Liquorature Gathering #044 – “American Gods” (Neil Gaiman)
Date: September, 2012
Whisky: Great King Street, Glenfiddich 15, GlenDronach 15
Rum: Mount Gay XO Eclipse
Sadly, a night when I was fighting a wicked cold. A couple of us (Pat, Scott and I) had just returned from a jaunt over to the promised land (Scotland) touring distilleries and drowning our livers in that greatest of libations, Scotch single malt whisky. On my second-to-last day there I managed to contract a case of what was either the Plague or gonoherpasyphylaids. Man…this f*cking cold knocked me on my *ss! Contrary to initial thoughts (that all of that alcohol still running rampant in my veins would kill off any possible infection), this heavy drinking binge must have beaten the hell out of my immune system. ‘Laid low’ doesn’t even begin to describe it.
Clint likely could have thrown out Johnny Walker Red and any of the McClellands line-up and I wouldn’t have known the difference. Ok, ok…let’s not get silly. Compromised tastebuds? Yes. But let’s be clear…it would take a full-on lobotomy to make me think either of the afore-mentioned constituted real whisky. Settle down, I jest. Ish.
As it was, Clint was playing to his themes. He’d been writing a wee series for my other site, All Things Whisky, and his latest subject matter had been Speysiders at or around 15 years, if memory serves. Ergo…we at Liquorature got to revisit a couple of old friends (the ‘Fiddich…s’ok, but the ‘Dronach…now that’s a special one). On top of these two, Ostby broke out a bottle of Compass Box Great King Street, John Glaser’s latest concoction. Great blend, this. I know some of you more snobby buggers are reading that last sentence and thinking ‘oxymoron’. Well…shaddap. And for the Rum Sage…a bottle of Mount Gay XO Eclipse.
Good sipping, this, and well paired with an interesting pressed steak sandwich (hard to describe…easy to eat). And with that, we were rolling.
‘American Gods’, by Neil Gaiman, is a book that had me hooked from the get-go. It was dark, it was eerie, it was twisted and it bordered on brilliant. I was picking up a bit of Clive Barker here…a bit of Salman Rushdie there…maybe a little Stephen King and a bit of…hmmmm…not sure…maybe some comic book flare throughout? Not quite right, but neither is this an easy one to pinpoint.
The sad fact of the matter is, though, that we as a crew were simply not all that ‘on’ this night. While the companionship was, as always, top-notch, the discussion itself was lacklustre. Not our best. We sorta seemed to be struggling for topics and lacked the enthusiasm a work like this deserves. And trust me…it does deserve your attention. There are some hella cool rollercoaster twists of absolute excellence as this book unfolds. Summed up in two words: Read it.
One note though, for those about to undertake this journey…if I had a do-over…I’da paired this bad muthaf*kka with some Highland Park. Now THAT would have been epic.
Wish I’d felt better personally (and that the three of us weren’t still recovering from a liver-beating in Scotland), but still a memorable night.
Randoms: Jesus says “f*cking dough head” … “gee…that guy got it rough, huh?” … “Irfit j*zz”