Monday, October 30, 2006

The Rules

Yes, dear reader, there are rules.....

1) There is no such thing as a chocolate martini.
2) There is no shame in club soda and cranberry juice.
3) Visiting the pub will be cheaper in the long run if you tip the bartender regularly and more generously than is necessary.
4) Never order a frozen drink in a place that serves pickled eggs.
5) Actually, never order a frozen drink.
6) It's also not a bad idea to eschew the pickled pigs' feet, although their presence is fairly strong evidence that you've accidentally stumbled upon a real tavern.
7) For the sake of the children, leave the pistol at home.
8) Grappa is to lighter fluid as ouzo is to lighter fluid.
9) Garnish matters. ((My personal motto))
10) Despite a high ratio of female clientele, an insouciant way with fried mozzarella, and their prevalence in resort towns, establishments where a waitress pours shots into your mouth from a bottle she holsters in a bandolier are fraught with peril.
11) When throwing a party, break the seals on all liquor bottles, lest guests should hesitate to open them and come to doubt your hospitality.
12) Better yet: Hire a bartender.
13) At the holiday office party, consume one drink less than your boss.
14) Adopt a favorite cocktail on a seasonal basis.
15) That sangria means "bloodletting" is more a cautionary note than a simple fact.
16) Drinks that give you bad breath: beer, anything sweet, anything with milk.
17) Drinks that give you good breath: gin and tonic, gimlet, vodka and cranberry, anything with citrus.
18) Instead of ordering a shot of After Shock to cap off the evening, one could just walk calmly into the street, lie down, and wait.
19) Hungarian proverb: If three men tell you that your are drunk, lie down.
20) Every man should know how to make at least one drink from a foreign country, preferably one taught to him by a local female with whom he has had a complicated, unresolved, and quite possibly dangerous dalliance.
21) Citrus cocktails benefit greatly from rubbing lemon peel around the rim of the glass.
22) Jack Daniel's. Rocks.
23) Fresh orange juice. Fresh lemon juice. Fresh lime juice.
24) On those chrome, hourglass-shaped bar measuring cups, the big side is the jigger. The little side is the pony. Never use the pony.
25) If you must: single-malt Scotch in a brandy snifter with a splash of water.
26) Avoid bars that use plastic cups, bars whose bathrooms consist solely of a trough-style urinal, bars with chicken wire protecting the band, bars where Patrick Swayze is the bouncer.
27) There is rarely any genuine need to shout "Skal!" "Na Zdorovye!" "Slainte!" "Bottoms up!" or "Down the hatch!"
28) No one but the bouncer cares how tough you are, and he already knows you're not that tough.
29) Drinking is not a competitive sport.
30) Never drink in a place that calls itself an eatery.
31) There is no upside to karaoke.
32) There is an ever-so-slight upside to a wet-T-shirt contest, as long as you're not in it.
33) It is not necessary to request premium liquor for a mixed drink in which you cannot taste it, such as a gimlet or sour.
34) On the other hand, ascertain exactly how nonpremium the "well" liquor is before you opt against the good stuff.
35) Sitting at the bar works only for two people. Three or more requires a table.
36) Never utter the words I and love and you if you've had more than three drinks.
37) If you're a lightweight, make that one drink.
38) If a bartender makes you flail your arms or beg for service, well, obviously, leave.
39) Don't call the bartender Barkeep, Chief, Buddy, or Ace, unless his actual name, in fact, is Barkeep, Chief, Buddy, or Ace.
40) Even if you have ascertained your bartender's name, behaving overly familiar with him will be seen as a pathetic gambit for free drinks or, worse, proof that you have nobody to go to for affection other than a random service-industry professional who does not, in fact, know you and just wants your money.
41) The one foolproof hangover cure: Don't get drunk.
42) Once you've fallen off a stool, there is little you can say to the bartender that will change his mind about asking you to leave.
43) There is nothing cheeky and clever you can say to a female bartender that she hasn't already heard from some other schmuck before you.
44) Don't eat the worm.
45) If you don't smoke and you're in a bar, don't complain about other people who happen to be smoking, because, virtuous friend, you are in a bar.
46) Instead of trying to remember whether it's "beer before liquor" or the other way around, just be an adult and stick to one or the other.
47) Acceptable drinks for men: beer, wine, whiskey, cocktails that are neither sweet nor made with dairy or fruit other than lime or lemon or orange.
48) Acceptable drinks for women: whatever they want, except a certain few.
49) A certain few: the grasshopper, the Long Island iced tea, the pink lady, and any variety of spritzer.
50) Also unacceptable: drinks whose names mimic critical medical conditions or copulative acts and their secretions.
51) And while we're on the subject, drinks that are named after supposedly cute body parts, like navels, which are actually disgusting repositories for sebaceous grime: No.
52) All of that said, never question a woman's drink choice.
53) If you're the first in the group to arrive and you start a tab on your card, you deserve exactly what's coming to you.
54) Unless you are lounging on the Promenade Deck, do not drink from a fruit.
55) Almost never have more than three cocktails.
56) Never order a cocktail with more than four ingredients.
57) If it doesn't have vermouth, it's not a Martini. If what you really want is iced gin (or vodka) straight up, order it that way.
58) Grain alcohol and purple Kool-Aid do not a punch make.
59) Pick up your drinks before moving the table.
60) Despite its name, a cocktail should contain no chicken parts.
61) Single-malt Scotch and soda: there oughtta be a law.
62) A lime yields about an ounce of juice, a lemon a little more.
63) Two singles are better than one double.
64) Ice. Lots and lots of ice.
65) Shun novelty. Suspect innovation.
66) If you strain your citrus juice, everything will be easier to clean.
67) Measure, measure, measure.
68) Betty Crocker Moment #361: 2 tablespoons = 1 ounce; 3 teaspoons = 1 tablespoon.
69) When all else fails, have a Martini.
70) The perfect Martini: There is no such thing as the perfect Martini. Make it the way it tastes best to you.
71) Provided that you remember that there is no such thing as a chocolate Martini.