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Robynn

Long-while Besotted, Recently Realized

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Ladies and Gentlemen,

 

I am hereby rectifying my faux pas of posting, pre-introduction by getting around to introducing myself albeit in a somewhat tardy fashion.

 

My interest in absinthe began as a juvenile curiosity - a byproduct of my general brooding and morbid fascination with all things dark and mysterious, typical of most teenagers. As a romantic by nature, but a skeptic by trade I did what little research I could about absinthe in my late junior high school years through library research, but as it appeared to be a banned substance and a foreign one at that, absinthe became an obscure wish, mostly forgotten about for awhile longer.

 

Becoming part of internet culture in the early 1990's, I was able to finally learn more about absinthe, and unfortunately to try some very scary home brew (vodka maceration made from whoknowswhat) through a friend. So I can attest first hand to the evils done by others in the name of the elusive and imaginary psychoactive brew that so many once believed to be absinthe, that we fortunate enlightened souls have schooled our brains and our palettes, and know better. Like most things, the truth of the matter is much sweeter than the fabricated fiction.

 

As an adult, I had friends who had mentioned they had procured absinthe from Europe (via internet sales) and had offered to finally let me taste what I had wondered so long about, but this was either a silly boast or through gluttony perhaps there was none left to share - and once again, I would have to wait.

 

In May of this year my girlfriend and I spent a lovely two weeks in France, driving from Paris through Alsace south to Lyon and then North again. On a leisurely stroll through Kaysersberg I chanced upon a shop window displaying apparently antique, and new absinthe paraphernalia and it stopped me in my tracks. There's absinthe in there - that I could buy for my very own.....and the shop is closed. We had only limited room in our baggage (and limited number of bottles of liquor allowed through customs) but I asserted that a bottle of Absinthe was the souvenir I didn't want to go home without. We had already expended our Paris part of the trip, and so I was concerned I wouldn't get a second opportunity to procure my elusive quarry. The next day, we doubled back to Kaysersberg, rushing past the many windows of local gingerbread and macaroons (not the fussy Parisian kind, the amazing coconut kind) our hurried pace betraying our American tourist habits and with the assurance from the shop keeper that I would have no issue in customs, I purchased a bottle of Libertine 72 and several lovely spoons. (I know now, keep the grumbling to a minimum please?)

 

I rediscovered the WWS that same night in our hotel room, doing research on among other things the possible foolhardy purchase I had just made. Despite what I learned, the bloom was NOT off the rose. A whole world of new opportunity to explore my long lost minor obsession was opened up again, and I was lost from then on. I have even built my own single spigot fountain from a wal-mart acquired apothecary jar, a spigot purchased online and a candlestick from Target. (Pictures are on the WWS Facebook page.)

 

My seduction by la fée verte had begun in earnest. My current absinthe hoard includes: that not as bad as I've been told in my opinion (review to be posted soon) Libertine 72, Marteau de la Belle Époque, Pacifique, Delaware Phoenix's Meadow of Love and Walton Waters, La Désirée, Belle Amie 2nd edition, and a 50ml sample of Pernod Fils 1910, and (as packaged with La Désirée a 3ml sample of Pernod Fils Tarragona 1960. I have tried them all in proper preparation, save the samples (which I took a long deep breath of and a small taste from the cap) and the La Désirée. I'm saving the vintage Pernod for this coming New Years (when it will be at least 100 years old), and I recently battled a rather massive head cold, so I wanted my taste buds back before I sampled the new offering from VdA and the nifty Tarragona bonus. I have (finally) on order some Jade PF 1901 - assuming VdF will actually ship it, I've yet to be told otherwise and am all aflutter with excitement.

 

I currently reside in the Atlanta suburb of Roswell, Georgia by way of Maine, North Carolina, Minnesota, Texas and Las Vegas. A native of Washington state, Walla Walla by birth, and then raised on the Olympic Peninsula where my family still resides and I visit often. I note there are many other absinthe enthusiasts in the Evergreen state, I hope to perhaps find some here in my adopted neck of the woods as well.

