Alberta – Angry Canadian

Each month, the Sip Advisor will alphabetically travel Canada, discovering the best each province has to offer in a variety of subjects. We will also featuring a drink the area is known for. Today, we begin our journey in Alberta, sometimes called the Texas of Canada. Does this comparison hold true? Let’s find out:

Nicknames: Alberta is known as the Wild Rose Country, based on its provincial flower. The wild rose appears on licence plates in the province. The moniker has also been adopted by Wild Rose Brewing, based out of Calgary.

Motto: “Strong and free” – Typically, when you’re strong, you’re free!

Food: While Alberta is known for its beef industry (used in Canadian McDonald’s burgers, among other products), it should be noted Chinese restaurant staple Ginger Beef was invented in Calgary. Silver Inn chef George Wong is said to have created the dish of deep-fried beef strips in a sweet and spicy sauce in the mid 1970’s. Since then, it has spread to other Asian eateries.

Drink: The Caesar, Canada’s far superior cousin to America’s Bloody Mary, was created in Calgary, in 1969, at the Calgary Inn. Although similar recipes predate this variation, this rendition, made by restaurant manager Walter Chell, was the first time the cocktail was comprised of the unique recipe we know today, with the Caesar name. May 13, 2009 was proclaimed Caesar Day in Calgary.

Caesar

Site to See: For outdoorsy types, the Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks are a must-see destination. The World Heritage Site is comprised of four National Parks (Banff, Jasper, Kootenay and Yoho), offering stunning landscapes. For indoor entertainment, there’s West Edmonton Mall, complete with indoor amusement park, water park, ice rink and more. Finally, for young and old alike, Dinosaur Provincial Park allows people to embrace their love of dinosaurs.

Street: The Icefields Parkway (also known as Highway 93) runs through both Banff National Park and Jasper National Park, connecting the two. The route allows access to glaciers and lakes, including such picturesque sites as Lake Louise, the Athabasca Glacier and Athabasca Falls, Peyto Lake, Bow Lake and Maligne Canyon. Along the way, people can also spot various wildlife.

TV Show: Heartland, based on a series of 26 novels by Lauren Brooke (although the books are set in Virginia), ran for 15 seasons and 234 episodes, becoming the longest running one-hour scripted drama in Canadian TV history. The show centers around Amy Fleming and the activity on her family Ranch in Alberta. Most filming for the series was done in High River.

Movie: The majority of the Disney movie Cool Runnings – loosely based on the real-life story of an unlikely Jamaican bobsled team competing at the 1988 Winter Olympics – is set in Calgary, which hosted those games. Starring John Candy (in one of his final roles) as disgraced bobsled coach Irving Blitzer, the film was a hit and a personal childhood favourite of mine.

Cool Runnings

Book/Author: Todd McFarlane is one of the most well-known comic book artists/writers in the world. His work on Spider-Man in the late 80’s and early 90’s led to great success and McFarlane forming his own publishing company, Image Comics, which released McFarlane’s Spawn property. Outside the comic world, McFarlane has popular businesses in McFarlane Toys and Todd McFarlane Entertainment.

Fictional Character: X-Men wildcard Wolverine was born in Cold Lake in the 1880s, according to the mutant’s backstory. Wolverine is among the most popular super heroes of all-time, having appeared in numerous comic iterations, as well as other media, such as the X-Men movie franchise (portrayed by Hugh Jackman), which led to a trilogy of solo films for the character.

Fictional City: Adult animated cartoon Crash Canyon is about a society of people who have all wound up stuck in an Alberta canyon and are unable to return to their regular lives, due to the canyon’s high walls. The series lasted two seasons and I wish, like the show, that golf tees were currency, as it would justify my brief golf phase as a teenager.

Actor/Actress: Nathan Fillion, star of shows such as Firefly, Castle and The Rookie, was born in Edmonton. Fillion’s role in Firefly, as ship captain Malcolm Reynolds, earned him cult favourite star status. In his hometown, the Edmonton City Hall was renamed the Nathan Fillion Civilian Pavilion on August 7 and August 8, 2021, resulting from a fan petition with over 27,000 signatures.

Nathan Fillion

Song: Alberta Bound, originally performed by Gordon Lightfoot, is about being en route to Alberta, with the singer heaping great praise on the province. Lyrics include: “I’m Alberta-bound, This piece of heaven that I’ve found, Rocky Mountains and black fertile ground, Everything I need beneath that big blue sky”. The song has been covered by other artists such as Bryan Adams and Paul Brandt.

