Mixer Mania #40 – Endorsement Errors

Cherry Cola has been a Sip Advisor favourite since I was wee little sipper. Whether Coke, Pepsi or a no-name version, I just love that little something extra to my cola. In China, billionaire businessman Warren Buffett has been featured on bottles of Cherry Coke. A fan of the drink and shareholder in Coca-Cola, Buffett’s success is very much respected in China, so why not use the man’s likeness to sell soda. Here are some other interesting celebrity endorsement relationships:

Hulk Hogan – Pastamania

If there’s money to be made, you’ll probably find Hulk Hogan sniffing around. Borrowing from his ‘Hulkamania’ aura, the Pastamania restaurant opened in The Mall of America in 1995, closing down in under a year. Some kids meals – for Little Pastamaniacs – did include Hulkaroni & Cheese and Hulkios, which is pretty awesome.

Ozzy Osbourne – I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter

The infamous rocker, best known for his excessive lifestyle of drug and alcohol abuse, was for some reason pegged as the face of I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter for a time. I only wonder if he ever tried the spread on a live bat?

The Olsen Twins – AquaFresh Toothpaste

I suppose the American Dental Association was looking to get kids interested in brushing their teeth, so they pushed for companies to find younger spokespeople. Enter the Olsen Twins and their BubbleCool toothpaste. At least it’s not another video game, movie, or musical release.

Brad Pitt – Chanel No. 5

Keep in mind, this is a women’s fragrance… actually, that makes some sense. What better way to draw the attention of a prospective female customer, than entice them with the two-time People Magazine Sexiest Man Alive. Or, you know, you could try marketing the product with an empowered female figure.

Bob Dylan – Victoria’s Secret

After seeing the music legend perform this past summer and be completely unintelligible, it’s clear Dylan is in it for the money. Such was the case when he appeared in a 2004 Victoria’s Secret commercial. Apparently Dylan once said he would only ever ‘sellout’ to advertise “ladies garments”, so I guess he can be forgiven.

Donald Trump – Anything He Can Hawk

The US president has endorsed everything under the sun, from vodka to steaks, fragrances to teas, bottled water to vitamins, and the list goes on. If only he stuck to making endorsements, rather than running for office himself.

Penelope Cruz – Nintendo DS

Appearing with her sister, the actress loses a video game bet and has to suffer the consequences of dressing like Nintendo’s main mascot. Nothing is sexier than a beautiful woman outfitted as Super Mario, complete with thick mustache.

Mikhail Gorbachev – Pizza Hut

Personally, I think pizza sells itself. Certainly, it shouldn’t take a former Russian politician to get you onboard with the food. Appearing with his own granddaughter, and putting a final nail into the Soviet Union communism coffin, at least Gorbachev put his appearance fee towards his charity.

Mixer Mania #40: Scorpion Queen

Scorpion Queen.JPG

  • 1.5 oz Vanilla Vodka
  • 1.5 oz Coconut Rum
  • Top with Cherry Cola
  • Garnish with Maraschino Cherries

Another interesting fact about Cherry Coke is that it was first tested at the 1982 World’s Fair in Knoxville, Tennessee, before being introduced in February 1985. Check out the Sip Advisor’s past article about things we have World’s Fairs to thank for their existence.

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
This drink is pretty good, as one would expect. I didn’t have any Vanilla Vodka in my bar (bad Sip Advisor), so I went with regular Vodka and a splash of Galliano to achieve the right flavour.

