Tuesday, December 02, 2014

The Burning Question!

"A startling and shocking exposure!"  I wish I could've seen this to know the Truth.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

BoozeQuest: The Singapore Sling


I usually order Vodka Collins when I go to bar.  But when I got tickets to The Magic Castle in Hollywood, I thought I'd go for something fancier -- the Singapore Sling.

If you've never been to The Magic Castle, it is a private club for magicians and their friends that is nestled in the hills of Hollywood.  Inside is a multi-story mansion with gothic d├ęcor and a bar around every corner.  They have a few showrooms where you can see magic shows, and you have to dress up and bring a lot of cash because everything is over-priced.  I especially like going because -- for some reason -- I'm always picked as the magician's unwitting volunteer to assist in a trick or two.

I get a group of five of us to go and after saying "Open Sesame!" a wall slides open and we're in the club.  We head directly for the piano lounge and get the waitress' attention. The cocktail waitress shortly returns with our drinks.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Friday, November 21, 2014

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Kitchen Options

Which one would you choose?  Lemon/watermelon, tomato/grass, or more watermelon or more watermelon?  Tough choices...

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

"Va Va Voom" Star of the Day

Donald O'Connor
Donald O'Connor was born on August 28, 1925 in Chicago, Illinois, to a family of circus performers.  He entered the family business in the family's vaudeville act, becoming a featured dancer in low-budget musicals.  Ten months after O'Connor's birth, his 7-year-old sister Arline was struck by a car and killed. O'Connor's devastated father died of a heart attack weeks later.

During the Great Depression, the surviving O'Connor's traveled from city to city, performing for food if necessary.  His mother had become extremely overprotective of her remaining children, seeming never to completely recover from the shock of losing her daughter and husband.  Donald enjoyed being on stage, which served as escape from his domineering mother.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

BoozeQuest: Shots & Chasers

 
I'm going to San Diego with Gina for the weekend to gamble my paycheck away at an Indian Casino.  The casino has a very traditional, Vegas feel.  I feel a little old school atmosphere warrants more flexibility and adventure.  So this weekend's drink, no -- theme -- is going to be Shots and Chasers.

I arrive at the casino Friday and head straight for the bar with Gina.  We order a tequila shot and beers.  The bartender - the smart, savvy businessman that he is - upsells us to a higher caliber of tequila.

Round #1:  1800 Tequila shot, Budweiser chaser
Gina and I toast to our luck and down the shot.  It's so smooth that it goes down quickly and I don't even need the lime.  The bartender gives us a "Good luck, ladies," and we're on our way to the slots.  We decide to head to the cheap penny slots - to keep our money for booze.  The slots are more like games in the penny section; if you hit a certain combo they bring up a bonus round where you make picks and play a mini-game.  We find two machines next to each other and I stick in a 20 dollar bill.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Oh...Hello

"Don't judge me, although Phil, Bob, and Frank are gossiping about me adding sugar to my 'Four Roses' cocktail.  But I can't help it...I just love that added sweetness.  'Four Roses.'  When you don't care what those pipe-smokin' judgemental bastards think."

Thursday, November 13, 2014

TBT: "Va Va Voom" Star of the Day

It's Throwback Thursday so I thought I'd keep on the Van Johnson kick and repost our previous "Va Va Voom" Star of the Day post from 2006, for those of you who missed it.  Enjoy!

Van Johnson
"Va va va Van!" Van Johnson had just started a 7-year contract with MGM in 1942 when he was in a major road accident which left him with a metal plate in his head. Ineligible to serve during WWII, the studio used his all-American boyish looks to become America's war film hero. He was usually opposite June Allyson (I love "The Bride Goes Wild") or Esther Williams (my personal favorite is "Thrill of Romance"), two 'all-American girls' that made movie-goers flock to theaters.

In the 1950s, as middle age and a heavier build set in, he was limited with his roles. MGM also began to crumble, and his film career has been irregular since 1960. His career in the 70's and 80's has consisted mostly of stage work which has kept him under the Hollywood radar.

Although his personal life has been racked with turmoil -- from undergoing treatment for skin cancer to rumors of homosexuality -- Van will always remain timeless and pure on the silver screen. His movies will keep him charming, handsome, and as a great symbol as "the all-American" hero of Hollywood, fighting for our country in World War II.

Update: Van Johnson passed away on December 12, 2008.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Crushing on Van Johnson

Today we are crushing on former Va Va Voom feature, the sweet all-American boy, Van Johnson.
Just look at our fresh-faced cutie-pie with his flannel all ready for fall!  Adorbs.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Happy Veteran's Day!

