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Shadesbreath's Great Scotch Adventure

Updated on June 15, 2011
My bottle of 18-year-old Glenlivet.
My bottle of 18-year-old Glenlivet.


I decided I’m not drinking enough these days. I try to drink every day, and usually I am successful, but there are occasions where I fail. I pride myself on being goal oriented, and I have been accused by more than one person of being anal retentive when it comes to achieving things I want. (Don’t be fooled into thinking I’m trying to say I’m some kind of super-guy, because I’m not. I have set myself the task of getting rich and failed, not to mention getting published by a brick-and-mortar publishing house with one of my novels… also FAIL—so far anyway—but I digress.)

So, in an attempt to broaden my sodden horizons, I decided to acquire a new type of booze to enjoy. Now, I already like vodka, and tequila is my favorite kind of booze by far. In particular, Heradurra, kept always in the freezer, is beyond good. But I decided I needed to try something else. So, because so many great writers and movie characters drink Scotch, I embarked upon my life’s first official Scotch experience.

The alcoholic's Holy Land
The alcoholic's Holy Land

My journey began in the alcoholics’ Holy Land known as BevMo--formerly called "Beverages and More." (Apparently even the corporate guys were too hammered to say all those words every time they talked about themselves, so they gave up trying and just went with what the CEO slurred out at the last corporate meeting they ever had: “Bevmo isss the greatesss store intheworld."

Upon hearing this, the CFO, on his seventeenth shot of a rare Russian rye vodka, hoisted his glass in the air and sent a crystal gout of expensive liquor flying across the room. Everyone around the boardroom table was mesmerized at the beauty of the shimmering stream as it sparkled beneath the florescent lights. Then, upon recovering, the CFO shouted, “Thass a signfromabove. BevMo issposed be ournewname.” Then they all cheered or threw up depending on how lit they were, and they renamed the company that moment. It’s been like that ever since. But again, I digress.)

Keep in mind, the socks are white too.
Keep in mind, the socks are white too.

See, I don't lie.

So, there I was, in BevMo, seeking Scotch. I know nothing about Scotch, but I did know enough to wear a kilt when I went so the people working there would know I was serious. My legs are kind of white right now, it being so late in the year and me having not been outside in at least a decade, so it was a bit shocking for them. A sales clerk came to me and, shielding his eyes, said, “May I help you?”

“I need Scotch,” I said. And so he began to tell me about single malt and blends, and about how they do something in a swamp somewhere with peat moss and warm bricks under barrels of oak or something. All I could think of was that documentary I saw once on the Discovery Channel where anthropologists found an old dead Scottish guy from like 5,000 years ago perfectly preserved in a peat bog.

Or else that was a Nordic guy named Pete partially preserved in a regular bog. Anyway, it was something like that and some old white guy died.

The bottom line was, he told me stuff and I nodded and then I bought a really expensive bottle of Scotch off the top shelf since that’s where the good stuff always is.

Top shelf. That’s why people say stuff like, “This Scotch is top shelf.” It’s because it comes off the top shelf. Although sometimes I wonder if that’s always true. I mean, does everything on the top shelf really work better than the stuff on the shelves below? What if the store has really tall shelves? If the shelves are like eight feet tall, putting stuff up there would make it hard to buy for most people. If you owned a store, you wouldn’t really want the expensive stuff you are trying to sell to be out of reach of your customers would you? Not to mention, what about things like tampons or yams? Is there really a difference between yams and tampons? And what if you needed tampons but there were only yams on the top shelf? Then you would be in a pickle having to decide whether you wanted quality or, well, absorbency. I mean, I suppose you could use a yam, but that seems weird to me. But hey, I’m not here to judge you, I’m just trying to write an article on Scotch. Do what you want.

"Yams or tampons?" a perennial question.
"Yams or tampons?" a perennial question.

Anyway, I bought some 18-year-old Scotch. This Scotch was in a barrel in some peat bog before my daughter was born. I was pretty stoked to bring it home and drink it. My wife was too. She was all fired up to try it with me. I even watched some videos about “how to drink Scotch” so that I didn’t drink it in some way that was un-cool or uncultured. I think it’s very important to practice your vices in a way that is in keeping with how other people do their vices. Doing a vice wrong is a good way to undermine it. A vice is already wrong, so doing it wrong makes it double wrong. Not right. Everyone knows two wrongs don’t make a right, and this ain’t math class with all that negative positive stuff. Doing a wrong wrong is like double-reverse negative karma or something. So don’t ever do it if you can help it.

