Drink Social
by Andy
06-January-2018 at 00:48

Untappd. If I sent you a text or email with that word in it, you'd probably think I'd forgotten to spellcheck the message. It's a name - a word - built for the Twitter age, where every character counts and which is designed to make people over a certain age feel uncomfortable (incidentally - get clicking that link there and follow us!). I must be over that age, because the misspelling certainly grinds my gears. It's like the missing E in Tumblr (or Grindr, if you're that way inclined - and no, I'm not linking to that page), or Facebook in general. Stupid and pointless.

And yet, that first paragraph and description is something of a misnomer (go Google that word, it's fine - it's like concomitant. It looks like a fake word, but it's real and used by idiots that want to sound intelligent. Hey...) I sound like I'm being hard on Untappd - that I don't like it. Honestly, that couldn't be further from the truth. I'm actually hopelessly addicted to it.

But I digress. I'm getting ahead of myself here. There must be a lot of you crusty old fogeys out there (anyone over the age of 40) who have no idea what Untappd is. You've only just figured out what this gosh darned interweb thingamajig is and you don't quite understand the point of it all yet (it's porn. I'll save you the effort of looking). Untappd , my friends (we are friends, aren't we?), is the latest in a long, long line of social media sites, such as Bebo, MySpace and little know newcomer, Facepage. What's that? It's Facebook? What a stupid name. Anyway...

Unlike those other aforementioned hives of villainy and unchecked narcissism mentioned above, Untappd isn't about boasting to the world about how you 'invented' macaroni cheese, or stalking your ex-partner. No, Untappd serves a higher purpose; it allows you to keep track of the copious amounts of alcohol you consume on a daily basis, just to numb the pain of everyday life, trying to hide from the unescapable truth that deaths icy gaze draws closer every day...

But Hell - it could be worse, right!?

Ah crap. Here's me trying to explain how awesome Untappd is to the unsuspecting masses and I've turned it into a cynical treaty on the harshness of life itself. Again. That'll happen when you mix four different types of beer (follow them on Untappd!) and chilli heatwave Doritos - the greatest of the Dorito family, so help me God - before bed. My arsehole (and the toilet) won't thank me tomorrow...

I did it again didn't I? Digress, I mean. Gimme a second.

Let's get back on track, shall we? (Woohoo - track!) For anyone who hasn't heard of - or used - Untappd, what is it? We'll, Untappd is a social platform - generally used on mobile handsets or tablets (although available on PC to, in a stunted form) - which allows you to search for and 'check in' beers (and apparently ciders too - I'm looking at you, BK...) and then rate then for the millions of other users around the world to see. So, for example, you decide to crack open a can of McEwan's Export after a hard day's graft at the quarry (and who am I to judge...). You figure that this can of McEwan's is even more dull and insipid than the last 12 you've just poured into your facehole and want tell the world. Well, if you have Untappd installed on your smartphone of choice, you can! Simply log in, find your poison, enter a few details (including - but not necessarily - a photo of your pasty face indulging in your favourite tipple) and tell the world what you think! Because isn't that what modern life is all about - venting your spleen online about subjects that don't matter, to strangers on the internet who don't care!? Of course it is!

(I'll give you a couple of minutes to let the extreme irony of that last paragraph sink in, as you read this online, on this website...)

Still here? Good!

So, look. Again I find myself making excuses for my tone in this article an again, I'll blame the beer (not beer in general - just what I've had tonight). Genuinely, I do love Untappd and I know Scott does too. It - pun intended - taps into that gaming instinct we both have, by allowing us to unlock badges depending on a variety of factors, such a number of beers drunk, types of beers drunk and photos uploaded (as well as loads more). It's like Xbox achievements, or whatever Sony decided to call their rip off version (keep your head geeks - I have a PS4 too). You gain nothing from these badges - except getting a step closer to liver failure - but it is addictive trying to 'earn' them. Isn't that some kind of huge irony? Tacking one horribly addictive activity (Untappd badges) onto another (alcoholism)?

But - to come back into reality for a second (which, for the record sucks ass), Untappd is kinda cool too. You can find out what that amazing beer you had a month ago was called, without watching some fuckers video of you spewing it back up on Youtube and also find out where you can buy it again (you can then choose whether you want to bring it back up again). You can see what beers local bars are serving, thus saving yourself valuable time going to sub-standard pubs - and possibly putting yourself in life dangerous situations - in search of a great pint. You can also track where your 'friends' have been - or possibly still are - drinking, and surprise them by hiding in the bushes outside the pub after closing time.

Genuinely though, the whole process of checking in a beer as your sinking it, is incredibly satisfying. Watching the little numbers - total beers and total unique beers - creeping up, appeals to that most human trait, getting one up on others. There's something primal about proving to the world that you have had 311 more unique beers than that idiot that sits beside you in work, or that you managed to drink an average of 14 beers a day last year. And then to thrust that into the face of the world. That, my friends, is living.

I'm sure there's actually loads of other cooler stuff that's possible with Untappd that I haven't even touched upon here. The fact is though, my buzz is starting to wear off and I'm dangerously low on beer at the moment. I also think I may have stretched this article on just a paragraph (or ten) longer than it needed to go and the fact is, no fucker actually cares what I say on here anyway. I could tell you that I once had a conversation with the Loch Ness Monster on the deck of the Titanic, just as the last blue moon shone its light on the earth and no one would know, as no one will get this far into this piece of absurd literature. It's true though - this is absurd. And I also did speak to old Nessie a while ago. She said she loves the site, but we need to include more stouts.

And on that note, I think it's time to reel this in a bit. If, like us, you too want to keep track of your descent into alcoholism, download the Untappd app (Android here - IOS here) and get following myself and Scott. God knows we need the attention and a little bit more reason to keep drinking. Peace, out.

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