Researchers breathalysed 2,000 people as they left bars in the province of Brittany. Patrons with body art and adornments returned higher alcohol readings than those without.
These differences in readings between the inked people and the cleanskins suggested that tatts may be a “marker” for alcoholism, according to scientists.
I suppose that's why they call boozing "getting on the ink".
Previous research had shown that people with tattoos and piercings were more likely to engage in unsafe sex, fighting and heavy drinking, the rationale being they are risk takers.
People do like a drink in Brittany. An expat Australian mate owned a bar in a place called Morlaix (population 15,000) and when I visited a few years ago, his venue was in the top ten of French sales of Jack Daniels.
He was the only person in town who liked bourbon whiskey, so there was a message right there.
So is this (more) flawed research posing as news on a slow media day? Lighthouse’s preferred research partner Neil Stollznow of StollzNow Research:
"The problem is that it’s not a good sample. It is a big sample, but only of those who go out drinking. There could be a large number of people with tattoos and piercings who are at home watching the television.
"To make the conclusion they do you would have to randomly sample the population and then track them to see whether they go out, drink or get into trouble.
"The best you can say is that of the population who go out at night to bars those with tattoos and piercings are more likely to drink more – and although the differences in alcohol levels are statistically significant, they’re under the recommended level for confidence."
The bottom line is that there’s a strong case for research of almost any kind coming with an explanatory label.
Photo credit: Inkarttattoos