So like the videos said to, we used narrow wine glasses, and I poured the caramel colored liquid into them as instructed. I whirled it like you always see those snooty wine guys do, and then gave it a whiff. You’re supposed to whiff it so you can smell what you are about to experience. (Works for wine, women and, apparently, Scotch whiskey too... must be something to do with the "w"). This is a proven strategy, and of course I gave it a sniff. So did my wife. That’s when her face crinkled up and she said, “Eww,” and then, “Gah.” Her eyebrows looked kind of like someone had just hacked a caterpillar in half and its parts were having seizures above her eyeballs.

Actual close-up of my wife's face after sniffing Scotch.
Actual close-up of my wife's face after sniffing Scotch.

“WTF?” I said. “This is a $55 bottle of Scotch. Don’t be making that dying caterpillar face at me. This is serious business!”

She fixed me this sort of empty look, then said, “If I drink this, I am going to puke. I can already tell.”

Well! And to think I thought she should be allowed to participate in the manly ritual of Scotch. Clearly it is too advanced of a drink for a woman, someone weakened by ovaries and the leeching such organs impose each month, not to mention the effect of having yams stuffed in uncomfortable places all the time. Such a gender has no business trying to drink Scotch. No wonder the merest whiff of it nearly turned her inside out. Frailty, thy name is woman!

Fortunately, I am a man and was able to step up. I snatched the elegant crystal from her hands and poured the honey of Scotland into my glass. A double. THIS is how a real man drinks.

I whirled it round my glass again, now nearly half full. Whirl, whirl, whirl. I was mixing out and sterilizing any estrogen particles my wife may have left in her portion to weaken it. I scented it again. Delightful. Warm wood and buttery, slightly sweet with an aspect of ash.

My instruction video said I should sip it once, a small taste mostly for the tip of my tongue, and let it linger. So I did. Sip.

Yes, I grew up with this kind of technology.
Yes, I grew up with this kind of technology.

When I was a kid growing up on the ranch, my dad used to make me fill up his truck with gas. We had these old fashioned gravity-feed gas tanks with simple nozzles, the kind that don’t have any pressure shutoff valves like the ones these days do. Back then, the way you knew your tank was full was when gasoline geysered out at you. I remember this one time, gas shot all over my pants and I had to wear the gas around, rubbing against my leg through my jeans, for an hour or two. I had this big red burn/rash thing on my skin with little blisters.

Well, that’s what happened to my tongue when I drank this Scotch. It was like my tongue had been wrapped in a gasoline soaked cloth for four days. And then set on fire. All my tongue-skin was instantly burned off and fire actually shot out of me. Mount Saint Helens didn’t do what happened in my mouth. My tongue was a nuclear flambé and blue hot flames were shooting up my sinuses and out my nose. Then I flew over the Shire and burned all the hobbits to death. It was brutal.

Burn you little bastards! BURN!
Burn you little bastards! BURN!

Did you know that Scotch can be as much as 60% alcohol? My God!

It turns out that is why sometimes people mix it with water. Before I started drinking it, I was fairly certain that only pussies put water in their Scotch, needing to weaken it because of their being such sorry examples of manhood.

NOW I understand it has to do with chemistry. It’s the same reason fire departments use water to combat fires in people’s houses and that sort of thing. Firemen are very manly. In fact, I would say firemen are amongst the manliest types of men there are. Big brutish fellows who run into deathtraps to save babies and stuff. Heck, many firemen have their own topless calendars to show off their muscles and chest hair. That’s pretty manly in my book. I don’t know any doughy, white writer types who get their own calendars. Despite doughy whiteness, however, I consider myself to be as masculine as you get short of bull riders and firemen. So there you go. You got bull riders, firemen and me. All using water to fight fire. Well, except the bull riders. Although, I’m sure they would if they needed to. That’s all I’m saying.

The universally accepted top three most masculine male body types.
The universally accepted top three most masculine male body types.

Anyway, I had to put a tourniquet on my left eyeball for a while, but then I added water to my Scotch, and it was delicious. I think.

I’m honestly not sure because my face was still in shock most of the night. But it seemed very good. And I did finish the whole glass, no thanks to my extremely un-masculine wife. (I hope she never tries to be a fireman because they will not let her be on their topless calendar with her weak attitude!)

So, if you are thinking of trying some Scotch, I think you should. It is very tasty. And I even think you should taste it without any water at first too. Just be prepared. That’s all I’m saying.

