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So I’m afraid the whisk(e)y-tasting is going to be put on hold. After looking forward to trying the Woodford Reserve and finding that it tasted like cleanser I got a little disheartened and decided to re-evaluate my choices. I decided to hold a preliminary round where I tried everything on the list,* with only the things I thought tasted good making it to the next level.

At present, that is the bourbons Maker’s Mark, Knob Creek, and Basil Hayden’s and the scotches Johnnie Walker Black and Glenlivet 12. There are a couple more I’d like to consider (I feel as though the Chivas didn’t get a fair deal and wasn’t aware that there’s a black label of Dewars).

*You can safely assume that everything else, at least when not mixed, tasted like battery acid.


So, in the aftermath of the recent spate of elections, a friend put up a Facebook status message. Several people commented on it, and I noticed that one of them was a girl whom I’d noticed in previous comments from the same co-friend’s status a few months back. Based on what this new girl said, I thought she sounded intriguing and asked our mutual friend to introduce us.

I hope that’s not weird. Certainly, it’s no weirder than randomly chatting up some girl at a bar based on her looks or dance moves. It just seems awfully E-Harmony-ish. We’ll see where, if anywhere, this goes.

Shockingly, Caleb was the victim of an attempted mugging. He doused his attacker with hot coffee and drew his concealed pistol, scaring off the attacker. All this in broad daylight in (presumably) Indiana. Fortunately, he’s safe and seems to be recovering okay, although if he has some shakes over the next few days I for one wouldn’t hold it against him.

My real concern, though, is that Caleb clearly had a pistol grip on his assault coffee, and I presume there was a detachable lid and perhaps even a heat shroud. No one needs however many ounces he had.

Fortunately, there was no Shoulder Thing That Goes Up.

“As the action for seduction is founded on the relation of master and servant, the gist of the action at common law is the loss of service.”

-a LexisNexis Headnote I encountered in my research today

Clearly, the South is a hotbed of racism. Why they can’t accept integration after all these years and follow the example of more tolerant Northern cities like Chicago is beyond me.

You know Crown Royal; it’s the Canadian whisky that looks like perfume, comes in a purple bag, and is present everywhere.

First Impressions: Acidic, with an sweet air inside my mouth and nose. Hits my brain immediately.
Five Minutes In: Still kind of thin, although not as spiky as before. It feels almost like a suspension, as though all the liquor were wrapped in a thin layer of water. Maybe even business-like: it’s not really enjoyable, but it’s not unpleasant and seems kind of orphaned when by itself.

With Diet Pepsi: This could be dangerous, as it’s virtually impossible for me to taste the Crown in here. Adds the very barest maple base to a normally sharp drink, improving both immeasurably.

Aftertaste: You can tell you’ve had it, but with an “unfinished” taste. It’s like you want more, but that’s all there is. There’s a lingering simmering on the tongue and very mild heat in the throat, but nothing too notable.

Cost per Airplane Bottle:

Verdict: Drinkable. Not great, but probably a good staple to have around for mixing. There’s a reason people as for Crown & Coke and not Crown, Neat or Crown on the Rocks. I didn’t try it, but I suspect it would actually be a decent complement to a mild cigar, as too much flavor isn’t good but a bit here and there can go a long way.

Having recently been broken into the world of whisk(e)y, on Johnnie Walker Blue Label, no less, I’ve rounded up a pile of airplane bottles of the stuff to give a try. At present, here’s the list:

Jack Daniels No. 7
Jack Daniels Gentleman Jack
Jack Daniels Single Barrel

Knob Creek
Maker’s Mark
Woodford Reserve

Crown Royal
Crown Royal [Special] Reserve


Scotch (Blended):
Johnnie Walker Red Label
Johnnie Walker Black Label (12yr)
Dewar’s White Label (12yr)
Chivas Regal 12 Year Old

Scotch – Single Malt
Glenlivet 12
Macallan 12

I’m limited at the moment by what I can find in airplane bottles (or at least, ones not costing $30/bottle). I don’t really want to try the bottom-shelf ones, although if I can find them then I may.