Thank you to all our servicemen and women, past or present!

Booze Quest: The Mojito

I decide to give the Mojito a try when Gina and I meet some friends for a Girls' Night.  My friend Summer says they make the best Mojitos at this place.  I've had a good Mojito before, so I'm up to the challenge.  I find the group in a back room taking up a big booth, and I settle in between Summer and Missy.

Drink #1:  First round.  It seems more minty than I'd like, but it's still good.  The bartender muddled the mint leaves well, and it's garnished nicely.  Overall presentation is good, but the flavor could improve.  Meanwhile the girls are having a real detailed conversation about male genitalia.  I'm going to need another drink.

Thursday, November 06, 2014

Coming Soon

The word is out: Disney has announced that the title of the newest Stat Wars film is "The Force Awakens."
  
Principal photography wrapped today and the film is expected to release December 2015.  Can hardly wait. 

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Cocktail Recipe Du Jour

While I finished getting dressed, here's a quick drink recipe for you to try -- great as an after-dinner cocktail.

The Locust
In your cocktail shaker, pour:
1/2 oz. White Creme de Cacao
1/2 oz. White Creme de Menthe
1 1/2 oz. cream

Shake and strain in to a stemmed, chilled glass.
Float 1/2 oz. of Bacardi 151 on top.

...And if you hold the 151, you have a Cricket.

Cheers!

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

BoozeQuest: The Flirtini

I go to my friend Sasha's house for a barbecue.  She is especially excited that I came because she wants me to make drinks.  (This has become one of my biggest problems now: you go to a party, they hear you went to Bartending School, and they want you to make the drinks.  What happened to just being a guest?)  I agree to make drinks for her because I'm what you may call a Giver.  But agree to do it on one condition: everyone has to give me lots of tips.

I decide to make the debatable Flirtini.  I say debatable, because the drink became known during two different seasons of "Sex and the City."  Apparently in one season the drink was made one way, and in the next it was made a different way.  So sometimes it's made with primarily pineapple juice and champagne, but I decide to make them the other way: with the addition of Raspberry Stoli. (For the detailed recipe, go to my post on the drink called Cocktail Recipe du Jour.  After making a batch for about 4 or 5 people, I pour myself one.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Horror Trailer Mashups

Halloween is coming, and I do like a good scare.  So let me take my childhood favorite movies and see how we can change them.  For example...What if "Labyrinth" was a horror movie? Not much of a stretch really.  I mean, The Goblin King stole a baby.  When I saw this as a kid I thought he was already kind of creepy... in a cool way.
 But then there's this one for "Mary Poppins" that is pretty well done.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Booze Quest: The Vodka Collins

My co-worker Tess is going to perform in a comedy show, so I decide on the Vodka Collins for the night.  I go with two of my male co-workers Thomas and Jim and we find a table near the stage.  "Oh great," Jim says.  "We're definitely going to get heckled up front." 

Drink #1: The waitress brings me my Vodka Collins and asks if that's what my second drink will be, to comply with their two-drink minimum.  "Yes, but -" I start, but she's already walking away.  I don't know why I had to order it right at that moment, but I shrug it off.

Friday, October 24, 2014

How to Make the Perfect Martini

According to Ketel One's website for their "Ultimate Martini," you "pour 1.5 oz. of vodka and stir it with ice in a cocktail shaker. Strain into a rocks glass over ice and garnish with a lemon twist.  This can be tailored to personal taste with the addition of olives, olive brine, dry vermouth, etc."  But......

Here's what I say:
1. Lots of olives please, and make it a little dirty (topped with a float of olive brine). 
2. It doesn't need vermouth, in my opinion.  It takes away the flavor of the vodka.  And if you've bought good vodka, it doesn't need much else.
3. As previously posted (from what I learned in Bartending School), the perfect martini should never be shaken.  It should be stirred, and stirred gently to not "bruise" the vodka.
4. The vodka should always be kept in the freezer so that it is ice cold and ready.
5. It doesn't need a lemon twist if it haves olives.  Just give me those olives!

By the way, if you add cocktail onions, you're no longer drinking a martini.  You're drinking a Gibson.  And some believe a "true" martini is made with gin, but I disagree, and so would PAH-LENTY of vodka drinkers out there.  I think you can have your martini with vodka or gin.  It's up to you.