                                        ~ Fin ~


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    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      Uh, Terryandco, I hate to be the one to point this out, but that "tired and moody thing" ... well, that's a hangover my friend.

    • Terryandco profile image

      Terry Harris 

      8 years ago from Essex

      Scotch is good and bad for me. I never seem to get "silly" when drinking it and I never get a hangover in the morning from scotch. The only downside is that it makes me very tired and i get a bit mooody the next day! anyone else get the same thing?

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      Hiya Tony. I'll be honest, Scotch is going to be an occasional treat for me. It's tasty, but its pretty strong and, after a few runs at it, it's not without abdominal reprecussions, if you know what I mean. Still, in small quantities it's good and will make me a better writer somehow. :)

    • tonymac04 profile image

      Tony McGregor 

      8 years ago from South Africa

      In spite of my dubious Scottish ancestry I don't like Scotch! Is that a dreadful confession to make? I don't like oats porridge much either! Actually tried a glass of The Macallan that Para recommends the other evening. It smelt nice enough but tasted like surgical spirits to me, and had about the same effect on my tongue! I was scared to go near an open flame for hours after! And since we were barbecuing (or braaing, as we call it!) that evening I had a bit of a problem.

      So I'll just stick to the grape juice and drink to you drinking The Macallan! Have a great one, and thanks so much for the laughter. I really enjoyed this Hub.

      Love and peace


    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      Well, you can defend the masculinity of your gender all you want, but I still don't think that females are manly enough for Scotch and will continue to think it until one does drink Scotch properly. Then, I will suggest that she make a topless calendar of her own to prove that she is as masculine as a fireman. Then, I will be satisfied. Until then, I reserve the right to hide behind my computer screen and act as mysoginistic as my cowardice allows!

    • Karen Wodke profile image

      Karen Wodke 

      8 years ago from Midwest

      ok, I laughed. I admit it. Even though you denigrated the masculinity of my gender. What kind of female am I that I would just bail on my gender and laugh at jokes about our manliness? I don't know the answer. It's philosophical. But I loved the entire article. I don't drink Scotch, but if I wanted to, I could drink it just as well as a topless fireman or a shirtless cowboy. I can't prove that, of course. But I am sure there are scientific studies out there that support my position. I had to vote this hub up, by the way. Had to.

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      HEY, I'm a tequila person too! Have you tried Herradura? The red horseshoe on the lable one, IN the freezer = win.

      I'm glad you enjoyed my hub, btw, and thank you for saying so. :)

    • Pixienot profile image


      8 years ago from Clarksville, Indiana

      I not only enjoyed the text, although I'm a tequila person, I loved the pictures. Thanks for the entertainment!

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      You know, that sounds like a totally cool idea. And I know EXACTLY the bar to go too. Awesome idea! (Except I'll let her spit--and drive--and I'll keep what I drink, tyvm. :)

    • Sally's Trove profile image


      8 years ago from Southeastern Pennsylvania

      Find a scotch tasting night at one of your local restaurants or bars. They've got these candelabra type racks where there's a small glass on each arm containing a sample of 5 or 8 scotches--single malts and blends. If you bring your wife, bring a portable spittoon!

      Very fun read and more.

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      Thanks, Sligobay. I hope your Christmas was awesome, and that you have a happy New Year too.

      AC, good to see you. Glad you were amused, I am still half tempted to write up a product hub on Yampons, but I think I'd end up having to be too low bar to go very far. Still, that was a funny idea. Stan kills me.

    • ACSutliff profile image


      8 years ago

      Thanks for the laughs, Shadesbreath. And don't worry about what Stan said. Your storytelling skills are raising the bar, really. :) Cheers and Yampons!

    • sligobay profile image


      8 years ago from east of the equator

      Best wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy ,healthy, and prosperous New Year. Great Hub! BevMo sounds like a truly great company to invest in. Sadly, I needed to surrender my daily drinking habits a decade ago. I could just taste this article. Well done.

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      DzyMsLizzy, you are probably right. While arguments can be made for the joy things bring once you get used to them, equal arguments can be made for the abundance of things from which joy comes making the torture of acquiring a taste seem, well, illogical. However, I am going to try this anyway just in case it is a requirement for the universe to grant novelist status. :D

      SWEET, Austinstar... you see how the power of BevMo permeates all things, and especially here at the holidays, and even more, through a vehicle with "star" in her name. Hmmm, coincidence? I think not!

    • Austinstar profile image


      8 years ago from Somewhere near the center of Texas

      Hey! I just got BevMo coupons in my email! Are you hacking me?

