The joys of drinking gin

A nice essay in the Speccie on gin. I particularly enjoyed this paragraph.

The English educated and political classes still fall into the categories of those who Know Best — and who want to impose their austere tastes on everyone else — and those who feel it is no business of theirs to boss and control smokers and drinkers and druggies. Tony Blair — long before the invasion of Iraq — showed himself in his true colours by making a public announcement that we should not give money to beggars in case they spent it on some substance of which he happened to disapprove. It was almost an exact echo of the prig who asked Dr Johnson, ‘What signifies giving halfpence to beggars? They only lay it out in gin or tobacco.’ Johnson spoke for Liberty and England when he trenchantly replied: ‘And why should they be denied such sweeteners of their existence? It is surely very savage to refuse them every possible avenue to pleasure reckoned too coarse for our own acceptance. Life is a pill which none of us can bear to swallow without gilding.’

(HT: Alan)

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59 Responses to The joys of drinking gin

  1. john malpas

    And you are watching the decline and fall of Britain.
    Countries with thrift , discilpline and morals tend to thrive.

  2. Infidel Tiger

    There’s nowt as refreshing as a tankard of g n’ t when one has a sweat going on a summer’s eve.

  3. Bruce

    It is surely very savage to refuse them every possible avenue to pleasure reckoned too coarse for our own acceptance.

    No, not if they are on welfare courtesy of my taxes.

    But if someone earns the money they use to pay for gin, cigs or the latest exotic organic chemical, yes, enjoy doing what you want so long as it is not illegal and harms no one else. And if it is illegal, get elected and change the law.

  4. lotocoti

    Is there anything more refreshing than a tall G&T with a slice of lime?
    Excepting of course a Savoy French 75.
    Of the wowsers and teeth suckers, it’s nice to see that one alleged charity took a shot to the goolies.

  5. Infidel Tiger

    No, not if they are on welfare courtesy of my taxes.

    Nearly ever Australian is on welfare. The middle class are the biggest bludgers of the lot.

  6. C.L.

    Nicola Roxon phoned.

    Wanted to know Sinclair’s home address to pass on to the police.

  7. Gab

    <blockquote

    Wanted to know Sinclair’s home address to pass on to the police.

    She should call the ABC then.

  8. C.L.

    Yeah, ya gotta laugh at the bourgeois hardarses who condemn the bloke smoking a dole-financed Winnie Red at the TAB in the arvo as they zoom their way to a subsidised ‘child care’ centre.

  9. I am the Walrus, koo koo k'choo

    At the end of a v. long work Christmas party on Wednesday, at a pleasant joint overlooking the harbour, I shared with a colleague a jug of Pimms, ginger ale, lemonade, mint leaves, and sliced orange, lemon and cucumber.

    Wonderful. What a country. Thank God for gin.

  10. Pedro the Ignorant

    At the end of a v. long work Christmas party on Wednesday, at a pleasant joint overlooking the harbour, I shared with a colleague a jug of Pimms, ginger ale, lemonade, mint leaves, and sliced orange, lemon and cucumber.

    Good Lord.

    *sidles away, looking anxiously at the Walrus*

  11. Pickles

    Am partial to a bit of Aunty’s Ruin now and again.

  12. stackja

    Life is a pill which none of us can bear to swallow without gilding.’

    Does Gin taste like wine? I do not like the taste of wine.

  13. Infidel Tiger

    Does Gin taste like wine? I do not like the taste of wine.

    You’ve never drunk gin??????

    Next you’ll tell me you’ve never poured Sambucca on your chest and set it on fire at the footy club.

  14. egg_

    From previous, working our way through the gin section of a cocktail book; Dutch Uncle enjoyed Bols in the earthenware bottle.

  15. Bruce

    Nearly ever Australian is on welfare.

    Not me, Infi. Once I got $50 from the then version of Centrelink. That was 35 years ago to the day, just about. I was just out of year 12 and looking for a job before uni. They gave me the $50 so I’d go away and not bother them anymore. I haven’t.

    I do not want to pay taxes for welfaristas to indulge on my account. I want them to survive, not to have fun. If they want fun they should get a job or start a business.

  16. JC

    Under the evolutionary model, should people on centrelink be allowed to die?

    That’s one area of evolution leftwingers wish to ignore.
    Discuss.

  17. calli

    Ahhh….Mother’s Little Helper…

    Make mine Bombay Sapphire, a twist of lime and topped wiv Schweppes Tonic thanks Sinclair.

  18. Pickles

    Yes Calli. Served in a chilled schooner. That’s a 15 ounce glass Stakja.

  19. Louis Hissink

    Unfortunately one can’t seem to get Dutch Genever gin in OZ anymore.

  20. C.L.

    I’ve never drunk gin – not that I remember anyway.

  21. Tel

    I’ve been trying a gin and tonic diet.

    So far I’ve lost three whole days!

  22. Tel

    Does Gin taste like wine? I do not like the taste of wine.

