The SFA Take(s) Five: Koozie Code

Cartoon of soda can inside blue foam cooler

In The SFA Take, a weekly dispatch from SFA World Headquarters, we break down our perspectives on current issues related to foodways in the South. Sometimes, we admit, it gets a bit heavy. Today, we break for levity with a sixpack of social insight from guest writer Stephanie Burt.

Koozie Code

by Stephanie Burt

In the South, koozies are more than a throwaway promotion item given out at 5Ks and your roommate’s wedding—they are both an accessory and a necessity.

Koozies are part of many a dockside bar, a friendly tailgate, or a neighborhood cookout. And there is an unspoken code about koozies at a beach or dive bar: if a bartender at such an establishment serves your beer nestled in one, you’re either a regular or invited to become one. (Proper koozie courtesy dictates that when you finish your brew, you slide off the koozie and lay it next to your empty bottle or can.)

For many of us, koozies are also a personal form of expression, folded and stowed in purse or back pocket, ready for a frosty beverage at any moment. What does your koozie style suggest about you?Burlap Chevron NC KoozieThe burlap. You have a copy of Garden & Gun on the coffee table and know how to shuck an oyster with your own monogrammed oyster knife.

zipper koozieThe zipper. You have been a fan of leopard print at some point in your life. If you have a zipper model for wine glasses, you are likely wearing leopard print right this moment.

tshirt koozie

The jersey. An anthropomorphized beer is a happy beer. Dressing your beer up like a little person means that you are very loyal to your team and to your beer. And to your dog, who is also wearing a team jersey.

band koozieThe concert. Or, as you would call it, the show. You know that band tees are so last decade. You’re surprised that you managed to get home with this koozie after that wild night. The main souvenir was the experience, man.

Koozie Cowboy BootThe boot cut. You sing “Friends in Low Places” for karaoke and are probably marginally famous among your neighbors for your homemade salsa.

Screen Shot 2015-11-12 at 4.23.20 PMThe handmade. You have already made as many toaster covers, placemats, and table runners as you can. Plus that Clemson fabric was on sale, and how much more practical is a koozie than a toaster cover anyway?

bev napThe wet napkin. You have forgotten your koozie.

Stephanie Burt lives, writes and podcasts (and adds koozies to her collection) in Charleston, South Carolina. Follow Stephanie on Twitter as @beehivesteph.