I believe in paying respects to my elders, the ones who went before us and paved the way so that we can enjoy life more smoothly. Nothing gets me through a New York City day of misogyny at the office, sexual harassment by creepy men on the streets, and the bitchiness of my friends better than a strong, ice-cold cocktail.
Nowadays, history textbooks in school only teach but so much. Thank the heavens for NPR and other organizations making it their mission to give the public a deeper understanding of our historical roots. This week, NPR presented a feature on the forefathers of excessive alcohol consumption in America. I wish to share it with you, lest you remain ignoramuses.
Jennings Cox – Inventor of the Daiquiri
I bet all you boogie-asses who order strawberry daiquiris on the lido deck, thinking you cute and fancy, didn’t realize you have this man to thank for your ratchet taste in alcoholic beverages. Sir Jennings Cox (he’s not necessarily a “sir”, I just call him so out of respect) came up with the idea in the late 1800s in Cuba. The original rum the drink consists of is Bacardi (Sir Cox was working at the Bacardi factory when he created the daiquiri). American soldiers later bought the recipe to the States and, as with pizza or Chinese food, totally screwed it up. Now, instead of enjoying the pure taste of rum, lime and sugar, we have the fu@$ked up American version reminiscent of a 7-Eleven slurpee.
Lady Randolph Churchill – Patroness of the Martini
My personal hero is Lady Randolph Churchill. She a go-getter. Not only did she marry herself a rich bae (and a #NERDBAE at that), she gave birth to the future prime minister of England (Winston Churchill – ask about him) and invented the MARTINI. That’s my drink right there. I personally like mine dirty with ice-cold vodka (I know – blasphemy!) and olives, but the original drink was made with “gin, vermouth and orange bitters” (according to NPR). The story also is that she (Lady Churchill) ordered this while on a visit to the Manhattan Club, where real old Gs reside.
Marjorie King – Conceiver of the Margarita
Marjorie King not only blessed the world with her fierce dancing abilities, but with her allergic reactions. For if it weren’t for her inability to drink anything other than tequila, bartender Carlos “Danny” Herrera would have never created the margarita for us (well, and for her too). Marjorie’s story is an example of American perseverance, for she would not let her physical ailments cause her to give up on her dreams of getting tipsy one night. We should have a national day for her, or a race – you know, something like A Race for a Cure, or the Special Olympics of Libations.
And let’s not forget the many original gangstas who risked their lives in the fight against oppression during Prohibition – without you, bottomless mimosas and bottle service would only exist in our wildest dreams.
For more history and original recipes, visit NPR’s page.