Band/Musician: Alberta has produced a number of female artists who have gone on to great careers domestically and internationally. Singers/songwriters include Joni Mitchell, k.d. Lang, Jann Arden, Tegan and Sara, and Feist. Among them, Mitchell has been described as “one of the greatest songwriters ever” and one of “the most important and influential female recording artist of the late 20th century”.

People: I was surprised to learn that actor and marijuana activist Tommy Chong was born in Edmonton. Chong is best known for his stoner comedy duo, Cheech & Chong, with Cheech Marin. The two released several popular movies and albums together, but my favourite role for Chong was as baked hippie Leo Chingkwake on That 70s Show.

Animal: Charlie was a mule that survived the 1903 Turtle Mountain landslide, which killed 70-90 people who called the mining town of Frank home. The mule managed to endure underground for more than a month by eating bark and drinking available water. Sadly, Charlie was overfed oats and brandy by his joyful rescuers, resulting in the mule perishing.

Leo

Invention: The SMART Board was developed Calgary husband and wife team David Martin and Nancy Knowlton in 1991. No longer would teachers and instructors alike have to struggle with chalkboards, overhead projectors or whiteboards. By 2016, the tandem’s company, SMART Technologies Inc., was purchased by the Foxconn Technology Group for $200 million.

Crime: Known as the Edmonton Shooting, in 2014, 53-year-old Phu Lam killed his wife, stepson, in-laws, a family friend and a neighbour. His victim count totalled eight people, making it the deadliest mass murder in the province’s history. Lam would take his own life following the homicides. In 2021, Lam threatened to do exactly what he later carried out. At the time of the crime, he was in heavy debt due to a gambling addiction.

Sports Team: Calgary, with the Flames (NHL) and Stampeders (CFL), and Edmonton, with the Oilers (NHL) and Elks (CFL), host all of the province’s professional franchises. The rivalry between the two cities is dubbed the Battle of Alberta for games between the NHL teams, while the Labour Day Classic is contested each September between the two CFL squads.

Athlete: Figure skater Jamie Salé was born in Calgary. Salé became internationally recognized when she and partner David Pelletier were awarded Olympic gold medals following the 2002 Salt Lake City figure skating scandal, which saw a brided French judge fix scores leading to a Russian team victory. Other top Alberta athletes include Alphonso Davies, Grant Fuhr, Jarome Iginla and Mark Messier.

Smart Board

Famous Home: A mecca for professional wrestling fans, the Hart Family home in Calgary is where such stars as Bret Hart and Owen Hart were born and raised, while other world famous grapplers were trained in the home’s basement, affectionately known as the Dungeon. The list of legends to graduate from the Dungeon include Chris Benoit, Chris Jericho, the British Bulldog, and Jim and Natalya Niedhart.

Urban Legend: The Banff Springs Hotel, in scenic Banff National Park, is known as one of Canada’s most haunted locations. Opened in 1888, the resort is home to a number of ghosts, including a bride (famous enough to have her own coin and stamp) and bellman, based on former employee Sam McCauley, who passed away in 1975, but is said to still help hotel guests.

Museum: Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame can be found in Calgary. The museum highlights Canada’s role and history in the sporting world, as well as the many athletes that have represented the country. Opened in 1955, close to 700 inductees have been enshrined into the Hall of Fame, split between athlete and builder categories. The building is hard to miss, painted in Canadian flag colours of red and white.

Firsts: In 1916, Alberta’s Emily Murphy, a women’s rights activist, was the first female judge in Canada and the British Commonwealth. Thereafter, in 1917, fellow activists Louise McKinney and Roberta MacAdams were the first and second females elected to a legislature in the British Empire. MacAdams would go on to be the first woman to pass a piece of legislation.

Hart Foundation

Company: A favourite eatery of the Sip Family, Boston Pizza was founded in Edmonton, in 1964. The chain was originally known as Boston Pizza and Spaghetti House, ironically established by four Greek (not Italian) immigrants. One of the first Boston Pizza franchisees and one of its current owners is Jim Treliving, best known for being one of the investors on Dragons’ Den.

Events: The 1988 Winter Olympics were hosted in Calgary, with skiing events taking place in Kananaskis Country and Canmore. Canada failed to win any gold medals as host country, but the facilities built for the event resulted in Calgary becoming a hub for Canadian winter sports training development. These Olympics also produced the aforementioned Jamaican bobsled team and Michael ‘Eddie the Eagle’ Edwards.

