Beer diplomacy is the best diplomacy

By Mike Pomranz
June 29, 2018
Photo by Mike Moore via Getty Images

Tensions between the US and Mexico have been high since you know what. While sometimes it feels like nobody wants to do the hard work of mending our relationship with our neighbors to the south, someone has finally stepped in to try to bring Americans and Mexicans together: Bud Light.

Following in the footsteps of its successful promotion of offering free beer to Philadelphians if the Eagles won the Super Bowl, America’s most popular beer brand made a similar proclamation surrounding Mexico’s upcoming World Cup match against Brazil on Monday. If Mexico is able to pull off a victory and advance to the quarterfinals, Bud Light is promising to help the entire state of California pay for celebratory beers.

OK, granted, California already gets along Mexico to begin with. If this was really about repairing American-Mexican relations, Bud Light could have tied a Mexican World Cup win to beer for all of, I don’t know, Kansas. Still, it’s nice to see someone encouraging Americans of any kind to root for Mexico’s success.

Bud Light actually made its big proclamation three weeks ago, back before the World Cup even started. On Twitter, the brand wrote it “has been informed of the great Curse of the 5th game that haunts Team Mexico” and stated “that should Mexico advance to the Quarterfinals such a great victory shall be celebrated by … helping ye pay for thy celebratory Bud Lights.” (Though “helping pay for” doesn’t quite sound like totally free beer, at least one tweet from Bud Light has used the term “free.”)

At the time of that tweet, Mexico’s fate was unknown in a tough group that included the top-ranked FIFA team in the world, Germany, but thanks to a German collapse that included a loss to Mexico, the Mexican team took second in its group and now faces another tough challenge to kick off the knockout stage: FIFA’s number two team, Brazil.

As for the “Curse of the 5th game,” that refers to Mexico’s inability to reach the World Cup’s fifth game—now also known as the quarterfinals. Despite advancing out of the group stage each of the past six World Cups, Mexico hasn’t been to a fifth game since they hosted the event back in 1986.

Needless to say, playing what may be the best team left in the tournament won’t be an easy win—but at the same time, the New England Patriots are one of the most successful dynasties in the history of the NFL, and the Eagles were able to beat them to guarantee their city free beer. If Mexico does advance, we may see a new curse: The curse of going against the team that is playing for free Bud Light!