28 August 2009

Friday Belts - Never Again

Not a huge fan of Margarita's but the Gulf Foxtrot is. I make a mean puerco pibil. Five pounds of pork butt marinated in achiote sauce and slow cooked in banana leaves. It screams for cold beer. But Foxtrot doesn't drink beer so I usually make her a margarita. I rarely indulge. It makes no sense. It doesn't pair well with the food and it breaks all the rules of mixing booze resulting in a nasty hangover. I'll admit... I probably don't know what I'm doing. My bench mark is the silver version at the Frontera Grill in Chicago. It's hard to compete with Rick Bayless. But I try.

I love the taste...the lime, the Cointreau, the salt...I don't like the buzz. It's rag like and a little scary. It reminds me of pot and why I was never a fan. Champagne gives me a sense that everything is gonna turn out okay. Even though it's not. The buzz is gentle and after a couple of glasses it melts away within an hour. Just long enough. The Magarita keeps me anxious and seems to drop me in Juarez with out clothes, money or ID. But I tried. And I always say the same thing. Never again. Never, ever, again.

Never again.

The 100% polyester Nik Nik shirt, the nails bitten to the quick and an old Army barracks from my first year in the service. If you want to know what it's like being a second class citizen in this country...enlist. You will be cheated by stereo and car salesmen, scolded for not rolling your socks correctly by a 22 year old West Point graduate, assumed ignorant by your civilian friends and considered poison by all women except the wrong kind. It's just like drinking tequila. Still, it was a helluva buzz.

No idea where that belt buckle is and that's a good thing. It was heavy and the belt was wide. I also had a Winchester buckle that I would rotate on the same strap. Isn't that odd? Just like my sterling buckles today. Well...not, 'just like' but you get the point. Surprised by those glasses. Wonder if I beat John Milius to prescription Bausch & Lombs?

Times have changed. The military today is nothing like it was back when that picture was taken. And while I'll always feel a connection to the Army...it was and is my only home...I'm also an outsider. Unable to go through that gate anymore.


Michael from ACL said...

Great post per usual.


Anonymous said...

one drink i will never drink and one belt i will never wear.

Alice Olive said...

"Champagne gives me a sense that everything is gonna turn out okay."

I love champagne for that reason too. Who needs to mess about with "smelly chemicals and nuclear weapons" (blatantly stolen from How To Steal A Million) when chilled champagne is wonderfully perfect as is?

Ah, I must break open a bottle tonight.

Anonymous said...

Victorian? Dance? hall?

robin said...

i thought nik niks were nylon knit?

Anonymous said...

Boy, that's scary - both that photo of you AND the Margarita hangover. I think I was once naked in Juarez, too. Maybe it was Jerez....

Glad you mentioned today's different Army, one with bright young people with direction and honor. And yes, favorable spouses and "significant others" who love them and honor their sacrifice. As they always have. I do get the second class citizen reference, though. It helps when people at the airport applaud their return from the Middle East, I'm sure.


Steve said...

I'm still recovering from your musings over the tube socks.

That scares me a lot more than the worst tequila nightmare.

Anonymous said...

you need to step the tequila drinking up to a more mature level. Try sipping on a glass of clase azul repasado or anejo and you'll never go back to drinking patron or herradura ever again. thank me later.

Dickie said...

great story, great pictures. Dig the buckle and glasses.

~Tessa~Scoffs said...

Agree re: tequila buzz. For me, it's angry and dirty.

Brian said...


I love the blog but feel compelled to make one really anal comment. "Gulf Foxtrot" should be spelled Golf Foxtrot.

On another note, can you recommend a place to get Barritts in New York? It doesn't seem to be stocked in Morningside Heights.

Anonymous said...

This post reminds me of a bad tequila experience I once had. I had a "friend" when I was in the army. He invited me to dinner. As "friends." The dinner as "friends" was great, but being "friends" wasn't what he really had in mind apres dinner. Romantically rebuffed, he decided the only "friend" he needed was a bottle of tequila he had waiting for him back at the barracks. Our coed barracks. Where we both lived. It wasn't pretty, kind of like that belt you are wearing. Ah, memories...D

Anonymous said...

Next time you post a pic of yourself in a shirt so tight that the buttons are pulling, with your hand over the crotch of your skin tight jeans, and the come hither look in your eyes, you might want to crop out the homoerotic poster of the bare chested stud in the background. Y'know, in case some people might get the wrong idea.

Memphis88 said...

I've yet to have a hangover from tequila. Gin and tequila are the only kinds of liquor I drink and I haven't been hit with a hangover from either one yet. I try to limit myself to 3 drinks tops though, so that's probably why.