Miscellaneous: The Calgary Stampede, one of the world’s largest rodeos, is known as the “Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth”. Numerous free pancake breakfasts and barbecues are served throughout the 10-day long event, hosted every July since 1923. One million visitors are estimated to attend the event each year and it’s on the Sip Advisor’s bucket list to attend one day.

Angry Canadian

Angry Canadian

  • 2 oz Canadian Rye Whiskey
  • Dash of Maple Syrup
  • Dashes of Angostura Bitters
  • Garnish with a Maraschino Cherry

This Old Fashioned variant was invented by Calgarian Steve Johnston in 2013. I liked the hint of maple syrup you could smell with each sip of the cocktail. I could have used the drink being a little more complex, but it’s a good start to this journey across Canada.

Mixer Mania #22 – What’s In A Name?

When Mrs. Sip and I travelled to Egypt in 2008 – you know, before the country descended into total chaos – we found it funny that nearly every Egyptian would mention Canada Dry, the moment they discovered we were Canadian.

I mean, sure, they were likely just associating us with the one Canadian product they had come across in their lives (ironically manufactured by the Dr. Pepper Snapple Group in Texas), but should we take offence that they think we’re dry, packed with ginger and fizzy? At least we work well when healing an upset stomach or other ailment.

With Canada Dry in mind, here are a couple other nicknames for us Canadian folk:

Crazy Canucks

Canucks

I’ve never really liked this one, given that the Vancouver Canucks are my hometown hockey team and I don’t like the term being shared by the rest of the nation. The nickname dates back to being an Americanism, used to describe Dutch or French Canadians. We sure showed them, by creating the character of Johnny Canuck to combat their Uncle Sam.

At least the name has found its way into some good references, such as our national rugby team; the Crazy Canucks of ski racing; used at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics; and even Marvel Comics character Wolverine being dubbed “Ol’ Canucklehead” in some instances.

Canadian Animals.png

Hosers

Made famous by the duo of Bob and Doug McKenzie (played by Rick Moranis and Dave Thomas, respectively), these two hosts of the Great White North show were the original Wayne and Garth of Wayne’s World fame. The skits examined life in the Great White North that is Canada and the pair’s insult term of hosers kind of stuck.

While originally a disdainful term (along with the closely related ‘hosehead’), Canadians have grown fond of it over time, and have even embraced the nickname. Although it is rarely used anymore, for people of older generations, this is a handle we can all still appreciate with our trademark Canadian indifference.

The Coolest, Raddest, Baddest, Dudes and Dudettes on the Planet

Okay, I might have made that one up, but I think we could take this viral and, eventually, make it official!

Mixer Mania #22: The Grave Digger

The Grave Digger.JPG

  • 2 oz Hard Cider
  • 1 oz Whiskey
  • Top with Ginger Ale
  • Garnish with Licorice

I would have thought there’d be a lot more nicknames for Canadians, either created by us or by our American neighbours, but alas, there are only a few.

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (2.5 Sips out of 5):
This drink was okay, but the Hard Cider overshadowed the Ginger Ale. I’m also not thrilled with any recipe that only has an ounce of liquor in it.

 

Flavour Revolution – Blueberry

Where is my Mind?

Blueberries are said to help greatly in maintaining cognitive functioning and fighting off memory loss – so long as you enjoy a serving of them once per week – as the berries clear toxins that gather in the brain. Clearly, the entertainment industry is unaware of these developments because it is rife with stories of amnesiacs. Here are some of the most notable memory loss cases:

Jason Bourne – The Bourne Franchise

If a case of amnesia resulted in the Sip Advisor being able to instinctively fight secret agent style and have a highly-functioning mind, I’d say it would all be worth it… I know Mrs. Sip would appreciate the change in brain activity! Jason Bourne awakens one day and can’t remember who he is, but he can certainly kick ass and that keeps him alive through three (soon to be four) films.

short term memory loss

Leonard – Memento

Although suffering from short-term memory loss, Leonard is still working to solve the murder of his wife. To remember the clues he’s put together, Leonard uses Polaroid photos and self-inflicted tattoos as reminders. I should do the same on binge nights! This psychological crime thriller is told in reverse order, which only adds to the building mystery.

