Flavour Revolution – Grape

Grumpy Grapes

I try to be as optimistic and happy as I can in life. Sure, not everything has gone the way I’d want it to, but that’s no reason to become a bitter, miserable person… a person who can be defined as a ‘sour grapes’ type. Love them, or typically hate them, here are some of those folks:

Ebenezer Scrooge – A Christmas Carol

Before having his personality and therefore future changed for the better by three visiting Christmas spirits, Ebenezer Scrooge was one of the most miserly men you could ever come across. His cruelty knew no limit, driving even his closest family members away. Scrooge’s misery can be traced back to neglect from his own father, who left the young boy all alone at boarding school during the holiday season. With his trademark “Bah, humbug!”, Scrooge makes his gruff opinion quite clear to anyone around him.

Scrooge 1%

Gregory House – House

This incredibly talented doctor is a miserable prick with a bedside manner that leaves a lot to be desired… and that’s just the way he likes to be. Thanks to an aneurysm in his thigh, House loses the use of one of his legs and the operation that saved what is left of the limb, ruined his relationship with a long-time love. Add a drug addiction to deal with his chronic pain and you can kind of understand why the guy is so angry. Somehow, House has managed to maintain one friend, fellow doctor James Wilson, who manages to put up with the curmudgeonly diagnostic expert.

The Grinch – How the Grinch Stole Christmas!

Much like Scrooge, the Grinch has no interest in his fellow man (or in this case, Whovillians). He’s content to live inside an isolated cave and never have any contact with the outside world. The extent of The Grinch’s bitterness leads him to want to ruin Christmas for the Whos down in Whoville and he sets upon a devious plan to steal the holiday. The Whos, however, aren’t phased by this, leading to the Grinch’s heart growing three sizes (really it was a massive coronary episode) and a complete change in character.

Grumpy Cat

The Sip Advisor is a big Grumpy Cat fan (and an admirer of all kitties in general). The memes created using Grumpy Cat – real name Tardar Sauce, although Grumpy Cat is much better – are some of the best on the internet. Many don’t know that Grumpy Cat actually looks the way she does because of an underbite and a form of feline dwarfism. I love how the owner of this feline turned a negative into a positive, creating joy for many, while also amassing a fortune that will help this kitty live comfortably for all of her nine lives!

grumpy-cat-disappoints

Mr. Potter – It’s a Wonderful Life

At every twist and turn, George Bailey’s life seems to always hit some sort of snag, but none of these are more crippling then when George’s uncle Billy absent-mindedly loses the money he meant to deposit for their Building & Loan business. Mr. Potter, an adversary and competitor to the Bailey’s happens to come across the money-filled envelope and takes it for his own gains. We learn, when George wishes he never existed, that without him, the town of Bedford Falls would be known as Pottersville and would be inhabited with all the grime a slumlord could ever dream of.

Grumpy – Snow White

Perhaps it’s the years of wear and tear on his body from working in the mines. Perhaps it’s having to live with seven dudes (total sausage fest!). Perhaps it’s simply the fact that he’s a dwarf. Regardless, Grumpy is not a happy person (that’s reserved for Happy!) and can’t even be cheered up by the musical stylings of Snow White and his fellow mining brethren. Despite not initially welcoming Snow White to the fold, Grumpy is the first to rush into battle with the Evil Queen, after she poisons the fair princess with that dastardly poison apple. Healthy food, my ass!

Inspector Javert – Les Miserables

As the title implies, every character in this musical is miserable (and each has their own good reason to be so), but Javert really takes the cake. He’s obsessed with ruining the life of Jean Valjean, a former prisoner who has escaped from parole and managed to elude capture. Even in the end, Javert just can’t let go of his fixation on Valjean and it ends up costing him his life. The dude commits suicide because he was shown mercy from the very man he has hunted for so many years. You’d think with all the wine the French have access to, they’d be a little more relaxed.

Flavour Revolution: Arctic Summer

Arctic Summer Cocktail

  • Muddle Raspberries
  • 1.5 oz Bacardi Arctic Grape Rum
  • Splash of Lime Juice
  • Dash of Simple Syrup
  • Garnish with a Lime Wedge and Raspberry

It’s amazing how many of these characters have a connection to Christmas media. It’s the best time of the year (or so the song implies) so why are miserable people an enhanced version of themselves around the holidays? Speaking of the holidays, if you’re ever in Spain for New Year’s Eve, tradition dictates that when the clock strikes midnight, you should eat 12 grapes, one to go with each chime of the New Year.

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (2.5 Sips out of 5):
This is kind of a mint-less, soda-less version of a Raspberry Mojito, but what it lacked it could have used. I’m looking forward to trying more cocktails with the Arctic Grape Rum, as that was the best part of the drink.

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Flavour Revolution – Lemon

When Life Gives You Lemons

I find stories of people turning their lives around to be quite fascinating and inspiring. Going through challenges makes for better people on the other end and some of the greatest things we know today were created by those who took risks, defied protocols, and pushed through adversity. Here are some fine examples of folks turning lemons into lemonade!

