La fée verte


La fée verte. The Green fairy. Absinthe.

I remember first reading about it years ago in Jim Garrison’s On the Trail of the Assassins and later in lots of books during my obsession with the Bohemians and Van Gogh. Lately, it’s popped up in film (Moulin Rouge, From Hell, xXx, etc.) and is suddenly hip again.

So we decided, just for kicks, to have an absinthe “event.”

By reputation, Hill’s is a pretty terrible brand of absinthe. It is, however, the most popular brand (mostly due to the company’s aggressive move into the UK when sale of the drink there became legal again), so it happened to be the one that was available.

We did the Bohemian ritual, which is basically to dip a sugar cube in the liquid, set it on fire on a slotted spoon, and let it caramelize. Finally, douse it in an amount of cold water equal to the original amount of absinthe and stir the sugar into the mixture.

The taste is not unlike sweet, herbed peppermint schnapps (others would say “mouthwash” and they wouldn’t be too far off). The effect, due to the 70% alcohol content by volume, is strong and immediate. “It tastes like burning,” to quote Ralph Wiggum. For me, it also caused a huge headache to start developing.

After that, straight shots were also tried. As a liqueur, it’s not bad, actually! Would probably would make a decent mixer, perhaps with some bitters and lemon. As an absinthe — who knows? Next time, I’d like to try a sans-thujone pastis of some repute, maybe Herbsaint or Ricard. Unfortunately, the only variety available in local stores is Pernod, which is horrible, horrible (Good ‘n’ Plenty liqueur, I call it) and a far cry from the drink marketed under that name in the 1800s.

Played more DDR after drinks, the first few games of which were rather interesting due to the aftereffects of alcohol. After a short time things went back to normal and I tried something new: double mode.

Double mode is like normal DDR except you use two controllers, and arrows move seamlessly between the left and right pads. Tough, but lots of fun! A good workout, sorely needed. I’m glad for kakumei’s pad-modding — double mode would have been nearly impossible without it.

And by the way, let me say that the Dreamcast versions of the DDR games are so much better than Playstation in terms of song selection!

Did you know there’s a DDR 7th Mix in Japan? Can’t wait for it to cross the ocean so I can get a crack at it.

  • yukino

    1. Thanks Linh! And yes, I'm all about tipsy DDR.

    2. No, Kylie was not present. In fact, it would have been more likely that a mint-green Kool-Aid man would have busted through the wall, saying "IT's LISTERINE TIME! OH YEAH!"

  • jet

    Did Kylie Minogue do a little number in a little number for you after you did the Absinthe?

  • In terms of the DDR pads, my daughter has two of the steel-frame pads available on import only. They are oodles better than the standard pads, even with woodframes.

    Sadly, they are at her biological father's house, so we can't use them during the year. So... much... cheated... fun....

  • You didn't strike me as the type to like k-pop/j-pop or techno. Nor the type to get down on liquor-powered DDR! Woo, dangerous. You surprise me, Y.

    Anyway, I've been catching up with your journal and I had to say... I really, really like your writing. It's accessible, interesting, and unwittingly amusing.


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