Wednesday, May 28, 2014


Oh alcohol, one of life’s great redeeming elements, a refuge from the troubles of the world and the spark that lights many a midnight adventure through the lamplit streets of some far-flung city. 

The joys and subsequent pains of getting drunk have been appreciated all across this spinning globe, and many countries have evolved their own cherished tipple, with a scent, flavor and intoxicating effect that have sunk roots deep in the soil of the national psyche. 

So why not slip on the garb of some alternative patriotism and celebrate Russia with a beaker of vodka, or South Korea with a shot of soju. 

It’s guaranteed to be terrific fun – at least through the first four or five glasses...

Sunday, May 25, 2014


ALCOHOL—the mother of all evils
Sayed Abdullah S. M.
Konkani Shanti Publications (Goa)
Pages: 40
Price: Rs 60
Year: 2013

The author in his book, “ALCOHOL—the mother of all evils” has outlined the historical description of alcohol through the ages along with pattern and trends of alcoholism, its causes and effect, measures and mechanism to tackle the roots of alcoholism, and how it was prohibited by different religions and what methods were applied or followed to discourage the consumption of alcohol.
The author has categorised various aspects of alcoholism that even a layman can easily understand its aftermath effect on an individual, society and economy and why the governments have not made any serious efforts to curb it even after knowing how harmful it is.

As (UK) Sunday Express editor John Junor used to write, "Pass the sick bag, Alice."

Wednesday, May 21, 2014


“‘Rum Maniacs’ traces how and why heavy drinking became a subject of medical interest, social controversy, and lurid fascination in the early American republic. 
"At the heart of that story is the history of delirium tremens [which] changed how the medical profession observed, understood, and treated the more general problem of alcohol abuse. 
"Indeed, the delirium tremens diagnosis became the basis for the medical conviction and popular belief that habitual heavy drinking was pathological — a self-destructive compulsion that constituted a psychological and physiological disease.”
Mr. Osborn begins his book with a terrifying account of the hallucinations Edgar Allan Poe suffered in the throes of delirium tremens, the first of a long series of literary takes on the process from Charles Brockden Brown to Jack London that enliven this scholarly book. 
In addition we hear about movies such as “The Lost Weekend,” “Days of Wine and Roses,” “The Shining” and even the recent “Adventures of Tintin.” 
There is even a lengthy and fascinating disquisition on Walt Disney’s “Dumbo,” a film that “established pink elephants as the standard cliche for delirium tremens.”


Tuesday, May 20, 2014




Is it possible to drink alcohol and still be healthy? 
Alcohol consumed in moderation can make you feel good. This is the reason most of us drink it! 
Stress is a huge factor to weight gain and other health issues; if a beer at the end of the day helps you relax and unwind, then I guess it’s all good.  
One beer will work just fine.
If you have been guzzling beers every weekend to forget how miserable your week was, it is time to re-evaluate. 
As every health-conscious drinker will tell you, red wine has some healthy antioxidants. Thus, it can be healthy for a number of reasons, including helping your body fight against cancer-causing oxidative reactions.
Alcohol as a blood thinner enhances vascular health. Research has also found that moderate alcohol consumption appears to lower the incidence of type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, total and ischemic stroke, as well as result in an overall reduction in heart disease and related mortality. It has also been linked to higher bone density in postmenopausal women.

Sunday, May 18, 2014


Browsing the internet when you've been drinking is risky business - especially if you've bookmarked Amazon or Ebay. 

All of us are likely guilty of making a drunk purchase or two, but these people took it to the next level.

Saturday, May 17, 2014


Mark Twain Cocktail

* 1 1/2 ounces Scotch whisky
* 3/4 ounce fresh lemon juice
* 1 ounce simple syrup
* 2 dashes of Angostura bitters
Shake all the ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
This drink was described by Mark Twain in a letter to his wife Olivia from London in January, 1874:
Livy my darling, I want you to be sure & remember to have, in the bathroom, when I arrive, a bottle of Scotch whisky, a lemon, some crushed sugar, & a bottle of Angostura bitters. Ever since I have been in London I have taken in a wine glass what is called a cock-tail (made with those ingredients) before breakfast, before dinner, & just before going to bed.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Wednesday, May 14, 2014



Ladies, here’s a toast to quaffing an occasional beer. It can save you a lot of pain down the road.
That’s according to Dr. Bing Lu, who teaches at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School.
Lu says that women can reduce their chances of developing rheumatoid arthritis, which begins as early as the 20s, by drinking alcohol in moderation.
Tracking the drinking habits of women from two large studies that began in 1976 and 1989, respectively, Lu found that those who enjoyed a few alcoholic beverages per week cut their risk of rheumatoid arthritis by 21 percent. But the risk went down by 31 percent when they only drank beers.

