Some New Treats and a Few Old Tricks

This week’s posting on Scribbleskiff is part treat, part trick. It’s our way of honoring Halloween and, at the same time, shirking our responsibilities. Typical? Exactly!

Boo-ya! Or boo-hoo?

Well, for several reasons, we just can’t be aimless and informative right now, but we didn’t want to let one of our favorite holidays slip by without some sort of nod. So we are handing out a few novelties, including some seasonal songs, spirited books, and sinister beverages, and offering a little tomfoolery, too — namely, a repeat of some popular past postings. If you’ve never read any of the following words before, then this entry will be sweet music to your eyes and ears. If, on the other hand, you feel like you have previously encountered some of these specters, well, then, boo!

Treats: For starters, we recently uploaded a new Halloween-themed playlist at All 18 songs, by everyone from The Acorn to Wolf Parade, have some type of seasonal tie-in to put you in an All-Souls-Day state of mind. And all were released in 2010. Click here to hear them.

Trick: We recently invoked the magic in the relatively new search function on this site (floating in the upper right-hand corner). We typed in “Halloween” and, surprise-surprise, more than a dozen entries appeared that either featured or were related to this most un-hallowed holiday. One of our top picks was this one (click here to read it), which involved the search for an adult-strength beverage appropriate for sipping while handing out (and sneaking) Halloween candy.

Treat: Sometimes, reading a good book can be a spiritual experience — especially if said book is about alcoholic beverages. Such is the case with Beer Is Proof That God Loves Us, a frothy and refreshing look at “the soul of beer and brewing.” Author Charles W. Bamforth, a British ex-pat and a 32-year brewing industry veteran, offers a personal look at everything from the rebirth in a “beer ethos” to the reasons why a few simple ingredients (water, grains, hops, and yeast) are simply divine. Buy your copy of it here.

Trick: Here’s another of our favorite reruns (here, actually), in which we once again enjoy being visited by a palpable, menacing specter that haunts (and, in so many ways, delights) us all.

Treats: And speaking of spiritual (and spirited) visitations, lately our inbox has been a virtual medium for a slew of seasonal cocktail recipes that we are just dying to try. Here are a few:

Corpse Reviver
2 oz Kanon Organic Vodka
¾ oz Fresh Lemon Juice
¾ oz Orange Curacao (or Triple Sec)
¼ oz Absinthe (or any Pastis)

Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass, add a few ice cubes, and shake.  Strain the mixture into a Martini glass.

Fake Blood
1 1/2 oz. Riazul Silver Tequila
1 oz. cranberry juice
Lime wedge
1/2 oz. simple sugar
1 splash ginger ale

Combine tequila, cranberry juice, squeezed lime juice, and simple sugar with ice. Shake and strain into a chilled glass. Fill with a splash of ginger ale.

Jack-o’-Lantern Punch
2 oz. Flor de Caña rum
4 Sugar cubes
3 oz. Club soda
1 oz. Lemon juice
1 ½  oz. Pumpkin puree
Dash of allspice

Muddle four sugar cubes with lemon juice. Add Flor de Caña rum, pumpkin puree, and a dash of all spice and a cinnamon stick. Top with club soda. Garnish with an apple slice.

Trick: We’ve saved the best (and bloatedest) Scribbleskiff replay for last. In it (click here to read it) we offer a half-dozen recommendations that, though they may not help explain why we celebrate this ancientest of holidays, they should make Halloween more spirited if you do.

But don’t let these lazy bones scare you away. We’ll be back soon with new postings that feature the same aimless nothingness that you’ve come to expect (and, we hope, enjoy) at Scribbleskiff. In the meantime, tell us what you think. How do you celebrate Halloween? Are there any other new seasonal offererings that you think everyone should try? Let us know by leaving a comment below.

And be sure to visit (and join) the Scribbleskiff page on Facebook (find it here), where you can partake in wall-to-wall conversations, find additional information and suggestions from readers, and more.

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