      Shop and get dollars off:

      Use code at checkout:

      REWK475 will get you 5 bux off of a 50 buck purchase

      REWK4710 will get you 10 bux off of a 75 buck purchase

      REWK4715 will get you 15 bux off of a 100 buck purchase

      Enjoy! Happy Holidays! It's on their FB page too, I think.

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 

      8 years ago from Oakley, CA

      For my money, life is too short to waste time and punish myself trying to "acquire a taste" for something I did not like the first time. Forget it and move on is my motto! ;-)

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      Mysterylady, I would be more than happy to be defeated in a Scotch drinking contest by you, one of the finest examples of your gender. However, until you actually have defeated me, I will operate under my previous assumptions regarding my status as superior to all excepting perhaps firemen and bull riders. :)

      Uhh... sueroy333... wine in a box from the bottom shelf? Wow. You're lucky you are still alive. I heard that terrorists hide their explosives in wine boxes that they put on the bottom shelf because they know nobody will ever, EVER touch them. :D (Let me know how your Scotch experiment works out. Maybe your kid can draw it up and we'll have book end hubs. The male version and the female one. lol).

    • sueroy333 profile image

      Susan Mills 

      8 years ago from Indiana

      I will have you know, that that top shelf thing is totally the truth. I accidently bought my wine-in-a-box from the bottom shelf once, and it was NOT good.

      I was actually pretty content with sipping my wine from a top shelf box, then I read your hub. I feel like I need to try scotch now. It's like a challenge because I'm not a man and all.

      Next week, I'm going for it! I am woman, hear me roar.. (especially when I mistake my yams for my tampons.)

    • mysterylady 89 profile image

      mysterylady 89 

      8 years ago from Florida

      "Sterilyzing any estrogen particles," "frailty thy name is woman!" - tsk, tsk. I see you are picking on the female sex again. For shame!

      If you and I got into a scotch-drinking contest, guess who the winner would be. When I was a senior in high school, my father decided to teach me how to be a "social" drinker. A bourbon drinker himself, he chose scotch for me, probably hoping I would not like it. As several have pointed out, it is an "acquired" taste. Alas, I liked it immediately. Rarely do I buy the expensive stuff, but I can enjoy a less expensive brand on the rocks with a splash of club soda.

      A funny hub! Again I am aware of my ignorance. The only definition I know for a yam is a sweet potato, and I know that is not what you meant.

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      LOL, Chritopher, the bacon is on aisle 7 with the yams and tampons (which you may have noticed lol). It's funny to hear a bartender say that; you would know. However, I must develop this taste though, for it is clear that all great novelists must drink Scotch.

    • Christopher Price profile image

      Christopher Price 

      8 years ago from Vermont, USA

      Will we know when you have finally "Aquired the taste" by your switching from Shadesbreath to Peatbreath?

      I worked as a bartender for 8 years and never did become partial to Scotch. If I wanted the hair burned off my tongue I'd go for some EverClear Grain Alcohol and just forego the faux flavorings...dip some bacon in the stuff if you're looking for smoky nuances!



    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      Spryte, my wife gets her reward every morning when she wakes up and my awesome self is lying next to her.

      (Okay, yeah, I need to get her something nice. But it sounds so cool when I say stuff like that, it's like getting to feel like Kim Jong Il or something, just super full of myself. I like it. I need to work on making that more permanent.)

      I'm not going to touch that yam ammunition comment because my last two comments are already walking the line pretty tightly. So, um, yeah, I have no idea how those weapons are used, from whence they erupt when fired or anything else, nor while I ask. Because it would be wrong.

      Dallas93444: You HAVE to be right about that tape thing. It's so obvious, I can't believe I didn't see it too. They invented the tape to ramp up and then to probably just tape the bottle to your face or something so you don't drop it when you catch on fire. (Reminds me of those bud light commercials with the adhesive grip stuff on it lol).

      Cookingdiva: Hi! Yes, my wife is a trooper. The only thing she said about this hub was, "Nice, how you put my eyebrows look like that." LOL. Then she laughed. So, she survived the Scotch and the Scotch hub. All clear. (And yes, those are my illustrations. I have fun with them. I used to get my daughter to do my illustrations, but she's got her own stuff to work on these days and is hard to pin down for more than one or two here and there, so I started doing drawings with the Vlad the Inhaler hub. But those took way too long, did a couple more simplified versions for the Duck Poop and Fiber One hubs, and, well, it seems I've found a style that I can do fast enough to use more regularly now. I think they ad to the fun nicely and they amuse myself, which matters too.)

