Martini Quotes

"I'm not talking a cup of cheap gin splashed over an ice cube.

I'm talking satin, fire and ice; Fred Astaire in a glass; surgical cleanliness, insight.. comfort; redemption and absolution. I'm talking MARTINI.


Sunday, September 24, 2017

Girls, Girls, Girls

     Flapper Girls

       I try not to live in a romantic state of disbelief or fall victim to unrealistic expectations of the relationships between the sexes.  After all, men and women are fundamentally different in a number of ways but nothing bridges that gap quite like the Martini.  Say what you will about the allure of alcohol, or the feelings it imbues. There is nothing so unsexy as someone who is drunk, but there is nothing so sensual as one who has had a Martini, has developed that warmth of expression, and who remains lucid in their thoughts and feelings. As important as I think it is to root oneself in reality, I do allow myself at least one "fantasy"- I would have liked to have lived in the time of the Roaring Twenties, the glittering Jazz Age, when speakeasies- gin fueled- ruled the nights.  I am particularly enamored of the flapper girls, those short haired, hip twisting, Martini drinking sirens that seem to jump from the pages of F Scott Fitzgerald into my lap......

Crazy Girls

      Feeling a bit romantic, I picked up Tender is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald thinking I could find there a beautiful love story to satisfy my yearning.  After all, the title would seem to indicate an amorous tale.  Page after page I kept up hope that something romantic and rapturous would occur.  As it turns out, I could not have been more wrong. There is not one iota of tenderness in the entire novel. It seems that perhaps I made a rather sophomoric error in appraising the title.  I think the night referred to here is a bit more dark and permanent, an escape from reality that is not necessarily restorative. Fitzgerald and the main character in the novel, Dick Driver, found their "night" in the bottom of a bottle.        

       While he derived his fame from The Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald considered Tender is the Night his finest novel, I think perhaps because it struck so close to home. There are a number of striking similarities between the characters in the novel, Dick and Nicole Driver and the real life tragic lives of Fitzgerald and his schizophrenic wife, Zelda.  The title of the novel is derived from the poem Ode to a Nightingale by Keats.  As Keats sits in a chair watching and listening to a nightingale, he has a burning, almost desperate desire to leave "The weariness, the fever, and the fret, Here, where men sit and hear each other groan;" and travel into the deep forest where darkness rules and "tender is the night".  Fitzgerald develops a further spiel on the title in that Dick Driver, the main character and a psychiatrist,  develops "nightingale syndrome" which is loosely defined as occurring when a caregiver falls in love with the patient perhaps in an attempt to keep the patient safe. This is precisely what happens in the novel as Dick marries Nicole, his patient become wife. Unfortunately,  the relationship can't last as once the patient is cured, the basis of the relationship has no merit.  And so, Dick wallows along a path of self destructive behavior and alcoholism while Nicole now cured, remarries after their divorce.  

Gin Girls

       The gin girls of the modern era exude a certain allure and sex appeal which is a rather new phenomenon.  The Roaring Twenties with its flapper girls and speakeasies stand in stark contrast to the poor wenches of 18th century England.  Back then, living conditions were difficult and Gin was cheap. Cheap gin in old England was seen as a plague upon old Britannia a scourge upon the land and its subsequent taxation led to the gin riots.  Maternal alcoholism ran rampant leading the term Mother's Ruin to be attached to Gin.  Today it seems chardonnay has supplanted that role.   So the question is this, does the the pretty girl make the drink sexy or, rather, is the cocktail so beguiling that the Martini transforms the girl into a vixen ?  I suppose any beverage in and of itself really can't exude a sex appeal, but if I could steal a bit from Hemingway-

Isn't it pretty to think so? 


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