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.

Advertisements

March 8 – Pop Quiz

Learning Curve

While I’m happy to be done with school (although it may one day pull me back, kicking and screaming), there are a number of fictional institutes of learning that I haven’t minded attending on a weekly basis. Here are the top five schools of fine learning:

#5: Bayside High School – Saved by the Bell

It seems like the inmates run the asylum at Bayside. Mr. Belding can easily be wrapped around anyone’s finger and the collection of oddball teachers seem to have more fun making friends with their pupils than actually teaching them. Need a break from the stresses of teenage life? Why not hit up The Max for a bite to eat and a respite from the classroom. Upon graduation, you’d could even follow the gang to California University for some post-secondary tutelage.

SBTB

It truly was a perfect world!

#4: Acme Looniversity – Tiny Toon Adventures

I can only imagine the sheer joy (and pain) I’d experience while being taught by my idols; Wile E. Coyote, Sylvester J. Cat, and Yosemite Sam. The course catalogue would be interesting to scan through and might include classes like “Navigating Acme Products”, “Treating Exploding Cigar Injuries” and “Dressing in Drag to Confuse Enemies”. Remember, the teaching staff’s been getting laughs since 1933!

#3: Third Street School – Recess

This school will take you back to your earliest days of learning. To a time of first friends, crushes, and recesses. Recess depicted a time in life when kids don’t have many cares and can just be kids. The only thing to keep in mind is what you’re going to do at break time. Are you going to join an intense game of All the Balls? Perhaps you’ll hit Old Rusty, the jungle gym, for a few good slides. Just pray that you’re not stuck inside on a rain day or suffering through a dreaded detention sentence.

Recess

#2: Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters

Also known as Xavier Institute for Higher Learning, the only pre-requisite you’d have to figure out before attending would be finding your super power. I don’t think fending off hangovers is a talent suitable for a mutant academy, so I’m at a loss for what I could bring to the table. Still, a staff that includes a dude that shoots lasers from his eyes, a woman that can harness the power of weather, and a couple that can read your mind, would make classes very interesting.

#1: Greendale Community College – Community

This would be a truly epic school to attend, so long as every day featured one of the educational institute’s wacky competitions or other shenanigans. From paintball wars to the floor is lava games, each day would bring many unique opportunities. The faculty is a whole other level of insanity from Dean Craig Pelton to instructors such as Señor Ben Chang. Attending Greendale would certainly make your life more exciting, even if your degree wasn’t worth much in the real world.

Super Saturday Shot Day: Pop Quiz (A Sip Advisor Original Recipe)

Pop Quiz Shooter

  • Rim glass with Pop Rocks
  • 0.5 oz Root Beer Schnapps
  • 0.5 oz Bubble Gum Vodka
  • Splash of Lemonade

There are so many other institutions of learning that could have made this list, from Springfield Elementary (The Simpsons) to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry (Harry Potter) and everything in between. Mrs. Sip would probably have loved to attend Breaker High, the school aboard a world-travelling cruise ship (not to mention Ryan Gosling would be a fellow student), while I could see myself excelling at Shiroiwa Junior High School, being shipped off to outlast my classmates Battle Royale style!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3 Sips out of 5):
I had higher hopes for this original recipe (seven herbs and spices, of course!). It wasn’t bad, but it could have been better. When I think about it, Root Beer Schnapps and Bubble Gum Vodka have similar aftertastes and perhaps the two got lost in each other. Maybe a Bubble Gum Liqueur would have worked better than the Vodka version, but I don’t think that product exists yet.