Sunday, May 11, 2014


Hypnotiq (ghetto juice):  $3

Stoli strawberry (crap from Russia):  $3

Bacardi Gold (nobody drinks rum):  $5

Bacardi Orange (especially not this):  $3

Southern Comfort (passé):  $5

Dickel (beats me why nobody wants it):  $5

Seagrams VO (too fancy for my bar):  $5

Cazadores tequila (great deal):  $5

Arta tequila (ditto):  $5

Friday, May 9, 2014


Got a pair of smelly sneakers and some cheap vodka? 

Spray some into your shoes to kill that nasty odor!

Cheap vodka has a number of uses besides getting college kids drunk, and killing foot odor is an effective option. 

It was even "myth confirmed" on an episode of the all-knowing Mythbusters

If you have some lying around, pour it into a cheap spray bottle, or even attach a spray head to the top of the vodka bottle itself, and get misting. 

Some recommend mixing the vodka with water, but it's up to you and how much odor there is to clear out. 

The alcohol content of the vodka kills odor-causing bacteria and it's scentless when it dries. 

This leaves your shoes smelling a lot more like a new pair and a lot less like a locker room.

Thursday, May 8, 2014


(Click image to enlarge)

8 May 2014

Dear Joyce & Bill,

Thank you for your undated missive re Civil Code Section 52.6 pertaining to posting notices on resources available to victims of human trafficking.

Aside from the fact that your mailing (and your paid time on this matter) seems to me a waste of taxpayer money at a time when the State of California is on the verge of going broke, I would like to better understand why you believe my business in particular is covered by this law.

You write, “to the best of our ability we have researched those entities required to post and we believe your business is covered by this law.”

I would like to know why your research indicates that my business should be among those so honored.

This is partly because I have never seen your poster posted anywhere, certainly not in the establishments I frequent in Montecito.

In addition, I have a few specific questions:

What criteria are you using to determine which businesses should receive your posters for posting?

Is it because my business is on the Westside, and you believe human trafficking is a Westside rather than a Montecito issue?

Is it because some of my customers are of Mexican heritage, and you believe human trafficking is a Mexican heritage issue?

My customers and I would hate to think that your office is engaged in selective profiling and discriminatory practices.

Please clarify at your earliest convenience.


Wednesday, May 7, 2014


1 | When you take the first sip of a whisky, ask yourself, is it sweet, is it sharp? Does it coat your mouth, is it creamy? Once it gets to the back – is it hot, sweet, or spicy? And then comes the finish – does the taste linger in your mouth?
2 | Avoid drinking coffee or eating spicy food before you have a whisky – you want to keep your palette fresh to become good at tasting. 
3 | You'll find the flavours in a whisky with practice. People might say they can’t smell anything – it’s not that they can’t, it’s that they can’t translate what they’re smelling into words. The more you do it the more you’ll detect things like citrus and vanillas.
4 | Other big notes in whisky are fresh fruits, like apples, pears and pineapple – things that are around you all the time anyway. You can try and embed those smells in your memory by really focusing when you’re eating them – bury the aroma in your head as a reference point to re-call. 
5 | Don’t worry too much about colour. People put a lot of store by it, but other than what cask it was matured in, it doesn’t mean much. It's certainly not an indicator of quality.
6 | You can tell if a whisky is young because it'll be sharp on the nose– the alcohol is very prominent.  As you go through maturation, the prickle from the booze subsides a bit.
7 | Scotch whisky is made from purely malted barley, water and yeast.It's matured in an oak cask for at least three years, in a Scottish warehouse. Bourbons can be made with other grains like rye or corn, and are matured in a fresh wood casks, which gives a more hard-hitting, bitter flavour. 
| Before going on to the very expensive stuff, I would give a beginner a malt whisky, about 10 to 12 years old. And avoid smokey flavours until you're more used to the drink – they can be pretty divisive and put people off.
9 | Something like a 1989 vintage should be nosed for a long time. Smell it, smell it again, and the scent will keep on developing – that’s the sign of a great whisky. 
10 | Pairing food and whisky is becoming more popular, but it takes a great chef and a good palette to do it properly. You can pair it with chocolate or cheese for example, but I wouldn’t recommend a beginner trying to do it themselves.
11 | You'll only get better at whisky if you try different varieties.There’s a make and vintage for everyone –  just because you don’t like one doesn’t mean you don’t like them all. 
12 | I wouldn't mix up a Balblair whisky in a cocktail. I'd recommend drinking it on its own as the sole flavour –  you don’t want to dilute it.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014


1. Food

Eat something. Even if you feel like you’re going to throw it back up when you get anywhere near a piece of toast, it’s worth a shot. Food will help you gain your strength and energy back – regardless of if you choose greasy food or something a little lighter.

2. Alka-Seltzer

Grab one, grab a glass of water and mix them. Drink it and your stomach will be feeling a lot less queasy very soon. That being said, stay hydrated. Alcohol dehydrates your body, and the sooner you can re-hydrate the sooner you will feel better.