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      Mind? Morgan F, I hadn't even thought about THAT locality. You are really thinking outside the box with that comment. :D


      I have to say that I feel honored to hear, from YOU of all people, that I have lowered the bar for, well, for YOU of all people. That is such a distinction. Lowering the bar for you is a feat on parallel with raising the bar for Sir Edmund Hillary. So, just, thank you. I have a little tear right here in the corner of my eye. (sniff).

      Oh, and just LOLOLOLOLOL at Yampons. You know what, I should make that hub. Or you can, and I'll just take the link. lol. That's funny. NEW, from Tampax: Super Absorbant Yampons. Why wait for leftovers at Thanksgiving when you can have the comfort and marshmallow coated comfort of new Yampons. (* TYSS - Toxic Yam Shock Syndrom - is a serious potential side effect. Yampons should not be used by women under the age of 18. If you experience dry mouth, headaches, marshmallow run off or anything resembling tryptophan-like urges for a nap take a shower and don't tell anyone that you tried this product).


    • profile image


      8 years ago


      I never liked scotch but I sure enjoyed your fun hub here. I can only imagine how your wife must have felt! I like wine better, it can be used for cooking too :-)

      Did you do these drawings? Amazing!

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 

      8 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

      Perhaps "scotch tape" was invented when you need to construct a ramp to slide the scotch drink up to your mouth... and hold your hand to the glass...

    • spryte profile image


      8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      I'd avoid any woman checking out with a bag full of tampons and yams. The yams, btw...are ammunition. You can usually tell the difference by the string. Yams have no strings...ergo, we don't expect them to be retrievable.

      Scotch is on my "to be avoided at all costs" list right below gin, whiskey, brandy and pretentious wines. If they should ever come in an encapsulated form (sorta like Nyquil...which was a VERY smart move) then I may change my mind.

      You better be getting your wife something incredible for Christmas...she's earned it.

    • Stan Fletcher profile image

      Stan Fletcher 

      8 years ago from Nashville, TN

      Dude - I read all the comments and can't really add anything substantive, but I will add some non-substantive stuff.

      First off, congratulations on being the first Coors Light consumer to try Scotch - any kind of Scotch. You've changed the entire Coors Light paradigm with this decision and now they will have to go back to the drawing board in their marketing efforts. Now that their customers are sophisticated, I have a feeling the blue labels that tell you when your beer is cold are a thing of the past. This is good riddance, I'm sure you'll agree.

      Secondly, your discussion of yams, in the context that you introduced here, has lowered the bar for all of us, and for that I'm grateful. There are a few things that I still don't dare say in my hubs for fear of offending others more sensitive than I, like mostly everyone except you. Now, I can offend with impunity and not fear going as far as you went with your Yampons idea. Yes, I DO want credit for the name if you start marketing them.

      That is all for now, except to say that I buzzed over to your Fiber One bar hub and laughed hysterically. I had the exact same results, except I was out on a long run and crapped in the parking lot of the Mayo Clinic under the street lights and wiped with one of my favorite T-shirts. Not kidding. I call them T-shits now. I'm seriously surprised that you didn't shit your pants in class. For reals. Those heinous anus bars should be outlawed.

    • Morgan F profile image

      Morgan F 

      8 years ago from USA

      yams! *shiver* I'll have a little trouble getting that one out of my mind lol! Another epic tale Shadesbreath!

    • Lady Guinevere profile image

      Debra Allen 

      8 years ago from West By God


    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      De Greek, your stock can't possibly be in the cellar. The only way your stock goes in the cellar is if people have their fire safe down there. As for AA, that's not going to happen, I enjoy my drinking far too much for that. HOwever, I can't think of much of anything that would be more fun than checking out the land of my forefathers with you. Man we'd have a blast.

      Hiya Lady G, thanks for reading. And don't worry about not being a drinker. I'll drink your share for you, so it's all good; nothing going to waste. :)

      Hmmm, Winsome, I hadn't even thought about setting it in haggis. Mmmm, nothing says good drinking like guts, rot gut in guts is just such a gutsy drinking concept, who'd have thought it up, eh? And, lol @ ground up hobbits. Wow, the hobbits, who thought they were all resting peacefully after that whole Sauron thing, and here we come breathing fire on them like they haven't known since Smaug and grinding them up like trolls. Poor bastards. I'll let my wife know you suggested tequila worms, and I'm waiting on that youtube video. It sounds like something the Village People would do if they were still making videos. :D

