Advil Calendar, Week 2

Once again, hats off to Your Neighborhood Librarian for this very fine Advil calendar.

Also, why is it that every single librarian I know is such a fun writer?  I must have missed something about librarians (probably a lot, really) back in school. My stepson wanted to be a librarian, but I think the tedium of the old-style searching and foot-noting is killing his desire.  Now I wonder if he’s secretly funny and I haven’t been paying attention.  Good God.

Week Two!

Saturday, December 8: La Fée Parisienne Absinthe

Welcome to Strange Drink Saturday! And what’s weirder than absinthe, aka the green fairy, the least palatable liquor I know?

Fox Poison
3 parts chartreuse
3 parts absinthe
1 part green curacao
Build in highball glass. Stir and fill up with ice cold milk. Marvel at its creepy cloudiness, then throw it out and make…

London Fog
1 1/2 oz. Gin
1/4 oz. Absinthe
Frappe in a highball glass.

Sunday, December 9: Porfidio Anejo

Tequila Sunday! Shake your butt! This is the closest I will come to a chocolate cocktail. It is black as my black Scroogeriffic heart, and strong, and strange.

Ashes to Ashes

1 1/2 oz. tequila
1/2 oz. Pedro Ximenez Sherry
1 oz. Lemon Juice
1 tsp. Sweetened Cocoa Mix
1/4 oz. Agave Nectar
1 pinch Ground Cinnamon
Place all ingredients in a mixing glass, fill with ice, cover and shake well for 10 seconds. Strain up into a cocktail glass. Garnish with cinnamon dust.

Monday December 10: Johnny Drum Green Label Bourbon

Monday is a good day to make like a Mad Man and drink a Manhattan .
sweet Vermouth
Take 1 part bourbon and 1 part sweet Vermouth; stir. Add a dash of bitters and ice. Shake and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a cherry.

Tuesday, December 11: Roberto Cavalli Vodka

I read this thing about Cavalli and his family in W this past month, and the article sure made him seem like a tiny overtanned Italian id monster, a big granddaddy baby who buys his granddaughter marabou-trimmed plastic Barbie mules and demands everyone’s attention ALL THE TIME. A real Saturday night kind of guy. Look at him up there, with his models and his cigar. He’s like Christmas with a job. This recipe, needless to say, is from the vodka’s website. Note ALL CAPS. DRINK IN MY SPICY SUGARY OVERINDULGENCE, DARLING.

7.5 ml CAMPARI



Wednesday, December 12: Zwack Unicum Liqueur 80 Proof

We actually own a bottle of Zwack (it’s Hungarian!), and my husband invents all kinds of drinks to mix it into. His Zwackhattan was really nice. But then again, my husband also mixed Pastis with eggnog one afternoon, so I’ll give you a perfect Sunday recipe from the experts.

Bloody Hun
1 1/2 tablespoons Zwack
1/2 cup tomato juice
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Tabasco sauce to taste
Worcestershire sauce to taste
1 teaspoon horseradish
Salt and pepper to taste
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

In a cocktail shaker, combine Zwack, tomato juice, lemon juice, Tabasco, Worcestershire, salt, pepper and one cup of ice cubes. Shake mixture vigorously then strain it into an ice cube filled glass rimmed in salt and lemon juice. Garnish with a carrot stick and serve.

Thursday, December 13: Lagavulin 16 year

It’s Thursday, drink a glass of Scotch. If you need to mix it (not the Lagavulin, you fool! Some other, crappier Scotch!), try Le Pere-Bis:

1½ parts Scotch
½ part St-Germain
1 bar spoon Honey
4 parts Hot Chamomile Tea
Add all ingredients to a Hot Toddy glass. Garnish with a clove-studded lemon wedge.

Friday, December 14: Sailor Jerry

I’ve never tried this Sailor Jerry rum. Looks a little gimmicky to me, named as it is after, and relentlessly identified with, “a prominent American tattoo artist”. (Please. I have four tattoos, good-sized ones, and even I wouldn’t call any tattoo artist ‘prominent’.) But that’s what the Advent season is for, is it not – to try new boozes. What’s that? This season has other connotations? Huh. I should look into that.

There’s a new book out about one of these old tattoo guys. Titled Secret Historian: The Life and Times of Samuel Steward, Professor, Tattoo Artist, and Sexual Renegade, we have it in the library, even though some of the photographs inside are pretty raunchy. My friend Mrs. Rabbit checked it out – she had read The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks and was on kind of a nonfiction kick. Her allergies were giving her hell and her nose was stopped up, so it was up to me to tell her that the book, even though it was brand-spankin new, reeked of cigarette smoke.

This drink, though, probably smells quite nice. And it’s so seasonal! I don’t know what’s come over me.

Apple-Ginger Jerry
1 ½ parts Sailor Jerry Rum
2 ½ parts apple juice
½ part fresh lime juice
ginger ale
Shake all but ginger ale and strain over fresh ice in a rocks glass. Top with ginger ale and garnish with an apple slice and cinnamon stick.


Inaugural tweeting

This is hilarious and also really cool, the gigapan part, I mean (click the link): @zappos thinks this is amazing & scary. i think it is funny, the photo shows us on bb/twittering at #inaug09.

Photohunt: Aftermath

This week’s theme:  Aftermath


This is part of the 40 feet of fence that went down in the back yard during the big storm in January 08.


