Mixer Mania #39 – The Immortals

Aloe Vera Juice is a curious beverage. Prior to this project, I’d never tried the concoction and of course, I would only ever drink it as part of a cocktail… I may have to reconsider that, though. In Ancient Egypt, Aloe Vera was known as the “Plant of Immortality” and was even used by Cleopatra, as part of her beauty regimen. With that in mind, here’s the Sip Advisor’s guide to becoming immortal:

Have a Genetic Mutation

We have seen countless examples from the world of comics that all it takes to be immortal is a slight alteration to your genetic makeup. From Apocalypse to Wolverine, good or bad, many of the major players of the genre have existed for hundreds or thousands of years and cannot be destroyed.

Mutation

Be Bitten by a Vampire

Sure you’re still at risk of dying from sunlight, holy water, stakes, etc., but if you can avoid these potential dangers, you will live forever. You may tire of this world, however, so keeping a garlic-soaked stake nearby is a good idea.

Remove Death from the Picture

Both The Simpsons and Family Guy have spoofed what would happen if Death didn’t exist or was otherwise preoccupied. It’s an interesting concept, but the results seem to always be the same: Death is needed for there to be order in this crazy world.

Be a Horror Movie Bad Guy

Seriously, it seems like nothing can stop these guys – your Freddy Kruegers, Michael Myers’ and Jason Voorhees’ of the world – and even when you think you’ve vanquished the baddy and all is well with the universe, it’s likely only a matter of time before a sequel is released and we’re back to square one.

Straight Outta

Be a God or Goddess

This seems pretty unobtainable to us regular folk, but you never know. Some have thought of themselves as a higher power, only to learn the harsh reality of those claims eventually. The Sip Advisor is a proven deity, however, so beware of my omnipotence.

Take a Dip in the Fountain of Youth

Numerous forms of media have examined the existence of a Fountain of Youth. If it existed, would you dive in? What if you couldn’t be joined by all your loved ones and had to start anew. This is getting a little too deep for this site… let’s get to the drink!

Mixer Mania #39: Paradiso

Paradiso

  • Muddle Cucumber and Mint Leaves
  • 2 oz Tequila
  • Top with Aloe Vera Juice
  • Splash of Lime Juice
  • Dash of Agave Nectar
  • Pinch of Salt
  • Garnish with a Mint Sprig and Cucumber Slice

Aside from the Ancient Egyptians, Native Americans were also enamoured with the Aloe Vera plant, referring to it as “The Wand of Heaven”. The more you know!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3 Sips out of 5):
Sadly, finding cocktail recipes for Aloe Vera Juice was not as easy as I’d hoped. This drink is decent, but too sweet. I would suggest not adding the Agave Nectar for a better balance.

Flavour Revolution – Jalapeno

High Flyers

Jalapenos may not get into many mouths, as there are those who try to avoid spicy food at all costs, but they have ventured into space. Taken aboard the Space Shuttle Columbia in 1982 by astronaut William B. Lenoir, jalapenos are certainly not the craziest item to leave the earth’s atmosphere. Here are some of those items:

Ashes to Ashes

There are a number of folks out there that would probably like for their remains to be floated into space for eternity. For astronomer, Clyde Tombaugh, that exact wish was granted aboard the New Horizons mission in July 2015. What makes Mr. Tombaugh so special? Well, he discovered the planet Pluto and this journey was the closest man or machine had ever been to the celestial object. Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry also had his ashes shot into space in 1997, joining portions of scientist Krafft Ehricke.

laundry ashes

If You Build It…

While LEGO has marketed entire lines of space-themed sets, the company can also claim to have had some of their characters enter the vast universe outside of earth’s borders. These little yellow men weren’t just any person, though. Miniatures of philosopher and astronomer Galileo, as well as Roman gods Jupiter and Juno were created for to join the few humans who can say they’ve enjoyed interstellar travel. Other toys to reach space include a Buzz Lightyear action figure… to infinity and beyond, indeed!

Special Sounds

A number of recordings have been sent into space during humans exploration of it. This includes The Beatles song Across the Universe (with a special message from Paul McCartney: “Send my love to the aliens. All the best, Paul.”); Louis Armstrong performing his Melancholy Blues; a recording of a mother kissing her child; a sheepherder… well, herding sheep; a blacksmith at work (is this still a thing!?); the brainwaves of Ann Druyan; Morse Code; laughter; a heartbeat; a hyena; the sawing of wood; and a steam train; among many others.