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December 12 – Yellow Snow

Gift Receipt Required

Last week, we opened the Super Saturday Shot Day Christmas season with a look at some of the best gifts given and received in movie history. Today, we see the flipside of that, with the worst presents to be exchanged. These should have definitely been returned to the sender:

#5: Necklace – Love, Actually

I know what you’re saying: “You’re crazy, Sip Advisor… all that boozing has finally damaged your brain!” Now, before you exhile me from this site and the internet altogether, hear me out. The necklace given in this case is a bad gift because it was to be given to the wrong person. Karen (Emma Thompson) is ecstatic when she believes she’ll be receiving an expensive necklace from her husband (Alan Rickman). When all she gets is a Joni Mitchell CD, she knows something is up and confronts her partner. Rickman can’t seem to get Christmas right, given this and his turn as Hans Gruber in Die Hard!

love actually snape

#4: Lingerie – Elf

Giving your partner some sexy lingerie might be the most selfish gift in history (not that there’s anything wrong with that!). I mean, who’s it really for!? That said, it gets even worse when you’re a middle-aged elf, giving your long-lost father a sexy teddy. With so much sugar running through his veins, Buddy was bound to make some mistakes in his first visit to the world away from the North Pole. And what a confusing place to start, as he must travel to New York City to reunite a father who didn’t even know he existed.

#3: Bunny Pajamas – A Christmas Story

Most of us have been there at some point in our lives, when a gift from a distant relative just doesn’t jive with our wants and desires. Poor Ralphie not only gets a set of bunny pajamas (complete with floppy ears and cottontail) from his aunt Clara, but to add insult to injury, the sleepwear is pink because aunt Clara mistakes Ralphie for being a girl… not a strapping young lad capable of wielding a Red Ryder BB Gun. After showing his new jammies off to his mom, dad, and brother (who can’t help but laugh at the ridiculous outfit), Ralphie is allowed to change and get back to his present opening.

A-Christmas-Story-pink nightmare

#2: Jelly of the Month Club – Christmas Vacation

Looking to cut costs, Frank Shirley enrols his employees in a Jelly of the Month Club, rather than reward them with their annual Christmas bonus, as has been tradition. Aside from the loss of cash money, I have to ask: Is there really that many good jellies to fill up the calendar? As Clark Griswold says, with his boss held hostage in their home, people rely on that money and when they don’t get it, that’s just rotten. Mr. Shirley learns his lesson and promises to bring the bonuses back, even adding an extra 20% to Clark’s. If it had been a Beer of the Month Club, would all be alright!?

#1: Various – The Nightmare Before Christmas

While his heart is in the right place – wait, does Jack Skellington even have a heart? – any gift coming from Sandy Claws is probably one you shouldn’t bother opening. In his attempt to become the new face of Christmas, Jack delivers shrunken heads, Christmas tree-eating snakes, pumpkin jack-in-the-boxes, vampire teddy bears, toy ducks with sharp teeth, and living wreaths to the children of the world, causing dismay and chaos on Christmas morning. Jack really sounds more like a Christmas-themed mercenary than the bearer of great gifts.

Super Saturday Shot Day: Yellow Snow

While The Gift of the Magi presents are incredibly thoughtful, they’re poorly planned and communicated: Jim sells his watch to buy Della a comb for her hair, while Della sells her hair to buy Jim a chain for his watch. Definitely a couple that needed to focus a little more and buy a mutually awesome gift together!

Flavour Revolution – Toffee

Sticky Fingers

Toffee can be quite delicious, but also very sticky, getting caught in your teeth and causing a nuisance as you try to pry it out. Here are some of the world’s other sticky and sometimes annoying items:

Spider Webs

It causes great panic when you walk through a spider web. As you struggle to remove the arachnid goo from your face, you also have to worry that there’s a spider on your person. This doesn’t cause too much panic for the Sip Advisor, but for Mrs. Sip, a vocal anti-spider legislator, this is reason enough to launch into a fit of flailing limbs and verbal expletives.

spider webs sticky

Sauces

Finger food such as ribs, chicken wings, burgers, etc. can get pretty messy, often necessitating numerous napkins and sanitary wipes. Sometimes it’s fun to see just how much of a mess you can make when eating these items, so long as you’re not the one who has to wash the dishes used or clean the meal setting. That job is better left for the professionals.

