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What Boofing Really Does to Your Body, According to Science

Welcome to a magical mystery ride down the tube and into the anus: a special three-part report on boofing. Parts II and III can be found here and here.

Here’s a real sentence I can’t believe is true: Brett Kavanaugh, our newest Supreme Court nominee, swore under oath, in a Senate hearing about his sexual misconduct allegations, that a joke he wrote about “boofing” in his high school yearbook referred only to farts.

Yep, boofing. For the uninitiated, just know that “boof” doesn’t usually mean flatulence. As we found out digging through the annals of slang history, back in the 1980s, when Kavanaugh was a student, boof was more commonly known as lingo for anal sex — which is just one reason Kavanaugh’s classmates say he’s full of shit.

Today, however, boofing refers to consuming drugs or alcohol through the butt. And it’s time we learned a lot more about it.

Kavanaugh’s preliminary vote is scheduled for Friday, and the Senate will decide whether it cares if its next Supreme Court judge has a sketchy history and a flexible relationship with the truth, even when that truth is as embarrassing as butt chugging. In the meantime, allow us to provide a brief overview of the boofing phenomenon: the science of boofing, testimonials from real-life boofers, and the long history of the term “boofing,” from kayaking to baseball to anal sex.

How Boofing Works

In short, when you consume alcohol the normal way, your body treats it with natural filters and chemicals that we evolved to have in order to not poison ourselves. As Atlanta gastroenterologist Preston Stewart explained to CNNback in 2012:

Our stomachs and livers have an enzyme known as alcohol dehydrogenase that breaks down ethanol to make it less toxic for our bodies. The lower gastrointestinal tract doesn’t have that enzyme, so alcohol molecules are absorbed into the bloodstream through the lining of the colon.

Eventually the alcohol would still make its way to the liver, but the high alcohol content would overwhelm the organ.

How Normal Drinking Works

Basically, we’re made to eat and drink with our mouths because unlike the butt route, the mouth allows our body’s natural defense system to keep us from dying. This is called the First Pass, where your body’s natural defenses team up to break down and moderate the absorption of toxins before the entering the “systemic circulation,” where your bloodstream circulates to your brain, and all the other important organs.

Boofing totally bypasses all of that. When we drink beer with our mouth holes, alcohol is absorbed in the stomach and small intestine, which can take up to an hour, depending on weight and other food in the digestive tract. Rectally administering the booze, however, is basically just dumping alcohol directly into the bloodstream.

The Risks of Boofing

This faster absorption leads to stronger intoxication, which is all fun and games until you realize the alcohol is in your butt and you’ve effectively neutralized your body’s last-ditch attempt to save you from alcohol poisoning: vomiting.

When your body absorbs alcohol faster than it can eliminate it, your blood alcohol content (BAC) rises — so imagine the abrupt spike in BAC when you forgo the body’s natural process. Once alcohol hits the bloodstream, the only way out is to let it filter through the kidneys, liver and lungs. Such an immediate surge in BAC will lead to normal effects of an alcohol overdose, only in a much, much shorter window: Your brain begins shutting downyour breathing slows, your heart rate slows and if you’re like the man in 2004 who was administered a sherry enema by his wife, you’ll die.

I spoke with multiple boofers who admitted they take great lengths to get the exact dosage correct before butt-chugging. If they don’t, they risk ending up like Pi Kappa Alpha at University of Tennessee, whose members made themselves the poster boys of boofery after a 20-year-old was hospitalized — and authorities said he’d used an alcohol enema. The incident brought down discipline on the frat and embarrassed the college when it made national news.

How Real Boofers Do It

Those who regularly boof take extreme precautions, and are acutely aware that boofing, as Wesley put it, will get you “blacked-out drunk in a matter of minutes.” Another boofer, Taylor, measures his boof juice to the exact milliliter. He knows exactly how much time he needs to lie down to prevent any “leakage.”

“I use a ratio of 20 milligrams [of the 2C-B, a psychedelic] per milliliter of water, so with 200 mg and 10 mL of water I have my boof juice ready to go. Fifteen to 18 mg or so is a good boof dosage for 2C-B, so I use a little under 1 mL of water,” he says. He inserts the syringe 2 to 3 inches deep, and after squirting it in, he chills out on his stomach for a couple minutes.

Overall, there’s no good reason to boof, even if it’s in the name of hydration. But if you do, own up to it. The boof—sorry, the truth—will prevail.