    No gin does not taste like wine, you are perfectly safe on that score.

  23. Pickles

    Aunty Pickles swore the three great attributes of Gin & Tonic were the medicinal qualities of juniper and quinine, unsurpassed thirst quenching capabilities and the delineation between “us” and “the darkies”.

  24. stackja

    Infidel Tiger
    #1101406, posted on December 7, 2013 at 12:45 pm
    Does Gin taste like wine? I do not like the taste of wine.
    You’ve never drunk gin??????
    Next you’ll tell me you’ve never poured Sambucca on your chest and set it on fire at the footy club.

    Never been to a footy club.

    Sambuca is an Italian anise-flavoured, usually colourless, liqueur. Its most common variety is often referred to as white sambuca to differentiate it from other varieties that are deep blue in colour or bright red.

    Nor poured Sambucca on my chest and set it on fire
    Have had needles, drips and catheters.

  25. Infidel Tiger

    Nor poured Sambucca on my chest and set it on fire
    Have had needles, drips and catheters.

    Far out! It must sting pouring Sambucca in your Jap’s eye!

    What a party trick!

  26. tomix

    When i started work in Mar.1972, the dole was worth $3 pw., there were about 2000 lion tamers on it in the whole country. Something happened on 2/12/72, it suddenly rose to $19 pw., fist year apprentice weekly wages in those days and the lion tamer population rose to 100,000 shortly after. imho, it’s their business what they spend it on.

    Gin and Cointreau with lime on the rocks, thanks.

  27. calli

    Yes Calli. Served in a chilled schooner. That’s a 15 ounce glass Stakja.

    Is there another way to drink a G&T?

  28. boy on a bike

    Much more fun to get a stripper to lie on her back, make a circle of whipped cream around her belly button, fill with your favourite tipple and then face down and slurp.

    Remember to wipe the cream off your eyebrows when you’ve finished.

  29. Gab

    Life is a pill which none of us can bear to swallow without gilding.’

    Lots and lots of international QANTAS flights have been “gilded” in such fashion, in my experience.

  30. egg_

    Gin and Cointreau with lime on the rocks, thanks.

    +1

  31. Turtle of WA

    Nicola Roxon phoned.

    Wanted to know Sinclair’s home address to pass on to the police.

    She should send the cops around to Dr Johnson’s house. He hasn’t been there for more than 200 years, so his free speech is protected.

  32. calli

    Good grief, Gab! I misread that and thought you said ‘glided’. Although that may be true, too.

  33. Pickles

    Yes Boab, but not the belly button. That’s a bit yukky.

  34. SteveC

    Bruce,

    Not me, Infi.

    no 30% health insurance rebate?

  35. Gab

    The joys of gin expanded, thanks to Uncle IT of tippler fame…

    The Last Word:
    ¾ oz (20ml) Hendrick’s Gin
    ¾ oz (20ml) Green Chartreuse
    ¾ oz (20ml) Maraschino liqueur
    ¾ oz (20ml) fresh lime juice

    Shake all of the ingredients briefly over ice and serve in an ice filled rocks glass. Garnish with a smile.

    http://www.hendricksgin.com/treasury-choice-description-02.aspx

  36. Gab

    Certainly helped, Calli and have always thought QANTAS gave good service and never understood why others complain about Q.

  37. JC

    Much more fun to get a stripper to lie on her back, make a circle of whipped cream around her belly button, fill with your favourite tipple and then face down and slurp.

    Remember to wipe the cream off your eyebrows when you’ve finished.

    Sounds good, but have you done that?

  38. Viva

    Is there anything more refreshing than a tall G&T with a slice of lime?

    Not really – and don’t you just love to rattle the ice.

  39. boy on a bike

    Sounds good, but have you done that?

    Stripped?

    No.

  40. Infidel Tiger

    Yes Boab, but not the belly button. That’s a bit yukky.

    Pickles prefers the furry cup.

  41. Bruce

    no 30% health insurance rebate?

    Ok, I stand corrected. I qualify for that now. But that is a moot point since I’ve not made a claim on health insurance since 1987. I think I made an ancilliary claim for specs twice since then, forget when. I pay 100% to get back 30% and get nothing for it. Is that welfare?

    The health rebate was designed not as middle class welfare if you recall. It was brought in by Howard to save the bleeding of mugs like me out of the private health system. There was real danger the private system would implode at the time. People forget this. Look at what’s currently happening with Obamacare for example as the young ones flee the “affordable” 100% increased premiums.

    So I do stand corrected but with strong caviats. The health insurance rebates are arguably not middle class welfare but an incentive payment to protect the health system from melting down. Unlike Holden we can’t just buy healthcare from China, it has to be located here.

  42. stackja

    Pickles prefers the furry cup.

    Not Brazilian I assume.

  43. I think the last time we had this discussion, we had a row over Bombay Sapphire v Tanqueray.

    My personal favourite is the White Lady:

    1/3 gin, preferably Bombay Sapphire (take that! them’s fightin’ words)
    1/3 Cointreau
    1/3 lemon juice, preferably fresh

    Shake with ice, strain and serve. Yummo. I include proportions only, as you can make really big ones that way.

