The First Middletini
Muddle several sprigs of fresh thyme in a cocktail shaker with a spoonful of sugar (to taste – I didn’t measure, but it was probably about a teaspoon). Toss in 4-5 fresh blackberries and muddle those, too. Add juice of ½ lemon, 3 oz. vodka, and about 1 oz. of elderflower liquor. Shake with ice into an ice-filled glass, garnish with sprig of thyme. You could probably do as a martini, but I’m a Southerner and like ice. I have no idea what to call this - any suggestions?
This is my very first post on this blog. I’ve thought for awhile about starting a blog, but my life always seemed like such a shitstorm (warning: I swear a lot), and I thought eventually things would calm down enough that I could be all Zen-like and look back and reflect beatifically on how I finally figured it all out. I expect that to happen ANY DAY now.
First, the title. I chose “Middletini” because I just turned 40 this year, and I suppose that makes me officially middle-aged. I can probably get by a little longer without claiming the title because so many of the baby boomers are still insisting on being called middle-aged well into their dotage, but eventually I will have to own it. I will confess that the specific title was my boyfriend’s idea. Let’s call him McDreamy, because he’s a sexy doctor. We were drinking martinis at the time, and it still seemed inspired the next morning, so I decided to use it.
So, what is a middletini? I’d thought I might come up with a cocktail that would perfectly capture the coming-to-peace-with-middle-age gestalt for which I’m aiming. I asked my college friend Oma, who is a big deal over at Better Homes and Gardens and who, along with her husband Bailey, mixes some of the loveliest cocktails I’ve ever heard of, only they live in Iowa, so I have yet to enjoy one. She suggested that there was no one cocktail that could capture this feeling, because the path to personal peace and enlightenment has to be achieved by each person in her own way, so everyone probably has her own middletini. Did I mention that she was raised by Beatniks? Anyway, even though I realized that she might have just wanted to get on with the business of herding two young children in the midst of having a busy job and gave me a bullshit answer to get rid of me, I thought she had a point.
Like many people, I thought I would have my shit together by the time I was 40. I was a type-A high achiever, I went to fancy schools, and I had goals for my career and my personal life. None of that has quite worked out as planned. I have a decent job that gives me the flexibility to be with my 6 year-old daughter, Tink, and my 8 year-old son, Tweak. I’m divorced, happily so, and I have the world’s best boyfriend, about whom I will wax rhapsodic at some point in the future. I also have a sweet kitty, Magnus (his real name). There are obstacles – ex-spouses (McDreamy's and mine), 2 sets of kids (he has a 6 year old daughter and a 9 year old son), geography (oh, yeah, he’s in the Navy and being relocated to San Diego, which is on the opposite coast from me, next month), and the fact that I never did really figure out what I wanted to be when I grew up. Also, my parents are batshit insane.
On the plus side, in addition to the sweet kids, boyfriend, and cat, I have amazing friends, a secure livelihood, an ample supply of good liquor, and the ability to use humor as a coping device. I think this may be almost as good as it gets. I’m happy with that.