Cheers!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Must-See Movie: Boys' Night Out



Boys' Night Out (1962)
As far as classics go, this movie is not at the top of the list, but it does have James Garner in it. Garner is adorable as Fred Williams, a single guy who lives with his mother, and pools his money together with three of his other friends (all married) to share an apartment in the city. What's the point?  Not only can they each have their evening at the apartment away from their wives, but the lovely Kathy (Kim Novak) is staying in the apartment to be at the mens' beck and call. Now that's the ugh stupid part of the plot.  But what redeems the film is a few factors.  First of all, there's James Garner in the film.  'Nuff said there.
Hi, Lover...

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Wednesday's This & That

I'm still preparing for my favorite holiday, Halloween!  So while I wait, let's see what's floating around the internet...

Apparently, we Americans are spending a boatload of money this year for Halloween, mostly attributed to the fact that it falls on Friday.  2.2 BILLION DOLLARS are predicted to be spent this year on candy alone.  If you're a dentist, it's time to jack up your prices, because you'll be getting a lot of customers by January 2015.

Halloween on a Friday also means more parties, more events, and a lot more people dressing up in costume. Studies show that "consumers this year are spending $1.4 billion on adult costumes compared to $1.1 billion for children's costumes."

As far as costumes you should probably avoid, there's the offensive (like the Ray Rice costume), the newsworthy (in a Hazmat suit for the Ebola scare), and the downright pointless (crazy Amanda Bynes).  Choose wisely, my friends!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

BoozeQuest: The Long Island Iced Tea

I'm still researching for you (and for Science!) the best of the best cocktails.  Tonight's drink is the Long Island Iced Tea. I decide to give it a whirl with some co-workers at a dinner in Hollywood. I'm always nervous ordering a Long Island Iced Tea, because I've had my share of bad ones. But I decide it's the perfect cocktail for a work party, since they are limiting our drinks to only 2.  Maximize your potential, that's my motto.  When I order it up I eye the bartender's process very carefully. Wow, he's using Jack Daniels instead of Coke to give it that tea color. Interesting...

Drink #1: The substitution of more alcohol for soda is definitely a plus - and that goes for any drink. The Tea still goes down really smooth - and it tastes like a real iced tea. The guy's an effing genius. More people from work are coming in and I spot one of my million bosses. I hide behind Tall Thomas. Not in the mood for business-small-talk-bullshit. Tall Thomas notes my drink and I get a look of doubt. "You know what's in that thing?" he asks me. Yes, and to prove it I order a second one, making the bartender smile. "You're the smartest girl here," the bartender tells me. "You're ordering the drink with the most alcohol!" I give a smug look back at Tall Thomas.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Uplifting Ad

No wonder, you worthless piece of shit.  Shame on you for feeling this way.  What the f$#% is wrong with you?  Stop being shy.  STOP IT.
By the way, what is this advertising?  Suicide?

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Whoa.

Well shit, a drug that even scares those damn hippies.  Now we're talking serious.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

My Dad's Reasoning

Written by my dad in the summer of 2008 (before he passed away March 2009):

Reasons Why I'll Sit Through A Dumb Movie: (in no particular order)
a: I've enjoyed a prequel or some of the actors previously and want to give them every chance to not disappoint me.

b: I'm watching it with someone(s) else and just want to be polite.

c: "I can't believe that it can ALL be THIS bad!"

Miss you, Dad.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

BoozeQuest: The Bloody Mary



Tonight's drink is going to be the Bloody Mary.  I'm going to my friend Missy's surprise birthday party in Hollywood, and although it is normally a breakfast (and hangover) cocktail, I thought I'd give the classic tomato juice mixture a try.  I reach the restaurant with enough time to hit the bar before Missy arrives, and I order my first one.  Strangely the bartender asks, "With salt?" and I pause.  They all come with salt - and pepper, and celery salt.  So, a bit confused, I say yes.

Drink #1:  *cough cough*  The bartender - although cute - made this Bloody Mary way too spicy.  Lay off the Tabasco, my man!  He should've asked "How spicy?"  Additionally the salt request was putting salt on the rim. A third look and I realize he's forgotten the celery stalk!  Bad bartender!  Bad!  

Monday, October 13, 2014

Crushing on Vincent Price

It's MCM ("Man-Crush Monday" for you newbies), and here's another dude we're crushing on that doesn't look so creepy if you forget all the scary roles and voices he's done.
LOVING the sweater and pipe combo.
Read our previous post about him.