Tar

While tarring and feathering someone has gone the way of the dodo, the act of public humiliation would really come in handy for unruly celebrities, such as Justin Bieber (just one example that immediately came to mind!). Instead, the only humiliation The Biebs had to go through was being roasted by comedians and other stars on an edition of Comedy Central Roast.

Velcro

Velcro was designed by Swiss engineer Georges de Mestral, who used the words “velours” (“velvet”) and “crochet” (“hook”) to create the portmanteau Velcro…  and the product sticks together just as successfully. While its best use is as an alternative to shoe laces, I think my favourite Velcro deployment is on those pads that people launch themselves into and try to stick to.

velcroshoes

Peanut Butter & Jam

The Sip Advisor is a huge PB&J fan, but I will admit that both ingredients can be a sore spot for those that don’t like getting their hands dirty while eating. I suppose that’s one good thing that could come out of having a peanut allergy: never having to wash off after making or eating a peanut butter-based sandwich. I’ll take the adhesive spread any day, though.

Super Glue

I remember one summer day way back when, when a panicked Pa Sip called out for help. Worried that he’d injured himself while working around the house, I rushed to his aid, only to discover that he’d accidentally super glued his fingers together. Once we both realized the emergency wasn’t so serious, we burst out laughing.

super-glue

Sap

While I loved climbing trees as a wee little sipper, I always hated how sticky the sap would make my hands. The scene in National Lampoons: Christmas Vacation when Clark Griswold is in bed reading a magazine and can’t turn a page without ripping it from the publication, thanks to unveiling the family Christmas tree, is a priceless example of this.

Gum

It really sucks when you get gum stuck to anything, be it on your shoes, in your hair, or on your face. Recently, I challenged Mrs. Sip to a bubble blowing contest (yes, we are actually adults!), but had to be very careful, given the facial hair I’ve been sporting for the last half year. While I emerged victorious, I wasn’t my usual self, worried about any errant bubble pop.

Flavour Revolution: Mark Twain

Being sticky isn’t all that bad. After all, a quick shower together cleans the slate for the next go round!

August 8 – Cheesecake Shot

Old Country Buffet

As we are enjoy the summer season and all the food-based gatherings that come with it, I thought it was a great opportunity to look at the field of competitive eating. I’m surely not very good at packing away food (booze on the other hand!), but these folks excel at it:

#5: The Ladies

Competitive eating may be one of the most open “sports” to equality for both genders. There have a number of notable female champion consumers, including Sonya ‘The Black Widow’ Thomas, Molly Schuyler, and Miki Sudo. These gals specialize is foods that include hot dogs, Kimchi, chicken wings, chili cheese fries, crab cakes, hard-boiled eggs, oysters, and steaks. While Schuyler and Sudo are newer to the competitive eating circuit, Thomas has accumulated a small fortune thanks to her exploits, with an estimated $100,000 in career winnings. The native of South Korea is small in stature, weighing in at less than 100 pounds for some of her most memorable events.

Competitive Eating

#4: Jason Conti

Nicknamed ‘Crazy Legs’, Conti got into competitive eating kind of innocently. He started as a fan of the Nathan’s 4th of July Hot Dog Eating Competition, before winning an oyster eating contest (he ate 400 of the shellfish aphrodisiacs) in New Orleans, and then began a career in the discipline. Conti has held world records for eating green beans and sweet corn, so I guess that’s kind of healthy. A documentary on Conti, titled Crazy Legs Conti: Zen And The Art Of Competitive Eating, was released in 2004. According to the film, Conti has held numerous jobs, among them: a window washer, nude model, and sperm donor (the trifecta of awesome!).

#3: Adam Richman

The fun-loving host of Man vs. Food may not be your traditional competitive eater, but he’s game for food challenges across the United States. Each episode of the popular Travel Channel series, shows Richman in a different city, where he visits three different must-eat-at local favourite restaurants. At the final stop, Richman takes on the eatery’s menu challenge. These have included spice trials, as well as masses of food, with Richman owning a personal record of 37 victories to 27 losses. To train for his challenges, Richman would try not to eat the day before the big meal, while drinking large amounts of water of club soda. Upon retiring from the competitive eating game, Richman dropped more than 60 pounds.