    • Winsome profile image


      8 years ago from Southern California by way of Texas

      I was wearing my kilt this morning and after admiring the perfectly tanned SoCal legs I thought to myself: "Those rodeo buddies of mine in Texas never looked this good." That random thought led me to do a google search on "bull riders aren't so tough" to verify my epiphany and wonder of wonders, look where it brought me. I sympathize with your experience and hasten to say that true Scotsmen have a secret to drinking Scotch that only tenth level ward members are privy to and that is that they let the bottle contents sit overnight in a good sized haggis (which only the Scots know is ground up peat and road kill hobbits.)This renders the Scotch palatable and gives the appropriate send off to the hobbit. I would read the exact procedure from my "All Things Weird and Scottish" reference library, but I keep it of course on the top shelf and with the sunburn on my legs I'm not going there. Tell your wife she is perfectly justified in having bugs on her face, particularly if they get there from an enthusiastic tequilla shot fest.

      I will be sending you the youtube link to "Kilt-wearing bull rider pelted in Huntsville with yams by over-estrogenized soccer moms." =:)

    • Lady Guinevere profile image

      Debra Allen 

      8 years ago from West By God

      I am not a drinker of any spirits but this story was so funny! Thanks for the laugh this morning.

    • De Greek profile image

      De Greek 

      8 years ago from UK

      John, though the bottom appears to have dropped out of the De Greek market, and De Greek Preferred Shares are down in the cellar with no takers, I have had what is known as “A THOUGHT”, which I shall now put to you:

      Why don't you join Alcoholics Anonymous, and save your money up to buy a ticket to visit me in the UK? There are some really interesting sites around here and we could spend out time trying to impress each other with our knowledge of literature ;-)))

      ( - Come ON, now, don't tell me that's not funny! ;-))) - )

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      De Greek, compliments from a writer of your astounding and compelling voice are like ... well, like Alkea Seltzer tablets and Advil to a morning after a Scotch adventure. But I will point out that I was perfectly able to enjoy my eggs and bacon the next day because, with my face burned off as it was the night before, I didn't do justice to my typical heroic approach to drinking. For now, Scotch will be a social drink for me, and I'll stick to beer for ruining breakfasts. :) And yeah, you have to watch out for those estrogen particles, there's no telling the suffering those things can cause.

      LOL Lorlie, you know you want them to come out with that movie... All Dogs Go to BevMo. It would be a real modern children's classic, prep them for their adult years with a far greater sense of reality than do movies about heroic rescues and supernatural intervention.

      Twilight Lawns, thanks for that. Your prose are dazzling, so such fine words from you are very gratifying. And I was tempted to try some Irish Whiskey when I was looking for Scotch. I'll have to finish developing my taste for Scotch so I will know the difference, but I have every intention of doing so.

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      Para, I hope you do show up here. If I have finished that bottle off, I'll certainly get a new one. As for the 57% AVB before bottling, I'm fairly sure that is a detail that passed before me, from which I rounded up to 60% (as is my artist's prerogative)and ignored the part about bottling (or never heard that part). That's the cool thing about writing the stuff I write: facts mean so very little in the end. :D The Macallan will be the next bottle I buy, btw, so long as I can get it at BevMecca.

      Arb, you may be right about bourbon, but can a good wife be found on the bottom shelf? And if she is on the bottom shelf, what is she doing there? Did she have an earring fall out or something? And if she DID have an earring fall out, why did it fall out? Maybe she has like big Dumbo ears and the original piercings have widened like the big holes in Swiss Cheese, so her earrings just fall right out all the time? Can you really call a woman whose jewelry just falls off at grocery stores a "good" wife? I think not, especially when you consider that jewelry is one of the best gifts you can give, and a woman like will be too expensive to keep around losing her jewelry all the time. That's all I'm saying.

      Mark Ewbie, thanks dude. Coming from a wonderful jokester and writer like yourself, that's a fine compliment. And if you don't like Scotch, you probably haven't tried the right one. Or that's what I'm saying to people because I like to sound like I'm smart about Scotch even though I'm not even done with the only bottle I've ever had. Don't tell anyone though.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image

      Twilight Lawns 

      8 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      A brilliant piece of writing. I love the way you meander through the telling of it.

      I didn't taste whiskey until I was twenty-five, but had read John Steinbeck's eloquent description of the liquid and liked the sound of it. I was on an ocean liner for six weeks and decided that that was the time to try it; there was nothing else to do. I was hooked... but then, some years later, discovered Irish Whiskey, and never looked back

      Try it.