The Force

Many youngsters have become enamoured with space thanks to the Star Wars franchise of movies, so it’s fitting that a lightsaber prop from 1983’s Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, would make its way out of earth’s atmosphere aboard the Discovery shuttle in 2007. On the flip side of that, is the fact that a poster from the 1984 “classic” Top Secret!, starring Val Kilmer, has also enjoyed a trip through the galaxies. Why this movie was selected amidst all the potential sci-fi classics is a question aliens couldn’t even probe.

owning a lightsaber

Sport Spectacle

Sports play a great role in human existence, so why not bring some of those items up into space. First, there’s the infamous golf shots that have taken place on the moon, including a 200-yard zero gravity bomb, hit by astronaut Alan Shepard. After that, things get a little weirder. In 2008, astronaut and New York Yankees enthusiast Garret Reisman decided to bring some dirt from the Yankee Stadium pitcher’s mound aboard his journey. Lastly, a set of NASCAR green flags were taken into orbit, but the shuttle did more than just loop a track repeatedly.

Reading Material

In 1967, a member of the Apollo 12 backup crew decided to bring a time killing slice of Americana with him. That ended up being a copy of Playboy magazine, which I’m sure was only aboard the spaceship for the articles! Many years later, 100,000 Craigslist advertisements were launched into space. At least the early days of flight have also been paid homage to during space missions: a piece of the Wright brothers first plane to leave the ground was taken into space, as was the watch and scarf worn by Amelia Earhart.

Flavour Revolution:  Pepino Diablo

  • Muddle Cucumbers
  • 2 oz Tanteo Jalapeño Tequila
  • Splash of Lime Juice
  • Dash of Agave Nectar
  • Garnish with a Cucumber Slice

Considering everything that we’ve sent into space, any life that does exist out there must certainly have formed some interesting opinions about us. Chief among those, must be how easily an invasion of earth would be to undertake. After all, just distract us with toys, music, sports, and Playboy magazines and it’s practically mission accomplished!

Flavour Revolution – Maraschino Cherry

Spit Take

Maraschino Cherries lack a pit, which is a bit of a shame. As a youngster, I loved spitting cherry pits out the car window on road trips and that thrill would simply be missing with the Maraschino variety. While my spitting was pure pleasure, these incidents led to much harm for all involved:

Roberto Alomar – Baltimore Orioles

When Alomar was up for election into the Baseball Hall of Fame, the only real knock against him was the spitting incident that had long-tarnished his reputation. At the end of the 1996 season, Alomar was arguing with umpire John Hirschbeck, when he spit in the official’s face. Alomar claimed Hirschbeck had used a racial slur against him and went so far as to say the umpire was bitter over the death of one of his kids. The two eventually made peace, with Alomar doing charity work for ALD research, the illness that claimed Hirschbeck’s child and Hirschbeck fully endorsing Alomar’s Hall of Fame appointment.

Invisible Spitters

Keith Hernandez – Seinfeld

In one of the greatest scenes ever from the popular “show about nothing,” Kramer and Newman take the audience through their experience after a Mets baseball game, where they claim they were spit on by star player Keith Hernandez. Using visuals that resemble the famous Zapruder footage from the JFK assassination, it is deduced by Jerry that there must have been a second spitter, a la the second shooter conspiracy theory, which is part of the JFK murder folklore. Interestingly, actor Wayne Knight, who played Newman, appeared in a similar scene in the 1991 movie JFK.

Roger Waters – Pink Floyd

During a concert in Montreal (us Canadians cause all the world’s problems!) on July 6, 1977, in front of about 80,000 fans, Waters spit in the face of one audience member. What spurned the Pink Floyd frontman to do this, you ask? Well, concert goers were lighting firecrackers, throughout the band’s performance, particularly during quiet sections of the show. It has long been thought that the events of this concert inspired Waters to create his concept for The Wall, which brought the band a whole new level of fame. So, at least they turned a negative into a positive!

