Student Drink | Made with half water, half vodka, a caffeinated flavor enhancer, and a dash of electrolyte powder.

With gallon jugs, some college students look to take control of their drinking.

By Morgan Sung; Edited by News Gate Team

Several harm reduction advocates pointed out that drinking from borgs may actually mitigate the dangers of college drinking culture. NBC News; Getty Images / iStockphoto

The borg, also known as a “blackout rage gallon,” has taken over as the preferred beverage on college campuses all throughout the nation.

The cocktail has been acclaimed by many students on TikTok as a hangover-proof party staple since it is made with half water, half vodka, a caffeinated flavor enhancer, and a splash of powdered electrolytes.

The practice of binge drinking, which entails taking an excessive amount of alcohol in a short period of time, is nevertheless pervasive and difficult for many college administrators to manage. However, some harm reduction advocates, who do not support binge drinking, have claimed that the trend may actually lessen the risks associated with college drinking culture as borgs gain popularity.

Erin Monroe, a creator certified in substance use prevention in New York, said in a message to NBC News that harm reduction “recognizes that people are going to make their own decisions when it comes to alcohol and other drugs.” However, there are methods we can employ to lessen some of the risk.

Drinkers have “total control” over what they’re consuming and can pace themselves properly when they make borgs, according to Monroe. When combined with other strategies like taking a ride with a reliable designated driver, she called borgs “very solid harm reduction.”

The borg was first mentioned in a TikTok video from March 2020. The beverage is notably well-liked for tailgating and outdoor gatherings. Its popularity increased as a result of social withdrawal and other Covid avoidance methods.

One TikTok user commented on a video about the beverage, saying, “after covid the entire ‘community drink’ thing basically went out the window for us.” In response to a need, borgs emerged.

Just as their spring semesters came to an end last year, college students started posting more about the drinks. As students posted lessons and videos showcasing their jugs, which are customized to the drinker’s preferences, it grew in popularity throughout the autumn semester.

One TikTok user, for instance, demonstrated how to make a borg in a video from October using a bottle of Skyy vodka and Kool-Aid. With the help of MiO, a packet of Liquid IV, and a can of the fizzy energy drink Celsius, another TikTok user created a snow day borg.

Borgs are completed by giving the jug a clever name on the label. It has become a TikTok craze to display borg names like “Soulja Borg” and “Our Borg and Savior.” “Brown v. the Borg of Education,” “SpongeBorg,” and “Borgingham Palace” are some more amusing borg names.

Monroe pointed out that by supporting borgs, harm reduction proponents aren’t encouraging drinking.

“Harm reduction does not advocate drinking or abstinence. Harm reduction is absolutely free of bias, the speaker emphasized. “My constant goal is to assist in empowering people to employ risk-reduction strategies that work for them.”

She and other professionals have utilized TikTok to highlight how borg drinking seems to be less risky than other types of student binge drinking.

Monroe recently equated borgs to drinking in a video, saying that while in college, her friends would sip “gin buckets and jungle juice” from “trash cans in the basement of frat houses.”

She also supported students who customized their borgs to match their own alcohol tolerances. She created her own borg, which she called “Ruth Bader Ginsborg,” in a subsequent video, using more water than vodka. She made a remark that contrary to the drink’s name, “you might be blacking out, but not everyone wants to,”

The borgs are one of the “great harm reduction tactics I’m witnessing,” according to creator Leigh Beez, a crisis response educator who works with college students, in a TikTok video.

NarcanMan, a harm reduction content creator on TikTok, called borgs “the smartest method to get drunk” in a video.

There is no chance of unintentionally obtaining alcohol that you don’t like or have a low tolerance for, according to him. “You have a sealed jug, so there’s no risk of someone putting something into your wide-open cup. You’re all drinking enough water, too!”

In the meantime, borgs have received acclaim from numerous millennial TikTok users in comments.

One TikTok artist claimed in a video that when in college, she remembered seeing bits of hair floating in the bathtubs of frat houses, which were used to keep party drinks. How we as a generation didn’t all succumb to sepsis is astonishing, remarked another person.

Others have remarked that the beverage seems to be a more hygienic substitute for the shared “jungle juice” vats that for a long time predominated college events.

By Morgan Sung; Edited by News Gate Team

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