Bela Fleck… Class from the Harwich Spirits Shoppe

March 31, 2010

Hey!

Cisco, the HSS feline here. Every once in a while, we like to take a break from the deluge of wine discussions and just give you a snippet of art that you might not have run across before. (Who can forget Karen and Ella or Kseniya?) That being said, get ready to meet Bela Fleck and the Flecktones. But before you actually take a gander, a bit of background is in order…

  • Without a hint of a shadow of a doubt, Bela is one of the finest banjo players alive. He has played with everyone from Steve Martin (who is also a master with the banjo), to Earl Scruggs.
  • The bass player is “Futureman” (a.k.a. RoyEl) Forget the pirate’s hat, and focus on the drumitar. Futureman designed that… No wonder he’s a two-time Grammy winner.
  • Three-time winner of “Bass Player of the Year” from “Bass Player Magazine”, Victor Wooten is the brother of Futureman, and generally regarded as one of the top bass artists on earth.
  • Jeff Coffin is a straight-at-you modern jazz saxophonist. He can handle tenor, soprano, and alto. He’s really quite breathtaking.


And with no further adieu, here is “Next” by Bela Fleck and the Flecktones…




More class from between the racks,


Two Cats Blogging,


Wine Glossaries

* Nat Decants: A thorough glossary from Natalie MacLean, noted wine writer, speaker, and judge.
* eRobertParker.com: “The Independent Consumer’s Guide to Fine Wines”
* GLOSSARY of Wine-Tasting Terminology (Version 1.4 – Jan. 1995): A thorough collection of definitions from Anthony Hawkins.

Beer Glossaries

* ratebeer: Now that’s a straightforward name!
* beer-pages: Roger Protz and Tom Cannavan say that “it’s all about beer”.
* alphaDictionary.com: A fine collection of Beer dictionaries.


Keeping an Open Mind…

March 29, 2010

Hey!

Cisco the Harwich Spirits Shoppe cat here. The other day, Lena and I were talking about the variations of similar alcoholic beverages, and she mentioned a great article by Gunther Anderson which mulled the differences between schnapps, cordials, and liqueurs.  As Lena pointed out, Mr. Anderson talks of the kinship between liqueurs and schnapps :

“Liqueurs do go a long way towards tasting like real schnapps, and can make some compelling tastes on their own.”

And the point I believe she was making was that just because schnapps aren’t available doesn’t mean that all is lost to the consumer. A knowledgeable merchant (like Bruce or Lena)  can still save the day.

But that got me to thinking (dangerous) about the whole nature of alcoholic beverage choice and the subjective nature of the process. If you look over to the sidebar on the right, you’ll see a series of  free tutorials presented by Da Gizz, and one of the themes that he stresses is that of open mindedness. As it goes with schnapps, (IMHO) so should it go with all potent potables.

Take for instance beer. (Now that’s my field of expertise.) Suppose you go looking for the latest, trendiest, designer red lager. Well, HSS (or any other store on the Cape for that matter) might not have that. But with just a little direction from a seasoned clerk, you’ll probably end up with a moderately-priced (~$7.00) six pack of Killian’s Red… And you know what? I’ll bet you dimes to donuts that the Killian’s will be the better beer…

I’m just saying… Keep an open mind and listen to the experts.

Two Cats Blogging


Wine Glossaries

* Nat Decants: A thorough glossary from Natalie MacLean, noted wine writer, speaker, and judge.
* eRobertParker.com: “The Independent Consumer’s Guide to Fine Wines”
* GLOSSARY of Wine-Tasting Terminology (Version 1.4 – Jan. 1995): A thorough collection of definitions from Anthony Hawkins.

Beer Glossaries

* ratebeer: Now that’s a straightforward name!
* beer-pages: Roger Protz and Tom Cannavan say that “it’s all about beer”.
* alphaDictionary.com: A fine collection of Beer dictionaries.


What I’ll Do When I’m Selectman

March 24, 2010

Goals are good. Here are some of the goals I’d like to achieve should I be elected Selectman…


  • Shine sunlight on the town’s business. Most residents have ideas that can help the town, but are nervous to speak at televised Selectman Meetings. I will request that the Selectman hold a posted casual meeting at least once every two weeks where anyone, including town workers, residents, officials, and even non-voting residents may participate free from the glare of a television camera. I believe this will allow a more positive flow of ideas and solutions to problems that afflict the town.
  • I’d resurrect Harwich Civic Spirit Day (HCSD). During the years of my first term I began the program to create a more harmonious rapport twixt the public and all the committees and commissions in town. Lo and behold, it worked. HCSD allowed members of one board to network with other committee members saving considerable time and hassle. Beyond that, it gave regular folk a chance to talk about town positions and volunteer opportunities. That’s a win/win. I say we that we resurrect Harwich Civic Spirit Day and get it done!
  • Given the recent national events, it’s obvious that skyrocketing health insurance is a biggie. And as it goes on “The Hill”, so it goes in Harwich. But who has the answers? I’d study other towns of similar demographics and see what worked (and didn’t work) for them. At the moment, I’m leaning towards the classic three-tier system:
    • If a person wants the gold-card plan, he should participate in a financially commensurate fashion
    • If a moderate plan is a better fit, then that plan will bear a moderate cost
    • And if a worker is just looking for a short plan… Well, that will cost the least

    Of course, there can still be a pick-and-choose 'buffet' form of health insurance selection, but more perks equate to more cost.

