Tuesday, April 19, 2011

It's not a party without American Red Cups

Because of the crumbling Irish economy, each Irish citizen living in the US is required, by Irish law, to take in another Irish citizen and support him or her until conditions improve. Thus, we have a Girl From Ireland staying with us in our house.

Nah, I'm just shitting you. The GFI is actually The Wife's oldest friend since childhood, and she's staying with us voluntarily. Actually, I agreed to it when I was drunk and would never have otherwise consented to having a houseguest for 5 weeks but The Wife is good at taking advantage of me. I'm sorta kidding. I mean, GFI is perfectly nice and just as plucky and charming as you might imagine but having anyone in your house for 5 weeks is kind of a drag. Whatever, they're in Vegas right now and I'm revelling in the time alone.

Wait, this had a point. Oh yeah. So one of the benefits of having the GFI around is hearing about the Strange and Bizarre Customs of Her Land, and the one I'm impressed with most so far is the deep Irish need for American Red Cups at parties. (In all fairness, this seems to be a British-Isles-wide phenomenon, and not restricted to Ireland alone.) You know what I'm talking about:

So apparently having red Solo cups is the key to having a successful party in Ireland or Britain because, I don't know, they're American or something. Check it out:

You do see them in every American high school film! That's true! Anyway, as capitalism teaches, every untapped market will eventually be filled. And to fill the American Red Cup market, there's Redcups.ie, your premiere Irish source for American Red Cups! Behold:
The Red Cup has been made world famous by its appearence in films and sitcoms such as Desperate Housewives, Superbad, Roadtrip, American Pie, The Social Network, The Hills and music videos by Black Eyed Peas, Fergie, Pharrell Williams, Asher Roth and Ke$ha.

20 cups for €4.50 (plus €2 delivery). That's right, for only about $9.20, your Irish pals can party like Desperate Housewives!

Note that the same plastic cups are widely available in white in Britain. White's no good! Remember this whenever people say Americans are weird.


LB said...

This is all very true. I met some Australians while in Germany and one of the first things they asked was "So do you drink out of red cups?" Sort of flattering that the world's biggest drinkers were slightly jealous of our booze habits.

Unknown said...

I hope you're sending GFI home with several stacks of Solo cups. Maybe she can sell them and get that economy moving!

TK said...

Man, that is a really good idea. They're like $1.99 at Target for 30 or something. She could make fat cash AND become the American Red Cup Queen, all in one fell swoop.

Anonymous said...

Did you tell them about the art you can make in chain link fences using red (and other color!) plastic cups?

This seems to be particularly popular with cheerleaders. So much so that a secondary market of pre-engineered plastic inserts has emerged. "Available in a variety of colors to match your school or team colors."

(Dear god they actually have a "Put-In-Cups Chain Link Fence Art Online Calculator" so you can more easily figure out how many you need.)

Though this may in fact become a fairly impressive new pixel-based art form.

Tamagosan said...

I foresee her going home with not only stacks of Solo cups, but also the intense beer pong training required to properly do them justice. Just imagine her hustling her hometown... You guys have your work cut out for you; good luck.

Marie said...

A Brit Boy was visiting and jonesing to go go to American party, complete with the highly coveted Red Cups. Thankfully we were able to provide him with the real American experience.


Plastic-free Beth Terry said...

Oh good god. Why emulate Americans' environmentally irresponsible behavior? We have people over here trying to get OFF the red plastic cup habit:


Unknown said...

I just discovered this blog and the red cups post caught my eye. That is hilarious! I also see you have labels for Chuck Klosterman and noticed you have a similar witty writing style - seems like a pretty cool blog =)

Dan said...

This is a revelation, TK. I find that the redcups.ie site is lacking instructional graphics showing you how you're supposed to leave the red cups EVERYWHERE around the host's apartment, filled with cigarette butts. This is an important ritual that I hope a generation of young Irishmen and Irishwomen isn't not missing out on.

Also, I like the idea of the red cup taking on a Mentos-like significance in Ireland, such that just tilting one at somebody means 'Hey, Rebekah... wanna party?'

Chester said...

I wonder if the Irish government is considering charging a tariff on American Red Cups in order to protect the domestic plastic cup industry.

Moltenriches said...

I don't know why American's drink out of them, why don't you just drink out of the can/bottle? Seems stupid pouring it into a plastic cup first

Myles said...

They are a novelty in Australia as well - but they are limited supply!

You can grab them from a company called REDDS CUPS though at


delivered all over Aus or from any Dan Murphys stores nationwide!

TeddyBlair said...

I spend my summers in Ireland and this is very true. My friends there couldn't wait to ask me about these "American traditions." The first thing I'm asked there is, "you live in California? So you, like, know wee movie stars right?"
I was just browsing the red cup images for a presentation I'm giving and came across this blog. This was very entertaining, thank you!