In which I celebrate one of my least favorite movies

by Lorin Michel Monday, May 16, 2011 10:29 PM

Twenty-five years ago today a movie was released and it became an instant success. Men loved it because it was about men doing manly things, bucking danger, putting themselves in harm’s way and coming out heroes. With hot women in tow. Women liked it because the movie was littered with very hot looking young men, in uniform and out, doing manly things but showing their sensitive side by crying.

I’m speaking of Top Gun, released on May 16, 1986. I saw it when it first came out and can honestly say that I enjoyed it. Of course, I was pretty young myself and was enamored with Tom Cruise. My first husband was doing a lot of traveling at the time and he would go to the theater every night while he was out of town and watch the movie again.


Come to find out, most men are like that. When Kevin and I got together, our third date was watching Top Gun in his apartment, with ribs and fries delivered by Pizza Man. It was referred to as “Dad’s Airplane Movie” because that’s what Justin called it. Even though I wasn’t a big fan of the film, I was already a big fan of the man who would become my second husband and so we sat and watched. We quoted all of the famous lines. And munched on some of the best bad ribs around.

Top Gun has a very simple premise. A hot shot navy pilot with a chip on his shoulder named Maverick and his Radar Intercept Office (RIO) Goose are given the chance to train at the Navy’s Fighter Weapons School; to be the best of the best. The inspiration for the film was an article by Ehud Yonay in a May 1983 issue of California magazine entitled “Top Guns,” and it profiled actual pilots at the Miramar Naval Air Station in northern San Diego, nicknamed “Fightertown USA.” A former instructor named Randy “Duke” Cunningham was supposedly the inspiration for Pete “Maverick” Mitchell.

The movie, directed by Tony Scott and written by Jim Cash and Jack Epps, Jr., opened on 1,028 theaters and was the highest grossing film of 1986, bringing in $176,786,701 domestically and $177,030,000 internationally for a total of $353,816,701. Enrollment in the Navy went up 500 percent.

It starred Tom Cruise, who was a hot young thing. I loved him in The Firm; in other things I’ve tolerated him. Val Kilmer (“Iceman”) was one of my favorite parts of Tombstone when he played Doc Holiday. Tom Skerritt was a great sheriff in Picket Fences. Anthony Edwards went on to fame as Dr. Greene in E.R. At one point, he, Rick Rossovich and Michael Ironside were all on E.R. at the same time, in either the first or second season. Tim Robbins who had a very minor role is now a fairly big star (loved Bull Durham) as is Meg Ryan, or at least she used to be. Kelly McGillis. Never cared much for her.

The movie itself is trite and clichéd but has great action sequences, and nice bodies. As Roger Ebert said “movies like Top Gun are hard to review because the good parts are so good and the bad parts are so relentless.”

Regardless, Dad’s Airplane Movie continues to be a big hit in this house. I don’t tend to watch it because it really is bad, but every time we find it on cable, Kevin can’t help but pause and watch. I think he feels the need, the need for speed.

Happy Anniversary, Top Gun

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live out loud

The wheel deal

by Lorin Michel Sunday, May 15, 2011 10:33 PM

There were equal numbers of boys and girls standing in the shade, patches of sun slipping through to warm an otherwise cold Sunday morning. The wind was blowing but none of the kids seemed to mind. They were completely focused on their small, home-made wooden vehicles at the top of the drive. These cars ranged from the sparse flat floor panel with a seat, a steering column, attached wheel and a foot brake to wedge-shaped enclosed boxes with bucket-seats, handlebars and sponsors. The parents hovered. As the kids got into their cars, some crouched down to whisper last minute words of wisdom; others continued to tinker with the wheels, for torque. It was Derby day here in the OP.

Photo: Kevin Michel

The Soap Box Derby has been called The Greatest Amateur Racing Event in the World, and the Gravity Grand Prix. But it received its official name back in 1933 when a Dayton Ohio newspaper photographer named Myron Scott came upon three boys racing their engine-less cars down an inclined street. Scott had an idea: Why not hold a coasting race and award a prize to the winner? He took the idea to his bosses who promoted it and several weeks later, nineteen boys showed up for a race on the same street. One of the cars was handcrafted and painted black with a big white “7” on the side. Built by Robert Gravett, the son of a metal stamping plant employee, the car – which didn’t win – became the unofficial symbol for the Derby for nearly 35 years.

