Consuming any of the many forms of alcohol is a personal preference. Almost everyone drinks responsibly, spacing their intake over time so as not to become impaired. Others do not drink at all, either through a personal preference or because they don’t like the consequences. Careful drinkers usually limit themselves to two or three beers a night, spread over several hours of entertainment.
There will always be a few players who think that the consumption of hard drugs (coke or amphetamines) will give them at edge to take on other players and win more games. The pool careers of these shooters tend to be measured in a small handful of years as they burn themselves out. After their heyday, they still pop up occasionally in local bar tournaments, where they try to relive their glory days. They rarely blame themselves for losing their career.
Avoid matches where the loser buys the drinks. If you're the better shooter, those "rewards" soon screw up your abilities (not to mention the increased probability of a DUI). If you find yourself in the company of someone who insists on playing for drinks, you probably may want to wait for the winners to get a little soused and then take them on for a few bucks a game.
The penalties for getting caught by your local enforcers of the law have become significantly onerous. Even at a first offense you are looking at penalties of several thousands of dollars, loss of license for several months, and draconian educational requirements. There are a lot of people who, get caught once, totally give up alcohol in all its forms.
If you are putting on a pool party, limit the drinks to non-alcoholic beer and sodas. It eliminates your personal liability in case something goes horribly wrong. If you are playing out of your home, only bring out the real stuff if everyone is walking distance from their homes.
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