The month of August isn't going to be an easy one for me. Two of my dear friends, I would say some of my best friends, will no longer be living in Southern California by the end of the month. My buddy Kevin Lappin has already moved to Atlanta, and one of my favorite people Kalyn Dodge is moving to Reno in just over two weeks. And while I'm happy for both of them, I am sad for selfish reasons. While Kevin and I don't hangout all the time, whenever we do get the chance, it is like no time has gone by. Kalyn, who I see almost weekly has become a confidant, there are things she knows about me that will be taken to our graves. And while I could do a whole post with stories about each person, I thought it'd be more fun (and fitting) if I compared two of my dear friends to libations that remind me of them. So Kevin and Kalyn, know that I will miss the shit out of both of you and while thanks to the day and age we live in, I can talk to you at any point of any day, here are Spirits that will most likely cause me to send you a text saying "What's up?"
Kevin Lappin: Tequila
Kevin and I have been friends since High School, we had a Physics class together but that wasn't how we met. At a dance, our Girlfriends at the time introduced us to each other. We both acknowledged each other and then in class the next week, we started sitting next to each other and partnered up for projects. I can still remember him throwing a golf ball at Rick Shaw for a video project showing how important sound is. While the presentation didn't have the audible thud, it was loud during the filming. Our love for basketball lead us to being great friends and it came pretty naturally. From pick-up games across the street from his house or at Robinwood Park, to us arguing about how the Lakers should be run, there was always some competition, but always in good fun. And now, with his wonderful Girlfriend Tawny, he's in Atlanta. So while there might be a few years of time apart, I know that one day me and my Bud will hangout again. And those are some of the reasons Tequila will always remind me of Kevin.
Tequila was the first spirit I really enjoyed. Being a kid from Southern California it was almost as if liking it came naturally to me. And while I saw it around when I was growing up, it was introduced to me by a female friend. It became my drink of choice for a while and was my drinking partner at some parties. And when I moved to Kentucky, I couldn't drink it anymore because no one, and I mean NO ONE, in Bourbon Country would drink it with me. But when I came home for visits, it was something I reached for. Much like when Kevin comes home to visit us, I'll make sure I will see him. Tequila will also remind me of Kevin because of one of his favorite drinks; Adios Motherfucker. While I myself will never order one in his honor, I will never forget one night at Suds where after two he needed to crash on my couch and at some point left blue stains in my toilet.
Kalyn Dodge: Scotch
Kalyn and I met through a mutual friend. She was dating him at the time and he wanted to introduce her to his group of buddies he spent Tuesday nights with drinking cheap beer and playing pool. I gave her the nickname K-Chick because after our 3rd or 4th meeting, I couldn't tell if her name was Kalyn or Katelyn. When the couple broke up, I sent her a text saying that while her and her ex might not talk, that wouldn't be the case for the two of us. Fast forward 5 years and she has been added to the list of women I'd do anything for without even thinking once. And as much as I love this woman, she supports all the wrong teams! I mean she roots for the Anaheim Ducks, Anaheim Angels, New York Giants, Portland Trailblazers and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. If we had never met but ran into each other at a stadium or sports bar, me wearing a LA Kings, Dodgers, New Orleans Saints, Lakers or Louisville Cardinal jersey, and her wearing one of her ugly jerseys, there might have been a stare down, but that's it. One thing we do have in common though is our appreciation for a good Scotch. So obviously, when I drink Scotch, she'll be the first person on my mind.
Scotch was something I had to be introduced to. When I first tried it I was a huge Bourbon drinker, and it just seemed like it was made wrong. I mean you take something elegant like Whisky, add smoked peat and it gives it this (sometimes) aggressive smokiness that can wreck your palate. Being the opposite of Bourbon, I thought Scotch and I would never get along. But after trying different styles, I learned to appreciate it for what it is, even found a few I am very found of. And with tricky names like Bruichladdich, Bunnahabhain and Caol Ila (to name a few), I sometimes made nicknames up for them when I was getting to know the Spirit. And while I'm not going to have a glass of Scotch on a weekly basis, it something I always have in stock. In fact the bottle pictured above is waiting to be finished by Kalyn and I since we bought it together for New Years Eve two years ago.
Kevin and Kalyn, you two are amazing people that I am so lucky to have in my life. I am so happy that ya'll are taking these big steps in your life and look forward to keeping up with you. Know that I will always be here for you and will do anything I need to do in order to see you when you're in town. And ya'll better have a couch for me when I come to visit you. To two of my best friends, these drinks are for you.