Llama-Selfie

Bret Hart – World Wrestling Entertainment

When Hart’s more than a decade long relationship with the then World Wrestling Federation and its owner Vince McMahon went sour in 1997, one of the lasting images from the acrimonious split – in which McMahon and other officials changed the planned ending of Hart’s championship title defense against challenger Shawn Michaels – was Hart launching a loogie at the face of McMahon and scoring a direct hit. The entire incident was dubbed the Montreal Screw Job (wow, a lot of spitting happens in Montreal) and it took many years before fences were mended between both sides.

Frank Rijkaard – Holland

There seems to be a lot of spitting in the football world. So much so, in fact, that there are Top 10 lists on the subject. The most infamous, likely due to happening at the 1990 World Cup (the sport’s biggest tournament and event) involved Frank Rijkaard of Holland spitting in the hair of Rudi Voller of West Germany, not once, but twice. Rijkaard also twisted the ear of Voller and stomped on his foot. That is one pissed off Dutch dude. Somehow, the result was both men getting ejected from the game. Rijkaard later apologized, but the German press had already given him the nickname ‘Llama’!

Flavour Revolution: Vida Verde

Vida Verde

  • Muddle Cucumber and Mint
  • 1.5 oz Tequila
  • 1 oz Maraschino Liqueur
  • Splash of Sweet & Sour Mix
  • Garnish with a Cucumber Slice

Maraschino Cherries are the perfect topping on cocktails to ice cream sundaes and everything in between (even baked hams). In fact, these fruits are so good as the final touch, that if you have a few good things happen to you, a smaller, nicer occurrence, might be called the “cherry on top”! Just like when you’re having a decent day and you wrap things up by reading The Sip Advisor…

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4.5 Sips out of 5):
There’s a lot going on with this cocktail and it’s all good! The drink is very refreshing thanks to the Cucumber-Mint combo and there’s both sweet and sour to be had. A very enjoyable sipping experience!

Flavour Revolution – Cucumber

Cold-Blooded

The term “cool as a cucumber” comes from the fact that cucumbers are known to actually cool the blood. Someone who shows a similar disposition to a cucumber, remaining cool under pressure, is usually given the nickname Iceman… and there are a lot of these folks. Let’s take a look at some of the dudes (there doesn’t seem to be any women on the list) who have ice in their veins:

Chuck Liddell

Liddell is a retired Mixed Martial Arts fighter and Ultimate Fighting Championship legend, holding the record for most knockouts in the company’s history at 13. Liddell has capitalized on his Iceman moniker, opening a memorabilia store called The Ultimate Iceman in 2010, as well as titling his autobiography Iceman: My Fighting Life. There is also Iceman Fight Gear, which is designed based on Liddell’s suggestions.

Chuck Liddell

Kimi Räikkönen

The Formula 1 driver was given the nickname Iceman for a number of reasons, including the frigid temperatures of his native Finland, his cool as a cucumber demeanor on the race track, and his often standoffish relationship with fellow racers, media, and even his own team. I’m not sure how much weight a nickname holds when you give it to yourself, but Räikkönen does have 20 wins under his belt.

Retief Goosen

The South African professional golfer is more likely to be called ‘Goose,’ but he’s also known by ‘Iceman’ for his calm, poised behaviour while on the links. Interestingly, both of Goosen’s nicknames also belong to characters from the movie Top Gun. Goosen’s mom credits her son’s conduct on him being struck by lightning at the age of 15, while golfing with a friend. That event would definitely change your perspective.

Richard Kuklinski

It’s not often that a contract killer gets lumped together with sports stars, but Kuklinski’s method of freezing his victims, to throw off their time of death for investigators, earned him this dubious handle. Kuklinski estimates that he murdered anywhere from 100 to 250 people, while working for the Five Families of New York’s Mafia. The Iceman, a film based on Kuklisnki’s double life, was released in 2012.

Richard Kuklinski

Dean Malenko

Also dubbed ‘The Man of 1,000 Holds,’ Malenko would often approach the ring with absolutely no emotion on his face and this continued throughout the duration of his matches. Unfortunately, when the strong technical wrestler arrived in the character driven WWE after stints in other promotions, he was saddled with the persona of a James Bond-esque ladies’ man, which just didn’t fit.

