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What winter is good for

I encroached on Elizabeth Large’s dining turf. Now, to complain about winter, she encroaches on science turf. Coming full circle, I can, by stepping on her toes again, tell her what winter is good for:


Put a teaspoon of sugar in a good, stout drinks glass, squeeze the juice of a quarter to half a lemon into it, stir till the sugar is dissolved, and leave the spoon in the glass. Pour in a quantity of boiling water, to taste, no more than a cup. The spoon will radiate some of the heat away so that the glass doesn’t shatter. Add a healthy glug, again, to taste, of bourbon (Old Forester is a fine bourbon ordinaire). Sip. Repeat as needed.

If you lack the fortitude for the unadulterated toddy, brew a mug of strong black tea and add the ingredients as above.

Though you should really support the economy of my native Commonwealth of Kentucky by using bourbon, I will not denounce you if you substitute brandy or rum.


Posted by John McIntyre at 4:04 PM | | Comments (1)


I will swear by the hot toddy. It knocked the cold right out of me!

...or maybe the hooch (I used brandy) in the toddy just knocked me out. I'm not sure.

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About John McIntyre
John McIntyre, mild-mannered editor for a great metropolitan newspaper, has fussed over writers’ work, to sporadic expressions of gratitude, for thirty years. He is The Sun’s night content production manager and former head of its copy desk. He also teaches editing at Loyola University Maryland. A former president of the American Copy Editors Society, a native of Kentucky, a graduate of Michigan State and Syracuse, and a moderate prescriptivist, he writes about language, journalism, and arbitrarily chosen topics. If you are inspired by a spirit of contradiction, comment on the posts or write to him at
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