The first major Derby event was held that same year, on August 19, 1933, when 362 kids showed up with hand-made cars built from orange crates, sheet tin, lots of junk, and all sporting either wagon or baby-buggy wheels. At least one was made from a soap box, and 40,000 people watched the race from the hill.

By 1936, the event moved to Akron, Ohio and Derby Downs was born. At its peak, the Soap Box Derby was one of the top 5 sporting events in the country in terms of attendance with an average of 70,000 at each race. In 1947, actor James Stewart cancelled a week’s worth of appearances on Broadway in order to attend the Soap Box Derby.

In races around the world, modern gravity-powered racers reach speeds up to 35 mph. Drivers compete one on one, with the winner advancing to the next round or heat. Each heat lasts about 30 seconds. The maximum height of a car is 36 inches, max width is 42 inches with a maximum weight of 250 pounds not including the driver. Wheels can’t be more than 20 inches in diameter and all cars must have brakes. Today’s event in Oak Park was sponsored by the local YMCA. Several hundred people gathered in the parking lot of the Farmer’s Insurance building (they have a great asphalt incline driveway that’s off the main road), lining the pavement, sipping coffee, snapping pictures and rooting for their favorite cars.

Photo: Kevin Michel

We didn’t have a kid racing today. Our kid is too old and too big and this morning, was home in bed sleeping. But we went out to celebrate the Derby because Kevin has always been fascinated, because it was a beautiful morning after a night of drenching rain, and because events like this are the wheel deal.


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The brain as mood ring

by Lorin Michel Saturday, May 14, 2011 11:59 PM

It has long been accepted that the heart is the center of our emotions but I have always wondered about that. Maybe it’s because I tend to be more cerebral than emotional. But still, does the brain have something to do with the way we feel, as well as the way we think? I think I think so. Thinking is as much a way of emoting as emoting is a way of thinking. They’re forever intertwined in the same way that the brain and the heart are entwined by arteries and blood. Emotions feed the brain and the brain feeds emotions.

It’s a theory that’s actually supported by a number of neurosurgeons including Antonio Damasio, a neuroscientist and director of the Brain and Creativity Institute at the University of Southern California. He’s written several books about how the brain generates emotion and how emotion then helps people think. His research has shown that emotions and the conscious mind are both involved in all decision making processes. He has written several books, including Looking for Spinoza: Joy, Sorrow, and the Feeling Brain which foreshadowed discoveries in biology and neuroscience on the mind-body problem. His latest book, Self Comes to Mind: Constructing the Conscious Brain suggests that conscious minds and feelings are the two elements of your idea of self and your actual self. The think works with the feel and vice versa.

The brain is all about influencing our decisions, and our decisions are what make us us. The brain is about thoughts and behaviors. The heart is about feelings and desires. The emotional brain is a combination of both. It tells us how to think about how we feel.

I feel hungry, so I eat. I feel thirsty and I drink. I think that someone is interesting and I feel like I’d like to get to know them better. I’m considering a new job, and I’d love to work at that company. I want to go to dinner, and I’m anxious to try the new Italian place on the corner. I wonder about going to that city for a weekend, but I’m so excited to try it. I think I’m in love and I feel my heart beating faster.

I think therefore I feel and I feel therefore I think.

When two people fall in love, their irrational unconscious brains dominate their conscious logical brain. We overlook the flaws that a logical thinking brain would have noticed, so love becomes blind. Then, after a few years of wearing glasses, love is no longer blind. Suddenly we can see because our brain takes over. And yet our heart continues to beat.

The brain involves love, lust and even sex. The heart does, too. They are hand in hand, though they function differently. The brain thinks and feels, the heart feels and thinks. We think about all of it and we feel all of it as well.

The emotion centers of the brain.

This is my brain. This is my brain on emotions. Any questions?

Well, since you ask, I feel really good about tonight so I think I’m going to go to bed happy.

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live out loud

Things I'm celebrating right now

by Lorin Michel Friday, May 13, 2011 11:54 PM

Every day I find something to celebrate, something that’s good and joyful. Sometimes those things are fun, sometimes they’re introspective, sometimes they’re playful, and sometimes they’re serious. Sometimes they’re about a person, somedays about a place, often about a dog. 

Right now I’m celebrating the return of Justin who’s on his way home, driving across the desert into the setting sun. He should be home around 10. We haven’t seen him since January and he’s only home for three days before he jets off to New York for the summer. We’re celebrating his NY internship, too.

