|In Baltimore, in the mid 1800's there was
a man who sold corpses to the hospital for research. He stored the
cadavers in cheap whiskey to ferment them before turning them over
to the researchers. He then sold the whiskey to the medical students...
thus the term "rot gut."
was the accepted practice in Babylonia 4,000 years ago that for
a month after the wedding, the bride's father would supply his son-in-law
with all the mead he could drink. Mead is a honey beer, and because
their calendar was lunar based, this period was called the "honey
month" or what we know today as the "honeymoon."
Before thermometers were invented, brewers would
dip a thumb or finger into the mix to find the right temperature
for adding yeast. Too cold, and the yeast wouldn't grow. Too hot,
and the yeast would die. This thumb in the beer is where we get
the phrase "rule of thumb."
In English pubs, ale is ordered by pints and
quarts. So in old England, when customers got unruly, the bartender
would yell at them to mind their own pints and quarts and settle
down. It's where we get the phrase "mind your P's and Q's."
After consuming a bucket or two of vibrant brew
they called aul, or ale, the Vikings would head fearlessly into
battle often without armor or even shirts. In fact, the term "berserk"
means "bare shirt" in Norse, and eventually took on the
meaning of their wild battles.
In 1740 Admiral Vernon of the British fleet decided
to water down the Navy's rum. Needless to say, the sailors weren't
too pleased and called Admiral Vernon, Old Grog, after the stiff
wool grogram coats he wore. The term "grog" soon began
to mean the watered down drink itself. When you were drunk on this
grog, you were "groggy", a word still in use today.
Many years ago in England, pub frequenters had
a whistle baked into the rim or handle of their ceramic cups. When
they needed a refill, they used the whistle to get some service.
"Wet your whistle," is the phrase inspired by this practice.
....So during the holiday "honeymoon"
use this "rule of thumb".... grab your "rot gut"
and "wet your whistle". Try not to get "groggy"
or go too "berserk" and always "mind you P's and