Friday, October 10, 2014

How To Make Friends By Telephone

I just love me some Tack-O-Rama.  If you ever are in the mood to walk down memory lane and find some great ephemera, there's the link you should go to.  Recently I stumbled upon this gem on their site (that links to a now defunct blog) and had to share.
Click on the book to find all the juicy deets inside.  My favorite is the page that demonstrates how to hold the phone to your ear properly.
Thanks again, Tack-O-Rama, for filling that nostalgic void in my soul.

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Cocktail Recipe Du Jour


Cigarettes?  Cigarettes?  Oh, there you are.  While I try to make a couple bucks at my evening job, enjoy this cocktail recipe for your Thirsty Thursday:

The Night Owl
One 1-inch piece of vanilla bean, split (or a splash of vanilla extract)
Orange zest
1/4 ounce simple syrup
2 dashes of orange bitters
2 ounces bourbon
Orange wheel

In a rocks glass, muddle the vanilla and orange zest with the simple syrup and bitters. Add the bourbon and ice, stir and garnish with an orange wheel.

Cheers!

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Crushing on Anthony Perkins

If you forget that he played that creepy momma's boy from all those "Psycho" movies, you can manage to crush on actor Anthony Perkins.  Look how friendly and warm he looks here:

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

BoozeQuest: The Cape Cod

For the next 8 Tuesdays, I will be reposting "vintage" posts that had previously only appeared on the now-defunct blog SorryIGotDrunk.com.  This is the first post in an 8-part series called "BoozeQuest."  Please enjoy.

Since going to Bartending School, I realized that there are a lot of drinks out there that sound fantastic but I've never tried. So I've decided that for every night I go out I'll dedicate the entire night to one drink. And thus each shall make up what will be dubbed thine Booze Quest.

Tonight's drink is going to be the Cape Cod, which is simply vodka and cranberry juice. Lou and I go to see my friend's band perform at this place in Santa Monica. It's a wanna-be jazz club, decorated with red velvet curtains and huge black and white pictures of old stars. A little kitschy, but nice.

Monday, October 06, 2014

Monday's This & That

So I'm getting ready for Halloween here at the Lounge...meanwhile, let's see what the heck is going on around the interwebs, with a special Halloween Costume Edition!

Do you dress up for Halloween? If so, what will you be?  It happens to be my favorite holiday, so I will of course be dressing up.  My closet is so full of costumes that the options are endless.  It looks like, for kids, "Frozen" is still holding the prize as most popular costume this year.

Subway is playing up on female insecurity in its new ad.  They say there was no ill-will intended, but the basic premise is that we all should be dressing slutty for Halloween, so their reasoning seems pretty paper thin.  I don't mind dressing up in a slutty costume (as my pictures have demonstrated), but I don't feel that you need to be a size 2 to do so.  And, by the way, Subway is one of the least "freshest" places to eat, so they really shouldn't be promoting any kind of fitness or weight-loss regimen anyway.  *end rant*

But for those of you who'd rather not whore it up for Halloween, there are plenty of alternatives for you!  I especially like costumes that you can make yourself.

...And just when you thought the Ice Bucket Challenge craze was over, there is -- of course! -- the Ice Bucket Challenge costume to stretch those 15-minutes even further.

Let me know what you'll be dressing up as in the comments!

Thursday, October 02, 2014

Cocktail Recipes Du Jour

There are a lot of "collins" drinks out there... do you know them all?  There's the traditional vodka collins which is also called a Mike Collins:
In a collins glass, pour 1 oz. Vodka
2 oz. Sweet and Sour
Fill with soda water
 Garnish with a cherry. 
Pretty straight-forward.  But then there's more...
Substitute the vodka for Gin, and you have a Tom Collins.
Substitute the Gin for Scotch, and you have a Joe Collins.
And last one: making a Joe Collins without the cherry is called a Joan Collins.

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

"Va Va Voom" Star of the Day

Barbara La Marr 
Born as Reatha Dale Watson, this becoming silent film star got her start in vaudeville as a comedian named "Billy Devore."  She made headlines when she accused her half-sister of kidnapping her on a three-day car trip.  Charges were dropped, but the publicity was electric and her career soared.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Bartending 101: Exam Results!

So did I pass the test?  I needed to get a 90% or more.  I know you've all been waiting with anticipation, so here's the conclusion...

Well, I finish taking the Bartending written exam and take the papers to Betty, who seems pretty proud of herself.  I mean, here I have taken Graduate-level courses in college and was never this stressed.  But I must look pretty nervous because she says, "So how'd you do?" with a big smug grin on her face.