I’m celebrating Friday and the end of a fairly successful week; a haircut and color; pasta sauce simmering on the stove; wine swirling in a glass. The air is clear, hedging toward crisp after a warm and humid day. Saturday is only hours away, my favorite day, a day that always brings a smile to my face and a sigh of contentment.

I’m celebrating my vintage puppy, here next to me chewing on one of his toys. Kevin and I were looking at pictures earlier, laughing. Every inside picture we have of Maguire has at least one if not three toys on the floor around him.

I’m celebrating the quiet neighborhood and the flag dancing lazily across the street. I’m loving my husband, who’s in the kitchen chilling glasses and readying for martinis. Friends will be arriving soon. So I’m celebrating friendships, near and far, past and present. The smell of fresh cut lemon is wafting my way.

I’m celebrating a hot shower, and my favorite cargo pants, fresh out of the dryer, a black sleeveless mock turtleneck and black flip-flops.

I’m celebrating my book projects, two of which are simmering as we await publisher instructions, one that is moving forward even as we wait to hear from an interested publisher. And I'm celebrating the start of a new project with someone I worked with a while ago. She found me on the internet. She wants to write a book about her family and specifically her grandparents, and she’s hired me to do it. It’s going to be a special project, one that allows for both historical fact and fiction as we create scenarios about what the train from Chicago to Los Angeles might have been like in 1944; about the route across the country and the sights; about her grandmother seeing her grandfather, before they were even married, after he had sent a telegraph, proposing. She took the train to meet him, and their lives and the lives of their children and their children’s children would never, could never be the same.

The song that the grandmother loved so dearly, Live till I die, is a celebration unto itself. It was originally sung by Old Blue Eyes, Frank Sinatra, as well as Eileen Barton, a 1950s singer best known for the song If I knew you were comin’ I’d’ve Baked a Cake.

Live till I die begins: “I’m gonna live till I die, I’m gonna laugh ‘stead of cry,/I’m gonna take the town and turn it upside down,/I’m gonna live, live, live until I die."

Shout it out. Celebrate it right now. Live it out loud. I’m gonna. Everyday.



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live out loud

A totally un-PC love affair

by Lorin Michel Thursday, May 12, 2011 11:13 PM

I’m in love. I have been for about eight years or so, ever since we met one warm July evening. I remember it well. It was the Vons parking lot in Calabasas. Kevin and I had decided to make a change, and so he had done some research. Among all the things he’s good at, research is one of the best, especially when it involves something that is near and dear to our hearts. Like a new used car.

We don’t buy brand new vehicles anymore. The prices are ridiculous, and since both of us essentially work out of the house, we don’t drive much. A new car with its shiny new car payment makes no sense. There are weeks that we don’t drive at all. So we have our classic Porsche, and it’s fun, but not a great commuter or traveling car. We wanted something bigger.

Correction: I wanted something bigger. With lots of bells and whistles. Gadgets. A bitchin’ sound system. 4-wheel drive. A smooth ride. A great look. A classic. Or at least, a variation on a classic.

The classic Range Rover. That’s not us.

The Range Rover was introduced by British car company Land Rover in 1970. The Brits had been making the quintessential touring vehicle for the desert for decades, since its 4 X 4 introduction in 1948. It was built for tough terrain and was ideal for safari in Africa with its canvas roof and fancy extras like passenger seats and doors. For the next twenty plus years, it was the go-to vehicle for off-road travel. And then came the more luxurious touring car, the original sport utility vehicle, the Range Rover Classic, with a smoother ride, disc breaks, power steering and a hefty weight. When it was redesigned in 1995 as the P38, it became even heavier. A 4.6 liter engine, four-wheel drive, a 25-gallon gas tank and more made it quite the gas-guzzler. It also has air shocks so it can get real high to go through water, or real low for loading. It has independent suspension, so it can almost literally walk down a mountain, slowly, carefully, intricately. I read a review recently that categorized the Range Rover as a “limousine that can climb a tree.”

On that day in July, we saw our new baby. Deep red metallic exterior with a tan interior. Comfortable, gorgeous, and able to leap tall mountains in a single bound. We bought it. Our sport utility vehicle is very sporty, does some utility hauling when necessary, and is our go-to vehicle for travel. We’ve had it in 4-wheel drive a grand total of once. But we’ve taken it up to Napa Valley several times. We load up the CD changer, and stock it with bottled water and healthy snacks for the 8-hour drive north. We always come back heavier than when we left, usually because we’re carrying several cases of wine.

