Sunday, February 14, 2010

Bottom's Up

Gabriella Herkert
Catnapped and Doggone

What is my writing beverage of choice? Maybe I should have already been cut off already but my head is fuzzy on the actual inquiry here. Is this an attempt to illicit what I am currently consuming as I attempt to correctly conjugate verbs? Do I believe a libationary bent can release the writer within? Could this be a search for characterization in the bottom of a bottle? Or maybe, just maybe, it’s a test to see if I really have gone past my limit and can’t remember a single popular culture product placement reference for anything that comes in liquid form? Let’s order a round and take the possibilities one at a time. A virtual pub quiz if you will.

At this very moment, I am drinking decaffeinated P.G. Tips tea out of a Grumpy mug the size of a bath tub. It’s one of my usual cups. Sometimes Grumpy, sometimes Mickey, even the occasional Goofy. Basin selection is random. Tea selection is not nor should it be. Caffeinated tea for little insomniac me is a once in a blue moon phenomenon. As it should be. One of these mugs with a stimulant and my hair hurts. Characters drop like flies and would be bomb-makers twitch their way to workman’s compensation claims. Not good. The English brand and milk and sugar give the entire process the civilization of Shakespeare at the Globe if not the wit. Milk and sugar are for muscle-building protein and generic personality sweetening. Hope springs eternal.

Is drink the diesel of a creative mind? Does it determine how that engine runs? There are more than a few famous author-imbibers. Would Hemingway’s work have been so dark with a lesser intake of liquid depressants? Maybe. Ditto Tennessee Williams. William Faulkner was a rather infamous tippler but quite famously stated that he didn’t drink while he wrote believing it did not help fuel the creative process and still I wouldn’t describe his work as happy, happy. Then again, maybe it’s not the actual drinking, but the location of the drink that fuels the writer’s drive. Who wouldn’t feel the brain neuron’s firing faster during drinks at the Algonquin with Dorothy Parker and her “vicious” circle? Is it mere coincidence that Ian Fleming (James Bond) and John LeCarre (George Smiley) both spent happy hours in the bar at the Oriental Hotel Bangkok? I don’t know but I’m prepared to do the research necessary to find out.

Can beverage choice provide characterization? Absolutely. Every time big, bold sports agent Myron Bolitar reaches for a chocolate Yoo-Hoo you know he’s a guy who lived in his parents’ basement well into his thirties. Janet Evanovich’s men are distinguished by their choice of drink. Joe Morelli is a beer guy. Ranger is a tequila with no hangover when blending in to his surroundings or a very expensive scotch man when he doesn’t give a damn. Their drink orders say it all. Is Sex and the City the same without a Cosmo? I can’t really see the ladies as club soda and lime-types, can you? Then again, a crafty writer can totally surprise you with a bottle of something strictly against type. Mean Joe Greene drinks Coca-Cola and likes it so much he’ll give you his jersey. MEAN JOE GREENE. Who’d a thunk it?

Beverage product placement and it’s place in popular culture. For artists, actors, authors, every creative professional and would be professional even Kermit the Frog, there are just two words: Got Milk?

And now that I’m done blogging for today, maybe cookies.

Thanks for reading.


1 comment:

Shane Gericke said...

I like milk! And I don't mean with whisky ... just plain ol' ice-cold milk. Preferably with a hunk of dark chocolate. But shhh, don't tell anyone. It'd spoil my image ...