Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Broker's Gin

While up in D.C. (a post about my trip is forthcoming), I went to a Christmas party with the friend I was staying with. It was just a little get together at someone's apartment and there were probably about 20 people there. After having a little bit of wine, I noticed that someone brought some stuff for gin & tonics, so I decided to have one. The gin was called Broker's Gin, and, I have to admit, the main reason my curiosity was piqued was because the bottle has a black bowler for a cap. Cheesy? Perhaps. Did it make me want to drink gin? It certainly did.

Broker's Gin, apparently, is made in Birmingham, England, so I guess it has some British street cred. While I don't consider myself a gin connoisseur, I do enjoy it and prefer Beefeaters. It seems to strike a good balance to me in terms of good flavor without being too expensive (or prentious; Tanqueray anyone?). That said, in spite of having two gin & tonics, I didn't really notice that the gin was particularly good. It wasn't bad, but it didn't seem to be anything special. I feel like my opinion was justified, however, when I read this review of the gin today. They seemed to agree that the flavor wasn't that great; however, they did point out that this gin is 94 proof, which is pretty impressive, so apparently it will help you get tanked faster. According to that review, it cost about $20 for a bottle, which isn't too bad, and seems to be in between Gordon's and Beefeater in terms of price. Given the choice between the two, I think I would probably end up choosing Gordon's over Brokers, but at least the bottle looks good on the shelf.

In the News

"Rom-coms 'Spoil Your Love Life'"

(Please note that I would never personally use the term "rom-com" in reference to romantic comedies)

I saw this article and feel like it really confirms the suspicions I've had (and many men have had) about these movies for a while. I guess it is a not a surprising result since most females nowadays don't really seem to have many better places to look for romantic advice than romantic comedies and episodes of "Friends" and "Sex in the City." Additionally, I think that Nicholas Sparks, and the drivel that he passes off as "novels" (that eventually get made into movies), also play a big part in this unrealistic perspective on love.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

A Trip to D.C. (or: How Many Times Can I Use the Title of My Blog as the Basis for a Pithy Post Title?)

This is not my photo. It is a sweet HDR photo of the Capitol by a flickr user named NearDC

Having finished up my second to last semester of grad school yesterday, I set out early tomorrow morning for D.C. I am going to visit one of my best friends from college, as well as to try to see if I can't round up a job for when I graduate in May (or at least make some good contacts). I have a pretty decent itinerary shaping up, and I've got three meetings and a phone meeting scheduled with some D.C.-area real estate folks, so hopefully things should go well. I love D.C. around this time of year, so even if the job stuff doesn't pan out, it will be nice to be up there.

For the drive up I have a the past two episodes of This American Life which I haven't listened to yet. I also got audiobooks of When You Are Engulfed in Flames and Naked by David Sedaris from the Clemson Library (at least I am getting some of my tuition money's worth in terms of checking out books for pleasure reading, or listening, in this case).

While up in D.C. I also hope to maybe stop by Denim Bar. It's not like I have any money to spend on jeans (I am, in fact, now into my "cushion fund," which is slightly disconcerting), but I would be nice to finally pay a visit to that place.

Anyways, I'm not sure how many posts I'll make while up there (not that you, dear reader, have exactly come to expect new posts on a regular basis, for which I hope you will forgive me), but I will at least return with lots of good pictures.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

In the News

"Penny-Pinchers Go Preppy in Economic Downturn"

Someone posted this article on a particular men's clothing forum that I have been known to frequent. I thought it was a pretty decent little article. A the title "Penny-Pinchers Go With Traditional American Style in Economic Downturn" might have been more accurate, I suppose that the alliteration does work better. Nonetheless, I think the part about the increasing sales of logo-less purses is pretty interesting.

The article also touches on the "old money" notion of not flaunting one's wealth, which is an idea that I think is really missing from modern Western culture. In a quote from the article, Bud Konheim, who is (apparently) the chief executive of fashion house Nicole Miller says “You don’t brag about paying $10,000 for a dress for a party…You’re either a sucker or showing off when people have lost jobs.” I like principle of "understated elegance" and it's really something that guide what clothes I purchase. Don't get me wrong, I don't exactly have "wealth," nor do I come from either "old" or "new" money, but I do appreciate buying quality clothes, that often cost a little more (though a lot of mine come from second-hand sources), but that do not advertise how much they cost.

Case in point, in my post about Birmingham Mayor Larry Langford's arrest on Monday, Tammy B pointed out that Larry Langford was arrested in what appears to be a Burberry (no longer Burberrys, mind you; apparently that was too confusing for the people that buy that garbage nowadays) nova check shirt. Here is a photo:

A similar shirt is shown on the Burberry website as retailing for $250. Now, if I was about to be arrested on counts of bribery and money laundering, including accounts of how I spent $50,000 at a Birmingham men's clothing store, I don't think I would be making my court apperance in a $250 shirt that explicitly advertises exactly what it is and how much it costs. Perhaps this example is not really relavent to the topic, though, since that man is so blatantly stupid as is.

Anyways, be sure to check out the article.

Monday, December 1, 2008

3rd Annual Day-After-Thanksgiving Sporting Clay Shoot

For the past three years now, I have gone with my dad, brother, cousin, and uncles up to Brush Creek Sporting Club to shoot sporting clays. It is located outside of Athens and has always been a lot of fun. In addition to the 12 station sporting clays course that we have done each year, they also have 5-Stand Clays (which I have never done), as well as offering a couple of different hunting options. The people are really nice and things seem to be well-run. Here are a couple of pictures.

The Yildiz in action

The brother and I after shooting

David Sedaris "Six to Eight Black Men"

After listening to and enjoying several David Sedaris pieces on "This American Life" over the past few months, I went on Youtube to see what other content could be found on there. I came across his reading of his essay "Six to Eight Black Men" and could not stop laughing. Seriously. This is hilarious, and if you've got about 20 minutes, you should definitely listen to all three parts. Also, considering its references to Santa Claus, it is quite seasonal.

"Baby It's Cold Outside"

Since it has essentially become associated with Christmas, I pretty much wait 11 months out of the year to listen to this song. It is awesome (in spite of a good friend referring to it as "the date rape song"). Personally, I prefer the classic version by Margaret Whiting and Johnny Mercer, but Over the Rhine has a really good version on their album "Live From Nowhere, Vol. 2." And since the overnight low is going to be 29 degrees tonight, I think that the atmospheric conditions have certainly been met...

In the News

Dressing Alike Everyday Habit For This Couple

This is pretty disgusting. I have often lamented how poor America's dress standards have dropped, but this has to be a new low. I think this quote really sums it up: "The couple has more than 100 matching Hawaiian silk shirts, dozens and dozens of matching Croc clogs and assorted matching everything else from jeans to pajamas to watches and even fanny packs." Crocs? Fanny packs? I really don't think this could get any worse.


Larry Langford Arrested on 101-count Indictment

How soon can we get someone else in office?