We’ve also driven across the Sonora desert several times, through blazing heat, air conditioning making us comfortable, on our way to Tucson. It gets a whopping 13 – 15 mph city, 17 – 18 mph highway. It’s a terrible guzzler, totally un-PC these days, especially with gas prices around $4.50. And I love it anyway.

Our baby. That’s us in the front seat.

Tonight we put its new headliner in place, secured all of the lights, grab-bars, alarm sensors and more. And everything works! Tomorrow we’ll go for a ride.

Maybe we’ll even climb a tree.

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God bless the child

by Lorin Michel Wednesday, May 11, 2011 11:13 PM

It’s been in my head all day and I have no idea why. I suspect I heard it somewhere, a version of it at least, though not the original. The original, I would remember hearing. It was recorded on May 9, 1941 by Eleanora Fagan during session #44 for Okeh (pronounced okay) Records, a division of Columbia. Sitting in a studio on Seventh Avenue in New York City, and backed up by Eddie Heywood and his orchestra, the song was two minutes, 57 seconds long. It was released on 78 rpm vinyl in July of that same year, with a B-side titled Solitude. She had written the song with her writing partner Arthur Herzog, Jr in 1939.

By then, of course, Eleanora Fagan had become Billie Holiday, one of my favorite jazz singers of all time, who penned and sang one of my favorite songs, God Bless the Child. It’s truly a masterpiece of soul, passion, anger, want and sultry desire. Billie Holiday had a voice like no other. Smoky, warm, guttural and raw, yet completely soothing, much like jazz itself. I can imagine the clubs where she would have sang. Dark, mysterious and moody, with a slight danger lurking in the cigarette haze. Ice clinking into glasses, whiskey splashing inside and burning the throat.

“Them that’s got shall get; Them that’s not shall lose; So the bible said and it still is news; Mama may have, Papa may have; But God bless the child that’s got his own; That’s got his own.”

Many have wondered the meaning of the lyrics she penned. She herself said that they came to her after an argument with her mother over money. I always thought it was about counting on yourself even if you have successful parents; it’s about understanding that if you have good character, you’ll be fine.  But it’s also about how people can use you if you’re successful, and then abandon you when you fall.

“Money, you’ve got lots of friends; Crowding round the door; When you’re gone, spending ends; They don’t come no more.”

It’s a fabulous song, an introspective one, sung by a woman who had numerous problems, including drug and alcohol addiction. She was a prostitute at the age of 14, but she found strength in music, especially the music of Bessie Smith and Louis Armstrong. In 1929, she began to sing. She took her stage name from her favorite actress, Billie Dove, and her father, Clarence Holiday, a guitarist. Born in April 1915, she died on July 17, 1959 from alcohol and drug-related complications. She was 44.

Billie Holiday recorded a number of popular songs but God Bless the Child remains the one for which she is most known. It was even inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1976. It’s been recorded by over 40 artists including Blood, Sweat & Tears in 1968, Yeardley Smith as Lisa Simpson in 1990 on The Simpsons Sing the Blues, and Moby in 2007. It inspired a television movie, and several books including an award-winning children’s book all by the same name.

It’s a melancholy song but so hauntingly beautiful. Maybe that’s why it’s in my head. Maybe it’s in my head because I love it, just as I love the music of Billie Holiday.


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live out loud

These are the hops

by Lorin Michel Tuesday, May 10, 2011 11:04 PM

The walk today wound up through several neighborhoods. The streets were narrow and dotted with pick-up trucks, workers doing everything from landscaping to remodeling. Several garage doors were open; an older man was on his stationary bike. Two beautiful Australian shepherds sat behind their wrought iron fence, backed by chicken wire, quietly, watching. The one with the brown, black and white fur raised a paw and hooked it into the fence. Hello.

On the road, chalked onto the blacktop, was a hopscotch board. I can’t remember the last time I saw one; I can’t remember the last time I played. I also couldn’t quite remember how it worked. I seemed to recall something dropped that you had to hop toward, without touching something, pick up whatever had been dropped, then turning around to do it all again, in reverse.