3. Sleep

While this may not be incredibly practical considering it is a Tuesday and you may have work, but if you are lucky enough to take a quick nap it will help you feel better very quickly. Even just a short cat nap can help more than you may think!

Sunday, May 4, 2014




THE SPECIALIST: Freddy Tincher, bartender at Clyde Common in Portland, Oregon
HIS ELIXER: Peloton Punch
ITS HISTORY: The word "punch" comes from the Hindi word for five, "panch." The five-ingredient drink originated in the East Indies, where it was traditionally made using arrack (a rice or sugarcane spirit), spice, lemon juice, sugar and tea. Imperialist Brits spread the recipe around the world, and North Americans made it their own by replacing arrack with rum. Rum punch was the most popular mixed drink in America from the late 17th Century up until the 1850s. As David Wondrich explains in his book IMBIBE!, punch was always considered a leisurely drink; you and your comrades had to have enough time on your hands to finish the whole bowl. "It's not that Americans suddenly stopped liking punch," he writes. "But [during the Industrial Revolution], they were busy, or at least they thought it a virtue to seem that way." So we relegated the lowly punch to special occasions, where it was socially acceptable to sit idly ladling booze. But with the demise of the American textile factory and the rise of the three-hour-long brunch, punch is making a big, fashionable comeback.
ITS HEALING POWERS: "I've always heard that if you have a hangover, you should drink whatever you drank the night before," Clyde Common bartender Freddy Tincher says. "But typically that can be a little too much. If you had a hard night with tequila and you grab another shot of tequila the next morning, you're asking for a trip to the bathroom." So he recommends something light and alcoholic to make the headache go away. His drink of choice is a sweet, beer-based punch, which he makes every morning at the bar. "Punch is a nice introduction to a day of drinking," he says.

Saturday, May 3, 2014



DC’s TavernThis Hoboken bar has a pool table, drinks in mason jars, and if you want to hear some crazy old rock and roll stories, just start a conversation with its owner who has plenty of them to tell.
505 8th Street
Hoboken, New Jersey
Shanghai TunnelAccording to our very own Drew Pindle, Shanghai Tunnel is “a place that is both named after and built on top of the city’s historic underground tunnels. It’s a dingy, dank basement of a place, and people sometimes say it’s haunted by the ghosts of people who were “shanghaied” and sold into slavery back in the early 1900s.”
211 South West Ankeny Street
Georgia BarGeorgia Bar has all the right ingredients for a good night out — hicks, old men and cheap drinks.
159 West Clayton Street
Athens, Georgia
George’s LoungeOpen since 1959 Geroge’s Lounge has the cheapest beers in all of Canton, Ohio, so have a ton of them while you watch a band perform. If you’re hungry, this place has one of the best burgers in town.
229 Cleveland Avenue North West
Canton, Ohio
Bowen’s Island RestaurantThis little gem has the best seafood on James Island, so have some oysters as you guzzle down those beers.
1870 Bowen’s Island Road
James Island
Oscar’s TavernPop a coin in the jukebox, grab a few glasses of cheaper than cheap cold beer, and have a Philly cheesesteak at this Philadelphia dive.
1524 Sansom Street
Sophie’sOur favorite dive bar in New York was Mars Bar, but unfortunately that was torn down to build some new condos. Oh, gentrification. Fortunately Sophie’s is still around for cheap beer. Plus, it has a pool table!
509 East 5th Street
New York
AlibiFor Brooklynites, this Fort Greene dive has it all: an outdoor space, a pool table, and of course drinks that we can actually afford!
242 Dekalb Avenue
Brooklyn, New York
The Hotsy TotsyThis bar has been keeping students at the University of California at Berkeley inebriated since 1939. It’s also where we spent many a drunken nights during our formative college years.
601 San Pablo Avenue
Albany, California


Arta tequila:  $5

George Dickel bourbon:  $5

Cherry Southern Comfort:  $3

Bacardi O:  $3

Pinnacle Whipped Vodka:  $3  (sold out)

Stoli Blueberri vodka:  $3

Ciroc amaretto vodka:  $3

Ciroc peach vodka:  $3


Kurt Vonnegut (1922–2007) was one of the truly great American writers of our time. In 2006, when Vonnegut was 84, a few students at Xavier High School in New York sent letters to the the legendary author asking him to visit their class. 

The fact that Vonnegut actually replied shows what a thoughtful and kind man he was. Vonnegut politely declined the invitation with humor and with grace: "I don't make public appearances any more because I now resemble nothing so much as an iguana," wrote Vonnegut. 

However, his letter offered beautiful wisdom and advice for these young students. 

"Practice any art, music, singing, dancing, acting, drawing, painting, sculpting, poetry, fiction, essays, reportage, no matter how well or badly, not to get money and fame, but to experiencebecoming, to find out what's inside you, to make your soul grow.