Friday, November 6, 2009

A Jamee

I love the Jameson Irish Whiskey commercial that seems to run continuously between segments of The Daily Show (guess they're trying to hook the younger crowd). It's a playful yarn that both satirizes and plays to classic Irish stereotypes (impulsiveness, love of stiff drink, foolish bravery in the face of danger, triumph against all odds). It's like an updated "The Quiet Man" with a dash of early 21st century irony.

My first Jameson was a memorable experience. I was 21, fresh out of college and hitchhiking through the west of Ireland, a beautiful and desolate place dotted with the ruins of stone cottages abandoned when much of the population fled the Potato Famine for America. My traveling companion, a Dublin native and not an especially heavy drinker, decided it was time for a mid-afternoon "Jamee."

We stopped at an Irish pub out of central casting and had a glass. It was wonderful, warm and smooth. I'd like to think that a peat fire was raging in the fireplace and someone was playing a harp and singing Irish folks songs, but I think that's in my imagination.

In spite of the pleasantness of the experience, I didn't acquire the habit. I'm not much on hard liquor with the exception of a once or twice yearly tequila shot or brandy. In fact, I don't think I've had a "Jamee" since.

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