I look forward to Friday Belts every week. Good stuff as usual

Anonymous said...

Four of us, on involuntary fortnight early-early Summer Holiday at Ft. Bliss when David Thompson was at N.C. State and they were in the Final Four process during TV's March Madness, decided to launch another sortie into exotic, dangerous Ciudad Juarez from the El Paso Del Norte La Quinta Motor Resort in the shadow of The Franklin Mountains one evening. I think Stevie Nix and Lindsay Buckingham were playing in the tavern next door. We were interested in a cultural event known as The Donkey Lady. I think it was a ballet, folk opera or dinner theatre - we'd heard it was interesting. In an effort at thrift and/or loss minimization to any colorful banditos encountered we'd each limited ourselves to a specified amount of gringo dinero in pocket. The centralciudad upstairs bar the suave boulevardier recommended was amiable except for the rather dubious sanitary condition of the shot glasses. We'd enquired the Donkey Lady location of several of the patrons over a period of time when we each realized that we were, individually and cumulatively, financially embarassed. "No Senor, no tab" the mixologist had earlier stated. Pay to play. We'd just ordered a round. High-tailed it out the door and down a gross of steps to an awaiting rental car, eventually found somewhere, with the threats of the proprietor, and not a numeros poquitos of patrones, ringing in our ears and fears of incarceration a la Charles Bronson in that movie. Alas, no entertaining evening with the Donkey Lady. Left behind a couple of fine specimens of the sombrero decorators' art, too. U.S. Hwy 180 east of El Paso intersects in Lamesa with U.S. 87 which is the famed "Amarillo Highway" of song. Or, "Amarillo By Mornin", ah, again of song. Amarillo's similar in sound to Armadillo, some folks think Armadillo's in the Tejas panhandle. Anyways, one was well into Armadillo, the book, when one realized/realised Lorimer is an anagram of Milomre, the duplicitous protagonist's original moniker. Duh. And Algomir is an anagram of?

Yours truly,

p.s.: Don't recall anything about a Blackwatch suit in that tome???? Sure you're not confusing it with the Lochcarron catalogue?

tintin said...

Michael from ACL- How do I get them McNairy weejuns? Thanks for coming by. Your blog still leads in referral traffic. I'm appreciative.

Anon 12:12 Can't argue with you but mistakes like these do build character. So they tell me.

Alice- If you did break one open Friday night - - I was with you in spirit.

Anon 14:29 Is that a request?

Robin- Are they? I had no idea. He said gratefully.

DB - Back in my day, I always flew in Class A's. Never failed to get me a free beer or two in the airport.

Steve- I long for the day when I can afford cashmere socks.

Anon 16:44- I did try both at Topolobampo. My waiter gave me free tastes of both claiming they were as good - - if not better -- than single malts. They were good. They were not better.

Dickie- Are you sure?

Tessa- I hope we're talking about tequila?

Brian- You are correct. I made the mistake so long ago that it's too late to change. I may just make it Foxtrot. The new Barritts distributer is here:


Call them. I'm still having issues with Barritts in NYC. Impossible to find. I have found bottles on the main line (Wayne) in PA but there have been quality issues with low carbonation and some have been flat. Almost everyone I talk to on the retail side complains Barritts has been impossible to get while the Goslings Ginger Beer is popping up everywhere. It's a mystery.

D- Oh, boy. I know the, a-hem, drill. I dated one of the first women paratroopers in the 82nd.

Anon 21:23 I only posted that shot because I'm running outta belts.

The look is my attempt at being a bad ass at 19. Your interpretation of that look as come hither may explain some more embarrasing moments in my life.

The 'bare chested stud' in the bg is Bruce Lee. I was reading Tao of Jeet Kune Do around this time and was a big fan of his philosophy. Still am.

I remember reading, "People will look at you and without knowing anything about you...they will make conclusions about who you are while they understand nothing of themselves. Keep these people around for your personal amusement."

Memphis 88- Good advice. I had two. But that's actually four when it comes to the mix of Cointreau and tequila.

Anon 2:55 - The suit was on the cover of the paperback. You may be referring to Al Gomir. I think he was the mayor of Amarillo in '69 just before everyone left the town 'cause it gets so damned hot.

lancelonie said...

I can't drink alcohol. Allergic. :(

Great post! :)


Egads, Trad: You don't MIX Tequila; you SHOOT it.

Nice portrait shot, here. Looks like Bill Vollmann via Hunter Thompson but with an overwhelming musk of, how you say? Hustler.

Anonymous said...

Victorian dance belt.

Belle de Ville said...

Nik Nik shirt...omg flash back to the late 1970s.

Anonymous said...

The poster of Bruce makes the photo 100x more awesome.