Fireball Whiskey

Brewery Wings: Chocolate Fire Sauce

New Town Cemetery
New Town Cemetery

I am continuing my study of Hillsborough’s graveyards. Some of you have probably figured out what I’m planning. This morning I walked a few blocks east from my house to the New Town Cemetery. In 1871, after the Old Town Cemetery described on these pages last week, filled up, the town purchased six acres of land to be used for the burial needs of the citizens of Hillsborough. They were offered eight acres, but they turned it down. Seen all at once, six acres probably looked to the town fathers like there was room enough to bury the good citizens of Hillsborough for all eternity. Since that time, all 3200 graves have been filled, or at least used and/or purchased for future use. Like the Old Town plot, there are many well-known, illustrious citizens sleeping beneath the sod in the New Town.

Our house is known as the Daisy Lynch house, named for one of the more recent Lynches who have lived here.  I mentioned in last week’s entry that readers should remember the name Lemuel Lynch. I believe Lemuel, one of the town’s prominent residents in the ante bellum period, was the first owner of the two rooms that were the Ashburn School’s original schoolrooms that form the ancient core of my current home.

There are many Lynches buried in the Town cemetery. Daisy Lynch GraveNote Daisy’s stone. She lived to be 92 years old and residents of the town remember visiting her in her house, now my house.

Here’s my question, as I wander between the gravestones: are there any African Americans buried here? Surely there must be, but I have been continually surprised (as noted in these blogs) by the extent of segregation throughout the area. I know, I’m foolish, uneducated, misinformed and naïve, or at least that’s what most of my long-time North Carolinian neighbors probably think of me. I’ll say it again: I still don’t understand slavery.

And so I wander the pleasant, shaded, quiet older part of the Town Cemetery, among the Lynches and the Cates and the other old-time inhabitants. I know there must be African Americans here, as well as all the Scotch, Irish, English, white Americans, though I have no real way of telling. It feels white, though, privileged, at least in the old part. Which means it’s not right for my purposes.

I have one more cemetery to examine.

I’m in the Penny, having a drink, working my cell phone, scrolling through the protective garments for sale on Amazon.

I’m closing in on the last lap for the 69 drinks and most of the rest are disgusting libations I’ve been putting off. Tonight I ordered a Fireball. This is an awful liqueur consumed by idiot youngsters who have not had a proper education in the art and craft of drinking. I found an article on the website Delish that I found amusing. Here it is, with some cuts for brevity.

Fireball Whiskey

  1. It tastes like Red Hots soaked in water.

Actually make that Big Red gum soaked in pee. Just the thought of sipping this syrupy mess is enough to make you gag and start dry-heaving.

  1. Fireball has the worst recipe ideas with even worse names. 

Any drink that ends in “balls” or “nuts” is best left behind. Same goes for the eye-roll–inducing fragile masculinity of the”Man-mosa.”

  1. It’s always ordered by the d-bags at the bar.

You know who I’m talking about: the bros with popped-collar Polos and gingham button-ups, finance guys who always cut you but somehow touch your lower back while doing it, sorority girls and college freshmen (with fake IDs, obviously) looking to get plastered on a Thursday night, juice heads bragging about how much they can lift.

  1. Sorry, but it’s “whiskey” not “whisky.”

The makers of Fireball, Sazerac, are based in Louisiana. So there’s no need to use the United Kingdom’s spelling of whiskey. According to the brand, the drink contains Canadian Whisky. Our friends to the north apparently drop the ‘e’, hence the spelling choice, but we’re not sold.

  1. It’s weak as hell.

At 66 proof, Fireball has 20 percent less alcohol than a true whiskey, which typically clocks in at somewhere between 86 and 100 proof.

  1. It always leads to terrible decisions.

No one orders a single shot of Fireball because it’s cheap and weak and apparently people like to torture themselves. And so, since it’s only ever had in excess, it inspires ridiculously drunk behavior—like peeing in public and starting fights with the bouncer. Hate to break it to you, Fireball, but no good story ever started with “Well, we were drinking Fireball…”

  1. It will give you the worst hangover. 

Sugar and spice and everything not so nice. The morning after drinking this nasty concoction should be enough to make you quit it for good.

  1. It used to contain a chemical used in antifreeze.

A fact so unsettling to Europeans that sales of the sickly sweet booze were “temporarily halted” in Norway, Sweden, and Finland, which Fireball says was “due to a small recipe-related compliance issue.” The chemical coming under fire is propylene glycol, which supposedly enhances flavor by absorbing water, a slightly less toxic compound than ethylene glycol, which was—until recently—most often used in anti-freeze. According to the FDA, propylene glycol is “generally recognized as safe” when used in food “at levels not to exceed current good manufacturing practice,” but nonetheless, Fireball removed the chemical from its recipe.

You see what I do so I can give you a fun read while choking down the 69 drinks?

OK, here’s the result of my research on protective gear. I bought a set of these, $14.00.

3M Disposable Protective Coverall 4510

  • The 3M Disposable Protective Coverall – 4510 helps provide a basic barrier protection against light liquid splashes and hazardous dusts. (Does it protect against hazardous fleas, other biting insects and malign spirits?)
  • Other features include a 2-way zipper with a storm flap, and elastic waist, ankles, and wrists for easy movement. (Good, I need to be able to move fast if the house begins to collapse on me.)
  • The anti-static coating on both sides helps reduce static build-up and prevent the risk of static discharge during use (Could be useful against strange aura and other possible electrical phenomena.)
  • The 3M Disposable Protective Coverall – 4510 does not contain components made from natural rubber latex or silicone to help prevent reactions from those with sensitivities or restrictions. (Not a problem for me.)
  • Typical applications for this safety work wear may include: spray painting, metal polishing, machine or vehicle maintenance, and general industrial clean-up and processing. (Crawl space explorations?)


10 thoughts on “Thirty-three

  1. You must post a picture of yourself wearing this lovely protective ‘gear’. As always, your writings make me curious.
    Check out this article from Greenville SC. Maybe if you find the slave masters in your cemetery the slaves may be buried near by, with just a stone or brick for a marker no inscription. I read about a cemetery in Hamilton,Ga that has a fence separating the whites & blacks. I never gave it much thought before, I assumed blacks had their own church and cemetery. Probably suggested by the movies.


  2. Fascinating article about the Greenville cemetery.
    Keep reading. The dead will not be denied.
    The comments are pouring in: everyone wants to see me in the protective gear. Well, I guess you’ve all seen me in my bathrobe, so what the hell.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. And a fitting suit it is.
    The face, however, remains dangerously exposed.
    A full-face-mask snorkel would complete the protection.
    Saving face, in this adventure, is essential.


    1. The suit is mostly to repel the various bugs, including the possible plague-carrying fleas. They might get me on the face, true, but there are limits. I think I’ll be ok. As long as the house doesn’t collapse on me.


  4. Me too would enjoy a pic of you in the suit! Can’t wait for the next installment…….be careful suit or no suit!


  5. Alan – We saw the article in today’s paper about the Occaneechi Indian Village in Hillsborough.. Maybe Rafe is one and he’s been around much longer than you think – watching after not only little black girls but Occaneechis.


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