The world changed

My god it’s been a long time.

I miss being what you might call a writer or at least a blogger.

I miss days when it mattered.

I miss being creative, and living a life that routinely got me in trouble – I miss the trouble, and the people I used to get into it with. Well, certain people anyway.

It’s been a long fucking pandemic; will any of us ever be the same, when this is objects-closer-than-they-appear in the rear view? Not the over that people are pretending now, the ‘it’s not over at all but we’re too tired of it to know that’ kind of over thats’ whole-cloth nonsense. Will we ever, though, be who we used to be?

I need a martini, but I need it with the people I used to drink martinis with. My dogs are good company and all, but, well, it’s not the same, now, is it? They can’t mix a decent drink, and though they’ll definitely kiss, they also don’t kiss nearly as well as – well, as some other people –  and gin doesn’t cover dog breath.

I need to write something better than this. See if I still can.

Maybe i’ll be back tomorrow. Or maybe in another year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

meet me at musso n’ frank

I’ve been having’ one of those days – weeks, actually – when I’m just craving a cocktail.

But not – you know, just alcohol. It’s not really alcohol I want. It’s the time, the place, the, you know, the thing.

There are those places you miss; not a place place, not Hawaii or London or the Scottish Highlands, Venice or New Orleans. That’s bigger, and sadder. That’s a spirit, a feeling.

No, I mean that smaller scale sense of missing. A coffee shop where one once sat, eating greasy food and drinking bad coffee after late nights. The book store where one used to sit and read in a dusty corner. The bar where one once met friends and heard local bands.

And it doesn’t have to be a hangout. Some places I’ve been, they got under my skin after one visit. A pub by the river in York; a fish n’ chips stand on the Royal Mile; a bar down below canal level in Brügge.

One such – and the place I’ve been visualizing now – is a silly place indeed. You know the place if you live in Hollywood; you know it by rep if you read about LA. If you’ve read crime novels by Michael Connely or Robert Crais or Jonathan Kellerman, you know the place as if you’ve been there, eating steaks and drinking mid-day with rough men.

Musso and Frank. Hollywood’s oldest eatery they call it; it feels like it. It feels like it’s seen more old hollywood action than any studio or any mansion. You can imagine Welles, Chaplain or Valentino; the Mark brothers or Clark Gable. You can imagine writers, Bukowski, Faulkner, Hemmingway. They live on in the dark walls and worn tables.

It’s the kind of dark, wood paneled room, the kind of old-fashioned chop house ambiance, that just seems to have ghosts and seem to inspire dreams.

Aside from that kind of cuisine, aside from the feeling that someone very important or deeply sinister may’ve sat in this same seat yesterday or may tomorrow, the thing one goes to musso n frank for would be martinis. And that’s what I’ve been salivating for. Ice-cold, served with an odd, tiny carafe on the side (so you get an extra pour), this is place that understand exactly how a martini should taste.

And I’ve been sitting here all day, trying to concentrate on incredibly dull but important data gathering (to prove with numbers what everyone already knows to be true). But my mind is in that dark, smokey room, (because never mind the silly laws, in my head it’s smokey, like it would have been in those days), with a fine, mysterious dark-haired girl beside me, and we’re drinking icy cold martinis.

Outside it’s daylight – because it has to be. But here inside, I shade my eyes with the brim of a hat, and I breath in the perfume of her, and sip icy cold gin – always gin, never vodka.

Thats where I am today. But the martini I might make when I get home – or not – wouldn’t taste the same. Because the scene is what I want, and the company, the company of ghosts and beautiful, mysterious women. The drinks? Well, they’re just the taste on my tongue.

…and they use too much vermouth.

Quotes on Drinking from http://cocktails.about.com: “When I have one martini, I feel bigger, wiser, taller. When I have the second, I feel superlative. When I have more, there’s no holding me.” William Faulkner “One martini is alright, two is too many, three is not enough.” James Thurber “Do not allow children to mix drinks. It […]

Quotes on Drinking from http://cocktails.about.com:

“When I have one martini, I feel bigger, wiser, taller. When I have the second, I feel superlative. When I have more, there’s no holding me.” William Faulkner

“One martini is alright, two is too many, three is not enough.” James Thurber

“Do not allow children to mix drinks. It is unseemly and they use too much vermouth.” Steve Allen

“Whenever someone asks me if I want water with my Scotch, I say, “I’m thirsty, not dirty”. Joe E. Lewis

“Man, being reasonable, must get drunk; The best of life is but intoxication.” Lord Byron

“One can drink too much, but one never drinks enough.” Edward Burke

“The three-martini lunch is the epitome of American efficiency. Where else can you get an earful, a bellyful, and a snootful at the same time?” Gerald R. Ford

I love me some martini quotes.

Dirty Martini

I like to have a martini,
two at the very most.
After three I’m under the table,
after four I’m under my host

    –Dorothy Parker

I have the feeling I would have liked to party with Ms. Parker.

What is it about a martini?

Tequila’s a drug. Scotch is an obsession. Bourbon’s a statement. Vodka is for when you don’t really like booze.

A martini is a lifestyle.

Read more “Dirty Martini”