August 1, 2023

Cocktail Talk: Nightfall, Part II

Nightfall by David Goodis

Back a few years now (not a century’s worth, but a few, which over the last decade can feel nearly like a century at time – at other times, barely a second. Time? It’s a strange one), I had a Nightfall Cocktail Talk, and it was peachy! But I just took a re-read into this noir-ish book by David Goodis (nearly the noirish-est). It’s a dandy read, by the way. A twisty-ish, nearly character study in a way. I mean, there’s a murder that’s happened, and a crime (in Seattle! Of all spots. Though the action as it is takes place in NYC). And a beating. And some hidden? Lost? Spent? money around somewhere. And love, too! And maybe camaraderie. It’s interesting, in that (as mentioned in the early Nightfall Cocktail Talking), you feel there is no way it’s gonna work out happily for anyone, I felt that multiple times. but . . . well, I’m not giving it away. Read the book yourself! I will give away the below Cocktail Talk quote, however.

In this particular Village place there wasn’t much doing. Four men at the far end of the bar were having a quiet discussion concerning horses. A young man and a young woman were taking their time with long, cool drinks and smiling at each other. A short, fat man was sullenly gazing into a glass of beer.

Vanning turned back to his Gin Rickey. A peculiar sense of loneliness came upon him, and he knew it was just that and nothing more. He wanted to talk to somebody. About anything.

–David Goodis, Nightfall

February 27, 2009

Cocktail Talk: No Business for a Lady

I love old pulp novels (the pocket book size especially), with their snazzy (and sometimes silly-ly sexy) covers, mysteries, and generally jazzed up writing. Not to mention that the characters within tend to drink lots and the reading tends to be roll quickly and be perfect when accompanied by a drink–if it’s a drink that’s in the book, even better.


Maybe it’s not a celebrated piece of detective fiction (though the story’s not that bad), but if you can find the book No Business for a Lady, it’s perfect for when you want to match the cocktail you’re having with the cocktail the main character (a feisty redhead with an hourglass figure, of course) is having, because the range of drinks she has is wider than most. As evidence: the three quotes below. So, go pour yourself something and open a book, for gawd’s sake.



Although the doors were wide-open and the temperature was in the nineties outside, it was air conditioned and cool in the dimly lighted interior. I picked out a booth and sat down, and when the waiter came I ordered a Gin Rickey.


And just to prove to him that I knew how to take care of the whips and jingles, I built a couple of Ramos Fizzes.


My stomach was still queasy so I went to the bar downstairs and mixed myself a Gin Fizz.

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