So I’ve been thinking about this, and pending further evidence I’m going to assume that the story about vodka soaked tampons (see KPHO) is rubbish. Every so often it seems to make the rounds (see Snopes). Here’s why I’m an unbeliever.
A tampon will soak up about 15ml-18ml (see About.com) of liquid which is a pathetic dram. Alcohol is not blood, but for this thought experiment it’ll do. I can test it later. Regardless, it’s likely much less than a shot.
In addition tampons are designed to retain liquid rather than release it, so there’s a reasonable chance that it wouldn’t release the booze very quickly.
Now, as far as I can discover, a stomach absorbs about 20% of consumed alcohol (see Brown University), the rest is through your intestine. For the moment I’ll make the assumption that vaginal walls absorb alcohol at a similar rate as the intestine. Although this probably isn’t accurate due to the the quantity of blood vessels, it doesn’t matter because the rumour generally also includes men who, it is whispered, stick it up their bum.
It follows, I think, that if I drink a Polite Dram (about 35ml - 40ml), 80% of that will end up in my intestines, which is 28ml - 32ml. That’s about double what this mythical Tampon Delivery Mechanism would offer. Also, drinking the Polite Dram on an empty stomach (remember kids: eatin’ is cheatin’) will whap that Double Tampon Quantity right into my intestine, an organ which exists to diffuse things into my blood vessels and make embarassing noises during quiet moments.
Therefore I conclude that ingesting a Polite Dram on an empty stomach may be up to twice as efficacious as Tampon Delivery, plus it’s easier to buy in rounds. Have you ever tried getting a tampon in a pub? Those bloody machines never work.