"You tell me," I say, and I hear the woo-ee-oo tones from the movie "High Noon" ringing in my head.

She gets out her red pen, and I sit and watch her correct my test.  Check, check, check... Hey look at that, I got one right... check, check, check...

She takes a half point off for the Manhattan recipe because I got the garnish wrong.  I also misidentified American whiskey with Kentucky whiskey.  Got all the glassware right, and two were for extra credit (woo-hoo!) but got confused between a Zombie and a Scorpion.  I also didn't have a good answer for the question "What are the two ways to make champagne?"

She's totaling up the score.  I can't really tell because her writing is so crazy.  "Ready for the results?" she asks, smiling.  She looks a bit too happy.  

Monday, September 29, 2014

Every Vanity Set Needs a Knife

Yes, the noise had finally subsided.  All she had now was the satisfaction of Silence.  And herself.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Happy Birthday, Julie!

Happy birthday today to our favorite sultry songstress Julie London!
For our previous Julie London posts, click here.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Bartending 101: Know Your Glassware

If you're going to be a bartender -- or at least look like one -- you need to know your glassware. There are a variety of glasses, and each drink has a specific glass that you should pour it in.  Here's a general list to get you started on knowing which glass goes in which cocktail.  Today we'll just talk about the classic glassware, and thankfully most of them are named for the drinks that go in them:
Photo courtesy of Cocktail Hunter

Rocks or Old Fashioned glass  - this glass is usually used for whiskeys and gin, but I've gotten this glass when I order my vodka/soda cocktail.  A perfect rocks glass has a round bottom, and when the ice is dropped from the correct height a "ting" can be heard. Rocks glasses got their name as most of these drinks are served over ice (on the rocks).

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

BBQ and Fritos

The very next thing I think of when I think "Barbecue" is....Fritos?  Apparently in 1957, the Frito-Lay company wanted our thoughts going in that direction.  This mini-cookbook brochure with Outdoor Cooking tips and other ways to make your backyard barbecue successful was attached to Fritos.


Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Bartending 101: Taking the Exam!

I decided a while ago that I was going to take the written exam.  Well, I did as much "research" as I could (step 1 of The Plan) and also procrastinated as long as I could (step 2 of The Plan).  So now it was time to face the inevitable proverbial tunes.

I don't want to fail in front of a bunch of people, so I leave work early and drive to the school.  Against my plan, four other people are already there, including a guy from my class (a huge basketball player-slash-college student).  

"Hey," I say.  "You testing today too?"
"At this very moment," he says.
"How's it going?" I ask, seeing that he's still working on the first page.
He groans and shakes his head as an answer.  I'm feeling even less confident now.

Betty emerges from the back and sees me.  "Hey, you ready?" she asks.
"Ready as I'm gonna be," I tell her, hoping she'll give me some words of encouragement.
No such luck.  "Three people have failed today already," she declares.
"Huh," I respond, wondering what the hell she was trying to do to me.
"Okay, here's your test," she says.  "You have an hour."

Monday, September 22, 2014

Friday, September 19, 2014

Friday Photo Album: Working Girls

Here is the last in the series of my photo albums!  During the war, when I wasn't performing at the USO, I was a factory worker.  Here are some photos of the girls an' me at the factory!
It's tiring working at the plant, but I keep a smile on my face:

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

"Va Va Voom" Star of the Day

Mabel Normand
Known as the "Queen of Comedy," Mabel is also noteworthy as one of the most powerful women of the silent movie era.  She was a revolutionary comedienne and actress of silent film, the "It Girl" of the early 20th century, and one of the industry's first female screenwriters, producers and directors.

Onscreen she appeared in a dozen commercially successful films, occasionally writing and directing movies as well as sometimes co-writing and co-directing with Charlie Chaplin in films in which they played the lead roles. At the height of her career in the late 1910s and early 1920s, Normand had her own movie studio and production company.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Bartending 101: Mid-Term Exam Prep

I finally decide that it's time for me to take the written exam.  Yeah, before that whole "12 drinks in seven minutes" practical exam, you have to pass the written exam -- which I am told usually takes around 2 hours to complete and is a complete bitch.

I interrogate Betty all week about what the test is like.  She says you have to get a 90% to pass the test, and that she has seven different versions of it.  More importantly, no one is allowed to take the test home, whether they pass or fail it.  Damn, no chance of getting an underground photocopy.  There goes Plan A.