Get Series(ous) #16 and Figue et Citron Champagne Cocktails

First of all, my heart goes out to the people of Houston, Rockport, Port Aransas, and the other areas of Texas affected by Hurricane Harvey. I cannot imagine the stress you’re under. Before I get to the figue et citron champagne cocktails, though, I want to note that starting next week, I’m doing a read … Read more…

There’s Always Whisky.

Last night, I was enjoying a lovely night’s rest, sleeping well, until approximately 1:30 am. At that time, my phone started pinging angrily on my nightstand, alerting me to the fact that I had been remiss in not TURNING MY PHONE ON DO NOT DISTURB. How could I forget?

Alas, angry Scots were blowing up my phone, lamenting their loss at a shot for independence. The votes were tallied, and my friends were pissed. I dutifully text them back, and even took a drunk dial or twelve, but when I tried to retire to my bed, I found I was far too awake to sleep.

I was in a state of manic-sleepy. I was sure I could go running, or learn to knit, make a few David Cameron memes to cheer up my Highlander family…or I could just post a bunch of missed connections onto my Scottish friends’ facebook/google+/whatever pages. Learn to knit? Troll Craigslist. You can see where this is going…

Riding home about 9:30 last night, you passed me coming up the hill with two full pannier bags and a baritone horn on your back, confirming your hardcoreness. We talked about how perfect the weather was for riding and how you just wanted to keep going. I said you didn’t have to go home. You laughed a beautiful laugh then turned north on Vanderbilt…

We’ll title that one “Because, Brooklyn.” Alternatively, there was also a real winner regarding perfect lady bags and a colorful use for a man’s John Thomas. But a baritone horn? Was she also on her way to a ladies choral and band practice? Brooklyn. So much Brooklyn. 

If I were to pen one, it would read something like:

I was the one with the trashy novel in Poe dustjacket. I carried a fairly large tote filled with notebooks and granola bars, with my love of the Oxford comma emblazoned upon its dusty exterior.

You were the one with the extra-large cup of tea, mahogany curls, and somewhat unsightly bracelet. I understand it denotes your having diabetes, but cuter ones are available. See? I’m already improving you. Aren’t you sad you didn’t stop stroking your beard to ask me out?

Let’s chat. You love tea, I love tea. Let’s add alcohol and see what happens. Ok, you’re a diabetic and that’s probably ill-advised. 

Let’s go for a walk. Respond with a description of my Doc Martens and a Petrarchan sonnet, and we’ll do this. 

Who am I kidding, I’d totally still drink.¹

After I exhausted the library of sentiments on Craigslist, I was still rather awake, and having been ablactating myself from staying up all night with my nose in a book, I decided to compile a list about books instead.

And my happy ass made a collage to go with it, because I thought to completely underwhelm WOW YOU  with my artistic prowess.

It’s fall (nearly) so…


Must-Read Fall Books


A Sudden Lighby Garth Stein


When a boy tries to save his parents’ marriage, he uncovers a legacy of family secrets in a coming-of-age ghost story by the author of the internationally bestselling phenomenon, The Art of Racing in the Rain.

Station Eleven byEmily St. John Mandel


One snowy night a famous Hollywood actor slumps over and dies onstage during a production of King Lear. Hours later, the world as we know it begins to dissolve. Moving back and forth in time-from the actor’s early days as a film star to fifteen years in the future, when a theater troupe known as the Traveling Symphony roams the wasteland of what remains-this suspenseful, elegiac, spellbinding novel charts the strange twists of fate that connect five people: the actor, the man who tried to save him, the actor’s first wife, his oldest friend, and a young actress with the Traveling Symphony, caught in the crosshairs of a dangerous self-proclaimed prophet. Sometimes terrifying, sometimes tender, Station Eleven tells a story about the relationships that sustain us, the ephemeral nature of fame, and the beauty of the world as we know it.

On Immunity: An Inoculation by Eula Biss 


In this bold, fascinating book, Biss investigates the metaphors and myths surrounding our conception of immunity and its implications for the individual and the social body. As she hears more and more fears about vaccines, Biss researches what they mean for her own child, her immediate community, America, and the world, both historically and in the present moment. She extends a conversation with other mothers to meditations on Voltaire’s Candide, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring, Susan Sontag’s AIDS and Its Metaphors, and beyond. On Immunity is a moving account of how we are all interconnected—our bodies and our fates.

Stone Mattress: Nine Tales by Margaret Atwood


A recently widowed fantasy writer is guided through a stormy winter evening by the voice of her late husband. An elderly lady with Charles Bonnet’s syndrome comes to terms with the little people she keeps seeing, while a newly-formed populist group gathers to burn down her retirement residence. A woman born with a genetic abnormality is mistaken for a vampire. And a crime committed long-ago is revenged in the Arctic via a 1.9 billion year old stromatalite.

I’ll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson


Jude and her twin brother, Noah, are incredibly close. At thirteen, isolated Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude cliff-dives and wears red-red lipstick and does the talking for both of them. But three years later, Jude and Noah are barely speaking. Something has happened to wreck the twins in different and dramatic ways . . . until Jude meets a cocky, broken, beautiful boy, as well as someone else—an even more unpredictable new force in her life. The early years are Noah’s story to tell. The later years are Jude’s. What the twins don’t realize is that they each have only half the story, and if they could just find their way back to one another, they’d have a chance to remake their world.

I can.not.wait. I hope you find this Must-Read Fall Books list helpful!

I have a few of these in hardcover already, (Stone and Station) and plan on purchasing the rest this weekend. I’m going to sit in my home and pretend it’s not eighty degrees outside. There will be tea. There will be fleece. There will later be booze.

Speaking of which…COCKTAIL time! This cocktail is both the monthly beverage for my amazing and incredible online book club, We Ran, We Read, We Rummed, and it’s ROSH HASHANAH themed, AND it will soothe the angry Scots with the comforting burn of their native liqueur, Drambuie.

For me? It’s fall in a martini.

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Sweet Orchard in the Skye

by Cat Bowen

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Keywords: beverage Rosh Hashanah fall

Ingredients (2 cocktails)

  • 1 1/2 oz Drambuie
  • 2 oz GOOD Brandy
  • 2 oz champagne
  • 2 oz apple cider
  • 1 oz pomegranate juice
  • pomegranate arils and sliced apples for garnish
  • optional
  • cinnamon sugar/honey for the rim of the martini glasses


dip rims of 2 martini glasses in honey and roll in cinnamon sugar mixture

in a shaker, add juices and liqueurs, save champagne

add several ice cubes

shake vigorously

pour evenly into two rimmed martini glasses

top with champagne *more or less than prescribed*

garnish with arils and apple slices

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¹I’m not totally horrible. I didn’t mention his possible mommy-issue related tattoo or slight unevenness to his beard. Or how I just made him up entirely from my totally fucked-up imagination.

What What? A 125 calorie Watermelon Mintarita?

Oh how I love Independence Day. We get grilled foods, sweets, and red, white, and blue themed cakes. There is the off-chance you’ll lose a limb. Someone may get too tipsy and fall into a giant bowl of potato salad. You know, THE FREAKING FOURTH! I still don’t want my arse to spread, or lose … Read more…