Sign in | Register now | Like us on FacebookLike Us | Follow us on TwitterFollow Us

Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Wed
Hi: 46
Lo: 36
Thu
Hi: 53
Lo: 43
Fri
Hi: 60
Lo: 36
Advertise on OnMilwaukee.com
Four Loko didn't kill Sara, but it didn't make her stronger.  Just sick to her stomach.
Four Loko didn't kill Sara, but it didn't make her stronger. Just sick to her stomach.

Fear and Loking in Maltwaukee

Tuesday started out like any other day. The sun was shining, the birds were singing and I was having a caffeine craving. After meeting a friend for lunch, I stopped by my corner store for a couple energy drinks before heading back home to an impatient mountain of paperwork.

While I perused the choices (Monster or Monster Low-Carb) my line of sight was yanked over to a row of brightly camouflaged cans bearing the words "Four Loko" on the side.

Shut up. Could it be? I had been hearing about this energy drink/alcohol hybrid via the interwebs grapevine. News stories are flooding my RSS regarding entire states banning the $2 can as college kids are freaking out on the carbonated malt beverage dubbing it "blackout in a can."

Of course I had to try it.

Four Loko comes in a crazy number of flavors more suited for the front of a Kool-Aid packet. Grape, fruit punch, orange blend (I don't even want to know), watermelon and blue raspberry are only half of the available choices. I went with boring ol' cranberry lemonade because Adult Sara made me.

The 23.5-ounce can not only tosses 600 calories at you, but a whopping 12 percent alcohol by volume, the equivalent of five to six beers. The four main ingredients (hence the "four" in the name, yay for creativity) -- caffeine, guarana, taurine and alcohol -- are causing the nation's "experts" to throw down over the mixing of uppers and downers. I do believe I've been doing that for years when I mix whiskey and cola, but I digress.

When I popped the top of my very own can o' Loko and took a swig, the sickly sweet, slightly pickle-ish liquid that shocked my taste buds wasn't the best of first impressions. However, I'm a lot of things, but a quitter isn't one of them, so I slugged and I sipped and I made horrible twisty faces. For three hours. Like whoa-ko.

I can't tell you I necessarily enjoyed those three hours as much as I anticipated, but let's say they didn't suck. What did suck was the horrible stomachache my non-college age body was stricken with post-Lok. After doing a bit of online digging, I found this is completely normal. OK then.

What isn't as normal as post-Lok gut rot is the fact that sooner than later we may be kissing the sugary substance goodbye. As more and more college students binge (and unwillingly purge) on Four Loko, campuses across the country are banning it. Our neighbor across the lake has outlawed it completely. Michiganians are out of "Lok."

After spending a night with Four Loko, do I feel the government should forbid me from any future nights of Fourlokoing? No way. This is America for cripes' sake. If college students are smart enough to be in school, they should be smart enough to not drink themselves stupid.

I do think the crazy low price for the drink is not only encouraging Loking in excess, but it's frightening to think what the quality of the ingredients must be.

If FoLo taught me one thing, it's that I'm definitely a gal of refined tastes. Perhaps next time I'll try the lemon lime flavor.

Talkbacks

rabid652 | Nov. 15, 2010 at 5:25 p.m. (report)

It's almost 24 oz., alba. Figure 4% abv for a 12 oz. Miller Lite and it's easy to see how this could be the equivalent of 5-6 beers. I'm not sure what the attraction is for these things are. I did partake in one night of binge Sparks drinking back in college but that went about as I expected...gross taste, unpleasant drunkeness then stomach ache for about 24 hrs. afterwards.

Rate this:
  • Average rating: 0.0
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

alba | Nov. 15, 2010 at 2:07 p.m. (report)

Miller Lite is 4.2% ABV so this stuff will get you as drunk as about three typical beers, not five to six.

Rate this:
  • Average rating: 5.0
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

AverageGuy | Nov. 13, 2010 at 9:44 p.m. (report)

Ok, Paul, well then feel free to let everyone else make any important decisions in your life.

Rate this:
  • Average rating: 5.0
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

jthom | Nov. 12, 2010 at 2:39 p.m. (report)

I tried orange and it was horrible tasting as well. No more Loko for me.

Rate this:
  • Average rating: 0.0
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

brewcitypaul | Nov. 12, 2010 at 2:04 p.m. (report)

"they should be smart enough to not drink themselves stupid"....they aren't smart enough, see the UWM student who walked off the bike path in a drunken stupor last month to his death? I like to go out and have a few drinks and enjoy myself, but it's no shock the govt is trying to take these off the shelves. It's incredibly difficult to be self aware of how intoxicated you are when you have so much caffeine and other energy stimulants running through your blood.

Rate this:
  • Average rating: 1.0
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Post your comment/review now 5 comments about this article.
Post your comment/review now

Facebook comments

Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.