Bootlegger Completes Sober October And Raises £7,300 For Macmillan Cancer Support
Bootlegger made his name sharing videos of his trips to watch his beloved Wrexham AFC play. But over the past year, he has become a certified Twitter legend, amassing an army of fans who tune in every day to see his boozy antics.
If you ask most people about the viral sensation, they will probably tell you he loves a pint or two.
But in a shock move to his thousands of followers, he decided to test his mettle and attempt Sober October, going a whole month without having a sip of ale. And against all odds, he's actually done it, raising a tonne of cash for charity.
But it wasn't easy.
Speaking to LADbible, the 45-year-old, known to his loyal followers as 'the Captain', said: "It's been an absolute grueller. I'll be honest, the first couple of weeks were a right pain in the arse. But I feel a million euros, captain, I'm just sinking a pint now.
"There's a big sense of achievement because I never thought I would do it. I've probably taught myself a lesson now, it's taught me a little bit of self control.
"I don't think I've gone that long without a drink in my adult life. So if there's one good thing that's come out of it, it's that I don't have to go out and get bladdered every single night of the week."
But if you think that means the end of Bootlegger, think again.
Laughing at the mere thought of going teetotal, he said: "Oh, don't you worry about it, the Captain will be back better than ever."
And he's already back in the boozer and has some big plans for the weekend.
Bootlegger - real name Karl Phillips - said: "We're going to the caravan, there's a firework display on at Prestatyn tomorrow. And I'll be taking the working man's kettle [a draft beer dispenser] up, so that will be firing up with a keg of Löwenbräu.
"We're there Friday and Saturday, but Sunday I'll be bang at it because that's the best drinking day of the week in my opinion. I'll be going to the local for a pint by the landlord and then going for a slap-up meal - I'm absolutely gagging to open up a bottle of red wine."
So who is the man behind the meme? Well, the Captain has been making videos for the best part of a decade, documenting his travels and his love of the amber nectar.
But over the past year, his fans have blown up and he's launched his own range of Bootlegger merchandise.
"I don't have a clue how it got so big," he said. "I think maybe the 'spidey senses' video probably broke the camel's back. Little did I know at the time that little clip would be so massive.
"If you ask a lot of people about Bootlegger, they will probably say 'it's him with the spidey senses and the helmet'. And now I get loads of people asking for pictures and asking for shout-outs.
"I've had to direct message a lot of people just to tell them that I don't do shout-outs, because if I did I'd spent half me fr***ing life doing them."
That incredible support has seen the dad-of-one smash his target of £500 and raise almost £8,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support.
He said: "I never in a million years thought I would get over £500, never mind £7,000, but if I didn't have that backing, I reckon I would have jacked it in after about a week.
"One geezer donated £250, ya know. But it doesn't matter how much anyone's put in, it's the fact that they've gone to the effort to do it - it's an absolute ballache to create a PayPal password and all that crap."
And though the challenge has helped him cut down on the booze and get a bit healthier, there was a deeper motivation behind it all.
"I had the Macmillan nurses in with me nana," he said. "And I've seen the work they do. They come in and act with dignity. So I saw it pop up and thought I would have a go at doing it, but never in my wildest dreams thought the support would gather on Twitter - and it has."
But like he said, there's no chance he will be stopping. He concludes: "The Captain is back, you know it, baby."
You can donate to Bootlegger's worthy cause here.
Featured Image Credit: Bootlegger/Twitter