If, on January 1, you find yourself staggering down 9th Avenue in Chelsea, trying to remember the blur of champagne toasts from the night before, it might take more than Excedrin to ease the post-boozing pain. On New Year’s Day, a hangover helper pop-up in Manhattan promises to provide remedies to make the even the hardest partiers feel halfway human again. Nurses will even be on hand to administer anti-nausea meds and intravenous booster shots.
The effort is sponsored by Flashgap, a photo-sharing app that was inspired by The Hangover movie franchise. The app was created by four students in Paris who used the closing credits of the first Hangover film as the genesis of their idea: the drunken, memory-challenged characters in the film find a camera and learn what they did that night from the pictures they discover. The Flashgap app allows members of a group to take pictures and short bits of video. These images vanish within three seconds and are saved to an album that is only able to be viewed a noon sharp the next day.
“It’s a surprise when people discover all the photos taken,” CEO Julian Kabab, one of the founders of the app, tells the Voice during an interview from Paris. “Why noon? We just figured that is commonly when people wake up after a night out.”
Starting at 7 a.m. through 10 a.m. New Year’s day, the Hangover Helper Pop-Up will be on 7th Avenue in Chelsea.
“It’ll be in the street, so people passing by can expect hangover kits, like water bottles, sunglasses, IV drips, shots from Starbucks,” says Kabab. “Half our team is French, so you might see croissants from local bakeries, too.”
The IVs are described as a “doctor-approved cocktail of IV fluids, Vitamins B & C, electrolytes, antioxidants and anti-nausea medication” that will be “administered by licensed nurse practitioners.”
The app is for anyone who happens to drink and party, but the founders say users are mostly an under-25 crowd — usually college students and those who may frequent after-hours clubs.
“It’s a very young user base,” Kabab says. “They’re pretty active on social media and partiers.” But he adds that he’d gladly help any senior citizens suffering from a hangover as well.
The app has 220,000 users, the founders say, and, to date, more than 2 million photos have been shared. So far, about 75 percent of Flashgap’s users are based in New York, but some of the city’s bar owners say gimmicky drinking apps tend to attract revelers of a certain type.
“I’ve heard of people using IV drips for hangovers on a regular basis,” says Megyn Bruder, owner of Project Parlor, a bar in Bed-Stuy that was named the best new bar by the Voice in 2011. But those aren’t the kind of patrons she sees at her place. “It’s more of a Midtown-crowd thing.”