So, I’m reading Julie and Julia by Julie Powell right now, which I will fully admit I’m reading because I saw the movie. I wanted to read it before the movie came out, but that whole moving to Raleigh and saying goodbye to people in Manhattan, KS thing. Anyway, the book is fantastic. Julie Powell is a really great and hilarious writer. Ms. Powell, on the off chance you ever need a liquor apprentice, I will be more than happy to answer that call. Especially if you’re willing to let me telecommute, since Michael needs to go to school here in Raleigh.

Throughout the book, there is Mastering the Art of French Cooking, crying, a lot of humor, and a well crafted memoir. What the movie misses that the book captures so well is the booze. There is alcohol in every chapter — mostly her and her husband’s gimlets. Since they are a variation on an an actual Gimlet, I decided to call them “JJs Gimlets,” short for Julie and Julia. I love the honesty of the fact that when the food works for or against her, her husband and his gimlets are waiting at the end of the perfectly tasty or the perfectly disastrous meal.

I would be lying if I didn’t admit here that I wanted to be her, just a little a bit. But more than wanting to be her, I understand the insanity of cooking her way through the Mastering the Art of French Cooking and how that completely insane project brings you back from the edge.

On my way home today, I found out that I didn’t get yet another job that I had applied for and was even interviewed for. Phone screening but still. And, I got a very lovely email back about how they were “pursuing other candidates whose background and skills more closely match our requirements for the position.” It was for a call center position. I’ve been doing this work for years, and I’m still under-qualified for the position. It’s just so frustrating. For those of you who know me well, depression is something that I’ve been combating for years. So where my mind goes is the ubercritical. I recounted every second of the interview wondering what I did wrong and where I could have done better. I’ve gotten really good at writing my resume. I keep landing the interviews, just not the jobs. This is third job like that since I’ve been here. As I descend into my shame spiral, not wanting to talk to anyone, I return to making beverages. Not necessarily even cocktails.

Currently I have hot cider in the crock pot. In my shame spiral earlier today, I decided to look up recipes for Homemade Apple Cider (blog post forthcoming.) That recipe and a bad mixed CD from when I was 19 pulled me back from the edge and into sanity. I want to see if I can make a good recipe, especially after all my recent failures (which was the last blog post.) For some reason the blog helps.

I’m aware this blog post or any other isn’t changing the world. And so far has been read by a minimal amount of people — no more than 100 viewers per month.  No one subscribes to my blog. There are days when I wonder if I’m becoming a drunk or whether this is a silly hobby. Most of my friends have respectable hobbies. Michael cooks and makes soap. I have fraternity brothers who run marathons and sit as president of chairs of various organizations. I have friends who are raising children and getting masters degrees, masters certificates, and second bachelors. Some crochet chickens and sell them online. For some strange reason, I don’t think that my plan of establishing residency to eventually get my masters and writing a blog about cocktails holds a candle to some of these activities. However, I’m clearly unnecessarily self conscious about these things. Thankfully, Michael usually tells me to relax and calm down. The blog and making cocktails helps ground me.

In honor of the fantastic book  I’m reading and finding someone who understands the insanity of having a strange thing to blog as a way to spiritual enlightenment or happiness, I write about her gimlets.

JJ’s Gimlets

4 parts Vodka

1 part Rose’s Lime Juice

  • Add ice to a martini shaker.
  • Add all ingredients.
  • Shake dramatically.
  • Pour and enjoy!


Gimlets are usually made with Gin and not Vodka, which she briefly but self-consciously discusses in the book. It’s a bit of a flavor shock consuming a gimlet without gin. The drink was tasty but not my favorite. I may have an aversion to vodka’s flavor due to a lot of really REALLY cheap vodka in college (Thanks, Kelly.) Finally, it’s potent and cheap.


750 mL bottle of Vodka: $15

Roses Lime Juice: $4

Total Cost: $19

As always, happy and safe drinking.