    Much more fun to get a stripper to lie on her back, make a circle of whipped cream around her belly button, fill with your favourite tipple and then face down and slurp.

    I think the last time we had this discussion, Armadillo ended up wearing a pair of Spanx.

  44. Gin and Cointreau with lime on the rocks, thanks.

    Actually that sounds not dissimilar, and also yummo.

    Cheers.

  45. stackja

    Philippa Martyr
    #1101741, posted on December 7, 2013 at 6:10 pm

    Too rich for me.

  46. Bons

    Gin is the poison that changed the British galaxy of liberty into the grease trap of totalitarianism.
    We told’em; stay away from that poison, drink cheap plonk like the Frogs, a much more benign escape – everyone is happily ivre and doesn’t give a damn about what you think and certainly won’t obey any law you may choose to impose.
    Go the mighty grape.

  47. Helen

    I am afraid gin and I do not mix, I end up a literal snot rag of tears, shame, becasue it sounds such a romantic drink, shades of days gone by and afternoons slipping by.

    oh well, just have to stick to bundy, jammies, champers or a cold beer. Or red red wine, or a nice dry crisp white.

  48. .

    Tanqueray is simply the best of the Juniper flavoured, herb, spice and citrus infused clear liquors. Gin is perhaps the superior liquor second only to fortified wine spirits.

    My special

    “White Long Island Iced Tea”

    1 shot Gin
    1 shot Cointreau
    1 shot Vodka
    1 shot White Rum
    1 Shot Tequila

    In a tall glass on the rocks, with soda water, lemonade or tonic water to taste.

    Another drink I have a liking for is a Charles Bronson, of which there are a few variations.

    It basically is four shots in a black coffee. Modern drunkard had (IIRC) tequila, rum, whisky and vodka.

    I’ve just had a double of vokda and whisky recently because it is easier to order. I’ve also taken a liking to Chambord recently.

  49. SteveC

    Hi Bruce, I think that was the point of IT’s post. A huge proportion of the population receive government handouts is some form or another. It’s insidious, so that one can say “I don’t get any handouts”, but then realise – “oh yeah, there’s that”. We have over time managed to develop a strong attitude in this country that the community owes us a living – even when we are well off. I’m still in private health, not because of the 30% carrot, but because of the 1% penalty tax stick. It seems if you buy a Holden now you’re also receiving a fairly hefty government handout.

  50. .

    Steve – it is bizzare to think that Holden owners get a handout. In the US, a Mercedes CLA Sedan retails for 29,990 USD.

    They’re getting screwed. They could get a better car, cheaper, but they don’t. How is this a handout?

    The extent of the welfare state is a matter of annoyance for me as well. However, can I opt out? No.

    A lot of this can be minimised if you make things user pay, directly assisst those who cannot afford services and reduce public spending – education for example has had a negative return on marginal funds invested for years. In the UK, homeschooled kids of all backgrounds tend to do better – at a far lower cost.

  51. Bruce

    Steve – If I give money to the Red Cross, as I do from time to time, I get tax deductibility on what I send them. Roughly a 30% rebate.

    Is this middle class welfare? If not then why is the 30% rebate middle class welfare? My premia are paying for those in need. Discuss.

    Perhaps taxes for everyone should be reduced by the amount the average family gets in Family Benefit A, and the benefit abolished. What could be fairer than that?

    Apology to everyone for the OT, but the original point was that taxes should not be used by people on welfare to buy gin. I stand by that statement.

  52. Alfonso

    Gin drinkers are genetically adapted to enjoy paint thinners.
    A rare advantage over metho drinkers.

  53. SteveC

    Bruce, re FTB A, totally agree. I have children, my choice, don’t see why the taxpayer should subsidise me. Re donations, no not middle class welfare, just community matching. I think it’s excellent the government matches my donation. Means government donations match closer to community expectations.
    taxes should not be used by people on welfare to buy gin – again totally agree, because whatever got them into their situation, buying them gin won’t help matters.
    It appears we often disagree on solution, but on problem I think we agree a lot more than we disagree.

  54. .

    I hope people realise taxing the billy o out of smokes, gin etc is what is least helpful for those on welfare.

  55. .

    Steve C

    Are you against students on Austudy having a tipple?

  56. Elizabeth (Lizzie) B.

    Drank half a bottle of gin when my first husband walked out, before I cleaned up the mess of the crockery and glassware I’d thrown at the door after him. Then both of the kids woke up with diarrhoea and throwing up. I joined them in the throwing up. All told, a gin-enhanced piece of memorabilia.

    And down the memory hole this thread now goes.

    These days I drink my G & T on the terrace. Or on a plane.

  57. .

    A Charles Bronson would have perked you up if driving was not on the daily agenda.

  58. Rabz

    Life is a pill which none of us can bear to swallow without gilding.

    This.

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