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We 'bout that 'tuss.

Purple drank is a bit of an obsession around here. We're unsure why: drank has a charisma all its own, a make-do charm based in the need to not just get drunk, but to get excessively drunk on the cheap. Nay: to get excellently drunk, since it is the drink of champions like Mike Jones and 3-6 Mafia, who proudly advertises that they "drink that Tuss."

For those unfamiliar with the concept of purple drank, a.k.a. "lean," "sizzurp," or "you're drinking adulterated cough syrup because you find the concept of slumming it quaintly entertaining," Wikipedia contains all a human being could possibly want to know about that purp, though we excerpt two pieces in particular. No connection between the two. We swear.

DJ Screw first popularized the concoction[citation needed], which is widely attributed as a source of inspiration for the "chopped and screwed" style of hip hop music[8]...

...and two...

DJ Screw, who popularized the codeine-based drink, died of a suspected codeine-alcohol overdose on November 15, 2000, several months after the video to Three 6 Mafia's single debuted.[7]

Nice way to advertise your chosen brew, sailor. If DJ Screw were a lawn darts enthusiast, he'd have done the commercials with one driven to the hilt in his skull. BTW: we at EDSBS endorse lawn darts wholeheartedly. A kids' game with adult risks! Just like going to Cancun when you're 14!

Risks aside, purple drank remains popular enough to spawn a street-legal, non-narcotic version: Drank, the drink proudly touting the motto "Slow Your Roll" on the can just below the logo and header reading "The Anti-Energy Drink." The product warning reads:


Being the young, hyper urban teenager we aren't, we considered this warning carefully and sent off for some. Two days later, we got a package of five cans in the mail.


Package design: Purple's a great color, as it's the imperial color of Rome, some aroused genitals, and Grimace. It also happens to be the color of Dimetapp and several other brands of cough syrup, thus giving the whole package a nice semantic link to its narcotic street ancestor, and not necessarily to the toga-wearing Grimace with a three-foot long purple erection we imagined on the reveal.

Aroma: Precisely the scent of a carbonated grape Otter Pop with a hint of Dimetapp. None of the anise-y hints of Nyquil, though there is a hint of Robitussin's scotch bite in there. Just judging from the smell, this could be like chugging a liquid lollipop, a.k.a. the stuff you and your high-school girlfriend played around with that resulted in some extremely sticky sheets, an awkward ant infestation in your bedroom, and one raging yeast infection that left you in Manual Satisfaction Hell for at least a week.

Taste: Drank, you silky bitch: here we were, thinking you would bomb the palate with the lurid whore's fakery of chemical grape buoyed by a sea of high-fructose corn syrup, and you go and slip some Pendergrass smooth on us. It's nowhere near as sweet as we thought it would be, and the taste is remarkably consistent with the smell: grape-y but not overwhelming, leading with carbonation, and not repellent, even to sissified tastebuds like ours that commit the blasphemy of ordering unsweet tea in soul food restaurants. (OMG too many calories! Hard to do handstand pushups when you're heaving up 300 pounds! Yielding like a pussy to a slight familial tendency towards obesity and diabetes!)

Effect: Oh, consider our roll slowed. Valerian, rose hips, and melatonin, while not codeine, certainly will stun your inner water buffalo quick enough. Being the smart person we are, we noted that one serving of drank equalled one half of a can, which incidentally at 110 calories a serving isn't slimming, but it's not the potential disaster it could be if you had two or three cans of it.

Which you're not, because Drank will, for lack of better phrasing, knock you on your ass with a spike-covered fifty pound sledgehammer of mellow.

We know this because, being the book-smart but not operantly intelligent person we are, we drank a whole can the first time we had Drank. Normally, we have to drive on long car rides or we're simply unmanageable: twitching in our seat, doing deep breathing to attempt to relax, picking fights with truck drivers, flinging bottles out of the interstate problem child with ADD and time to burn. At best, we run laps through the radio yelling "NOTHING'S ON NOTHING'S ON NOTHING'S ON OH GOD ANOTHER STATION PLAYING "BARRACUDA" REALLY?"

After a headache set ten minutes after finishing the can, we slid into a pain-free stupor that TCOAN, if asked for a review, would probably describe as "one of the most pleasant driving experiences of my life." We had this conversation at least six times:

TCOAN: How do you feel?
OS: My roll has been slooooooooowed.
TCOAN: How do you feel?
OS: My roll has been slooooooooowed.
TCOAN: How do you feel?
OS: My roll has been slooooooooowed.
TCOAN: How do you feel?
OS: My roll has been slooooooooowed.
TCOAN: How do you feel?
OS: My roll has been slooooooooowed.

In fact, the mellow sledgehammer strike had effects all night and, we swear, through the next day. If years of stimulant abuse have made our system a leathery hide all uppers bounce off of, it has conversely weakened any tolerance for sedatives. Our in-laws described us as "nice," "polite," "relaxed," and "tactful," which they had to flinch while saying because frankly it felt wrong for all of us. You could have dropped pens on us while we lay on the floor, and we would have made as much fuss as an obese cat.

They're ordering us a case a month for life and two for the holidays. They're wonderful people.

Summary grade: We really don't know: as a social drink, Drank has zero applications. None. All we wanted to do was watch Discovery HD and go to bed at 9 p.m., which means if you like to party Boca Vista-style after the early bird special, Drank is the beverage for you. The one practical application could be to relax if you're the sort who has difficulty unwinding, and if that's you then Drank has a bullet named "chillthefuckout" on it for you, since you'll be snoozing like an Amtrak driver after a half can. A full can turns you into Andy Griffith, seersucker suit and all.

It does, however, deliver on all its promises: we were the epitome of anti-energy after consuming, and if what you're looking for is a bit less energy after sitting at a desk all day and enduring a hard, seated drive to work, then...sure, it's for you. Drank worked a lot better as a comedown beverage not called "McGillicuddy's Scotch for the Aged and Pension-restricted" during pre-bed GTA4 sessions, so perhaps that's its proper place in a day's rotation of legal substance consumption.

For overall mission execution divided by actual appeal to this urban teenager, we give Drank a solid B for somnamBulent. We just drank the last can, so expect a new blog post sometime around the middle of next week.