what does gin taste like? has it changed ?
my friend charles likes to send odd gifts. when i moved to savannah in 1996, he sent me all kinds of basic kitchen stuff which i didn't have. all of my worldly goods at the time fit into the back of a pickup truck, and i didn't own things like a can opener or a coffee maker. i was really very grateful towards him for helping me out in my time of need.
basically, charles is a really nice older gentleman, but also a kook. and over the years, he's gotten kookier. his gifts, although well-meaning, are a bit on the bizarro side. he makes up holidays, or sends gifts for kooky holidays. for example, in the weeks leading up to the kentucky derby, i'll get really long novel-type letters from him (he doesn't do email, and actually, i really appreciate this quality about him. people have forgotten how to write nowadays), letters about how great the kentucky derby is, and about how hats are pretty fantastic. usually somewhere in between the letters, a package or two show up full of little bourbon minatures. he did the same for saint patrick's day (we received a boatload of irish cream miniatures). and then for no apparent reason about two months ago, he sent mango rum.
so anyway, yesterday we get a package in the mail from him with all these little tanqueray miniatures. because according to him, the holiday i am to celebrate is the opening of Gin Season this weekend.
yeah, i raised my eyebrows too.
Gin Season, you ask?
i didn't realize that there was a season for this shit.
my one and only foray into gin was an unfortunate one. actually, i think it was this exact week in 1995; i remember it being in May of that year - May of 1995 was a big turning point in my life. i went through a lot of personal hell and rebirth during that time. it was getting pretty hot down in gainesville, florida, and me and a buddy of mine met up with some friends of his at Farah's on the Avenue. it was the night i met a girl and her boyfriend (girl and i became fast friends, however her and her boyfriend killed themselves a few years later; and no it was not a romantic romeo and juliet kind of thing). it was hot out, i was playing hooky from going home, and i decided that i would drink gin. and i really liked it; it was tasty, it was refreshing, and it made me feel good. two double gin and tonics later, and a hot car ride home, i was not feeling so good anymore.
and that was the last time i had gin.
but in an attempt to squash old feelings and thinking about my friend, i'm willing to crack one of these bad boys open and see if that fleeting moment of invincibleness i felt that night can be rekindled. problem is, i have no tonic. i have a teeny tiny bottle of san pelegrino (yeah, i'm a bottled water snob), and i have orange juice. when people talk about gin and joooce, what juice is it? i'm sure i could squeeze some of these grapefruits in the fruit bowl.
it's just not a red wine kind of night, ya know?