How to Murder a Martini

The candy-corn martini might be my greatest triumph yet, and as you know that’s really saying something.

Came to me during Happy Hour, as all great ideas do: If I plunk a dozen kernels of candy corn in a standard martini, hold it up to the light till it fogs, I might have something that captures the great American spirit.

The Candy-Corn Martini: For unto you is born this day in the City of Angels, a savior, Christ our corn. And this should be a sign unto you…

Look, my mouth has always been a spiritual place — where bar foods go to get married, a tiny chapel for dinner and drink.

I’m keeping it open extra hours during this amazing month, this pre-pre-Lenten festival that leads to the holidays.

If I work it right, you won’t see a gap between Halloween and Christmas. It’ll just be one long wad of incredible moments.

Oh, these October days. Can I gush a little more? In LA, the leaves don’t change but the sunlight does; the afternoons now look like apple cider.

This particular fall has an early start – a little crisp, a little soupy. The other night, I made a fire. And a candy-corn martini. OK, two.

I get so easily caught up. Bought my grandbaby some pumpkin PJs the other day, and a tiny cable-knit sweater that will make her look like an Irish Christmas ornament.

And each night on the telly, there seems to be a better ballgame than the last.

How about dem Dodgers? I promised my Twitter followers they would beat the Cards, and they did (just barely).

I have some issues with the Dodgers — their front office is an arrogant bunch of sap-holes. But as the Dodgers go, so goes LA. The players bring a lot of happiness to this big funky church. I root for them every chance.

One of the best things about watching a Dodger game is trying to identify the near-dead celebs in the expensive seats behind home plate.

True story: The Dodgers hire a guy just to jiggle awake the old goats after every game. If he can’t, he dials up their publicists.

Among the old celebs the other night was Lou Adler, the ancient beatnik in the white beret.

Adler is to music what Frank Gehry is to stainless steel. He’s an LA legend, a pal of Jack Nicholson, the record producer behind “Tapestry” and a hundred other hits. Among the vintage celebs (Pat Sajak, Mary Hart), Adler stands out as someone who did some really worthwhile stuff.

In watching him, I had this urge to ask: “Hey Lou, does today’s music sound like bus brakes to you? Because it sure does to me.”


By the way, it frosts my pumpkins when the rich people in the front-row seats don’t stand up during Dodger rallies.  As a friend pointed out, the true fans are up in the nose bleeds. During rallies, they stand on their seats, cheering wildly, painting each other in mustard and beer.

My peeps!

The Los Angeles Dodgers are a Neiman Marcus franchise with an increasingly working-class fan base. Go figure.

I’ve been enjoying the LA Rams lately too. They are like a Ron Howard movie, their gee-whiz Opie coach absorbing all the blame when the team occasionally stumbles.

I wouldn’t think that’s a recipe for success. But it seems to work with these jock millennials. Now Sean McVay’s got himself an Opie quarterback, a gee-whiz soulmate. Only good things ahead.

I don’t cover sports anymore, for obvious reasons, but I’m glad to point out that LA’s pro teams have the best front offices in the business – Lakers, Rams, Dodgers. Savvy execs, super-smart GMs…the best and the brightest.  

Even the Chargers have created some heat, with their super-young quarterback with the weed-dealer hair.

Man, we’re lucky. LA doesn’t suffer fools or second place.

Sure, our pizza and architecture mostly suck, but our fans are pretty interesting. That’s where the history is, in folks like Lou Adler and Vin Scully.

In LA, the monuments actually move. Some of them drive Bentleys (nobody’s perfect).

I was remembering Kid Scully the other night during the Dodger game, griping about how the current crop of baseball announcers rattles off stats all game long. For a moment, thought I was back in trig class. Yikes.

Vin Scully took another approach. Vinny did Dodger games like he was narrating a Thornton Wilder play. He’d tell us about the characters, the town, the back stories, who secretly loved whom.

Speaking of love…

“I love watching men be men and having a good time,” my friend Laura texted after the dramatic win on Wednesday.

Well, there’s an ancient notion, old as baseball itself: Love.

Oh, and men being men.

Seems that nobody appreciates men anymore. So it’s nice to see us have a moment for a change.

Cue the confetti! Light the fireworks! Next up: Men being men!

Oh, these textbook American moments – men acting like men and maybe something more, showing grit, courage and class.

Filling our beer cups with hope.

The Oct. 16 Happy Hour Hike is sold out. Thanks for all who responded. Info will come by email early next week. Look for the hike to launch around 2 pm, with details to follow on meet-up location and our terrific post-hike watering hole. If you missed out, we’ll have another adventure in November. Cheers!

9 thoughts on “How to Murder a Martini

  1. I definitely celebrate men being men. Who else would come up with a candy corn martini? BTW, great news for your wad of celebrations throughout the Holidays: all 3 beloved Peanuts specials are being shown on PBS this year. Your outrage was noted and Apple TV relented. Huzzah. Worth hoisting a candy corn martini for!

  2. I made SO much noise when Chris Taylor smacked that ball in the 9th! Yelling, cheering, clapping. There’s no one like our Dodgers!! Have loved and rooted for them since 1958 and will thru my eternity. There will be a lot of prayers going up for the next 3-5 games 🙏🙏. Thanks, Chris, for your always amusing ramblings.

  3. Best comment on the Dodgers/SF game came from wonderful Bradley Whitford. His take on the game (pre-9th inning magic by Taylor): “Watching this
    @Dodgers game is like passing a kidney stone. Without the morphine.” He clearly needed a candy corn martini!!

  4. Not sure you actually murdered that martini. You did intentionally drop candy corn into it so possibly assault and battery. I will however try this libation and get back to you. How ‘bout candy corn ice cubes? Go big or go home.

  5. Candy Martinis and beisbol brouhaha. Gee, I dunno. The Dodgers are forever from Brooklyn, the Chargers from San Diego, the Raiders from Oakland, etc., and the players are from anywhere and everywhere, and may not be here tomorrow. It’s breathtaking. It seems as though money is the real reason for regional loyalty and the accompanying fervor; thus, fans can be bought. Though baseball is a lovely game of mind, body, and spirit—a game for the ages, I don’t want to be a kept man, so I find it hard to get feverish in such an obvious seduction, though the individual players, managers, front office persona, et al continue to fascinate. And the theater of the game itself, the dramas and cognitive twists of the strategies, the vivid mirroring of life’s never ending competitive grist—these are the things to love, I think. I don’t give a damn who wins, I just want to see a great game, preferably in person, pre-Covid, of course. And then there are The Cubbies. When the Cubs won a World Series a few years back, I went around in a delirium for the next few days. Few or none of us are immune to all blandishments. As for candy martinis, surely you blaspheme…

  6. When I serve candy corn martinis on Halloween, I will insist that everyone raise a glass to your inspired invention.

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