Man vs. Food

#2: Joey Chestnut

Perhaps the most famous of all competitive eaters, thanks to his annual success at the Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Contest (held each Fourth of July in Coney Island, New York), the man nicknamed Jaws, is proficient at gobbling hot dogs, chicken wings, pizza, and jalapeno poppers, holding International Federation of Competitive Eating (IFOCE) records in each discipline. Chestnut has even been featured on his own trading card, which would be a big enough honour. He has amassed a total of $200,000 in winnings, as well as two cars and a motorcycle. Not bad, for getting fed!

#1: Takeru Kobayashi

Speaking of guys that can destroy hot dogs, Takeru Kobayashi used to own the Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Contest – winning six straight Independence Day classics – before Chestnut came along and won the next eight. The slender Japanese eater is known for his Kobayashi Shake, in which he wiggles his body around, forcing food to move through his body and settle across his stomach. On an episode of Man vs. Beast, Kobayashi came up on the losing end of a hot dog eating contest against a Kodiak bear, but he does hold Guinness Records in eating, include hot dogs, meatballs, Twinkies, hamburgers, pizza, and pasta.

Super Saturday Shot Day: Cheesecake Shot

  • Rim glass with Graham Cracker Crumbs
  • 1 oz Vanilla Vodka
  • 0.5 oz Cranberry Juice

I feel that I should give at least one eating challenge a shot at some point in my life. I won’t win, I know that, but then I could say that I was a competitive eater. You’re right, I’m not sure that’s something to be proud of!

Flavour Revolution – Watermelon

Seed Money

By far, my favourite fruit is watermelon. That said, the other day, the Sip Advisor picked up a little round watermelon for $3.99. Not per pound, just $3.99, straight up. That’s a pretty good deal. Some of the other price points that will appear on this list… eh, not so much! Here are some of the most expensive fruits of all-time:

Densuke Black Watermelon

Let’s get the ball rolling with some watermelon selections. Apparently, only 100 of these black, non-striped melons are grown each season, with one being sold at auction for $6,100. Sure the behemoth weighed in at a whopping 17 pounds, but I’ll take my $3.99 melon, thank you very much. There are also square watermelons, which blew up the internet a couple years back with their $200 cost.

Cat Watermelon

Lost Gardens of Heligan Pineapples

I would have never thought of England as a breeding ground for pineapples. Tropical countries, sure, but not a nation that is often the butt of weather jokes. Even more shocking is the method used to develop these fruits, which uses straw, manure, and horse urine, classified as “Victorian techniques!” Doesn’t sound very appetizing to me and we haven’t even brought up the $16,000 price tag.

Yubari King Melons

These melons are given as gifts, so I’m wondering who out there wants to get close enough to the Sip Advisor that come my next birthday, you might flip a set of these melons my way. What’s that? You don’t want to spend $12,500 on this purveyor of such pleasure? Well, that just makes me sad.

Life Melons

Strawberries Arnaud

At least in this case you get a bowl of strawberries and not just one, but the price point ($1.4 million) is completely ridiculous… even if it’s garnished with a 4.7 carat diamond ring. I wouldn’t pay that if Mrs. Sip was given the cash and had to personally serve me the berries, while wearing little to no clothing… or maybe I would!

Ruby Roman Grapes

These grapes are each about the size of a ping pong ball, but why does that make them so valuable? At least there are 25 in the bunch, but $6,400 seems excessive. Imagine taking these grapes and playing the most expensive game of beer pong, ever? There would have to be something like fine champagne or luxurious cognac in the cups!