Wolverine – X-Men Franchise

Following the procedure which gave him his trademark adamantium bone structure, Logan struggles to remember his past (in the origins movie, an adamantium bullet to the noggin also helps) and it takes the mind reading power of Professor X to make any headway into the mutant’s psyche. We all have events we’d like to block from our memory, but I’d rather have a mix of good and bad than none at all.

Lucy Whitmore – 50 First Dates

Can you imagine having to remind your partner each and every day about your shared past together? Thankfully, Mrs. Sip only has to do this for me after a hard drinking night. In this case, perhaps it was working with Adam Sandler again that drove Drew Barrymore to memory loss. Anyhoo, Lucy is helped along by Sandler’s Henry to break the pattern and live a happily ever after, each new day.

memory loss favourite movie

Joel Barish and Clementine Kruczynski – Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

This one is a little different, in that main characters Joel and Clementine choose to wipe their minds clear of any memories to do with each other after their relationship goes awry. Regardless of this, they wind up together again, as if their love was always meant to be. Jim Carrey must be the king of playing amnesiacs, having also tackled the role in The Majestic and The Number 23.

Dory – Finding Nemo

Played for comedic effect, Dory is one of the many characters father Marlin comes across in his search for his son Nemo. Dory proved to be such a popular character that the pacific regal blue tang (thanks to Wikipedia for that!) will be getting her own movie, Finding Dory, due out in 2016. Ironically, the movie will be centered on Dory getting her memories back, leading to another adventure.

amnesia joke

The Wolfpack – The Hangover

The one thing worse than one person not being able to remember what happened before, is three friends blanking out on the previous night’s activities. Thanks to being slipped roofies, the Wolfpack can’t figure out what trouble they got up to and worst of all, their buddy Doug is missing and his wedding day is coming up quickly.

Douglas Quaid – Total Recall

Mrs. Sip and I love to travel, but I’m not sure we’d be into futuristic travel methods which include having images placed in your mind, while you sit in a chair. Of course, an innocent visual journey to the planet Mars, helps Quaid realize that he’s actually a secret agent operative, with crazy fighting skills. Quaid (aka Carl Hauser) now has to go to the real Mars, to figure out why his memory was wiped.

Flavour Revolution: Lucifer’s Tears

  • 1.5 oz Gin
  • 0.5 oz Blueberry Liqueur
  • 0.25 oz Galliano
  • 0.25 oz Sambuca
  • Garnish with Blueberries

Soap Operas are also a prime breeding ground for cases of amnesia, either occurring after a death, or leading to a murder most foul!

July 11 – Scorpion’s Tail

A Movie of Their Own

With the Minions (more on them later) getting their own movie, out in theatres this weekend, the Sip Advisor thought it would be a good time to look at other characters that proved so popular that they earned their own film(s). Kind of like how Mrs. Sip keeps trying to break away from me and launch her own brand… too bad for her, she’s under contract for years to come!

#5: The Scorpion King

After a brief appearance in The Mummy Returns (in one of the worst CGI effects of all-time), wrestling star The Rock launched his Hollywood career with his own film, as the titular Scorpion King. While it wasn’t going to garner any Oscar consideration, the action in this movie was great and the story pretty good, too. Three additional movies have joined the franchise, although The Rock vacated the role.

scorpions

#4: Machete

It’s funny that the ultraviolent Machete first appeared in the children’s movie franchise Spy Kids, before branching out on his own vigilante activities. Played to badass perfection by Danny Trejo (a former prison inmate before turning to acting), the Machete character has enjoyed two film installments to date, featuring massive deadly weapons, beautiful women, and a lot of creative kills.

#3: Puss in Boots

This suave little kitty stole out hearts, starting with Shrek 2, en route to his own movie and Netflix TV series. Puss in Boots may have existed since 1697, but he has never been more popular than when he sliced and purred his way through various enemies in the DreamWorks films. Voiced by Antonio Banderas, Puss is based on the classic character Zorro, another role tackled by Banderas.

puss in boots

#2: Inspector Jacques Clouseau

This bumbling detective character is a favourite of the Sip Family, as is star Peter Sellers. Just a side character in the first film of the franchise, The Pink Panther, Sellers stole the show away from lead David Niven and never looked back. As Clouseau, a number of additional movies were made under the Pink Panther banner, up until Sellers died in 1980, at the age of only 54.

