red cliffThis is probably not a good thing to admit but Jerry and I frequently stop at The  Liquor King, our local liquor store, on the way home from work.  The owner, a lovely man who we affectionally call "King" because we don’t know his real name and probably wouldn’t know how to pronounce it anyway, often has some great things on discount.  The other night we got a bottle of Red Cliff for $4.99. 

Red Cliff is a cola based liqueur that tastes like spicy fire.  And it ought to since it’s 65 proof.  It came with a little tag of recipes like the Red Cliff martini (one part Red Cliff, two parts citrus vodka) and the Red Cliff All American (one part Red Cliff, one part bourbon — wheeee!) 

Jerry has discovered it is rather tasty mixed with cheap ass orange juice from Grocery Outlet.  I mixed it once with a cup of chamomile tea and it knocked me out for the night.  I also remember having some pretty wild dreams that night and would like to issue this warning: Too much Red Cliff will make you feel like jumping off a cliff the next morning. 

As you may already know, my Grandmother died this past week.  It was sad but not in a painful sort of way; not for me at least.  My grandmother was 100 when she died.  She led a rich, full life and was sharp minded until the very end.  For me her death has been a bittersweet experience of memories and letting go. 

In the days leading up to and after her death, my dad started commenting on all the things that Grandma (his mother) had taught him.  He got very contemplative about it and ended up giving her a heartfelt tribute at her memorial service, as any eulogy should. 

I also started thinking about all the things Grandma taught me.  While my list may seem trivial, it actually isn’t.  Someday, if I’m motivated, maybe I’ll be able to expand on my top 10 list of things I learned from Grandma:

10. Be a member of the clean plate club.

9. Always empty out a drawer for overnight guests.

8. Don’t leave shoes on the table. It’s bad luck and also gross.

7. Never underestimate the power of a thank you note.

6. If you’re going to cheat at solitaire you might as well not play.

5. Pumpkin pie filling is made with half and half, NOT evaporated milk.

4. Don’t use the guest towels hanging in the bathroom; use the paper towels placed by the sink.

3. Skelatonkey is actually two words.

2. A “dot” is more than a tablespoon but less than two forkfuls.

And the number one thing I learned from Grandma Teetsel:

Bea Arthur was a bitch. (But didn’t completely ruin Golden Girls.)

I love you Gramma! 

Six years ago at this time we were leaving our wedding at the Westover Winery and getting ready to get on a plane taking us first class to the Caribbean. 

Tonight we too a beat up old Aura to a roller rink in Milpitas.  And as an added bonus I got to clean the cat’s ass when we got home. 

Believe it or not but it’s been a pretty good six years.