Showing posts from 2009

The Birth of the Hemingway Highball

One of my favorite conversations while sitting at my side of the bar is literature, especially Ernst Hemingway.

Hemingway has been called the greatest American author of all time. I would have to agree with this statement as I have read all his works including many magazine articles he wrote in is early years.

I also own his entire collection of books and short stories in a leather bound collection from Easton Press and recently discovered what I really enjoy about Hemingway is not that he was a romantic as he had many loves in his life and was married four times. I attribute this to the fact that he fell in love very easily and could not have an affair that had no meaning. He was also a hero who volunteered to become an ambulance driver for the Red Cross WW I. He was also an adventurer who partook in big game hunting and deep sea fishing and also turned one of his fishing boats into a sub-chaser during WW II in the Caribbean looking for German U-Boats. However the real reason I love re…

The Christmas Gift

While sitting at My Side of the Bar last weekend the discussion within the group was the holiday season as this might be one of the last times were were all together before Christmas.

As adults it seems Christmas Gifts are really not all that important as most of us had stories to tell about some gift we received that we never understood. The Chia Pet, the rear view mirror that clipped onto a hat or sunglasses for bike riders or that shirt that all you could do was say "What the hell were they thinking?"

Swapping stories with my group of cronies, I recalled this story from my youth.

The Christmas Gift
I remember as a young boy of eight there was a Christmas party at my church where each child was supposed to take a gift for the grab bag. The idea of a grab bag is that everyone throws a gift in and then everyone takes a different gift out and has a surprise gift. I guess the surprise being the receiver does not know who the giver is, or something like that. There were two boxes…

Smoking Economics

One of the biggest annoyances while sitting at my side of the bar is cigarette smoke. It is not the smoke itself that is annoying it is the smoke always gravitates in my direction. I think this is one of the unwritten rules pertaining to smokers and non-smokers. The smoke always gravitates in the direction of the non-smoker. I do not know why, that is just the way it is. I also have noticed this since I have began to enjoy an occasional cigar that my smoke always goes directly to the non smokers.

As I sat in my usual spot at my side of the bar I could not help making an observation about a smoker and I asked myself this question. How could she afford the price of a pack of cigarettes? She appeared as if she had very little income and was scraping the change out of the bottom of her purse to pay for her beer. Yet she had a pack on the bar and was lighting up a second cigarette from the first. She was more than likely a chain smoker, or at least was a chain smoker while in a bar. As w…

Christmas Movies

While sitting on my side of the bar last weekend a few of us struck up a conversation on the holidays. The topic turned to Christmas Movies and we all had fun discussing our favorites.

Here are my top five Christmas Movies:

Number Five
Bad Santa (2003)
While this is not in the same category as the rest of the picks it still has a great feel good message in the end. Billy Bob Thorton does a great job playing a safe cracking Santa and take special note of his Santa Suite as the movie progesses. With Tony Cox as Santa’s elf partner in crime, Lauren Graham as the girl friend obsessed with Santa and Bernie Mac as Gin the house dick. Also this was John Ritter’s last movie and he turns in a very nice performance.

Number Four
It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)
The only Christmas movie that is in the AFI’s top 100 movies of all time “It’s a Wonderful Life” is probably the best of the feel good movies for the holiday season. Jimmy Stewart and Donna Reed turn in a great p…

Why the Urnal?

Any one who has sat at the bar consuming a favorite beverage comes to the reality that sooner or later they will have to make the long walk (or stagger) to the facilities. (Yes the men’s or ladies room!).

For males we know we know we are in the right place when we open the door and see the Urinal. The porcelain devices range in size from the 1960’s, full length model, to the waist high new wave model, to the handicap accessible version. Some of the newer facilities located in public malls and family restaurants even offer a variety of heights to accommodate all male family members, no matter their age or height.

Oh yes and least we forget the trough style that adorns most of the sporting facilities around the most powerful county in the world where a man can stand shoulder to shoulder and urinate.Or even worse standing in a circle facing each other.
What I always wonder is WHY! I realize that conserving water and the space a typical toilet stall takes up had to be some of the considera…

The Perfect Martini

As I sit at my side of the bar one of my favorite cocktails is a martini. While talking to many bartenders I have come up with a recipe for what I consider the "Perfect Martini"
The key here is to freeze everything (except vermouth as it will really freeze). Freeze the Vodka or Gin, The Shaker (Preferably the stainless steal variety), and the glass.
3 Parts Vodka or Gin 1 Part Vermouth
Shake until the shaker is to cold to hold on to (which is why you want to use the stainless steel variety)
Pour into a chilled glass and if you have small ice chips floating you have created the "Perfect Martini" Garnish to choice and I prefer mozzarella and prosciutto stuffed olives. You can even add a little olive juice if you prefer a dirty martini.