#1: The Minions

I love these little yellow guys, despite the fact I can’t understand most of what they say. The trailer for this movie is pure gold, with the Minions switching from one evildoer to another, after accidentally killing their masters throughout the ages, including an Egyptian pharaoh, Dracula, Napoleon, and others.  I can’t wait to check out the movie and I know I’m not alone in that desire!

Super Saturday Shot Day: Scorpion’s Tail

  • 0.5 oz Coconut Rum
  • 0.5 oz Banana Liqueur
  • Top with Cranberry Juice
  • Splash of Pineapple Juice
  • Garnish with a Pineapple Wedge

Honourable mentions include Jay and Silent Bob, the Penguins of Madagascar, and Aldous Snow (Get Him to the Greek). I wasn’t sure how to handle comic characters, such as Wolverine and Elektra, as they are their own entities, so I’ll leave them in this section. Hate if you want, but let’s all just relax and have a drink!

June 27 – True Canadian

Canadian Content

Recently, we looked at some of the most notable Canadian patriots and icons, in RL (that means real life!). Today, we enter the fictional world and examine some of the greatest contributions to this country’s (and outside its borders) culture, from persons who have never actually existed:

#5: Northstar

While many have probably not heard of Northstar, he is an important figure in comic history and LGBT culture. A member of the Canadian Alpha Flight team (also featuring his sister Aurora and other members, such as Guardian, Sasquatch, Shaman, and Snowbird), Northstar gained notoriety for being the first openly gay major character created by Marvel Comics. Despite debuting in April 1979, Northstar didn’t officially come out until 1992. The superhero was finally allowed to marry his partner 20 years later, in 2012.

Northstar Marriage

#4: Bob and Doug McKenzie

These two hosers got their beginning on the SCTV sketch comedy show, leading to a feature film, Strange Brew, in which they are thrust into becoming unlikely heroes, trying to save their favourite brewery. If that’s not a definitive Canadian story, I don’t know what is! These roles launched the careers of both Rick Moranis and Dave Thomas. In a great casting choice, Disney reunited the McKenzie brothers to play a pair of comical moose, Rutt and Tuke, in the movie Brother Bear, also set in the Canadian wilderness.

#3: Ike Broflovski –South Park

Ike is the adopted brother of Kyle, born in Canada as Peter Gints. As the main characters have aged, so has Ike, who is now in kindergarten, despite being only three years old.  Any episode that revolves around Ike is usually pretty good, whether he’s entered into a relationship with his adult teacher, is going through early puberty, caused by steroid, or is saving the Canadian Princess (wait, we have one of those?).  Crude TV stars Terrence and Phillip are also Canadian, which is why the folks of South Park, Colorado aren’t too happy with their neighbours from the north!

ike broflovski

#2: Trailer Park Boys

Julian, Ricky, Bubbles, and the rest of the gang seem to always be getting themselves into trouble, as they move from one get-rich-quick scheme to another, trying to avoid the capture of police and Sunnyvale Trailer Park disciplinarian Mr. Lahey and his partner in crime (and other things) Randy. Set in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, this mockumentary shows the love that can develop between folks stuck in hard times, as they scratch and claw their way towards better lives, sometimes taking shortcuts, rather than conventional means.

#1: Wolverine

One of the most rugged, bad ass superheroes has Canadian blood running through his veins… well, that and adamantium bones! Wolverine debuted all the way back in 1974 and over the rest of the decade, grew in popularity, leading to his own four-part series in 1982. The character has proven to be so prevalent, that he has been the focal point of numerous movies for the franchise. Wolverine’s on-again, off-again enemy Sabretooth also hails from Canada, as does Deadpool, who has been previously played by Canadian actor Ryan Reynolds, and will be again in the 2016 eponymous feature film.

Super Saturday Shot Day: True Canadian

  • Rim glass with Bacon Bits
  • 0.75 oz Vodka
  • 0.5 oz Maple Syrup

In closing, I have to include an honourable mention for Anne Shirley (better known as Anne of Green Gables), or else Mrs. Sip might strip me (wait for it) of my Canadian citizenship! Next week, we get to look at the fictional patriots from south of the border… and there are a lot of them!

September 30 – The Wink

Near Misses

Here is part two of my investigative series looking at roles actors and actresses passed on that cost them millions of box office dollars, increased fame, and iconic characters and franchises. Let’s get right on with it!:

Johnny Depp – Ferris Bueller (Ferris Bueller’s Day Off)

Depp’s career could have been launched years before he finally broke through, or perhaps it could have fizzled out much like Matthew Broderick’s has. We’ll never really know, as Depp passed on the role of Ferris Bueller and all of his ditching class hijinks. Had he taken the role, perhaps Depp would have never developed into the eclectic actor he is today and we would have missed out on characters like Edward Scissorhands and Capt. Jack Sparrow.