Hopscotch began in England centuries ago, in 1677, during the Roman Empire, when a hopscotch course was over 100 feet long. It was supposedly marked out on the Great North Road, a 400-mile stretch from Glasgow to London. Foot-soldiers played in full armor to improve their footwork, endurance and general fitness. It was a military training exercise.

Its name is derived from the word hop and eschocher, an old French word meaning to cut or scratch. To play, a series of linear squares interspersed with blocks of two lateral squares is sketched out on the ground. It consists of single squares and double squares, all leading to the safe or home domed square. A stone or coin or something similar is tossed into the first square and the player must hop through without touching the square containing the coin or whatever. Once they get to the safe or home square, they can rest before turning around, hopping back through and retrieving the marker before getting out safely. Then it begins again. No lines can be touched.

The French have a version called escargot, played on a round course. In Germany, Austria and Switzerland, it’s called Himmel and Hölle (heaven and hell), and in India it’s called kith-kith, Stapu or Ekhat-Dukhat. Brazil calls it Amarelinha; the kids in New York refer to it as Potsy.

Whatever it’s called, it made me want to play. I didn’t, but it looked fun. It looked like a memory, like something to celebrate.

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A vintage pod-puppy story

by Lorin Michel Monday, May 9, 2011 6:53 PM

A couple of weeks ago, we trimmed the palm trees on the side of the house, cutting down the dead fronds. There was a tree-trimming crew in the neighborhood and we had hoped to pay them to either feed everything through their wood chipper or to throw the branches on top of the load they were taking to the dump. But because the limbs were dead they were no longer “green,” which means they can't be "dumped" in the environmental section.

Who knew?

So we stacked everything on the back patio, right outside of our bedroom slider, and we’re slowly making use of our trash pickup every Friday morning. Last week, we managed to get all of the dead fronds into one can. But the hard pods are taking longer. They’re inflexible so we can only stuff a few into each barrel at a time. We still have quite the little pile on the patio.

Maguire didn’t seem to care much about the pile when it was bigger but now that it’s smaller and more manageable, he has decided that he must don his Super Dog cape and protect us from whatever it is that is obviously hell-bent on invading the house. These pods could lead to our destruction. Worse, they could lead to us being replaced by pod-people and pod-dog. I suspect his biggest concern is that should these pod-people materialize, his access to cookies and treats might be restricted. And what if they’re here, what if they’re already here! Mom! Dad!


Each evening he decides to venture out around the time we’re sitting down to dinner, which is usually around 9 pm. Standing at the back slider, gazing into the darkness, his head tilted slightly to the left in order to see the pods lying to his right, he stares first, then growls. He then looks to Kevin. Dad? I need to get out there. NOW! Kevin, good vintage-puppy dad that he is, rises from the couch, leaving his food to cool, and slides open the door. Maguire pushes his head out, keeping his body safely in the house. Then, after some prodding, he quietly eases into the inky blue of night, straight out into the yard his eyes never leaving the threatening palm pods.

Barking ensues. Eventually he gets up the nerve to walk right up to that nasty, mean pile of dead palm parts, sticks his nose inside and barks some more. Muffled, like a mute muffling a trombone or tuba. He paws at it, then decides that it’s good and scared and probably most definitely dead. Crisis averted.

Back to the door, and one bark for re-entry. This one’s for me. It says: Mom? I need to get in there. NOW!

And so we celebrate being safe from the palm pods until the same time tomorrow.

Maguire. The vintage pod-puppy. 

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live out loud


by Lorin Michel Saturday, May 7, 2011 11:20 PM

Do it yourself, otherwise known as DIY, has become a full-fledged phenomenon. There are websites and a television show, countless magazine articles, an arts and crafts movement, even an entire music genre devoted to it. It’s a cultural reality that first became common in the 1950s, under the banner of home improvement. In the 1970s, college and recent college graduates started renovating rundown homes, spurred on by Stewart Brand’s The Whole Earth Catalog, Access to Tools published in late 1968. The tools he described were a variety of designer items, carpenter’s and mason’s tools, garden tools, welding equipment, chainsaws and more. Everything needed to take on a project without professionals. How-to-books from Sunset, Time-Life, Better Homes & Gardens and others helped people learn how to do things. This Old House became weekly viewing.  

