151 and Pineapple Juice

Last week, we made burgers. Hailing as I do from the great state of Queensland, it was imperative I get a slice of tinned pineapple in there. Later in the week, another few slices made their way on top of a curry. Both applications were thoroughly delicious. (We will avoid the fraught question of pizza.) Now, the juice from this very versatile tin of pineapple finds itself mixed with some high proof booze.

In section IV of V.’s tenth chapter (“In which various sets of young people get together”), McClintic Sphere, Ornette Coleman stand-in, heads with his bass player to a resort town on Cape Cod. They make some friends:

Out in front of a seafood place on the main and only drag, they found two more musicians playing mumbledy-peg with clam knives. They were on route to a party. “O yes,” they cried in unison. One climbed in the Triumph’s trunk, the other, who had a bottle – rum, 150 proof – and a pineapple, sat on the hood. At 80 mph over roads which are ill-lit and near-unusable by the end of the Season, this happy hood-ornament cut open the fruit with a clam knife and built rum-and-pineapple-juices in paper cups which McClintic’s bass handed him over the windscreen.

V. p. 298.

They’re an adventurous pair. Mumbledy-peg involves throwing knives at one’s feet, and bartenders don’t typically choose to work from the hoods of speeding cars. Plus that rum is 75% alcohol!

Well, my knife-throwing skills might be a bit rusty and I may not be perched atop a Triumph hurtling through Cape Cod, but my rum is even stronger. Slightly, anyway. It’s the 151 proof stuff that showed up mixed with Jägermeister a few months back. There’s no fresh pineapple here, but I hope McClintic, brilliant jazzman that he is, would appreciate my improvisation with the leftover tin juice.

Flavourwise, it’s super sweet and nice and tart, which masks the booze just fine. A tropical smasher, lending Australian midwinter a nice drunken glow. A few of them would certainly make playing hood-ornament a little easier.

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