Ferris Bueller's Day Off Johnny Depp

Michelle Pfeiffer – Clarice Starling (Silence of the Lambs)

An Oscar could have been Pfeiffer’s prize if she had accepted the offer to play Clarice Starling in the wildly successful (both critically and financially) Silence of the Lambs. It’s not like Pfeiffer saw a drop in her career at that point, later playing Catwoman in Batman Returns, but she missed a rare chance to snatch up an elusive Oscar statue. It seems Pfeiffer made a career of turning down roles, including the female leads Pretty Woman, Basic Instinct, Thelma & Louise, and Evita, among others.

Jeremy Irons – Hannibal Lecter (Silence of the Lambs)

Sticking with Silence of the Lambs, Irons turned down the role of Hannibal Lecter because he found the script to be too violent. So, let me get this straight, it’s okay to voice an evil lion (Scar) who causes his own brother’s death and nearly his nephew’s, as well (in a kids movie, no less), but wearing the face of another human is not okay!? Irons missed out on a movie that swept the Oscars and is best remembered for being an animated kitty.

Hugh Jackman – James Bond (Casino Royale)

On top of playing everyone’s favourite adamantium-infused mutant, Jackman was also offered the role of iconic spy James Bond. He passed on the part, saying he wasn’t ready to hold down two so very notable characters at the same time… then went on to play freakin’ Jean Valjean! Okay, the Les Miserables protagonist isn’t on the same level as the other two, but I have to get something for sitting through that drudgery. On a positive note, Daniel Craig has been perfect as Bond, thus far.

James Bond - Hugh Jackman

Jackman as Bond could have worked!

Russell Crowe – Wolverine (X-Men)

Speaking of Wolfy, Crowe was originally pegged to play the age-unknown Logan/Wolverine. Rumour has it (or at least the rumour I made up) that Crowe was unable to grow the sideburns necessary for the character and therefore abandoned the project, not wanting to lose any legitimacy if he had used make-up or special effects instead. Crowe and Jackman would later play bitter enemies in Les Mis, with Crowe using his turned down role as inspiration for his hatred towards Jackman’s character.

Dave Chappelle – Bubba (Forrest Gump)

While he has since gone on to have a highly acclaimed TV show (as well as his highly-publicized meltdown and leaving said show), Chappelle was originally offered the role of Bubba in Forrest Gump. Had he taken the part, Chappelle would now have numerous restaurants around the United States in his honour. Perhaps he passed on the character because the slim comedian just couldn’t put back enough shrimp to justify Bubba’s obsession with the seafood.

Jake Gyllenhaal – Jake Sully (Avatar)

Gyllenhaal did finally get to play a cripple (spoiler alert) in Source Code, but he missed out on the Avatar money train and getting to be a computer animated blue guy fighting a mechanized army to save FernGully, the last rainforest. Sam Worthington snatched up the role, which he will reprise for 2016’s Avatar 2 (which has the working subtitle ‘Blue Man Group Rides Again’). It should be noted that Matt Damon also rejected the offer for Avatar.

Drink #273: The Wink

The Wink Drink Recipe

  • 1 oz Gin (I used Tanqueray)
  • 0.5 oz Triple Sec
  • 0.25 oz Absinthe
  • Splash of Simple Syrup
  • Dash of Peychaud Bitters
  • Garnish with Lemon Twist

With all the hype recently about who turned down the male lead in 50 Shades of Grey and who eventually accepted the role, it will be interesting to see if there are any regrets in the future. Menopausal women love this garbage, so I smell a big money franchise.

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (2 Sips out of 5):
This drink is pretty strong and bitter, with the Triple Sec and Simple Syrup only able to do so much to sweeten the mix. After some ice dilution, the cocktail tasted slightly better. It was nice to finally use the Peychaud Bitters Mrs. Sip picked up for me in New Orleans, but I hope to find better recipes to use it in, in the future.

