CLICK ABOVE TO PLAY MUSIC
Music – “Have a Drink On Me” from Lonnie Donegan Classics by Lonnie Donegan. Released: 2013.
Now that I have your attention…
It is hard to imagine a naked lady having a snake in her pants, especially since she would look like Lady Godiva and be unclothed. However, there is always a “Naked Lady” around somewhere…..
….and possibly, some other poor soul with a “Snake in the Pants“.
Welcome to the wonderful, wacky world of cocktails!
Have you ever sipped a “Cobra Venom“?
Or, perhaps a “Nuclear Slush“? or a “Toxic Refuse“?
Imagine drinking a “Tidy Bowl” (remember the man in the dinghy being flushed down the toilet in the retro commercials?)
How would you know what a “Green Scorpion” looked like, if you’d already imbibed a “Color Blind“?
Doesn’t a “Dead Grasshopper” cocktail just whet your whistle?
Or, perhaps for the really adventurous, how about sampling an “Anus on Fire“,
…..or a “Jet Fuel“…just a few of the colourful cocktails, which abound in bar books these days.
Years ago, my Dad had a few “bar” books, among them “A Guide to Pink Elephants“, published in 1952, which came in its’ own little pink box (I still have it).
The names of the cocktails were pretty tame: “Florida Punch“, “Bobby Burns Cocktail“, “Frozen Daiquiri” and the like.
Many of the cocktail books from the 1940’s through 1970’s, went the extra mile: in addition to recipes for imbibing, many had sections on drinking songs such as “Cigarettes and Whiskey“, which is a long way from the old “99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall“.
Also common in these cocktail bibles were suggested party games (“Tricks and Funnies“) including drawing with a mirror, the five coin problem, and in one guide “College Humor and Party Games” (charades, eye spy, talkathon) and more.
Many books provided information on how to properly stock your home bar and earlier books usually featured a nice selection of toasts for your event, for example, “To-Morrow Can Wait”…”Let us have wine and women, mirth and laughter, Sermons and soda water the day after”.
There is even a toast to lawyers: “Here is to the lawyer – a learned gentleman, who rescues your estate from your enemies, and keeps it himself“. Those pithy remarks are from the 1904 “Grein and Pahls Drink Mixer’s Manual“, which I also have in my collection (Price: One Dollar in 1904).
Over the years the names of cocktails have evolved from the very tame “Milk Punch“, to the outlandish “Martian Urine Sample” (ick!)
Bartending has become an art, with “flair” bartenders juggling a myriad of bottles of alcohol with flourish and pizazz, much to the thrill of their audience.
Alcoholic beverages have been around for a very long time. Early Babylonians and Egyptians were brewing beer, mead and wine for thousands of years (long before prohibition reared its’ ugly head in the USA and was ultimately, a dismal failure – happily!)
So, in the words of an unknown author, but taken from “Grein and Pahls Drink Mixer’s Manual“, edited by Paul E. Lowe,
“Drink to-day and drown all sorrow, You shall perhaps not do’t to-morrow; Best while you have it use your breath, There is no drinking after death”
“A Guide to Pink Elephants” (Richards Rosen Assoc, Inc., New York, 1952) “10,000 Drinks” (Paul Knorr, Sterling Publishing, New York, 2007) “Playboy’s Host & Bar Book” (Thomas Mario, Playboy Publishing, Chicago, 1971) “Bar & Party Guide” (Sirkay Publishing, Los Angeles, 1972) “Grien and Pahls Drink Mixer’s Manual” (Joe Grein & J. Pahls, Inc., Chicago, 1904)