But, a couple issues cannot be denied. First, prices are rising by leaps and bounds. Last year the insurance cost to the town went up 18% from a projected 3% increase. And lastly, events in Washington have injected a degree of fluidity into each of our decisions, and we have to keep a sharp eye on that as we go forward. As Selectman I will be very proactive in the process.


So, those are just some of my ideas… Don’t worry, I’ve got a bunch more…


Bruce Wm. Gibson


And Bruce Gibson Decides to Run for Selectman

March 22, 2010

Hey,

Cisco, the Harwich Spirits Shoppe cat here. The following is from the Sunday, March 21, 2010 edition of the “Cape Cod Chronicle“:

A fourth candidate has taken out nomination papers to run for selectman. Former selectman Bruce Gibson took out papers Friday with an eye on one of two seats on the ballot in the May annual election. Gibson said he has both a vision for and a history of the town that has been lost in recent years. Read more in the next edition of The Chronicle.

Yeah, we razz “Da Gizz” Gibson here a bunch, but he really ain’t that bad… He’s deeply involved with his community and businesses, he’s available at the store in Harwich Port (see the contact link above), and of course, you can reach him via this blog as well. Just ask him where he stands on a certain issue, and he’ll give it to you straight. Just look over this blog, and one thing becomes very clear… Da Gizz isn’t cut out of the standard “politician’s” cloth. And if you like what you hear from him, stop by the store and offer your signature.

Tell you what… Stay tuned to this blog and we’ll see if we can’t get Bruce to make some comments on policy and process…

Gotta run, but we’ll see you by the racks…

Two cats blogging


Wine Glossaries

* Nat Decants: A thorough glossary from Natalie MacLean, noted wine writer, speaker, and judge.
* eRobertParker.com: “The Independent Consumer’s Guide to Fine Wines”
* GLOSSARY of Wine-Tasting Terminology (Version 1.4 – Jan. 1995): A thorough collection of definitions from Anthony Hawkins.

Beer Glossaries

* ratebeer: Now that’s a straightforward name!
* beer-pages: Roger Protz and Tom Cannavan say that “it’s all about beer”.
* alphaDictionary.com: A fine collection of Beer dictionaries.


Buy Some Wine, Get a Hand-Made Fly!

March 21, 2010

Hey,

Cisco the cat here… Check this out!

Now, is that cool or what? And here’s the deal…

Purchase a bottle of wine at Harwich Spirits Shoppe and receive a complimentary fishing fly hand tied by Michael J. Mullaney.  Michael is the owner of www.capecodflyfishing.com. (Total purchase $30 or higher to qualify for this offer.)

I looked at every page on Mr. Mullaney’s web site, and this guy has serious game. We’re talking pro fishing guides from Maine to the Cape and Nantucket, as well as Block Island. We’re talking entire fishing and adventure vacations. Heck, we’re even talking about top-shelf lodging and gear! But maybe the most impressive feature is that, new for 2010, is Cape Cod Fly Fishing’s affiliation with Cabela’s Outdoor Adventure program. It don’t get no bettah than that.

So here’s my suggestion… Head on down to the Shoppe and buy some wine. Get yourself one (or more) of those free flies. (Even if you don’t fish, they’re beautiful and collectible.) Then give Michael a call at (508) 208-2265. Don’t be afraid to talk about kayaks, fly fishing, and all things outdoors… Hey, the guy publishes the “Cape Cod Maritime Guide Book”. Besides, unlike Da Gizz, Michael doesn’t bite.

Gotta run…

Two cats blogging

P.S. For all you wannabe fishermen out there… You haven’t drawn a breath of air until you hook a chopper on a fly rod. Trust a feline… We know fishing.


Wine Glossaries

* Nat Decants: A thorough glossary from Natalie MacLean, noted wine writer, speaker, and judge.
* eRobertParker.com: “The Independent Consumer’s Guide to Fine Wines”
* GLOSSARY of Wine-Tasting Terminology (Version 1.4 – Jan. 1995): A thorough collection of definitions from Anthony Hawkins.

Beer Glossaries

* ratebeer: Now that’s a straightforward name!
* beer-pages: Roger Protz and Tom Cannavan say that “it’s all about beer”.
* alphaDictionary.com: A fine collection of Beer dictionaries.


New Tutorial, St. Pattie’s Day, and Getting Thrown Out of a Police Station

March 20, 2010

Hey, Cisco and Ponchita here… (Yeah, we’re the ones who write this rag and go by the moniker of Two Cats Blogging.) I’m the rugged yet furry and tender fellow below.