January 22 – Envy

The Green-Eyed Monster

Jealousy…  I’m not too familiar with the feeling myself, but I assume it’s that feeling that other guys get when they see me free lifting my 200 pound weights in the gym, living my rock n’ roll gangsta lifestyle, or busting my sweet gangnam-style moves on the dance floor. 99% of the above may almost certainly be a lie, but since it’s Tequila Week here at The Sip Advisor headquarters, I know all you loyal readers are a bit jealous. To even it up, here’s a small selection of those who earn my envy:

Cookie Monster

Cookie Monster (speaking of monsters)

Imagine being able to eat whatever you want – cookies, plates, even the moon – and not gain a single pound. Seriously, Cookie Monster has been around since 1969 and despite eating whatever he wants, whenever he wants, he still looks the same, even though what he’s stuffed back would have other beings suffering the onset of diabetes or an incredibly gruesome and painful death or something. He may not lose any weight, but maintaining the body status quo would be classified a win for me. I love me some cookies (and chippies for that matter), so being able to eat so indiscernibly (and look cool in so much blue) definitely tops my list of enviable qualities.

Wolverine

Two words: adamantium skeleton. Sure the guy can’t remember who the hell he is or what his past life was, but he’s indestructible. Hell, I often can’t remember who I am or parts of my past life, thanks in large part to the subject matter of this blog. My mind is spinning with the stupid stuff I could get up to if I was immortal. Bungee jumping sans bungee cord, demolition derbies onboard a motorcycle, mixed martial arts fights with dinosaurs… the possibilities are endless, when your mind is as deteriorated as mine.

Garfield

The fat orange cat is allowed to be as surly as he wants and we love him for it. His enviable attitude is something that doesn’t work so well with my wife, however. While I’m not really down with the whole lasagna obsession thing, I can totally get behind the blankie, teddy bear (Pooky), fuzzy slippers and pajamas. And just like Garfield, I would only be nice twice a year, on my own Halloween and Christmas specials. I mean, how could you not be nice at Halloween and Christmas with all the candy, candy, candy and presents, presents, presents!?

Wile E Coyote

Wile E. Coyote

One has to admire Mr. Coyote’s passion and drive in his dogged pursuit of the Roadrunner. If I possessed the same ambition, I’d be able to get this 365-day challenge done in a month (never mind the fact that I may implode like said Coyote in the attempt to do so). I would also love to have the resources Wile E. has at his disposal. His ACME account must be unlimited and if they had an alcohol department, I would be all over that. The one drawback is his constant injuries. One can only fall off a cliff so many times before it would probably get tiresome. My hat is off to you buddy, keep chasing that rainbow and get yourself some sweet, sweet Roadrunner meat!

Inspector Gadget

He may be a bumbling idiot (sounds a little too similar to MY personality profile!), but he’s a respected and accomplished detective. Plus, he gets to travel the world, chasing criminals and use an array of high-tech – well, mostly low-tech umbrellas and such – gadgets (wait!? Is that why he’s called Inspector Gadget? Another of life’s mysteries solved). Perhaps I’d be the one to finally catch Dr. Claw. After all, in my younger days, I was very successful in my hunt for Carmen Sandiego and her band of henchmen. Go-go-gadget 12 inches, am I right, ladies?

Richie Rich

Simply put, the kid had a fully-staffed McDonald’s right inside his own house. We don’t even need to get into the whole gazillionaire, set-for-life kid, B.S. Nope, just McDonald’s… in your house… they would probably even do room service.  I would hold these off-the-chain shindigs with the guys from Epic Meal Time and we’d get completely destroyed on Chicken McNuggets and milkshakes. It would be, well, epic.

So, doing a final tally, if I put all my traits together, like a wonderfully-blended cocktail, I would be invincible; surly, but lovable; driven, with uncapped resources; with my own personal McDonald’s restaurant where I could eat at every day and never gain weight… and let’s not forget about the 12-incher!

Drink #22: Envy

Envy Martini

  • 1.5 oz Tequila (I used Sauza Gold)
  • 1 oz Blue Curacao
  • Top with Pineapple Juice
  • Garnish with Pineapple Wedge and Maraschino Cherry

Who (aside from super me) are you jealous of? Drop me a line and let me know. Perhaps your list will be better… I doubt it though, because I’m pretty awesome! Maybe there will be a list on narcissism in the future!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3.5 Sips out of 5):
I like how this drink came together visually with the Blue Curacao half resting at the bottom of the martini glass and the rest combining with the Pineapple Juice to make a greenish hue, perfect for the Envy moniker. The taste wasn’t half bad either.