Walt Disney

Had Walt Disney been one to easily give up, we wouldn’t have an archive of wonderful characters, shows, movies, theme parks, and experiences. Countless times, it was speculated that Disney would destroy his own company with new ventures. This included the making of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves – dubbed Disney’s Folly by the media – and the construction of Disneyland, which many believed had no chance of success. Disney had so much trouble raising funds for the theme park that he made a deal with the ABC TV network, exchanging programming for help in financing his dream. Everything worked out in the end, thanks to Disney’s risks.

Walt Disney Legacy

Henry Ford

The man who eventually brought the world the automobile went through a number of struggles before finally reaching success. Ford came from a farming family and was expected to take over the homestead, although he hated the work and lifestyle. Ford wanted a better life for himself, but simply leaving the farm didn’t guarantee anything. In fact, Ford was forced to file for bankruptcy twice, but he learned from his mistakes and gained a net worth of $188 billion. Ford was also one to look after his employees, offering them an unheard of $5 per day wage, allowing them to buy the vehicles they were making.

JK Rowling

The Harry Potter author, now raking in cash from her books, movie deals, theme park lands, etc. was once living off welfare and trying to complete her novel by travelling to various coffee houses, while caring for her infant child. Even when interest began swelling for her manuscript, she was advised to seek a day job, as it was unlikely she would make enough money solely on writing children’s books. While speaking for a graduating Harvard class in 2008, Rowling said: “It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all – in which case, you fail by default.”

Steve Jobs

Before he became the technological icon that we know him as today – creating devices such as the iMac, iPod, iPad, and iPhone – Jobs went through many hardships. Among them, he was an adopted child, struggled in school, dropped out of college course he could barely afford in the first place, and struggled to find his niche in the working world. Even running his own company would not provide smooth sailing. In fact, at one time, he was forced out of Apple, the company he created and would later bring back to prominence. Even in declining health due to cancer, Jobs never gave up hope or his dreams and kept working hard through it all.

Jobs Taking Over

Terry Fox

Fox was only 18 years old when he was forced to have his leg amputated due to cancer. The young man didn’t let that stop him, though, as he not only won national wheelchair basketball championships, but also embarked on a trip across Canada, running to raise money for cancer research. Fox’s Marathon of Hope lasted 143 days and 5,373 km, garnering $1.7 million in donations. Sadly, the journey had to be halted in Thunder Bay, Ontario, when Fox was too sick to continue, cancer returning to the athlete’s body. In honour of his campaign, the Terry Fox Run is done annually around the world and has raised over $650 million.

Rick Hansen

Sticking with Canadian content, the wheelchair-bound Hansen gave the opening address at one of my college convocations and his message really hit home with Mrs. Sip and myself. The crux of it was: “Failure is not having the courage to try.” Hansen is best known for his Man in Motion World Tour, an attempt to raise funds for spinal cord injury research by circumventing the globe in his wheelchair. Hansen had been crippled in an auto wreck at the age of 15, but that didn’t stop the man from raising $26 million over his 26 month journey. The song St. Elmo’s Fire was written for Hansen and his courageous expedition.

Oprah Winfrey

With a media empire that includes its own magazine, television network, and devoted fan base, one could certainly say that Oprah Winfrey did well for herself. When you learn of the broadcasting mogul’s humble and difficult beginnings, her success is all the more impressive. She had a strained relationship with her teenage mother, who was in and out of her life and was the victim of sexual abuse from family members. After running away from home, Winfrey herself became pregnant at age 14, although the baby died after premature birth. Once Winfrey entered the media world, it was a slow rise to the heights she currently enjoys.

Flavour Revolution: Floradora

Floradora Cocktail

  • 1.5 oz Gilbey’s Lemon Gin
  • 0.5 oz Chambord
  • Top with Ginger Ale/Beer
  • Splash of Lime Juice
  • Garnish with a Lemon Wedge

The phrase “when life gives you lemons, make lemonade,” has been credited to two sources. First, Elbert Hubbard, a Christian anarchist writer, used it for the obituary of Marshall P. Wilder, a dwarf actor, who Hubbard wrote of: “He cashed in on his disabilities. He picked up the lemons that Fate had sent him and started a lemonade-stand.” Fellow writer Dale Carnegie has also been said to have invented the term, writing in his book ‘How to Stop Worrying and Start Living’: “If You Have a Lemon, Make a Lemonade.”

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3.5 Sips out of 5):
This is an interesting drink. I used my Dark Ginger Ale, but kind of wished I’d used some Ginger Beer, perhaps Crabbie’s orange or raspberry flavour. There’s a lot of different tastes going on here, but the end result works. And if it hadn’t, I would have made lemonade from the lemon experience!

March 4 – Red Apple

Toxicity

Today’s drink may not be poisonous (my liver may disagree), but it has inspired me to look at the fictional folks who have suffered a toxic fate. In dissecting some of their tales, I will attempt to put myself in their shoes and provide a Sip Survivor’s Guide to lethal venoms!

