Thursday/Friday

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Family matters are taking me out of commission for a few days. Enjoy this mix of regular stories and drinking stories.

Priests Spray Drunks with Holy Water from Plane

I’m absolutely fascinated by this ongoing tornado born of Holy Mother Russia’s wrestling match with the social wrecking ball that was Communism.

Russian Orthodox priests in the Central Russian city of Tver took to the skies in a small airplane to save citizens from “drunkenness and fornication,” reported a Russian local media outlet.

On Sept. 11, Sobriety Day, an unofficial Russian holiday, the priests carried 70 liters (about 18 gallons) of holy water onto the aircraft.

Once the plane reached an altitude of 200 to 300 meters (approximately 800 feet) the blessings began. Clergymen held a prayer service before pouring the holy water out of the plane’s open door.

A Guide to a Shorter Bourbon Trail

I spent an evening in Bardstown last June. Lovely town.

As whiskey pilgrimages go, it’s hard to beat the Kentucky Bourbon Trail. What started 20 years ago with a handful of producers opening their doors to a public thirsty for brown spirits has slowly grown into one of the biggest attractions in the Bluegrass State. The official route packs in 36 distilleries, representing some of the oldest and newest whiskey makers in America. It would take weeks to properly tour each one, and if you have the time and liver function, you should do precisely that. In the meantime, however, find yourself a shortcut. From Lexington to Bardstown, Loretto to Louisville, these are the 13 best distilleries on the Kentucky Bourbon Trail.

Anarchism, Farming, and Climate

I offer it for what it’s worth.

If Desert’s diagnosis rang true, so too did its prognosis. The text’s author suggests that while the consequences of climate change are unavoidable, anarchists may yet prevail against both capitalism and the state. Positing that desertification will cause both markets and governments to retract, Desert argues that in their absence, anarchists could thrive—if only they could first survive.

“In this metaphor of the desert, where does life emerge?” Holland wondered. “If we end up unable to create some mass movement to overthrow the government, what does it look like to build a material force capable of sustaining itself, capable of struggle, capable of being the grounds that make government obsolete?”

In Brunswick, Holland is beginning the search for answers. These days, Holland commits much of his time to gardening, but doesn’t see it as a step away from his anarchist politics. Rather, he sees it as a step forward.

Political Correctness at Stand-Up

Bill Burr thinks it’s coming to an end. He likens it to the end of McCarythism: all its proponents will scurry like rats shortly.

There used to be a foolproof standard for anything said on the stage:

If they laugh, you can say it.

And it’s a pretty good rule because it eliminates all discussion about good taste, bad taste, off-limits topics, and it puts the comedian in the position of having to constantly outmaneuver the audience’s expectations, which is sort of the definition of comedy. Daniel Tosh has a whole section of his act in which he deconstructs the frequent battle cry of the moral crusader: “But there are some topics that can never be funny. There are matters that are beyond joking.” He then proceeds to tell jokes about rape, dead babies, and other topics that he gets away with because…the audience laughs in spite of itself.

PBR Hard Coffee

I wept bitterly when I saw this.

Earlier this month, Pabst Blue Ribbon (otherwise known as PBR) turned heads when it announced its latest product—not a new lager, but hard coffee. With 5 percent ABV, Pabst said that the drink is “among the first of its kind in the industry,” combining Arabica and Robusta coffee beans, milk, and malt beverage to create a boozy version of your morning cup of joe. It’s meant to taste like “vanilla infused premium iced coffee,” and we’ve also seen comparisons to Yoo-hoo, the popular creamy chocolate milk drink.