Dear Reader,

I’ve checked this site’s stats and see you are getting around, from country to country, just like old times. You haven’t even slowed down.

I trust you are keeping well.

That washroom I used to like at work, with the dim lights, I miss it. My washroom at home is too bright. The only time I look reasonable now is after dark, with a scarf over the night light. But it isn’t as good as the magic mirror at my old workplace. That little dose of fantasy kept my spirits up. And I’m staying away from that magnifying mirror I made the mistake of buying. In fact, I don’t look at mirrors at all anymore.

So here we are, you and me. It’s cocktail hour. I fancy a bit of whisky. There are several options; Irish, Jameson? Or perhaps Welsh, Penderyn. Scotch? Bowmore, Macallan. The other night I tried Bulleit Burbon and slept really well. I’ll go with that one

even though Penderyn is the best. – I’ll save it for a special occasion. The only country in Great Britain missing whisky here is England. They have good beer. I’ll bring in some Old Speckled Hen.

I’ve been watching more TV.  I tried a Canadian channel yesterday, from Edmonton. They were talking about saving an old neon sign in their city.  How refreshing!  It wasn’t about people getting sick and dying.

What’s happened to the news? Was Walter Cronkite a Republican or a Democrat? Now it’s obvious who the newscasters favour – the same ones as their employers, the networks.

I had to decide: Republican or Democrat? Is there an impartial choice?
It seems there is only one network if you want a Republican, the one the president calls into.  And several for the Democrats.

Why get angry and all worked up at the end of a long day?  I just want peace and contentment.  So I pick one I agree with.

I used to have little crushes on different newscasters, just one at a time though, like my relationships. There was Dan, when I was married to a guy who looked like him. After the divorce my preference turned to blonds. In later years I had a thing for Wolf. Then I got a boyfriend who looked like Wolf, we broke up, and that was the end of Wolf.

In those days I didn’t know who the newscasters voted for. They were pretty stoic. Now everybody knows. TV news lost something valuable: Objectivity.

I’m going to try a little wine now. How about you?

After a small dose of the news I need a diversion before the late night shows. I Love Lucy has been interesting. They smoke a lot in that show. When Lucy thinks she’s in trouble she calls Ricky “Sir.” The other night he took her over his knee and spanked her.

There’s Ancient Aliens: “…but what if…”   And old movies. I really like those, especially the Thin Man series, Phillip Marlowe, and anything Humphrey Bogart is in – “they fished him out of the drink,” “listen sister,” “just another dame.”

The wine is good, local and reasonable: Pinot Noir – Siren’s Call

With summer approaching I’ll have to watch 10 again one of these evenings. My favourite scene is George and Jenny walking on the beach in Mexico.  So romantic.  And what is better than a dream coming true?

Another summer must is Billy Wilder’s The Seven Year Itch with Marilyn Monroe and Tom Ewell. It’s best on a hot summer night.

I’m reading The Big Goodbye by Sam Wasson.  It’s making me feel nostalgic for Jack Nicholson in Chinatown – a classic.  I always wondered about the process Robert Towne went through to create that Oscar winning screenplay. The answer is he had a lot of unacknowledged help:  from research by his girlfriend Julie Payne, development from his old friend Edward Taylor, and wrap up by the director Roman Polanski.

Escapism. Why not?

There’s this virus…


2016 June whisky

Every month The Scotch Malt Whisky Society holds at least one tasting event at Legacy Liquor Store, the only retail outlet in Vancouver selling The Society’s scotch. Society buyers ship it by the cask from Scotland, and bottle it in Vancouver.

As we take our places around a large wooden table with trays of appropriate finger foods spread about – figs, sausages, olives, dried fruit, cheeses, chocolate and nuts, the evening begins with our host enthusing about our great good fortune at being here tonight. This is followed by some chat about a very large distillery by the English border who sells all of their whisky to one city in China that we’ve never heard of.

Thus, it is especially important for us to fully comprehend the blessings we all share; that is, scotch whisky is still to be had in Scottish distilleries farther north, where they haven’t yet realized how much faster they could sell this liquid gold without any distribution bureaucracy by shipping it straight to Asia.

I don’t need any reminders about my good fortune. It was a miracle I got a ticket. After they are turned over to the riff raff online, there is a window of opportunity of 1.45 minutes, with no warning when it’s coming, to grab a spot.

And before that, before it’s gone, if I brought all $286 in my piggy bank in the hope of buying a bottle I would probably be out of luck because I don’t belong to the Society.

After inhaling a portion of the glass I’m ready for a wee taste. Yikes, that’s strong.  60% strong. I drop in a little water and taste again. Better.

The polite formality slowly slips under the table as we make our way through the offerings.

If you don’t drink scotch, or your whisky drinking involves ice and coke, you may have never considered that the dram you are drinking is a cousin of Genie in a Bottle. – from the Summer Picnic outturn:  “…a puff of flittering, well rounded, perfused smoke.” [emphasis theirs]

Or A Ballerina at the Barbecue:  “Our ballerina sits on damp decking tending to her weary toes with TCP antiseptic and lint bandage from an antiquated first aid box.”


“A Bloody Mary revives her flagging spirit as she lights a fire pit to start cooking white fish wrapped in bacon and spritzed with lime juice.”

ok, it’s getting better

“She snacks on popcorn with sea salt and cracked black pepper and cucumber sandwiches from warm Tupperware.”

There’s the “Juicy, oak & vanilla” of Tantalizing Tannins, the “Sweet, fruity & mellow” Lay Your Head On My Pillow, or the “Deep, rich & dried fruits” of Summer’s Night In Lovers’ Lane:  “…butterflies of scent…The palate was equally multidimensional – Danish pastries and butter croissants, juicy grass and pipe tobacco, plus ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg spice. The reduced nose was just as inspiring…hot summer nights in Lovers’ Lane after rain (telegraph poles and honeysuckle).

Who makes this stuff up?

… oh, honeysuckle, yes, I’m getting that now.

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