according to one suburban myth, Europeans used to drink wine and beer instead of water because the water was too dangerous. i'm sure a link exists, but i don't feel like looking for it.
well, nowadays, the average American may have to switch to beer because their bottled water is too expensive:
"A Minyanville random survey of retail outlets found that the average retail price for 40 ounces of Dasani Purified Water is $3.10. However, the average retail price for a 40 ounce bottle of Colt 45 is $2.05, a savings of more than 33% over water. And that's despite a surge in beer prices thanks to a shortage of hops and malted barley."
so, if you see people carrying 40's to the gym, remember that they may just be smart shoppers, and not necessarily alcoholics.
considering that the beer brewing process starts with filtered water, buyers of bottled water are paying the bottler 50% more to not add anything to it.