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December 6th Update

In the December 6th post I said it was time to re-read Hemingway’s Islands in the Stream. I started yesterday and it has been quite interesting.

First, the terms he uses for individuals would not pass muster today. I guess like Mark Twain, Hemingway was an author who had different races in his books and both used the terms of their times. When I first read this book in the 1970’s I didn’t pay any attention to the words used. Today they stand out like a sore thumb.

Secondly it is amazing how easy this book is to read. I have downloaded plenty of “popular” novels on to my Kindle from authors who have a large following. Many I fail to finish either due to the writing or awful plots.

Finally I was not aware that there was a song named Islands in the Stream. Written by the Bee Gee’s and sung by Kenny Rodgers and Dolly Parton. When you Google “Islands in the Stream” this is what comes up, not the Hemingway novel.

I am thinking that once I finish this book it is time to revisit some Steinbeck.

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December Twenty-Second

22, what can you do with that? Well the first Christmas tree with electric lights was turned on by Edison on December 22nd. Then there is 22 caliber, a size of ammunition many have spent time putting holes in cans with.

But the Hyperbolic Tangent of 22 is 1! I can’t say that my memory of math and physics reminds me of why this is important but there was a lecture titled “Quantum Simulation of Hyperbolic Space with Circuit Quantum Electrodynamics“. By now many will have figured out where this is going. Quantum Electrodynamics = Richard Feynman, but you would be wrong. Feynman didn’t drink.

Hyperbole is something I have been accused of and I am a fan of Feynman’s so how about four drinks from my bar?

Winter option:
Bourbon – I am not a sour mash fan, just Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey please. Add a bit of ice and I am good to go.

Spring option:
Rum & Tonic – using dark Meyers rum and one must not forget the lime.

Summer option:
Pastis – Ricard is my favorite. A couple of these will cool the afternoon off.

Fall option:
Vodka Martini – I like mine on the rocks and whatever one does keep the pumpkin spices away!.

One too many and see what happens
  • Do I allow these drinks in other seasons? Sure although Pastis is really a warm weather drink. The others will work on all 365 days.
  • How many lime wedges in my Rum & Tonic? I like 2, the dark rum can handle it.
  • Betsy wants to know why Whiskey and Pickle juice didn’t make my list? Do I have to answer? OK, I have been lucky and do not often suffer from cramps.
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Three Martini Lunch

¡ IT’S BACK !

trump wants to bring the 3 martini lunch back and he doesn’t even drink. I guess this means a special post on the proper martini may be in order but I would have to write it before lunch.

And yes, in the 1970’s I did participate in a few. The experience was horrible, drink lunch with a customer and then try to get home. No way to go back to work. One that pops up in my memory was with Don Underwood (aka Freddy the Plumber) who had worked at Tacoma Marine Supply when I started. He left and became a purchasing agent, therefore I had to take him to lunch. Don got me blasted, don’t remember if it turned in to business.

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December Twenty-First

Today is the first day of winter and my favorite day of the year. You are asking why? Because starting tomorrow we get more daylight every day for six months!

Just in case it is getting chilly outside we might need Heated Drinker Bases. Coastal Supply or any farm store should have these and if you don’t know what they are you are just going to have a cold drink. Just to be different, I’m not going for a hot drink, actually something really cold, thus the need to keep our “drinker base” heated.

MARTINI’S AND MITTENS
Yup a Martini consumed outside, thus the need for mittens. A tradition at our house in Tacoma if/when we got dry snow.

  • Straight up or on the rocks? YES
  • Gin or Vodka? I prefer Vodka but there is nothing wrong with Gin.
  • May I put a blue cheese stuffed olive in my Martini? According to François-Paul- NO!!!!!!!!! But on this issue I don’t listen to FP.
Undated photo of Martinis and Mittens in Tacoma
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December Twentieth

Sunday is the traditional time for brunch and how does brunch start, a cocktail. Bloody Marys, Mimosas and Champagne are traditional choices.

But why can’t we drink every morning? A generation or so ago it was common in many cultures but like the three martini lunch, less and less people are participating.

Are options still available? Sure!

Option from Venice:
Ombra – in Italian the word means shadow or shade but in Venice the word signifies a small drink or glass of wine quite often in the morning.

Option from France:
Coffee with… – go to a rural bar in the morning and there will still be men with a cup of coffee (espresso) along with a shot of Calvados or some other alcoholic beverage. You have to keep the chill away somehow.

  • Am I a fan of either/both? Quoting George Patton, “does a chicken have lips?” which somehow means YES!
  • Choose one. Ombra in the summer, coffee with in the winter. Choosing just one is impossible.
  • But what about lunchtime? What’s wrong with the three martini lunch providing you don’t have to drive or do anything for the rest of the day.

OK, brunch didn’t get properly covered, feel free to grab a stalk of celery for your Bloody Mary, that’s fine but why not try something different!

