My complete lack of sports gambling acumen is well documented (the most recent evidence: the $20 I put on the Philadelphia Eagles to win the Super Bowl at 12-1). I am, however, much more successful in wagering on political outcomes, largely because I was a Nate Silver fan before being a Nate Silver fan was cool. (Hell, I knew him when he was Poblano.)
My savvy paid off for me this election season, as I came out on the right (or left, as the case may be) side of several alcohol-related wagers. One, in particular, paid off in memorable fashion. Just last week, I received check for $47 accompanied by a note typed on impressive letterhead, the text of which follows:
I write this letter from my well-hidden and protected bunker in the swamplands of central Florida, equipped with laptop and laser printer among other things. Why are you receiving a letter with a check you ask? Well as we say here in the office, "Fast pay equals fast friends." And due to Virginia ABC laws, there is no means by which to get you liquor via delivery. Beer is doable as is wine. The thought of sending you the bottle of vino you and Danny Snyder love crossed my mind. That would be too convenient for you not to mention a lot more expensive for me. At least this way you have to make an effort to grab your prize.
Your prize.Well you have this check to do what you will with. You could go out and buy a new Saints T-shirt and I'd be none the wiser. If I'd had the ability though, I was going to send you a bottle of Rum. Wait What? Yeah, Rum. For starters, I'm going to guess that you haven't had the brand of rum I am encouraging you to buy. And B, you did say you'd be willing to try something different.
Ron Zacapa - 23 Year Old - made in Guatemala. A buddy of mine down here turned me and a few others on to this. He's a 60-year old surf rat who travels to Guatemala for some killer waves. It's 100% pure adrenalin. He's in a group of guys I swim with a couple of times a week. They've had this annual tradition where on or around April 15th we do "The Tax Day Swim." I've had the (dis)pleasure of partaking in this each of the last three years. Like all of our sessions, we are in the pool at 0530 for a little warm-up. The Tax Day Swim is always a minimum of 40 x 100's on 90 seconds. Every 90 seconds, another 100 yards begins. In runner-speak I'm not sure what this would be akin to. Maybe 20 x 400's at 85-90% efforts with no more than 15 seconds rest between each? Regardless, it's a real bitch.
Once the swim is complete we try and pull ourselves out of the pool. Jimmer, the surfer, then breaks out his gym bag, 6-7 clear plastic cups, cooler with ice, and a brand new bottle of Ron.We sit on the pool deck, which is outside and at roughly 6:45 a.m. the bottle is opened. By 7:45 it is just about empty. This is at a YMCA mind you, with lifeguards and other people milling about. The first year I did this I was scared sh*tless of both rituals and more so of the Rum part. Little did I know. We shoot the breeze, tell stories, and get half pissed.
I like good bourbon and scotch as most of us cool, hip traveled guys do. I don't drink the Zacapa much but I could absolutely consume half a bottle per night. So hopefully I've persuaded you to allocate these dollars to a bottle of Ron Z 23-year. I've even included the cost to cover the tax due the Commonwealth. I have confirmed that your ABC Store on Fairfax St, less than two miles from your home has this fine bottle in stock. They wouldn't even let me pay for it over the phone. Again, the inconvenience is good for you. Anyway Rob, I felt you needed to know how Ronnie Z came into my life so that you could appreciate it a bit more, especially having just completed your marathon. Congratulations by the way. Enjoy your off-season and the Ron Zacapa. The best to you and the Russell family.
Now that, my friends, is how it's done. Cheers to you, Danimal, and here's to 2016.