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Goes Down Easy: A Bi-Weekly Column on Drinking
It’s cold outside, and I’m sick. I don’t favor medicine as a solution for illness since it just weakens the immune system, but I am determined to beat this microorganism into the ground somehow. My sniveling situation brought to mind an old roommate from high school who, faced with the same conundrum, smuggled whiskey into our dorm to take a whack at the problem with a traditional family recipe: the “hot toddy.”
Never one to avoid an opportunity to self-medicate (and despite my friend’s noting that he “started this regimen when I was a little too young, leading to my current drinking problem”), I recovered the recipe to pass onto you, dear reader, so that when the cold currently moving through campus comes your way, you’ll be ready.
Just brew some Irish Breakfast Tea, or whatever flavor you prefer, and add Irish Whiskey (though my friend notes that Tennessee probably does just as well), some honey and, optionally, some nutmeg. Now you’re set to beat the cold in style, or at least sleep it away after a few of these. It pains me to note here that the American Lung Association does not, in fact, recommend this method, noting that “alcohol lead[s] to dehydration, the opposite of what you want.” Just make up for your indulgence with a few more glasses of water.
But hot drinks shouldn’t be limited to times of infirmity. Mulled cider—great for a winter party—can be produced by anyone with a stove and a big pot (or a crock pot). Just heat your cider to a simmer, adding a cinnamon stick, a few cloves, some nutmeg (throw in some lemon zest if you like) and brandy to taste. Strain before serving, and make sure you have cups that candle hot liquid (Styrofoam, not Solo). Oh, and shut off the stove before the party takes off.
Healing, check; recreation, check; but what about the working man? Lord knows we can’t get enough caffeine here at Georgetown, so let me suggest to you the venerable Irish Coffee to help you through a particularly tough study session, or at least get you in the proper frame of mind before an early Saturday afternoon Hoyas game. Just heat up a cup of coffee, add a shot of whiskey and some brown sugar and top off the concoction with some fresh cream. Now, that’s how the Irish invented civilization.