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      Hi Misty. I'm not sure what's up with Ginger Ale suddenly making its way into not only this hub but just mention in the world at large, but there's a trend a'brewin'. Thanks for reading, and I'm glad you liked the pictures. I was most amused making them (I crack myself up sometimes... it's nice being so simple and easily amused).

      DzyMsLzzy, you MUST be right about the top shelf stuff. That has to be it, the heat rose to the top shelf. Had I bought the $4 bottle, I would not have taken out all those poor hobbits. (sigh). Poor little guys. :) And I know what you mean about the smoky taste. From what I've read, the range is from to sweet with that stuff. I guess part of the adventure is finding where your palate resides. Or something. lol. Thanks for the kind words, the cake simile was really cool. It is fun to just drop into the writing zone and see what comes out; it's amazing what disparate things can be tied together with almost nothing. It really is the joy of writing for me.

      Austinstar, I have to tell you, Southern Comfort is too sweet all by itself, and Dr. Pepper is the sweetest of the sweet drinks. Putting the two together would be like drinking tar made of sugar the way my imagination is assembling that. Yikes! Now the butter thing sounds more interesting, but I think I'm going to stick with just trying Scotch for a while before I start sticking weird extras in it. :P

    • lorlie6 profile image

      Laurel Rogers 

      8 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      I'm not sure if all dogs go to Bevmo, Shades, I'd say only the extremely tall breeds would enjoy the fancy stuff on the top shelf.

      Oh, and since your dear wife had bugs on her face, I can hope that you had the sense to spray her eyebrows with Raid.

      Poor woman.

    • De Greek profile image

      De Greek 

      8 years ago from UK


      I just had visions of you lowering the liquid of the gods into the abyss and then in reaction yards and yards of you uncoiling and stretching into a length unknown to you since school basketball, stiffening like in rigor mortis. With the additional benefit being the unintended whitening of your teeth by having them pickled in pure alcohol , while they acted as the Hoover Dam, keeping the rivers at bay at some stage

      And then I thought of you turning bright green next morning at breakfast smells of bacon and eggs, with the spirit pickled in 60% alcohol to be willing, but the old flesh unable to give the matter any serious consideration even for a second ;-)))

      But the best part was: “sterilizing any estrogen particles my wife may have left in her portion” … Man, is it a wonder that I love you and that I am so envious of your talent? THAT made me laugh out loud. And the way you made the first part appear as if you were getting sozzled as you went along… Great stuff Young Shades :-))))

    • Mark Ewbie profile image

      Mark Ewbie 

      8 years ago from UK

      I need a Scotch after that. I am a witless loser compared to the magnificence of your writing. The prose, and the drawings, my God, the drawings - and the prose, my God, the prose.

      Only thing is.. I don't really like Scotch.

    • arb profile image


      8 years ago from oregon

      "Acquiring a taste" was warning enough. They told me the same thing about marriage and although, that has worked out, 43 years of acquireing seems a tidious approach, especially when a good bottle of bourbon is on the bottom shelf.

    • Paraglider profile image

      Dave McClure 

      8 years ago from Kyle, Scotland

      Well, if you don't want that bottle of 18 year old Glenlivet, feel free to send it over here. Better still, keep it in the cupboard for when I'm doing my Grand Tour of the States, so I'll be forced to drop by.

      To be technical and boring, whisky is traditionally bonded (matured in wood) at 100 proof which is 57% ABV (alcohol by volume). But at bottling it is usually diluted to 70 proof or 40% ABV. A few distillers, notably Talisker in the Isle of Skye, sell some of their bottles at 57%, but it is almost undrinkable without adding water so I'm not sure why they bother.

      If you plan to repeat the experiment, I'd recommend 10 year old Macallan - cheaper than your Glenlivet and much smoother :)

    • Austinstar profile image


      8 years ago from Somewhere near the center of Texas

      {Doing a wrong wrong is like double-reverse negative karma or something}

      I'm positively positive that something is inversely correct about that statement.

      Ever try Southern Comfort and Dr. Pepper? (on the rocks) Ok, it's a girly girl drink, but delicious.

      Scotch should be warmed with a dollup of butter.

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 

      8 years ago from Oakley, CA

      Your talent for blending subjects like a chef blends cake mix is truly magical. I laughed myself silly. Or perhaps I'm already silly--hence my pen name--at any rate, it was a fun read.

