April 20, 2021
Another (don’t miss the “My Little Gypsy Cheat-heart” Cocktail Talk) from the sixth Day Keene in the Detective Pulps collection called, strikingly enough, Homicide House, this story, much like the earlier-mentioned yarn, I believe was eventually the basis, or partially at least, for a Day Keene novel, this time Home is the Sailor (which you can see more on if you check out all the Day Keene Cocktail Talks). This story has all the Day Keene traits: the action jumps right in, the narrator’s in a mess of trouble, there’s a murder or more, double-dealing, and boozing and carousing. And the below quote, which uses “boiled” in a way we should bring back.
“I don’t think I did kill her,” Stanton told him wearily. “No matter how drunk a man was he’d remember a thing like that.”
Waddy was dubious. “I don’t know about that. You were plenty boiled when she walked you out of here.”
“Had he been drinking all evening?” Marks asked.
“No,” the barman admitted. “As far as I know, he only had two old fashioneds. But he must have been drinking before, because the second one hit him hard. Corliss had one hell of a time getting him into the car.”
— Day Keene, “If a Body Meet a Body”
May 7, 2019
I’ve only had one other Cocktail Talk post from Ian Fleming
I’m sad to admit, because (also sad to admit), I haven’t read all of his legendary James Bond books. Though I recently read On Her Majesty’s Secret Service
, and it reminded me that I need to go back and catch up on all of them. While a few bits are a little dated in a way, they move fast, they’re fun, and Bond seems a little less a super hero, a little more relatable somehow, than in the movies, especially the recent ones (but really, all of them in a way, though Mr. Connery is the closest, of course). This particular book is, well, I don’t want to give anything away if you haven’t read it (though you should, even if you’ve seen the movies, cause they’re different indeed), but at least feel okay saying that it’s just-past-mid-way in the series, and features Bond skiing a fair amount, among other things. Moves along quickly, too, so while it might take you longer than watching a movie, it won’t cut too much into your day, and while you read, might as well have a drink! Which the below Cocktail quote might lead you to, too.
With efficient, housekeeperly movement he took out a bottle of Pinchbottle Haig & Haig, another of I.W. Harper bourbon, two pint glasses that looked like Waterford, a bucket of ice cubes, a siphon of soda, and a flagon of iced water. One by one he placed these on the desk between his chair and Bond’s. Then while Bond poured himself a stiff bourbon and water with plenty of ice, he went and sat down across the desk from Bond, reached for the Haig & Haig and said, looking Bond very directly in the eye, “I learned who you are from a good friend in the Deuxième in Paris.”
— Ian Fleming, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service