Flavour Revolution: Love Potion #9

Love Potion #9 Martini

  • 1 oz Watermelon Pucker
  • 1 oz Vanilla Vodka
  • Top with Cranberry Juice
  • Splash of Pineapple Juice
  • Garnish with a Watermelon Ball

So, how much would you pay for some of your favourite fruits? As far as watermelon is concerned, it’s almost cheaper for me to settle for the 21st Amendment Hell or High Watermelon or Parallel 49 Seed Spitter beers and call it a day!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
There are other recipes under the same Love Potion #9 name. This martini was very tasty, with hints of vanilla, watermelon, cranberries, and pineapples. It was a fruit salad for the mouth and a perfect recipe for this article… best of all, it didn’t cost an arm and a leg to enjoy!

January 3 – Pink Starburst

It’s Gonna Be Great

Each new year, provides time for reflection and an opportunity to plan for the future. With that in mind, here are the Top 5 things the Sip Advisor is looking forward to in 2015:

#5: New Opportunities

I have a feeling that 2015 will bring about some new adventures in the Sip Advisor’s life… all for the better, of course. Then again, I feel that way every time the calendar turns and while some years don’t hold the developments that others do, I refuse to not look at things with a positive and hopeful outlook. Not to steal a line from the Christmas season, but I hope every little sipper out there gets everything they want out of 2015.

Optimism Glasses

#4: Movies

There are some great theatrical releases in the 2015 pipeline. Regardless of what you’re into, there seems to be something out there for everyone. The films the Sip Advisor is looking forward to most, include The Avengers: Age of Ultron; Minions; Ted 2; and Deadpool. While I have absolutely no interest in it, it should be noted that Fifty Shades of Grey will finally hit theatres, so one can expect a spike in vibrator sales across the globe, following its debut!

#3: TV Shows

Returning to the small screen early this year are a host of great comedies, including Archer; Parks and Recreation (for its seventh and final season); and Community, the show that keeps on kicking. It’s hard to pick one out of those three that I’m anticipating the most, but I think the edge would have to go to Archer. Better Call Saul will also debut in 2015, for those looking to fill their Breaking Bad void!

Archer Astronaut

#2: Vacations

Already on the travel calendar for 2015 are jaunts to Disneyland, perhaps twice (once for a Sip Alliance member’s birthday scavenger hunt and later for the resort’s 60th anniversary); Portland for the Spring Beer and Wine Festival; and a likely trip to Las Vegas sometime during the summer. Mrs. Sip also has the wild idea of us going to South Africa in September, where the Sip Advisor will have to deal with his fear of snakes, Ebola, and hostile tribes, all at once!

#1: Flavour Revolution

Of course, one of the most enjoyable elements of the upcoming year will be the Sip Advisor’s Flavour Revolution Project, which will be rocking the world throughout 2015. I’m also really excited about adding some more personal coverage to the site with the “Out and About with the Sip Advisor” feature… it’s about time I combine all the fun I’m having with this wonderful site!

Super Saturday Shot Day: Pink Starburst

Pink Starburst Shot

  • 0.5 oz Vanilla Vodka
  • 0.25 oz Watermelon Pucker
  • Splash of Sour Mix
  • Garnish with a Pink Starburst

We need to enjoy 2015 to the max because 2016 will be inundated with a nearly full year of political coverage in the U.S., as they approach their presidential election. That’s one thing the Sip Advisor certainly isn’t looking forward to in the future.

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3 Sips out of 5):
The recipe for this shooter seems incredibly out of proportion, asking the maker to combine four ounces of liquid… that’s enough to fill at least three shot glasses. I’ve tried my best to bring the measurements down to an acceptable number, but that may throw the taste out of whack. In fact, the Vanilla Vodka provides a different aftertaste than you are used to from the actual candy, but it’s still relatively tasty.

November 22 – Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Reunification

Earlier this year, the online world became abuzz, when a poster was released, teasing a Friends reunion for this Thanksgiving. It turned out to all be a hoax, but that got me thinking of shows where I’d love to see a reunion episode or some other gathering of the cast/characters, injecting new life into the stories many of us grew up on. Here is the cream of the crop of those I’d love to see one more time!

