Text: (the drinking game known as “quarters”).
Context: My informant learned the game “quarters” from the older members of his fraternity at UCI about 30 years ago. He and his fellow pledges played the game very often before social gatherings. In the game, players try to bounce a quarter off of a table and into a short glass of hard liquor; if a player succeeds, the next player must drink the contents of the glass. My informant now has passed the game onto younger generations of drinkers.
Analysis: The game of quarters hails from the ancient Greek game of “Kottabos,” in which players would toss sediment remaining in their wine glasses onto a plate in order to make other players drink. After years of evolution in European pubs, my informant played the modern game. The game stems from a tradition of drinking, which is also prevalent in the Greek Life system at universities in America. I interpret the game as a method by which one gets drunk quickly in a social setting, and it is more typical in pregames than in the main social event or afterparties.