We do it ourselves regularly. Kevin is more than handy; he’s a near savant when it comes to looking at a space and deciding how best to fill it with something he’s designed, I’ve approved, and we’ve built. We started with our entertainment center in the living room. Then we built a queen size loft bed with a circular staircase for Justin. We retiled the kitchen floor, a little project that my knees and back have never forgiven me for. A built-in barbeque with a raised and eat-at bar happened shortly after. We redid our kitchen counters and cabinets, and the power room; removed the stair’s banister and refinished the stairs. We tackled the master bedroom’s shower, retiling and re-designing. We currently have a list of at least ten things including building a new bedroom credenza, walls around the planting area on the front yard and maybe laying stone on the walkway. We want to put new tile down in the guest bathroom.

Today we tackled the headliner in the Range Rover. It had started to sag about eight months ago, the fabric pulling away from the back of the car and moving ever forward. I first noticed it when the sunroof was open. I figured there was too much air flowing to the back. It billowed, a big light gray fabric balloon. It was annoying. It was also going to be about $1200 for us to pay someone to fix it.

So we’re doing it ourselves. What a job. Disconnecting all of the lights, removing the seat belts, and grab bars; the pillars. And then somehow pulling the fiberglass shell from the inner roof and maneuvering it out through the back door, removing the liner, scraping away the residual glue, scrubbing it to remove the stick and then collapsing in a heap on the floor, exhausted.

We’re not done, but once again we’re doing it ourselves. We like it. Every time we finish a project, it’s a real sense of accomplishment. And we also know it’s done right. That’s why we’re celebrating doing it ourselves.

Now – yawn – I have to go to bed. My back is killing me.

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Which brings us to Fritini

by Lorin Michel Friday, May 6, 2011 5:00 PM

On the 11th of May, 1614, a man named Franz de le Boë was born in Hanau, Germany and quickly grew, changing his name to Franciscus Sylvius when he moved to the Netherlands. He was a large man, a physician and scientist by profession, studying chemistry, physiology and anatomy, as physicians and scientists are wont to do. He got his degree at the Academy of Sedan in France and eventually had a very lucrative medical practice in Amsterdam.

Dr. Sylvius helped many patients find relief from kidney disorders. He also helped to purify their blood with a handmade remedy. He then discovered that his intoxicating mixture of grain alcohol and juniper berry oil also helped treat stomach aches, gout and gallstones. As an added benefit it tasted quite nice and was fairly inexpensive and easy to produce. It was called Genever.

We call it gin. And through the centuries it has become a constant companion to those seeking remedy for any number or ails, real and imagined. It has also made for good company with another ancient liquid from the 1700s, the originally very sweet vermouth. Made in Italy from a blend of juniper, workwood flowers, orange peel, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, coriander, mace, marjoram, brandy, white wine and tree bark, vermouth owes its name to a German derivative of the English word for wormwood, welmut, which as the name suggests is a remedy for intestinal worms. It also helped jaundice and rheumatism. When it made it to the US, it was sold in apothecary shops.

No wonder gin and vermouth play so nicely together, even if vermouth has changed fairly drastically and is now more or less a white wine. Either way, it is essential in the martini, a lovely drink created long ago, though its exact heritage is a bit dirtied. Many attribute it to a drink known as the Martinez, first crafted in 1862, and created in Martinez, California. Some say the name came from the Martini and Henry rifle used by the British army in 1871 because both the drink and the gun shared a strong kick. In 1888, the martini made it into the New and Improved Illustrated Bartending Manual.

It was supposedly a bartender at New York’s Knickerbocker Hotel, Signor Martini di Arma di Taggia, who first chilled the drink on ice and strained it into an equally iced glass. That was in 1912. And who knows how much the martini owes to Martini & Rossi the company known for its tall, emerald green bottles of vermouth. No one seems to know who added the olive.

Using vodka instead of gin to make a martini is frowned upon by martini purists. They say the abomination should actually be called a kangaroo or vodkatini. My friend Diane would agree. She likes her martinis made with Bombay Saffire. But try convincing the man who made the vodka martini a house-hold name if not drink. That would be Bond, James Bond.


To counteract the shaken drink argument, writer W. Somerset Maugham declared: “martinis should always be stirred, not shaken, so that the molecules lie sensuously one on top of the other.”

Which brings us to Fritini, our ritual of combining the celebration of it being (finally) Friday, with Grey Goose vodka martinis, olives, and good, good friends.

Shaken. Stirred. When good friends are involved it makes no matter.

Let the sensuous chilling begin. 

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