#5: Recess

Perhaps in a similar vein to All Grown Up, the Rugrats re-launch, it would be great to find out whatever happened to the Recess kids – T.J. Detweiler, Vince LaSalle, Ashley Spinelli, Gretchen Grundler, Mikey Blumberg, and Gus Griswald – and where they lives led after their fourth grade adventures at Third Street Elementary School. Did any of the kids ever hook-up (my bet’s on Mikey and Gus!)? The new story could be set in any time period, whether it be high school, college, adulthood, old age, etc. If a more adult network took the reins of the show, instead of Disney, we might get some very interesting and scandalous (thank you The Ashley’s) stories!

Recess Grown Up

#4: That 70’s Show

When we last left Point Place, Wisconsin, the 1970’s rolled over into a new decade. Therefore, the most pressing question to be answered, is how did the gang find life in the 80’s? Hell, for that matter, how did their 90’s and 2000’s go? I guess you can’t go too far ahead or you might lose the participation of the parents, Red, Kitty, and Bob, which would be too bad. I’d love to find out if Eric and Donna finally managed to stay together. What about Hyde, Kelso, Fez, and Jackie? What became of Kelso’s child? Was he as dumb as dear ol’ dad!? These are the kinds of questions that keep the Sip Advisor up at night… it’s tough being me!

#3: Full House

The Tanner clan was sent off into the television abyss with the show’s typical nice, neat wrap up. Since then, a lot has changed for the cast and would make for some crazy storylines, should there ever be a reunion episode. Would they incorporate Jodie Sweeten’s real-life meth addiction into the storyline ala the classic “On a very special episode…” trope. How would they handle Bob Saget’s departure from the squeaky clean image that made him neat freak single father Danny Tanner, as well as host of America’s Funniest Home Videos. And you just know there’s some juicy yarns out there, should the Olsen twins elect to participate.

Full House Reunion

#2: Cheers

There was the odd mini-reunion on the Cheers spinoff, Frasier (which would also be a decent series for a reunion), but I’d love to see everyone all together again at the classic bar set, enjoying a mug of fine brew and reconnecting. With Cheers being such an ensemble cast, many of which have gone on to thriving careers, it may be hard to get them all back onto the same page, but at least you know Norm Peterson and Cliff Clavin would be present, as their butts have been stapled to those bar stools since the series finale in 1993. You’d have to imagine that at least one of the bar regulars would now be suffering from cirrhosis, but it should make for good viewing!

#1: Saved by the Bell

As a child of the 80’s and early 90’s, you could never say that you didn’t have at least some fondness for this show. While we got a decent finale with the wedding in Vegas movie, a whole generation thirsts for more. Did Zack and Kelly survive to rigors of getting married young? How about the kids that surely came along (I mean, who wouldn’t want to tap the former Miss Kapowski!?). If they did relaunch this series, they could do something similar to what Boy Meets World did, where they brought back Cory and Topanga as parents to a teenage girl. Jimmy Fallon (among others) tried to get the whole crew back together, but all efforts have failed thus far.

Super Saturday Shot Day: Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake Shot

  • 0.5 oz Vanilla Vodka
  • 0.5 oz Pineapple Juice
  • Splash of Grenadine
  • Garnish with a Maraschino Cherry

Sadly, the TV reunion just isn’t done as much anymore, compared to the past where shows like Gilligan’s Island, The Andy Griffith Show, and even Growing Pains all got together again to update viewers on the status of their favourite characters. And that’s all too bad, as there are so many series I’d love to see a follow-up from. Honourable mentions go to basically any TGIF show and let’s throw Beavis and Butt-head in there, as well, just to irritate Mrs. Sip!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (2.5 Sips out of 5):
I chose this shot to go with this article because it (the cake) seemed like the kind of thing that might be served at an actual family reunion. As you can see by the measurements, there’s very little booze in this shooter, so you’re basically just getting Pineapple Juice and Grenadine. My suggestion is to up the alcohol and have some real fun!