Snow White – Poisoned Red Apple

Now it’s a bit beyond me as to why Snow White would ever accept a red apple from a strange old woman when she knows there’s a bounty out on her head. And doesn’t Snow know that Granny Smith’s are where it’s at and any intelligent person understands that Golden Delicious follows, in the absence of the good green stuff? I can suffer from insomnia at times, so if anyone knows where I can get my hands on one of these sleeping apples that would be pretty sweet. Of course, the chances of Mrs. Sip waking me up the next morning with a kiss are slim… She may choose to leave me in a perpetual dream world for all of time.

Snow White Poison Apple

Dude from Crank – Beijing Cocktail

Only having one hour to live thanks to his poisoning, this guy makes the most of it, running around Los Angeles committing crimes, getting into random fights, and having exhibitionist sex with his girlfriend at the mall. I gotta say, if you wanted to kill the guy, why would you give him an hour to live and also explain this to him in a video when he awakens?… silly movies. If I was given the Beijing Cocktail, I’d use my last hour to do some hardcore parkour. If you’re going to go anyway, might as well do some stupid risky stuff first.

King Hamlet, Queen Gertrude, Laertes, King Claudius, Prince Hamlet – Hebenon

Wow, there’s a lot of bad shit going on here. Something is rotten in the state of Denmark, indeed. Claudius poisons Hamlet’s father; Claudius accidentally poisons Gertrude’s wine; Laertes slashes Hamlet with a poison blade; Hamlet stabs Laertes with the same toxic blade as they scuffle; Hamlet not only stabs Claudius, but forces him to drink the poisoned wine; Horatio (where the hell did he come from?) almost willingly poisons himself, due to all the grief… okay, breathe… I can only conclude that if this was all going on around me, I’d be getting the f*ck outta Denmark!

Ron Weasley – Poisoned Mead

Mead – (def.) also called honey wine, is an alcoholic beverage that is produced by brewing a solution of honey and water…

What in the world was this underage boy doing drinking mead in the first place? What kind of supervision is taking place at Hogwart’s, a school where children are attacked on a regular basis? How does this place still have a license to teach? In the interest of full disclosure, I’m only upset because I was denied acceptance to the school, instead turning to the dark arts of blogging.

Batman – Fear Gas, Smilex

Used by the Scarecrow, fear gas causes victims to hallucinate their worse fears. While Batman, of course, is inflicted by nightmares of bats (seriously, who’s scared of friggin’ bats… just big tough guy Bruce Wayne), I would be haunted by vivid scenes of naked girls, pillow-fighting for the right to ravage Mrs. Sip. How does the old saying go: fear what you love!

And as if Batman didn’t have enough to worry about in the field of poisons, the Joker uses Smilex, a toxin which kills quickly and leaves the dead with a distorted smiling face. That wouldn’t bug me too much, given my face is permanently locked in an exaggerated grin. Remember when your mom told you not to roll your eyes because they’d get stuck in the back of your head? I never listened.

Joker Smilex

My Little Pony stable – Poison Joke

Wow, the weird paths research can take you down sometimes… this is why I never did any during my school days. So apparently, on a kids cartoon keep in mind, the ponies were once poisoned resulting in a unicorn’s horn going limp (erectile dysfunction, clearly), another’s voice becoming deep and manly (transgendered) and one suffering what seems to be the onset effects of an STD. And people thought the 1980’s excess was bad.

Cartoon Characters (Who Framed Roger Rabbit) – Dip

If I was animated, this substance would scare me more. Since I’m of the lifeless – no, wait, that doesn’t sound right… stupid thesaurus antonyms… what kind of a dinosaur is a thesaurus anyways? – I mean, since I’m of the living variety, the only Dip that scares me is Fun Dip. Poison in a pouch, if you ask me. Side note: If I was animated, I’d like to think that I’d be a cross between Wile E. Coyote and Sylvester the Cat. No lack of effort, but disappointing results all around!

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – Mutagen Ooze

So, one day these turtles were hanging out in the sewer when mysterious ooze was poured through a drain and splashed all over them. Almost instantaneously, they began to grow and develop a vocabulary that included words like “awesome,” “radical,” and “cowabunga.” Next came fighting skills and an obsessive love of pizza. If I was a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, I’d be the slacker one. Leonardo leads, Donatello does machines, Raphael is cool but crude, Michaelanglo is a party dude, Sip Advisor (Sipario) is lazy as shit and will likely be evicted.

Drink #63: Red Apple

Red Apple Drink

  • 1.5 oz Vodka
  • 1 oz Lemon Juice
  • Top with Apple Juice
  • Dash of Grenadine

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3.5 Sips out of 5):
This was a pretty good drink built on the back of the mixers, the Apple Juice and Lime Juice. The Grenadine finished the recipe and had the cocktail actually tasting like a red apple.