It hasn't escaped my notice that this project, by its very nature, has made me pick up some of the famed ten warning signs of heavy drinking. When I was a kid, long before the advent of DARE, my classmates and I were taught to closely watch mommy and daddy for hints of incipient alcoholism. If any of these traits showed up, were were tasked with quickly reporting our parents to the appropriate authorities. To be honest, the whole thing was a little bit Orwellian.
At any rate, the ten warnings are:
1. Drinking alone
2. Making excuses, finding excuses to drink
3. Daily or frequent drinking needed to function
4. Inability to reduce or stop alcohol intake
5. Violent episodes associated with drinking
6. Drinking secretly
7. Becoming angry when confronted about drinking
8. Poor eating habits
9. Failure to care for physical appearance
10. Trembling in the morning
Well, although my wife generally takes a sip or two out of whatever potion I've made for the evening, I have to admit that I am, basically, drinking alone. I've been assured that this may well change when I switch from gin-based drinks to ... well, to anything that isn't gin-based. Virginia really, really hates gin.
Also, to be honest, I was somewhat angry when my Aunt made the assumption that doing this project will turn me into a raging alcoholic. I got especially ticked when she raised the specter of my cigarette smoking, offering it up as evidence that I have an addictive personality. Having never had problems with drinking -- and having quit smoking almost four years ago -- I found the summary judgment a little irritating.
But, beyond that, I think I'm pretty solid. I don't really tremble in the morning, although I have been known to stumble a bit, particularly if I didn't get enough sleep. While some may criticize my grooming, I feel like that's more of a general moral failing than any sort of drinking issue. As far as the rest, I think I'm on firm ground.
Even so, old indoctrinations die hard. Needless to say, I'm not going to be an idiot about this...
Today's drink was the Pernod cocktail. Again, I made it with Lucid absinthe; given that Pernod was originally an absinthe, I feel like I'm on firm ground with this switch.
The drink was initially a bit much. Lucid's incredibly strong licorice flavor completely overwhelmed the sugar and bitters. However, when the ice melted, the cocktail became milder and more flavorful.
(from The Ultimate A-to-Z Bar Guide)
2 to 3 teaspoons water
2 to 4 dashes Angostura bitters
1/4 teaspoon powdered sugar
2 ounces Pernod
Put first three ingredients into chilled old-fashioned glass; stir well. Fill glass with crushed ice; add Pernod, stirring well.