The dogs are wondering what’s going on.  The wheels don’t actually live there, we were trying to prop the fence up a little with them … to no avail.


The ash tree outside the kitchen window went down.  We’ve been trying to burn it this winter but it’s not dry enough yet.  It’s very, very dense.

Posting the (sister’s) dog

Okay, this is the cutest picture I’ve seen in ages.

Angus - Pensive

I think he’s depressed because he has to go outside and pee in this:

Snow 1

or this:

Snow 2

Thank Jeebus I live in California.   I don’t care if I never see another flake of snow in person.

Misc. on a Sunday

In other news this week:

1. Ants invaded my bed for two nights. That was unpleasant. Waking up because you have ants in your hair is not a good way to wake up. They freaked out the new cat, too, who has been sleeping on my head. She saw one on the pillow and jumped straight up. It would have been amusing had it not been *my* pillow.  This house is built on the roots of an old walnut orchard.  Ants live in the roots.  They like to come into the house when it rains.

2. I am such a spaz. I just had a good cry over someone [no idea who they were, I got there via a damned google ad in my gmail] who built an expensive new mission style house and then bought and transplanted some big old grandad Manzanillo olive trees to the property. The part that made me cry was happy – I’m always so sad when the old olive trees around here get bulldozed down to make room for progress. So somebody is saving them, somewhere. And probably making big bucks on it.

3. We get to go see live music tomorrow night. Mark Hummel, Kenny Neal, and John Fucking Mayall [w00t!11!!] at the Sierra Nevada Brewery Big Room, one of my ATF venues for live music. I am even going to take the last John Mayall CD I bought and have him autograph it, fan-grrl that I am. It’s going to be great, even if it is on a school night. Luckily I’m working from home on Tuesday so I don’t have to get up too early.

4. God, but it’s gloomy here today. Raining off and on, but not too too hard. We finally cut that tree up that fell during the big storm earlier this month. Bob got to try out his new chainsaw. He cut, I dragged branches over to the cement pad to await further chopping and and hauling. Didn’t take all that long. Couple of hours, maybe. The whole time we were doing it the hummingbirds were chiding us loudly for upsetting the status quo. They’ve been very happy with the tree down, it gave excellent perching places convenient to the feeder.

Last week I was looking out the kitchen window at the tree and a really beautiful big woodpecker or maybe flicker was there, not six feet away. It was pecking away (sideways) at the downed trunk. I’ve seen them numerous times on the far side of the yard but could never get a good look. See, now I’m sorry we’re disposing of the tree.


Bob’s been out there fighting to get the stump out for the last three hours. I went and helped push until I saw stars, with no effect. I’m all for tying it to Andrew’s truck bumper and giving it a yank but Bob says that’s a good way to have a weird accident and he’d just as soon not have to redo the siding on the house. Spoilsport.

Muddy yard, cutting up the fallen tree

Hella Stormy

We had a big storm rip through here yesterday. Power was out for 30 hours. It’s been back for an hour or so, now … and the UPSs just started flickering again. Yikes. I used to like storms when I was younger. Not so much, now. The worst part of it all is that I couldn’t get on teh intarwebs. That, and all the damage.


Click the pic for a bigger view. We lost a tree and about 40 feet of fence. We have to take the dogs out and stay with them while they do their bizness until we get it fixed.  I just love doing that at 5 a.m.

Also, I can see that we forgot to repaint the chimney. 🙂

Here’s the rest of the pictures if you’re interested.

Maybe the weirdest part of this whole storm was going into the front bedroom and seeing the cat asleep on the bed and a bird inside at the window, perched on the blinds. I’m not making this up. No doors or windows were open. He hopped to the sill when I went for the camera.

Bird inside

I went outside and pulled the screen off and Tim opened the window from the inside and the bird flew out. My best guess is that it came in through the cat flap. The one that the cats can’t figure out how to use. When the tree went down in the back, the birds were all very confused, and at the height of the storm, they were sheltering in and around the back patio, which is where the cat flap is.

Re: the funeral  – I’m going to Idaho for the funeral tomorrow, hopefully the planes will be running more or less on time by then. Apparently there were a lot of delays yesterday and today. In my heart of hearts, I was hoping I wouldn’t be able to go. I hate funerals.

Washington state flood pics

Gadzooks! I hadn’t heard much about this, but my niece lives in Raymond, WA, and her husband works for a utility company there. This is what he wrote:


Most people haven’t even heard about the storm (basically a Hurricane: 130+ mph winds) that hit the Oregon and Washington Coasts on December 2 nd. We still haven’t got everybody’s power back on and H and I went without power for over 72 hours. The pictures of Centralia and Chehalis are towns on Interstate 5 just 50 miles East of us off the Coast. You will see the Exit Sign for Raymond and Pe Ell and we live in Raymond. It was a CRAZY storm and lasted over 30 hours.

Most big storms (and we get a few a year) only last about 6 to 10 hours and then we get to work. Last I heard, 5 deaths in WA are attributed to the storm and 10 in Oregon. The National Guard had to come in. All communications were down at several times. Emergency Op. Center had to employ the local HAM radio guys to talk to the outside world.

We were stranded, having to cut our way through downed trees to get anywhere. Hwy 101 (the Coast Hwy that runs Mexico to Canada) was flooded and blocked by trees. Only 1 gas station in the whole county had power and it was 45 minutes from our office. We and the DOT had to ration fuel because we would have run out.