My plan is to take each one and divide it in half. The first half will be mixed with one ice cube and tasted immediately (quasi-neat) and then about five minutes later. The second half will be mixed with whichever cola I wind up choosing for the test and evaluated that way (even the single malts).

What will come of this? I have no idea. Johnnie Walker, for instance, in theory has a hierarchy, but in practice it’s more like each one has a niche. Some may be great in cola but awful on their own; others may always just be second-team. I know from experience that one of the better ones on this list is on my “Definitely Skip” list, but I’ll give it another go for the sake of the test.

By no means am I a pro at this; if you’re reading, definitely leave comments. Is there a whisk(e)y that is awful on ice but wondrous chilled and neat? Is there something that, paired with Cherry Coke Zero, will be the best thing ever? These are things I need to know!

As part of an ongoing series, I present to you music that is definitely worth your time:

So far as I know, the only way to get the song is to buy the album. I don’t usually go much for soundtrack music, though, so we’ll se how I manage to get my hands on a recording of this.

Maybe I’m just a crankypants, but these “Man With A Gun” posts, being along the lines of “Today, a man with a gun went to the grocery store and not one got shot,” were funny and instructive the first time but have since gotten to be a bad in-joke. I’m as in favor of carrying as anyone, but the joke’s gotten old*.

*And this is coming from someone who still makes “Liquor? I hardly even KNOW her!” jokes.

Having decided to play 922(r) Compliance Bingo, I hit up my local gun show this weekend. Needing a gas port (because the pin retaining the handguard won’t budge on my current one…), gas piston, operating rod, and wanting a brass deflector, I was successful on the latter two and failed utterly on the first two. I also managed to find a Picatinny-to-swivel adapter and folding front grip that weren’t made in China, which was a minor miracle.

I’ve found some great deals on 7.62×39 ammo lately (although I missed the $270/1000rds Wolf until after I’d spent what cash I had*), yet the SKS is the only gun I have in that venerable caliber and it’s not exactly a good fit to someone of my height and wingspan. I’m toying with the idea of getting a dedicated upper for the AR lower I just built, and I probably would’ve bought an AK if prices weren’t laughable**, but it occurred to me that maybe my best option would be to get a new stock for the SKS instead. It’s not like the SKS is stock; I’ve already added a recoil buffer, Scout Scope mount, and Bushnell HoloSight in my never-ending quest to turn it into something slick.

Ammo was about what you’d expect: 10% underpriced, 10% about right, and 80% overpriced***. I bought 1260 rounds of surplus Yugoslavian 7.62×39 in an absurdly unergonomic box, plus two boxes of Czech surplus 7.62×25 at $8/40rds in weathered paper boxes. For whatever reason, the sales guy couldn’t understand why I wanted to buy that ammo at $8/40 instead of the the larger box at $16/72. I tried to explain the math to him; his argument was that the package was bigger and therefore better. With a decided “Hmm,” I asked another associate to ring up the two boxes of 40rds for me. I’m thinking that this ammo is M48, and my plan is to test it against my Winchester Metric (made in Czech Republic) and Prvi Partizan (Serbian); hopefully, all three will have similar ballistics.

This gun show seemed a little different. Virtually no t-shirts or jerky were for sale at all, and there seemed to be a lot fewer random junk dealers around****. I almost picked up the Don’t Tread on Me bumper sticker I’ve been wanting for my truck, but out of principle I refuse to buy anything from the guys with the Nazi flags on the wall.

There was actually some .380acp present, but at $25/50, I think I’ll pass.

*Some guy came up to the place where I bought the 7.62×25, complaining that the guy was selling 7.62×39 for $370/1000 of Wolf when the other guy across the building was selling it for $100 less. I’m not sure what he wanted. The seller told him that if he found a better deal then he ought to buy it; the buyer just complained some more. At first I had thought that perhaps the other seller had run out, but when I went over there a few minutes later I saw that, for whatever insane reason, he still had 1500rds left. Weird.
**A WASR-10 frankly just isn’t worth $469, no matter how much you praise it. The Saigas are nice, but I wanted a pistol grip and don’t have a decade to wait before TAPCO can alter it.
***This is the normal ratio for most stuff at a gun shop or, for that matter, Gander Mtn.
****However, as I was looking for random SKS parts, this was oddly disappointing.