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Fermi problem: booze prevalence update

Previously I'd tried estimating how much Americans spend on alcohol. Didn't directly estimate how much they drink, but I've now seen articles on that.

http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/medical_examiner/2014/10/how_much_alcohol_do_americans_drink_consumption_predicts_alcoholism_and.single.html
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2014/09/25/think-you-drink-a-lot-this-chart-will-tell-you/

Log-normal curve. Yep, 30% don't drink, and another 30% have at most a drink every two weeks. But the average (calculated by hand from the graphs) is 9.8 drinks a week -- which is between the 8th (6.25) and 9th (15.28) deciles. Meanwhile the top decile is downing more than 10 drinks a day. At least, if we trust the government survey this is based on.

I'm probably in the fifth decile these days.

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Damien Sullivan
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