Today, apparently, we are meant to celebrate a mixed drink called a Harvey Wallbanger. It’s made by combining three parts vodka, one part Galliano, and six parts orange juice. Add a twist of orange and, like this doodlewash, a maraschino cherry, and you’ve got yourself a celebration in a glass.
Though legend has it that this drink was invented in the 50’s, the earliest known appearance in literature was 1971, the year I was born. I don’t think my mother was drinking this at the time of my birth, however, as she never touched alcohol. She would only drink coffee. Lucky for her, it’s also National Cappuccino Day, but I wasn’t quite ready to paint more brown things after yesterday’s post.
I’ve never had this specific drink, though I have had a Screwdriver, which is the same drink without the Galliano, so I figure that’s close enough. This was back in college when drinks with more than two ingredients were rarely made because being able to afford the primary ingredient was considered a luxury.
I was never good at drinking hard liquor. No matter how little I thought I had consumed, my body would violently reject it later that evening. This didn’t stop me from drinking them, of course, as I was willful and determined to teach my body a lesson in a battle I was destined to lose. Which I did, every time.
One of the first mixed drinks I tried went by the unfortunate name of a Fuzzy Navel. This harkens images of belly button lint, but was actually made with orange juice and peach schnapps. It was like a liquid Jolly Rancher with alcohol and so sickeningly sweet that, between the sugary taste and the strong alcohol flavor, it would make your face contort into a permanent smile like that of a homicidal clown.
So, these days, I only drink wine. And my body seems to approve of this choice. Though doctors tend to agree that red wine has something in it that helps your heart, they unanimously agree that this only works when consumed in moderation. My body apparently read those articles while I wasn’t looking, as it decides I’m too sleepy to have any more after just two glasses.
When Philippe came, we only drank French wine, mainly because he thought the wine labels in America were a joke. In France, the wine is simply labeled to show you the region where it was crafted and whether or not a medal had been earned. Sometimes there is a simple black and white sketch of the vineyard but never anything to complex.
In America, like most packaged goods, wine labels often scream at you, doing everything they can to get your attention. To Philippe, this means that they spent more money on the label than they did actually trying to produce good wine. He’s immediately suspicious and refuses to try it. Clever naming is another thing he detests, so we haven’t yet been lucky enough to try Fat Bastard Shiraz or Cat’s Pee on a Gooseberry Bush Sauvignon Blanc.
On this day of celebration, however, I must then apologize to Harvey for choosing not to consume his signature drink. We’ll be sticking with wine today so I can avoid embarrassing myself later. But if this sounds like a delectable offering to you, then by all means you should celebrate! Or if you’re opposed to alcohol, then Happy Cappuccino Day! If you’re opposed to both, then although I’m sure you’re a lovely person, we probably won’t be hanging out together anytime soon.