Monday, November 7, 2011

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Kill the Open Bottles

As a freelancer, it's important for me to wrest as much value from the things around me as possible. In that vein, I keep a number of "yard work" shirts. They have frayed collars, bleach stains, little rips and tears — flaws that make them unsuitable for wearing to client meetings, but just right while raking leaves, trimming hedges, painting, etc. Old jeans serve the same purpose. The truth is, though, that I haven't had a yard in fifteen years.

That's not thrifty; that's hoarding.

But not this week. This week, I'm culling possessions ruthlessly.

We're in the midst of closing on a nearly 100-year old Craftsman home just off Balboa Park in San Diego's North Park neighborhood. I've already weeded the clothes. Today, I start pulling books I no longer use and boxing the library in earnest. Before the week is out, I'll turn that gimlet eye on the offsite storage unit.

But during the entire time, we're shifting how we use the liquor library. When we drink at home, we usually decide what we feel like, then simply gather bottles and start mixing. With several hundred open bottles at home, nearly any cocktail is possible, except for the most outlandish concoctions of modern molecular cocktology (or whatever it's called). The kind of drinking has to go on hold for now. Until we're settled in this place, the simple new rule for any bottle of spirits is:
Kill the open bottles.
We'll start with those holding just a few ounces of booze and then move on to more full bottles. I know we won't be able to drink it all, even with the help of friends, but I'm not moving frayed, torn old shirts — and I'll be damned if I'm moving heavy glass bottles with next to nothing in them.

 Goes well with:


Tony Harion said...

I could swear you did this last year.

I could suggest inviting friend over for “the mystery punch” on a Saturday.

Matthew Rowley said...

Tony ~

We DID do this last year. We were able to work through several hundred bottles over the course of nearly 10 months with the help of friends. However, when we learned that we would be staying in San Diego, we stopped making a point of trying to kill off the open bottles. New bottles were acquired. Old bottles were opened. Kindly distillers and public relations personnel have sent new bottles. The result is that we ended up having more bottles than ever.

Your suggestion about a mystery punch is solid; in fact, that's exactly what we did twice this week. Killing some bottles seems to me an accomplishment, something I'm glad to do. But when we used the last few ounces of Clement's Creole Shrubb this week, I wasn't happy at all. In fact, I'm looking forward to moving to the new house so that I can replace that bottle before the end of the year.