Dickel Barrel Select
I forgot to look and see what the food special was.
Do spirits get wet? Did it flood under my house? Evidently not, is the answer to both questions. This week past was the week of Florence, the massive storm that crept through North Carolina and Hillsborough dumping many inches of water. I checked the crawl space and found it, amazingly, pretty dry. In fact, I am seeing the last of Florence’s rain as it continues, off and on, all this afternoon. Right now.
I did, though, venture out several times.
Other than one afternoon when the power was out, the Penny was open most of the time, I drove down and dashed in to have a drink, a good one because I was sick of drinking the crap that I still had left on my list of 69. I had a George Dickel Select, of which I had some personal experience during my trip a few months ago when Sherry and I visited their distillery in Tennessee. One of the whiskeys they gave us after the tour was the Barrel Select, which is a newish addition to their line. Readers of this blog might remember that Dickel 12 is my house whiskey, so I was looking forward, first at the distillery, and now at the Penny, for a taste. We learned at the distillery that this whiskey was actually a mistake. They hold the barrels for aging in several different buildings. Every several years it’s someone’s job to go move the barrels around so that those that were in front are now in back and vice versa, but one year they forgot to do it in one area so they ended up with ten barrels that were aged longer than they were supposed to be. So they called it Select and charged more money for it. It’s a good whiskey, but I still prefer the Number 12 that I usually drink. The Number 12 is a bit rougher and at 90 it’s higher proof than the select, which is 80. As a footnote, I recently learned that the number 12 on the bottle no longer means the whiskey was aged for 12 years, as it used to mean. I don’t care, I still like it best.
Transgressions. I’ve been thinking about the meaning of this word as I plan my bone-burying foray at the Margaret Lane cemetery. I don’t really think of this as an actual crime, though I imagine there are some sorts of statutes about it. I have never been much of a criminal. My old pal Allan Bridge, now deceased, may he rest in peace, enjoyed various criminal acts: shoplifting, blowing stuff up, shooting out shop windows, nothing really heavy, but I found it difficult to go along with these shenanigans. So I tried out a late-night stroll around the block just to see what I was in for.
There are many small things that can turn a perfectly reasonable action into a transgression. The time of day can make all the difference. I can go for a stroll around the neighborhood at 2:00 in the afternoon and no one will even look at me. But if you do it at 2:00 in the morning, if a cop sees you he’s going to stop and ask what you are doing walking the streets at that hour. And you’d better have a reason besides rehearsing your moves for when you’re off to dig a hole in the graveyard to bury some old bones. So last Wednesday night when the hurricane paused and there was no rain, I waited till Sherry was asleep and then when out and walked around for a while.
Everything was dripping wet and it was very quiet. It’s not really that dark because there are streetlights and plenty of people have outdoors lights that they leave on all night. A couple of cars passed me, which scared the shit out of me as I thought any of them could have been cops patrolling. But none were, and after about a half an hour I was back in the house and glad to be there. I’m going to drive down to the area where the parking lot is where I’ll park the car when I make my run on the cemetery. I’ll get out and walk around if it looks safe. Safe meaning I’m not going to get caught doing my recon, or doing the actual deed.
I have a new piece of gear for my upcoming adventure. This is a light on a headband so you can keep your hands free for digging or fending off ghosts. I’ll wear it when I head under the house to dig up bones. It has a setting that is just red lights, which seems like it might be less obtrusive than the very bright light setting. I will wear this with my white suite with the hood. And speaking of which…
No, I’m not going to post pictures of me in my white suit, so you can quit sending me emails telling me that I must post some pictures. If I don’t already look stupid enough in the hoody suit, I’m going to add on the headband light and I will then look like an animated potato about to descend into a coal mine.
When my kids were little, hell, they actually still do this, when we would go on vacation and visit stores that sell tourist gear they find it great fun to have dad try on hats. It is well known in my family that I have no, what my pal Allan Janus calls, “hat sense.” Meaning I look really stupid in hats. Any hat. So we’d be standing in a store and the kids would goad me into trying on one hat after another while everyone — Sherry, the kids, the shop owners, gawking tourists, babies in strollers –would howl with laughter at how stupid I looked. I took it like a good sport, but if anyone ever thought I looked dumb in just a hat, you should see me in the potato suit. With the headband. So, no, just no. This is serious business. I’m about to put myself in harm’s way, and all you folks can think about is how funny I look.
Notice something else in the picture. Behind the head light is the bottle of ancient, what? Whiskey? Over time it is getting lighter. It started out the color of weak coffee and now it’s just barely tinted. I wonder if it’s turning into whatever Rafe drinks at the Penny, the frosty cold drink in a shot glass, as clear as an angel’s tear. But I’m not ready to open it. Some day I may need it, but not yet.