Not just for old farts any more.
Sorry in advance for the long-ish message here, but it actually takes some explaining to get my point across. Anyways, I was sitting around my house the other day, watching TV — wishing I’d bought Netflix stock back when they still mailed you DVDs, but that’s neither here nor there — and sipping on a Rusty Nail, which is a thing I’ve been drinking lately because, well, it turns out Rusty Nails are freaking dope. As I was pondering the melting ice cube in my Rusty Nail, I thought about how, if you had asked me maybe ten or fifteen years ago for my thoughts on the Rusty Nail, I would have said something about how I think my grandpa’s friends used to drink them at the Elk’s Lodge, and then I would have asked you for another frosty beer.
Now, I’m sitting here drinking what I once would have sworn was an uncool drink consumed exclusively by old farts whose bladders could no longer handle their Schlitz. I am pretty sure I have not yet become one of those old farts. Thus, I can only conclude Rusty Nails became cool again at some point, which is why I am drinking one right now. A brief and very informal survey of my friends indicates that they too have imbibed a Rusty Nail in recent years, which further confirms what I knew to be true: Rusty Nails are cool again. If my grandpa were still around, I’m sure he’d be proud.
Unlike my grandpa, who was kind of a big drinker, my grandma limited herself to her One Drink of the Year on or around Christmas. It was always a Brandy Alexander. Sweet little old lady stereotypes be damned! I think she kept the same bottle of Christian Brothers (or maybe it was Korbel) lurking in the liquor cabinet throughout my entire childhood, and she would dust it off for an annual drink that would more or less put her out of commission in a manner that was, in retrospect, kind of adorable.
Now, I surveyed a few of the same friends who backed me up on the whole “Rusty Nail is a cool drink” thing, and they pretty much all agree that none of them would go out ordering a Brandy Alexander anytime soon; which leads to conclude that, unlike the Rusty Nail, which is sort of the “ultimate grandpa drink,” the Brandy Alexander, which is basically the “ultimate grandma drink,” has not managed to stage a comeback, and probably never will.
Having queued all that up for you, I have to ask, why not? Is it some kind of casual hipster sexism, like old man drinks are hip and old lady drinks are lame? If so, that’s obviously not fair. I mean, little old ladies are completely badass, look at the Golden Girls!
With what little space is left to me, I’ll say nobody has ever put more thought into this particular topic, and that’s coming from a person who has authoritatively resolved the rivalry between cole slaw and potato salad.
Beware these kinds of musings, friend. Why indeed might one piece of nostalgic grandparental Americana accede to a position of renewed popularity while another seemingly indistinguishable bit of history escapes the attention of the cognoscenti who hunger to rediscover the treasures of the past? You could ask a thousand hipsters, and get ten thousand answers. That way madness lies.