Tales of the Cocktail Notes

Tales of the Cocktail Notes

  This post will only make sense to you if you were in the talk I gave at Tales of the Cocktail called The Drunken Botanist:  A Preview. It was a sneak preview of my new book, coming out in March 2013, called The Drunken Botanist:  The Plants That Create the World’s Great Drinks.  I promised to share links to a bunch of sources, so here they are: Handbook of Alcoholic Beverages — this new two-volume set covers a wide range of...

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The Portland Diaries, Part 4

The Portland Diaries, Part 4

This was me the very moment I woke up this morning: I do not like my state of mind; I’m bitter, querulous, unkind… I am not sick, I am not well. My quondam dreams are shot to hell. My soul is crushed, my spirit sore; I do not like me any more. I cavil, quarrel, grumble, grouse. I ponder on the narrow house. Except that unlike my drinking buddy Mrs. Parker,  I had no excuse. I was not due to fall in love again.  I was just a foul,...

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The Portland Diaries, Part 3

The Portland Diaries, Part 3

Add this your list of great last lines in literature: “When I hung up I felt as if I was an astronaut who had completed his orbit of the earth and now I was pulled by some new gravity into a cold clean darkness.” That’s Walter Mosley at the end of A Little Yellow Dog.  I stood in my pretty little Tin House apartment this morning after I read that and said it out loud three or four or a dozen more times.  Saying it out loud...

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The Portland Diaries, Part 2

The Portland Diaries, Part 2

I went the wrong way at the Rothko exhibit at the Portland Art Museum, turning right instead of left, which meant that I saw his last work first.  I have an excuse, though:  when I walked in, I looked to the left and saw a bunch of stuff I didn’t recognize.  Nice paintings, but not Rothkos.  Must be some other exhibit. Works from the permanent collection or whatever.  But over to the right I saw some Rothkos, so I went that way. You...

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