      I'm among the "NO thank you!!" crowd when it comes to scotch. Have tried it once or twice, and did NOT like it; not even one little tiny bit. I didn't have the 'tongue on fire' reaction, so perhaps it was not the top shelf stuff--ah--there's your problem: heat rises, as any fireman can tell you! ;-)

      However, my reaction was that it had a very 'smoky' taste, and I imagine if I were to lick a dirty ashtray, the flavor would be similar.

      Of course, I'm of the female persuation, and not 'manly,' although I'm not much into fashion and other things that folks consider 'feminine.' I've always been a tomboy, so I figure that should at least partially qualify my opinion on the matter.

      :-D HAHAHA! LOL... great always

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

      Cindy Lawson 

      8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      LOL, well I am with your Wife on the horror of drinking scotch, it is horrible, heartburn in a glass!!! Ginger Ale however is really nice, and quite refreshing! Loved your artwork as always Shades, and of course the wonderful humour in this hub:)

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      Well, drbj, this is an equal oportunity hub, and all people, Scotch or not-Scotch drinkers are welcome. And I don't know if I've heard Joe E. Lewis, so now, thanks to you, I shall see if perhaps he has a You Tube video or two to amuse me. :)

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 

      8 years ago from south Florida

      I confess I am not a Scotch drinker but wanted you to know I read every word of this hub because it was excellently educational and funny to boot. The graphics, too, Shades.

      But I also loved your subject because it gave me an opportunity to share with you one of my favorite quotes from the comedian Joe E. Lewis (he performed mostly in night clubs) who said: "Whenever someone asks me if I want water with my Scotch, I say I'm thirsty, not dirty." :)

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      Hey, get those particles away from me. I'm trying to get the attention of a calendar company and don't need your distractions.

    • Smart Reviews profile image

      Smart Reviews 

      8 years ago

      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~This is me wafting "Estrogen Particles" in your general direction! LOL Nicely done. :)

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      Thanks Dee aka Nonna. That's sweet of you to say. :)

      Denizee, I'm glad you appreciated this odd ramble around almost nothing held together by a feeble Scotch thread. Hey, I love gingerale too, btw. I think I'm the only person in the U.S. that knows it exists.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Terrific Hub - Love your unique style of blending a subject and interjecting humor - great read. Wish I could tolerate liquor but my stomach says no - so my top shelf bottle these days is gingerale. Thank you for the entertainment tonight.

    • Dee aka Nonna profile image

      Dee aka Nonna 

      8 years ago

      Great fun! You are truly gifted.

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      Awww shucks. (Don't think that's going to get you a second chance at my Scotch though).

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      you are a crazy sob and that is why I love you

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      Yeah, scorching your kids mouth with burning liquid is not a good strategy for making long-term Scotch connoisseurs out of them.

    • Uninvited Writer profile image

      Susan Keeping 

      8 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

      I blame my parents, they used to give me tastes of their whiskey as a child.

    • Shadesbreath profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from California

      Hiya, UW. I actually had some last night. I've progressed to "rocks" now, with a full understanding of how that evolved. If things get out of hand, the ice is there to stick in your eye or up your nose. Those crazy bartenders figured out all the safety angles.

      Hi Christoph. Yes, the yams are the sort of thing many men choose not to learn about the fairer sex until much later in life. One of the last threads that snap before all the magic and illusion is gone. Sorry to be the one to do it to you. (And yeah, I know, Sean Connery was a bad ass.)

      Hey ChrisLincoln... I think I'm going to hold off on Brandy myself, at least till my tongue skin grows back, but I wish you luck finding an expert. You Tube was useful for me, perhaps you can find some gourmet brandy person to get you started.

    • ChrisLincoln profile image


      8 years ago from Orange (or Lemon...) County, California


      It is an acquired taste with a huge range of flavors and "strengths". The water is important - just a splash, as it releases the aroma and flavor. I had a phenomenal education from a friend in Edinburgh. Found I liked the smoother, gentler blends.

      Glad you took the plunge though.

      Looking for a brandy expert now...


    • Christoph Reilly profile image

      Christoph Reilly 

      8 years ago from St. Louis

      Yeah, but just a little bit of water, right? Just enough to release the flavors and aroma, not drown it...not that I would know. I'm still stuck on the imagery of the yams. Very funny! And if Sean Connery could wear a kilt playing James Bond,what could be manlier than that?

      Is your regular illustrator still on strike? For heaven's Lauren the iPhone already!

    • Uninvited Writer profile image

      Susan Keeping 

      8 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

      Never could get into Scotch. This was a fun read. It really is something :)


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