I’m in the midst of heavy research on the song cycle La Chanson D’Eve, tech week for a minor opera scenes performance, and preparing my students for a recital of their own. And I have writer’s block. My weekly motto is: enjoy a tall pitcher of martini, take a deep sigh, and get shit done.
Check out this H.L. Mencken essay on drinking: “But what is reliable stuff? What is the thing to drink, specifically? I go back to my Rule No. 1. The better thing to drink, whenever there is a choice, is the milder thing. Wine is better than a highball, a highball is better than a cocktail, and a cocktail is better than hard liquor taken straight.” Agree or disagree? I love Mencken as much as the next armchair academic, but I must voice my dissent.
Late nights at the arts center, hugging the geometric curves of sleek cinder block corridors of its bowels, have kept me from prowling the streets and my memories in search of the next rocks pour. So I carry the next shot in my purse, a leather flask tippled in parking garages. Soon, I will slouch back to Merry Ann’s or go visit my old friend the Pittsfield, perhaps?