 

I've had the fine opportunity to talk on the phone with Cheryl Lins, proprietor of Delaware Phoenix Distilleries and it was interesting to note that both she and I seem to share the same mutual attraction to absinthe that was more or less, insatiable curiosity at first blush, further fueled by a need to know for ourselves just what this alluring herbal concoction really was. That Cheryl has moved beyond research, to create her own amazing absinthes, despite great adversity has made her one of my personal heroes.

 

I've been pleased, in my own small way to be able to educate some of my friends about what absinthe really is - and isn't - and several are now new enthusiasts in their own right, which is exciting. I hope that the Wormwood Society continues to foster a special respect and appreciation for absinthe. While it is rightfully dubbed "history in a bottle", as Cheryl Lins has so rightly stated absinthe is also "a drink for the 21st Century". And while it wasn't until now that I was fully able to appreciate the depth, complexity and truth about absinthe, it was certainly worth the wait.

 

Robynn McCarthy

Roswell, Georgia

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Hiya Robynn! Your intro was a fun read; I think you'll get along just fine here. :)

 

I have a friend (family friend) in ATL who isn't a board member but who gave me my first absinthe experience. Hmm, maybe I should lean on him to join the board...

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:wave2:

 

a skeptic by trade
?

 

Good to have you here. Loved the story. Cheers!

 

 

OMG_Bill, to clarify - I work for and with Skeptic Magazine and the Skeptic's Society which is a non-profit scientific and educational organization of scholars, scientists, historians, magicians, professors and teachers, and anyone curious about controversial ideas, extraordinary claims, revolutionary ideas, and the promotion of science.

 

Thanks so much for the warm welcome from everyone. What a fabulous sense of camaraderie!

 

Robynn

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So Robynn, what do you make of this, the strange lights over Norway:

 

http://spaceweather.com/

 

Jan-Petter1.jpg

 

Not an aurora, at least not anything typical.

 

And a group of friends in Santa Fe, NM saw multicolored lights similar to an aurora on the same night, except that there was no solar flare. Sunspot activity has been zilch for the last two weeks. Do you have any scientific pals who can shed some light on these events/effects?

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So Robynn, what do you make of this, the strange lights over Norway:

 

http://spaceweather.com/

 

Jan-Petter1.jpg

 

Not an aurora, at least not anything typical.

 

And a group of friends in Santa Fe, NM saw multicolored lights similar to an aurora on the same night, except that there was no solar flare. Sunspot activity has been zilch for the last two weeks. Do you have any scientific pals who can shed some light on these events/effects?

 

My good friend and really cool guy, Dr. Phil Plait has a good hypothesis on his blog, The Bad Astronomer which is part of the Discovery network. Following his initial post, additional information was released stating that the failure of a new Russian intercontinental ballistic missile during testing was the cause of spectacular spiraling blue lights in the skies over northern Norway.

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The light display was nothing more than a Russian rocket launched from a submarine that went out of control and was aborted. The rocket lit up the sky then spiraled out of control, creating a pinwheel effect in the northern skies.

 

It was similar to what happened over Jackson Township and the entire eastern seaboard of the United States this September when NASA launched a rocket and exploded it in the upper layers of our atmosphere.

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...a new Russian intercontinental ballistic missile...

 

:poop:

 

I thought this shit ended years ago.

 

Seriously.

 

Mr. President, we cannot allow ourselves to have a mineshaft gap!

 

No, my dear Nathan, we're no further away from nuclear annihilation now than we were then. And the threat of rogue states with nukes makes this a more dangerous world now than it was then too. As far as the Russians go, you can read plenty about how the petrodollar is singularly responsible for rebuilding, and rearming, the Federation of Russian States. No global power, in their right mind, would be rid of nukes so long as the other powers have them. And no one is ever going to get rid of them. No, it looks like they'll be here to stay for a long, long time. And depending on their final disposition, it could be a very, VERY long time.

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