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Sunday, August 28, 2016

Help!

Over the course of my lifetime, in too many ways to count, I've been taught not to ask for help. It's a sign of weakness. It's a sign that you don't have your act together. It's a sign that you're truly an idiot and can't handle the tasks you've set for yourself. Well, I've been doing a bit of research and learning that asking for help is a sign of strength, not weakness. It's an admission that you can't do it all yourself, even if there are two of you.

We've been trying like hell to grow this show, to make money and to turn it into a profitable business. And, guess what? Even though we can't support ourselves on it right now, some of our hard work is starting to pay off. But I also feel like I'm getting in over my head. I already write and perform the show, upload all the episodes, handle most of the social media, make the costumes, create the recipes and shoot all of the food sequences. Paul shoots the parts where I'm in front of the camera and handles all of the editing, plus some of the social media and many of the contacts with potential collaborators and partners. While holding down a full-time Wall Street job. I give us all the credit in the world - we've  been doing very well at getting it all done, staying on schedule and teaching an hour long symposium at Tiki Oasis to boot. But I'm not going to lie: we need help. We need someone to help us to schedule location shooting, to handle some of the social media (I feel like the biggest loser in the world because we're falling far behind on Instagram and I frankly never even look at Twitter, even though Twitter is pretty good to us). We recently hired a talented graphic designer to create our pint glasses (on sale in our merch store now) and it was the smartest thing we've done in a long time. He did a fabulous job, as did Gene at South Pacific Promotions, who did the actual ordering. I'm not a graphic designer. I could have done a mediocre job, but hiring pros was so smart. We need to hire more pros. We need staff. We just need to make more money, too, to pay them! I would GLADLY pay a manager to help us!

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Quick Catch-Up - More Soon!

I swear, no sooner do we touch down after Tiki Oasis than we're on the move again! This whole summer has been a blur, but mostly a happy one. A few highlights:

Our Tiki Oasis symposium is a memory (although we could probably be persuaded to give command performances after a few drinks)! Click here to watch the short film we made to accompany it! I took pitifully few photos while we were there, but I did take a few of the King's Inn, our hotel, which was amazing - a retro time capsule, complete with a fabulous bar and breakfast spot (The Waffle Spot). Some of my fondest memories include the GIGANTIC margarita I had at the Amigo Spot, followed by a long soak in the hot tub.






By the way, I've pretty much distilled my life goals down to one: get a hot tub.

Our next trip will be to the Bay Area, where some fabulous friends are tying the knot, and where we plan to do a little filming in our off hours.

Beyond that, I just procured our tickets to the Smithsonian Food History Festival, October 29! I am beyond excited, since Jane and Michael Stern will be there. They're pretty much our idols (if you'd like to learn more about them, click here) and I will probably show up with ALL of their books, begging to get them signed. We also got tickets to the American brewing event. What could there possibly be to not like about THAT? If you're in the DC area, let's meet up!





Monday, August 15, 2016

Say No To Crack!

I just added closed captioning to tomorrow's episode of our show. YouTube automatically generates what it thinks you're saying, which can lead to hilarity. For example, I employ Kraken spiced rum in a recipe. According to the automatic closed captioning, I said "Just add two ounces crack!" What?! No!! That's a different show entirely! Say no to crack!




Friday, August 12, 2016

Blueberry Shrub: An Easy Fresh Fruit Cordial You Can Make!

Our Friday happy hour cocktail, the Blue Friday, features a homemade cordial that's a nod to colonial America. The great news is that it's really easy to make!

All you do is combine 1 cup of sliced blueberries with 1/8 of a cup of sugar:



Allow to sit overnight and render juice. Push the juice and remaining berries through a strainer or a mill until the solids are completely separated from the liquids.


It looks weird, but you can use the remaining solids to top ice cream, oatmeal or anything else that would benefit from a sweet and fruity topping!

After you have your liquid, add one 1 TBSP red wine vinegar. Some folks will tell you to add more vinegar, but I think 1 TBSP is plenty and won't make your cocktail taste like salad dressing.


That's it! Now you're ready to make your Blue Friday (or any other) cocktail!

Blue Friday Cocktail

2 oz light rum
1 oz blueberry shrub
1/2 oz fresh lime juice

Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass!




Tuesday, August 9, 2016

I'm Loving This Book About Brownie Wise

Ever since I saw a documentary about Tupperware on The American Experience, I've been fascinated by Brownie Wise. I'm not finished with this book yet, but she's just beginning her descent down the ladder, after reaching dizzying heights as a female executive in the 1950s. It is particularly interesting to me to be reading this book at this exact moment. As our show grows and we continue to play a little bigger, I'm noticing something I had never noticed before: sexism. It's not blatant, you understand. It's not overt. No one told me to get back into the kitchen. But I've found that certain parties with whom we're working, including women, will take Paul's calls, but blow me off. He's an authority figure, seemingly because he's a man, even though I'm the executive producer of this show and the buck stops with me (Trust me, he won't be insulted to see that in print!). It's fascinating and, frankly, a little stomach turning. I will just say this: Paul will make the phone calls, since he's as pragmatic as I and knows we simply need to get things done. But the decisions are still being made by both of us, with me having at least an equal vote. I believe in breaking down barriers and all that, but for now we just need to get the job done!


Monday, August 8, 2016

Slightly Crazy Around The Kitsch-en

I'm trying like heck to keep up with the blogging and social media, but it's been a challenge lately. We are way too busy for two people but, as much as I'd like to hire help, I really can't unless they'll work for cocktails. An expert once told me that I should be posting on Facebook ten times a day and on Twitter far more than that to even be considered "keeping up" and I've been falling far short of that. I'm only one person and I've got A LOT of work to do in the next ten days. So, if I'm not posting as often on Facebook or Instagram, I'm trying! More cocktail shots coming soon!

Here's a funny example of what I have been doing lately, in preparation for our Tiki Oasis symposium. I've got a green screen and I'm not afraid to use it!


Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Good For What Ails You

There are so many reasons you might have a headache. Traffic, deadlines, encounters with low-quality individuals, non-stop politics - it all seems tailor-made for cranial pain. Never fear, though! My studies show that this lovely libation washes away the tension on a gentle tide of rum.

All better...

The Spotless Mind

2 oz light rum (I like El Dorado 3 year old)
1/2 oz ginger liqueur
3/4 oz pineapple juice
1/2 oz fresh lime juice
A dash of cherry bitters

Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass.

Good luck!