Three Sheets to the Wind…Drunken Launderer?


BGOBGAI! Quickie:

Okay, some of you may know this already, but the phrase “three sheets to the wind” means to be drunk…really drunk…Keifer-Sutherland-knocking-down-Christmas-Trees drunk. You may also know that it doesn’t refer to someone who is hanging the laundry out to dry and turning the whole thing into a drinking game.

No, the phrase “three sheets to the wind” was coined during the time referred to as The Age of Sail, when massive sailing vessels used to roam the high seas. Rum was often considered as part of the daily allotment of provisions, the cessation of which single handedly kept me from joining the navy.

drunk2              The “sheets,” however, are not the sails, contrary to what one would logically conclude. No, “sheets” are the lines, or rope, that were used to keep the sails taught and able to efficiently create propulsion from the wind. So, to be “three sheets to the wind” is to be so drunk that the sailors let the lines attached to the sails run unattached to the ship and thus, the sails are flapping uncontrollably in the wind.

Not that I’ve been in such a situation…no…I just read about it…in a book.

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