Fixing cocktails is mandatory around here, where you’re liable to trip up on an extra vehicle or two you know you didn’t discuss purchasing. Something cool and refreshing that softens the edges of things is essential. Mixing up a batch of mojitos the other day, I moved through the slow, deliberate process of crushing mint and squeezing limes with great contemplation. The mingling mint and citrus oils rising through the humid air felt like a prayer answered. By the time I added the rum, I felt reverential. Aaaaagh delicious! Now, what were we talking about?
Someone asked the Gearhead how many cars he owns.
“I just got rid of three!”
[wife edits: another whole number dodged! Stare into the middle distance]. Don’t mistake my lack of engagement for compliance, or even [gasp] acceptance. I notice your confusion. Survival comes in many forms.
“I think the number stands at 18.”
The rate that the barn [wife edits: yes, let’s talk about it in the third person, – objectify the purchases – that helps], acquires and loses “car stock” mirrors stock exchange forecasts [gearhead edits: it depends how you define “car” – a spare engine doesn’t count].
Friends of the gearhead show up on Sundays. They bring over things like this:
Friends of the gearhead get right in there and muck with the oil; move axels and doors around; stand and survey hard work, covered in grease that only accentuates bright white smiles.
Friends of the gearhead telephone to let him hear the ticking over growl of their engines – to check if the timing sounds right. The gearhead, ever fearful of brain cancer caused by holding the wireless too close to his ear, always has conversations on speakerphone. Listening to the engine whine, I can almost smell the gasoline.
“Look at these hills like white elephants!” I holler in frustration. Gosh these mojitos are good. Of course I mean the elephant in the room; the gearhead thinks I’m talking about breasts.
[gearhead edits, solemnly: I think you’ve had too many of those.]
I can only click my heels together and say “there’s no place like Cuba”.
Mojito for one
Muddling is the mashing of ingredients in the bottom of a glass using a muddler (a slim wooden spoon does the trick too). For more information and another recipe, here’s a serious cocktail blog post about the technique. I’ll make a note if visiting these people if I’m ever out in Seattle.
2 oz (60 ml) white rum (choose a good one – flavour matters here)
1 lime, halved
3/4 oz (20 ml) simple syrup or 2 teaspoons sugar (or less to taste)
6 – 8 fresh mint leaves (I prefer peppermint but spearmint works too)
Place the sugar (or simple syrup) and mint leaves in a glass. Muddle the mint leaves well, crushing them to release the essential oils. Squeeze the juice from both halves of the lime into the glass. Drop a half of the lime in there too. Muddle again. Add the rum. Stir well. Fill the glass with ice cubes and top with the soda water.
Reminds me of Mexico
Nicely done. Have you ever tried Ron Matusalem Blanca?
I have not. But I’ll keep it in mind next trip to the liquor store!