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A character is having a lot to drink, induced by sorrow or otherwise, and the bartender tries to gently get this character to stop. This character will then react angrily. Often the bartender asks "Don't you think you've had enough?", and the character snaps "I'll tell you when I've had enough!", hence the name.

Nowadays it's almost a Discredited Trope due to having as many parodies, usually involving someone Drunk on Milk or drinking an absurdly small amount, as straight uses.

Also, even though people in Real Life are prone to do this, bartenders don't stop at asking, as they need a bar to keep its license. They will simply refuse to serve a seriously intoxicated customer any more alcohol, and if the customer puts up a fuss, that's what the Bouncer is for.

Almost a stock phrase of The Alcoholic.

Examples of I'll Tell You When I've Had Enough! include:



 Barman: You don't think you've had enough, do you?

Death: I know when I've had enough.

Barman: Everyone says that, though.

Death: I know when everyone has had enough.

  • Seen in The Lost Weekend (although he's not Drowning His Sorrows so much as getting plastered because he's a professional drunk.)
  • Henry in The Secret History, only with pills.


 David: I'll...have the shame again, Sham...

Barkeep: Don't you, uh...don't you think you've had enough, Mr. Hatch?

'David: Enough!? Shure I've had enough! Of this crazy, go-ahead, shtinkin world...that'sh what I've had enough of!

Web Comics

  • In Narbonic, Dave, after drowning his sorrows, moves from the bar to the coffee shop, where he snarls at Calliban the demonic barrista "I'll tell you when I've had enough Mocha Talls, dammit!"

Western Animation

  • In an Alvin and The Chipmunks episode that spoofed King Kong, Theodore was at a bar, and when the bartender asked the question, Theodore snapped "More carrot juice!"
  • Bleeding Gums Murphy of The Simpsons said this in a flashback about his addiction to buying Faberge eggs.
  • Bobby from King of the Hill says this when the owner of the deli he's at tries to convince him he's had enough chicken liver.
  • On Rocko's Modern Life, in the episode "Who's For Dinner", Heffer runs away from home after discovering he's adopted. A diner waiter tells Heffer he's had enough French fries to eat, and Heffer yells in response, "I'll tell you when I've had enough, you greasy plate jockey!" Then he tries to eat the dijon mustard stain on the waiter's apron.
  • In the Hey Arnold episode "6th Grade Girls", Maria's boyfriend Tommy does this at the school dance with cups of punch.
  • In the My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic episode "The Best Night Ever", Spike gets ditched by the main characters and spends a lonely evening at the local donut shop:

 Spike: Hey, Pony Joe! Another doughnut.

Pony Joe: Don't you think you've had enough?

Spike: (Slams cocoa mug down on the counter) Another doughnut! EXTRA SPRINKLES!

 Freakazoid: Hey Mike, enough with the bells! [1]

Mike: I'm giving angels their wings!

Freakazoid: Well cut it out and give me another.

Mike: Hey, slow down Mr. F, it's not like Expendable Lad is dead or anything, he's just in the hospital with a bruised clavicle!

Freakazoid: I said give me another one! CURSE YOUR TINY PAPER HAT! If I want to blitz myself into some papaya-induced hallucination, that's my business...

  • Used in Home Movies when Jason became addicted to candy in one episode.

Real Life

  • One issue in the Modern Drunkard Magazine about Andre the Giant says that once a bartender wanted him to leave so he will be able to close, as he didn't want to, the bartender told him that he could stay only as long as he keeps drinking (the thing of Andre being a wrestler may have something to do with it); Andre finished up at 5:00 AM.


  1. He means the cash register.
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