Tuesday, July 25, 2006


Walker Percy
Michael Brendan Dougherty offers his advice on picking a whiskey. But one should also consult the views of Walker Percy on his preference for 80-proof Bourbon (from the posthumus essay collection Signposts in a Strange Land):
Consider. One knocks back five one-ounce shots of 80-proof Early Times or four shots of 100-proof Old Fitzgerald. The alcohol ingestion is the same . . . Yet in the case of Early Times, one has obtained an extra quantum of joy without cost to liver, brain, or gastric mucosa. . . An apology to the reader is in order, nevertheless, for it has occurred to me that this is the most unedifying and even maleficent piece I ever wrote -- if it should encourage potential alcoholics to start knocking back Bourbon neat. It is also the unfairest. Because I am, happily and unhappily, endowed with a bad GI tract, diverticulosis, neurotic colon, and a mild recurring nausea, which make it less likely for me to become an alcoholic than my healthier fellow Americans. I can hear the reader now: Who is he kidding? If this joker has to knock back five shots of Bourbon every afternoon just to stand the twentieth century, he's already an alcoholic.

1 comment:

joe public said...

What about splitting the difference?

Makers Mark (90 proof)