Adam Vinatieri

While there are some who devalue the role of a football placekicker, when compared to the rest of his teammates, Adam Vinatieri has earned the respect of fans, media, and his colleagues, thanks to completing some of the most essential field goals in the history of the sport. His resume includes two game-winning Super Bowl kicks, among his record four championships for a kicker.

Wim Hof

Of all the people listed in this article with the nickname Iceman, Hof is the only that can claim to actually have a close relationship with the cold stuff. Hof was once the world record holder for the longest ice bath at one hour and 44 minutes. He also excels at other cold weather challenges, including climbing the world’s most fearsome mountains in only shorts and completing marathons in polar temperatures, also scarcely clad.

George Woolf

How about a little Canadian content to wrap up? Woolf was one of the jockeys who rode the legendary Seabiscuit. His strategy of waiting for just the right moment to make his move in a race is what earned him the nickname Iceman. Sadly, Woolf died following a racing accident, in which he fell from his horse and suffered a head injury. An award for jockeys was named after Woolf and awarded annually since 1950.

Flavour Revolution: Crisp Twilight

Crisp Twilight Cocktail

  • Muddle Sage Leaves
  • 1.5 oz Effen Cucumber Vodka
  • Top with Grapefruit Soda
  • Dash of Simple Syrup
  • Dash of Angostura Bitters
  • Garnish with a Cucumber Slice

Cucumbers are so awesome that they can even be used to cure hangovers… not that the Sip Advisor is ever afflicted by this dreaded condition. Thanks to their mix of vitamins, sugar, water, and other nutrients, a few slices of cucumber can be the difference between waking up normally, or wasting the day away in bed!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3 Sips out of 5):
This drink was okay, but given the combo of Angostura Bitters and Grapefruit Soda, the Simple Syrup and even Cucumber Vodka could only do so much to balance out the cocktail, with a kick of sweetness. The Sage Leaves didn’t do much at all for the drink, hidden behind other flavours.

Greece – The Odyssey

Mythologically Speaking

There are some great characters found in the annuls of Greek mythology. I love shows like Hercules (the Disney cartoon, of course) and Clash of the Titans, which give you a glimpse of the legends, but in a way where you don’t feel you’re actually learning something! Let’s take a look at the most rockin’ gods and goddesses:

Zeus

The god of gods and a man you would not want to piss off. Some of his punishments are extreme, to put it lightly. To be fair, along with being the god of the sky, weather, thunder, and lightning, Zeus does also cover law, order, and justice. You probably also wouldn’t want to be a woman around Zeus, as the deity had a penchant for banging everything with a pair of legs… although I doubt missing limbs would stop the insatiable one.

Zeus on the Loose

Hercules

Played by acting icons such as Arnold Schwarzenegger, Lou Ferrigno, Ryan Gosling (Young Hercules) and to a much lesser extent, Kevin Sorbo, numerous performers have taken on the mythical character. Hell, this year alone, there will be two films released on the demi-god, starring The Rock and Kellan Lutz, respectively. An immortal strongman, as a youngster, Hercules even strangled a snake sent to kill him and for that, we thank him.

Hades

Lord of the underworld, Hades is also known as the god of regret and every time I don’t yell at someone who deserves a sound verbal thrashing, I am overcome with remorse. Thanks to the Disney version of Hercules, Hades will forever have James Wood’s voice attached to him in my head, telling me to do bad stuff and end up in the underworld, rather than living the sweet life in the heavens… it’s a tough voice to ignore!

Dionysus

Who can’t love this little scamp; the god of wine, parties and festivals, madness, chaos, drunkenness, drugs, and ecstasy. Personally, I think that sounds like a wicked weekend. Dionysus is so much cooler than Demeter, goddess of grain, agriculture, the harvest, growth, and nourishment (although grain is needed to make many alcohols and there’s nothing wrong with a good meal). Why build up your body when Dionysus is offering you all these fun ways to ruin it!

Dionysus AA Meeting

Ares

God of war, bloodshed, and violence, without ol’ Ares, we might not have all the awesome sports we enjoy today. Sure, the world would be a safer place, but someone would eventually ruin the peace, so chaos might as well reign. The one thing I can fault Ares with is that his sacred animals includes venomous snakes, which have been noted before as the Sip Advisor’s greatest fear. I am down with Ares moodiness and act first, ask questions later mentality.

