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GRIESHEIM, Germany — It’s a universal comeuppance for bad behavior that some adults have dealt with at some point. And come New Year’s Day, this shared experience will roar loudly through the collective groans of a populace who didn’t know when to stop.

It’s the hangover. And you brought it on yourself.

This blurry-eyed fact can be the first thing to greet a drinker in the morning. What, it asks, made you think you could mix beer and wine, do that third shot of tequila and chug that last vodka tonic before hitting another bar with your buddies?

Now it’s time for some bodily payback.

All you can do is get up off the front lawn and put the right stuff back in yourself to get moving again.

Hangover cures are as prolific as the hangovers themselves. Walk into any bar in any city, and if you can find the proper translation, you’ll get a knowing chuckle and a bevy of homemade remedies. Alcohol ravages the rich and poor alike, the young and old, the iron-livered and the lightweights.

The Germans call a hangover der Katzenjammer, roughly “wailing of the cats,” because it is believed that Germans whine more than any other nationality when they’re feeling bad. The symptoms are all the same, but the cure varies.

Hanging out at a Darmstadt bar this week, Army Spc. Ben Brierly swore by a Bloody Mary mix and beer concoction. Drop a raw egg in the brew and chug it down, he said, and just tolerate the slimy embryo in favor of the calming effect it provides.

“The egg sits like an eyeball, a red eye,” said Brierly, a member of the 105th Military Intelligence Battalion. “The red eye works miracles.”

Pfc. Matt Burnett, also with the 105th, said there was “some science backing” to his massive orange juice intake prescription for the morning after. Burnett said that the sugars in the juice are the same as those lost when drinking alcohol.

“Within two hours, you’ll feel better,” he said.

Pfc. Steven Collins, of the 2nd Military Intelligence Co., said his standard remedy is a doner kebab, aspirin and plenty of water before bed.

“That’s a standard ritual, and you’ll be straight by 10 a.m,” he said.

Despite all the homegrown remedies out there, little scientific evidence exists that hangover cures actually work, according to a BBC News article published last week. Citing the British Medical Journal, BBC reports that researchers claim only abstinence or moderation as the forces to stop hangovers.

As if the effects of hangovers were still in question, researchers in Scotland were given public money this year to study a hangover’s effect on concentration and coordination. To no surprise for those who have dragged themselves to work after a thirsty Thursday, hangovers affected performance.

Taking Tylenol or aspirin before crashing is generally not recommended because of possible damage to the stomach and liver. Water, sports drinks and juices will help rehydrate, but coffee is frowned upon because of its diuretic properties, meaning more urination and less hydration.

Hangover cures vary from country to country. In Germany, some locals eat marinated fish, while in Holland, many eat raw baby herring covered in onions. Romanian citizens have been known to down a bowl of tripe soup to chase the effects away.

Noel Benson, owner of the An Sibin bar in Darmstadt, recommended a few drinks in the morning to chase away the dizziness and nausea.

“But if you’re working the next day, it’s very difficult to do that,” Benson said. A raw egg mixed with milk, salt and pepper also does the trick.

“One of the best cures is to drink three pints of water the night before,” he said. “But most people who wake up with a hangover were too drunk to do so.”

Some people smugly proclaim they don’t get hangovers.

Darmstadt resident Nadine Werner is one of those drinkers. Don’t buy this lucky lass anything if you see her out and about. Unlike most of us, she swears she won’t suffer from it.

“Most of the time, I know what my limits are,” she said. “But if I don’t, I still don’t have a hangover.”


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