Can't wait for Da Gizz to close this joint so I can liberate more wine!

First things first… Check the side bar on the right… There’s yet another free wine tutorial. How cool is that?

What else? Oh! St. Patrick’s Day… That was a blast… Just nice people and a couple of cats standing around talking and tasting a couple of wines. It truly was small town America – polite conversation from people coming from every angle. If you weren’t there, you really missed out on something special.

And finally, there is the time that yours truly and his buddy Rocky got thrown out of the Dennis Police Station. (Ponchita loves this story.) Well, it was a dark and stormy night… (No, it really was a dark and stormy night.) Before I go any farther, you need to understand Rocky’s sense of humor. It’s a cross between Steven Wright, Jean Paul Sartre, and Tim Conway. And at any given moment it could range from the angelic to the flat-out weird. Watch the video below, and imagine Hannibal Lecter playing the part of Tim Conway.




Anyhoo, we were there to bail out a buddy (Johnny) who was arrested for being… shall we say… harmlessly, but overly exuberant. (Ah yes… Back in those days we were all full of youthful exuberance and other stuff to boot.) But rather than sit quietly and let the desk sergeant process Johnny’s paperwork, Rocky decided to “tutor” me in the fine art of serial killing and general mayhem. He would sit back and ponder where Johnny had gone wrong in a voice plenty loud enough for the sergeant to hear. He’d ask rhetorical questions like, “Did he use the wrong knife?” And then he’d rock forward in a moment of solemn yet inspired epiphany and utter something like, “He didn’t chop up the bodies… That’s where he blew it. You’ve got to chop up the bodies!” And so it went, I convulsed with laughter, and begged him to stop, but he just rolled right along. “Johnny didn’t dig the holes deep enough…” “He should have run the guy over. Poison never works…” “Maybe he should have used a chain saw…” During those rare moments when I could catch my breath, I tried to reason with him, and told him that if we got busted, they’d be no one to post our bail. But he never let up. Still, there was a tiny glimmer of hope – the police officer was laughing howling too. And with that slight bit of encouragement, Rocky decided to take the game to a whole new level – he walked over to the glass partition in front of the officer and pressed his mug to the glass and began making faces. Well! That was all she wrote! The sergeant slammed the palms of his hands down on the desk and yelled, “That’s it!” and started for the door that led to our waiting area. My only thought at that point was, “I’m going to jail where the inmates, by sheer slight of hand, brute force, and another body part, turn male cats into female dogs!” Thankfully, that was not to be. Rocky and I were shown to the door and told to, “Get out and stay out!” The cop was still laughing as he walked away… I vividly remember standing in the rain and saying, “My God Rocky, we just got thrown out of a police station!” And his chuckling response was pure comic existentialism… “Yeah, I know… That’s something isn’t it?


Anyway, that’s a true story, though I’ve changed the names to protect the innocent.


Before we go… Stay tuned to this blog… Exciting things are coming including sales, giveaways, contests, and a weird bit of sanity that requires state approval.


See you by the racks,


Two Cats Blogging


Wine Glossaries

* Nat Decants: A thorough glossary from Natalie MacLean, noted wine writer, speaker, and judge.
* eRobertParker.com: “The Independent Consumer’s Guide to Fine Wines”
* GLOSSARY of Wine-Tasting Terminology (Version 1.4 – Jan. 1995): A thorough collection of definitions from Anthony Hawkins.

Beer Glossaries

* ratebeer: Now that’s a straightforward name!
* beer-pages: Roger Protz and Tom Cannavan say that “it’s all about beer”.
* alphaDictionary.com: A fine collection of Beer dictionaries.


St. Patrick’s Day Gathering Today… HSS!

March 17, 2010

Well, here we go… St. Patrick’s Day and Da Gizz is at the helm…

Be Horrified!

Hope you’re ready for the event and armed with your pot luck and special Little Orphan Annie secret decoder code word… Miss this one and even the quahogs aren’t going to be speaking to you! What’s that… You don’t speak ‘hog??? Deep sigh… Oh well… Just show up around 6PM and shake off the winter and all those rainstorms. Besides, rumor has it that there will be a Guinness cake there. That’s a must show!


Two cats hiding behind the racks and blogging


Wine Glossaries

* Nat Decants: A thorough glossary from Natalie MacLean, noted wine writer, speaker, and judge.
* eRobertParker.com: “The Independent Consumer’s Guide to Fine Wines”
* GLOSSARY of Wine-Tasting Terminology (Version 1.4 – Jan. 1995): A thorough collection of definitions from Anthony Hawkins.

Beer Glossaries

* ratebeer: Now that’s a straightforward name!
* beer-pages: Roger Protz and Tom Cannavan say that “it’s all about beer”.
* alphaDictionary.com: A fine collection of Beer dictionaries.