Aphrodite

This firecracker is often depicted nude or en route to getting there. The goddess of love, beauty, desire, and pleasure, that sounds about as fun as Dionysus and perhaps a weekend under the spell of each of them would be the wildest thing you’d ever experienced. Aphrodite was said to have many lovers and if you were a god, you probably would as well. She can’t be faulted for wanting to get down with her bad self with anyone willing to tango with a goddess.

Aphrodite-Goddess

Hermes

As a writer, I have to give a shout out to Hermes, god of boundaries, travel, communication, trade, language, and writing. I find it odd that the “messenger of the gods” has a sacred animal like the tortoise. You’d think it would be something faster like a cheetah or something. That said, the tortoise did beat the hare, so perhaps it’s more about an accuracy issue. Hermes also guides souls into the afterlife, so he’s a pretty busy dude.

Poseidon

I’ve always been a water enthusiast and therefore I make yearly sacrifices of cannonballs and belly flops to Poseidon, god of sea, rivers, floods, and droughts. The broski of Zeus and Hades, Poseidon lords over all bodies of water. I wonder if this includes toilets, urinals, puddles, and all manner of liquid pooling devices. Can you imagine the all mighty Poseidon showing up in your bathroom stall and pronouncing: “I am king of the crapper and you must respect my authority!”

Greece: The Odyssey

Aug 28

  • Muddle Dill Sprig and Cucumber Slices
  • 1.5 oz Vodka
  • 0.25 oz Ouzo
  • Splash of Lemon Juice
  • Dash of Simple Syrup
  • Garnish with a Dill Sprig and Cucumber Slice

While the examples above are my list of cool gods, the following deities are on the naughty list with reason attached: Hestia (goddess of chastity – no explanation needed), Artemis (goddess of childbirth and the plague – covering both ends of the spectrum), Apollo (god of manly beauty – men should be rugged and ugly), and Athena (goddess of wisdom – who needs it).

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
This was my first opportunity to put Dill in a cocktail and it made for a very interesting drink. Throw in the rogue Ouzo and you never really know what you’ll get. For any Cucumber lovers out there (of which, I am one), this is a martini you have to try.

England – London Cup

Riot Brigade

From South Africa, we head north to merry old England. While it may or may not have originated there, the country has long been known as a hotbed of football hooliganism. Here’s a look at some of the most notorious hooligan firms and the anarchy they have caused!

Hooliganism Industry

6.57 Crew – Portsmouth FC

Taking their name from the depature time of trains from Southsea Station in Portsmouth to London’s Waterloo Station, the 6.57 Crew has been subject of TV documentaries and books on their hooliganism. The club has even had a 10-year old member arrested and convicted of violent disorder. For the 2006 Football World Cup, 130 members of the 6.57 Crew were forced to hand over their passports, limiting their ability to travel to Germany for the tournament.

Chelsea Headhunters – Chelsea FC

This firm has been linked to white supremacist groups, such as Combat 18, a neo-Nazi organization. One member, Kevin Whitton, was sentenced to life in prison for assaulting a bar manager, in which Whitton held the arms of the victim while another Headhunter smashed a beer glass into his face. The Headhunters have long-standing rivalries with firms representing other London-based teams, including Arsenal, Tottenham, and Queens Park.

Millwall Bushwackers – Millwall FC

Any group who chants “No one likes us, we don’t care!” has members that are in need of a serious hug. Perhaps they weren’t given much attention and love as youngsters. Anyway, The Den, where Millwall FC played was closed on five separate occasions by the Football Association due to fan violence. Clearly, these Bushwackers aren’t the fun loving type like the Bushwackers of wrestling fame.

bushwackers

Red Army – Manchester United FC

Sometimes called the Men in Black (hunting aliens when not disrupting soccer matches), the Red Army’s most infamous year might have been 1974-75, while Man U was relegated to the Second Division of the English League. During that season, Red Army supporters often outnumbered home team fans, while United was on the road, causing havoc with each stop across the country. The firm is largely cited as a reason for crowd segregation and fencing at UK football stadiums.