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December Nineteenth

Probably need some “hair of the dog” after last night but I hope that 20 days in to this, our livers have grown accustomed to the nightly onslaught of alcohol.

Tomorrow we are going to start drinking in the morning, should we ease off today?

Option #1:
Mint Julep – Isn’t the Kentucky Derby run on a Saturday and what do they serve there? The recipe says it is a cocktail “primarily” consisting of Bourbon so no easing off today.

Option #2:
Saturday Slammer – Ingredients
1 oz. Pineapple Rum
1 oz. Strawberry Rum
1 oz. Coconut Rum
.5 oz Blue Curacao
1 oz. Orange Juice
1 oz. Pineapple Juice
.5 oz Grenadine
Cherry for garnish
This one doesn’t sound like a lightweight either

Saturday Slammer

Option #3:
Rum & Coke – a classic

  • Thoughts? A rum and coke has its place, the others- not for me.
  • Is drinking on Saturday different? Not in these times. All days are treated equally.
  • How is my liver doing? Really well since I wrote this prior to the holiday season and have had time for a transplant.
  • Many people ride their bicycles on Saturday. Drink suggestions for them? Wait till after the ride! It is not efficient to haul the required amount of alcohol on one’s bike.
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December Eighteenth

Ah, Friday. A reason to get dressed up for a night out. How about dressed up for a night in?

As I have been making straps there is plenty of time to listen to music. One of my favorite albums is Pat Benatar’s “True Love”. Not what you imagine when thinking Pat Benatar, it is an album she made in the “jump blues” style and yes, there is even a Christmas song.

I think of jazz clubs when I hear this album, so get dressed to the nines and mix away.

Option #1:
Gin Rickey – 1 shot of gin, 30ml fresh lime juice, as much mint as you want and top it up with sparkling water. Supposedly F. Scott Fitzgerald’s favorite.

Option #2:
French 75 – another one of Hemingway’s choices.

Option #3:
Whiskey Highball – 50% whiskey of your choice, 50% sparkling water.

  • Have I ever tried these? No but I have always wondered why scotch and soda is a classic but not soda with other whiskeys. Guess I will have to experiment.
  • What am I going to wear? Haven’t got a tux out since moving to Cle Elum. Is this the right night?
  • What is Karen going to wear? That is the $64,000.00 question! Although featured on another day the Sidecar was also listed as an appropriate cocktail and she likes those.
  • Pro Tip: don’t forget the music!
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December Seventeen

Today is “Wright Brothers Day” so something aviation oriented is in order. The primary option is an after dinner drink that I first heard about was when going to dinner with Greg Switlik during trade shows.

When going out with Greg there was always the decision of who would pay for pre-dinner drinks, dinner and finally after-dinner drinks. Pre-dinner tended to be the least expensive option followed by dinner. After-dinner drinks were the tab you didn’t want to get stuck with.

Option #1
B-52 An ounce each of Kahula, Baileys and Grand Marnier. Add all three liquors together in a cocktail shaker, than shake her up. The mixture is perfect for two, oversized shots.

Option #2
Blue Kamikaze. Add 2oz. of vodka, 0.75 oz. of blue curacao, and 0.75 oz. of fresh lime juice to a mixing tin with ice. Shake to chill and mix the flavors together, then strain into a martini glass.

Option #3
Anything poured from a 50ml “Airline Bottle”.

  • How many rounds of B-52’s were consumed in a normal night with Greg? Numerous!
  • Is blue Curacao in my bar? No but it’s in François-Paul’s.
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December Sixteenth

Another day, another birthday. Today it is Werner Krampl’s day to be a year older. Being a Canadian one’s first thought might be towards Canadian whiskey but that is not what I have seen Werner drink. To keep up the birthday tradition we must have two choices.

Option #1
SCOTCH, with just a bit of water to “open it up”. Ice is optional.

Option #2
Hendrick’s Gin and Tonic

Label on a Hendrick’s Bottle
  • My choice? G&T, I’m no longer a Scotch drinker. Had to consume way to much on the Victoria to Coos Bay yacht race.
  • Does one drink their Scotch before dinner or after? My guess is both!
  • How many bottles of each does Werner take on a week long bicycle ride? It’s a state secret.

We did get Werner a present. Nothing but the finest new bicycle saddle. The grey color is the hard new trend, wait, that was supposed to be hot new trend. Lightweight, for a rock but I haven’t figured out how to mount it.

Don’t worry, we have a few more birthdays this month to celebrate!

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December Fifteenth

Today we celebrate a funeral. Nineteen years after his death, Napoleon received a state funeral in Paris. I don’t think we should follow Napoleon’s drinking habits, he added water to his wine.

Burgundy was his wine of choice. In a pinch it would be acceptable to substitute an American Pinot Noir.

  • Do I drink Burgundy? Of course, but Bordeaux is more to my liking.
  • What does Burgundy pair well with? Game, beef, escargot- this is a versatile wine.
  • Where do the best Burgundy’s come from? François Paul’s cellar of course!

Where do we use this?