Inter City Firm – West Ham United FC

The ICF has been the basis for one film (Green Street Hooligans) about hooliganism, while serving as consultants on another (The Firm). A movie was also made about former leader Cass Pennant, who despite being black during a time of heavy racism, rose to the top of the ICF and served four years in prison (the first to ever be given a long-term sentence) as a result of his hooligan actions.

Men Discussing

Leeds United Service Crew – Leeds United FC

The LUSC has even been known to beat up opposing fans in wheelchairs… now that’s hardcore. Leeds United has done much to distance itself from the firm, as the level of violence caused by the LUSC has nearly ruined the team. Leeds United was banned from European competition for four years in the late 70’s thanks to fans rioting and in Telford United refused to host the team at their own stadium in 1987, due to the LUSC’s reputation.

The Muckers – Blackpool FC

Colloquially, “mucker” means good friend, but these Blackpool supporters certainly weren’t amiable with fans from other squads. Despite Blackpool’s history of being a lower-tier team, The Muckers were a major league firm, making a 1985 BBC list of the six worst clubs, as far as fan violence was concerned. The Muckers have gone through a number of eras and leaders, seemingly resembling a gang, rather than fans, and participating in West Side Story type rumbles (minus the dancing and singing, of course!).

England: London Cup

London Cup Drink Recipe

  • 1 oz Tanqueray Rangpur Gin
  • 1 oz Sweet Vermouth
  • 0.5 oz Campari
  • Top with Grapefruit Juice and Lemonade
  • Garnish with Cucumber Slices

While the heyday of hooligan firms is long behind us, football fan violence still exists. I’m still thankful nothing broke out during the Man United game Mrs. Sip and I attended in 2007, although our street car did break down in the middle of the town, making for an interesting trip home!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
For my England posts, I wanted to pick up a new and unique Gin and I found exactly that with the Tanqueray Rangpur. I had never seen this product before and was happy to come across it in a duty free shop in the Dominican Republic. The spirit combines Gin with Rangpur Limes as well as some other spices and it is quite refreshing. The same can be said for today’s cocktail, which I enjoyed despite the presence of Campari.

January 2 – Cool Collins

Cool Collins to Michael Jackson’s Virginity – 6 Degrees of Separation

Cool Collins (Close)

How can one person connect the Cool Collins cocktail to Michael Jackson’s virginity in six simple steps? Watch and learn!

Sometimes I wake up and think, “Today is a Cool Collins day.” After all, that’s my Grumpy Old Man cure, with its citrus charm (I use 7-Up or Sprite, instead of soda) and pleasant presentation (muddled cucumbers, yo!). I love the Grumpy Old Men movies, starring Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau, one of the best comedic duos of all-time. Matthau also played one of my favourite drunks (look out for an upcoming post on this amazing selection of characters) Morris Buttermaker in The Bad News Bears. In that movie, Buttermaker enlists the services of his ex-girlfriends daughter, Amanda Whurlitzer, to pitch for the hapless team. That youngster was played by Tatum O’Neal, who is the youngest person to ever win a competitive Oscar, for her role in the movie Paper Moon. And here’s where things get interesting (as if you’re not enthralled by this connect-the-dots puzzle already): she once dated the ‘King of Pop’ Michael Jackson, who has claimed that O’Neal was his first love.

So, there you have it: Cool Collins—Grumpy Old Men—Walter Matthau—Bad News Bears—Tatum O’Neal—Michael Jackson’s Virginity!

The game is even more fun when you’ve already had a couple of these cocktails! So here’s my adaptation of a Tom Collins:

Drink #2: Cool Collins (A Sip Advisor Original Recipe)

Cool Collins Drink Recipe

  • Muddle 4-5 thinly sliced cucumber wheels
  • 1.5 oz Hendrick’s or other gin
  • Top with lemon-lime soda
  • Garnish with cucumber wheel or lemon/lime wedge

This is an awesome drink in the summer, but can definitely be rocked in the winter months, as well. Let me know what you think and come back tomorrow for another great recipe. Enjoy!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
I’m a huge Tom Collins fan and today I tried to change the recipe up a little. The muddled cucumbers along with the Hendricks Gin gives a great taste of cucumber throughout the drink, which while a mild flavour, has also been an enjoyable one for me. My choice of Lemon-Lime Soda over Club Soda is also an excellent decision.