I read a story yesterday that Fireball Whiskey is being recalled in Europe. Why? Here's why:
Late last week, the whiskey’s European bottler informed the makers of Fireball that they were out of compliance with European regulations. The Fireballers prepare two versions: a recipe for Canada and the United States containing the chemical, propylene glycol, and a European version that has less of the stuff. Propylene glycol is used for a variety of industrial, cosmetic, and food production uses. In your Prestone Low-Tox, it's an antifreeze. In Fireball, it's used as a sweetener, its makers say. (And yes, according to the Centers for Disease Control, it's "generally regarded as safe for use in food.")
“It appears that we shipped our North American formula to Europe and found that one ingredient is out of compliance with European regulations,” a Fireball spokeswoman told The Daily Beast in an email. “Finland, Sweden and Norway have asked to recall those specific batches which is what we are doing.” (There’s no word of an American recall.)
Typically when reading news that you are or have ingested the same shit that is used in internal combustion engines, it sends a bit of a jolt to the system. In this case, however, my first reaction was…whoopty do? And why was it whoopty do? Because I drink a lot. And I've drunk a lot of stuff that I'm pretty sure could be used to keep cars moving, stop cars from moving, heat small countries, and or cure cancer. For the record, I love Fireball Whiskey. That cinnamon-flavored goodness goes down with the sweet sensation of a June afternoon in Georgia sitting on a porch with no socks on while James Taylor's "Fire and Rain" plays in the background as the smell of a plate of yams with extra syrup wafts through the air. You wanna know how it feeeeeeeeeeeeeeels? Just like that.
Back to the lecture at hand. Upon reading the news about Fireball and anti-freeze and some of the ensuing conversation in the world's greatest discussion forum, Facebook, I realized that folks like to get into an uproar over nothing. For one, the levels of propylene glycol used in Fireball are safe. And youse a fuckin' fool if you don't think that you're drinking a chemistry lab any time you go out and drink. For two, I've drunk with many folks who got their panties in a bunch. Trust me, kimo, we've been drinking shit way worse than anti-freeze. Such as?
1. Bacardi 151
I have no idea what chemical compounds exist in Bacardi 151. What I do know is that this shit is clearly flammable (axe me know I know) and it pierces your soul as you drink it. 151 laughs at Fireball and calls it a bitch, while kissing its mother. Do you know what I also know? I used to drink this shit for fun. During homecoming at Morehouse, me and my band of wayward souls used to buy bottles of 151 and pass them around taking shots until the bottles were empty. I'm fairly certain that some of the brush fires that have lit up California were started with 151 or any variant of its firebreathing cousins.
Everybody who has ever drunk Everclear remembers their first time. It's like losing your virginity and innocence at the same time while somebody lights your esophagus on fire…then smiles at you. The suck fick who created Everclear is a bad bad man. He (or she, though I can't see a woman making something so vile and so evil) had no regard for human life or the college education process. I have no proof of this, but I'm fairly certain that the key ingredient in Agent Orange was Everclear. Point is, I've drunk Everclear. On purpose. I feel like I could clean my bathroom with Everclear and it would be cleaner than it would be with any Lysol or Comet products. Mr. Clean doesn't have shit on Everclear. To show you how stupid people are - and by stupid I mean me and my friends - we tried to make Everclear MORE potent. I won't even tell you how. Just know that when you try to make some shit that is already 190 proof (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) MORE proofy, you are asking for death. Keep in mind, once shit gets to 200 proof, you're starting to get to carcinogenic levels. YOU COULD GIVE YOURSELF THE CANCER. Dude, 190 proof damn near LITERALLY means you're drinking STRAIGHT FUEL.
I DRANK FUEL. FUCK ANTI-FREEZE.
I don't even ask folks what they put in moonshine anymore. Mostly because I don't want to know. When you start hearing motherfuckers mention laundry detergent and eyes of newts and aglets and shit that Walter White was using to cook his famous blue meth, you just turn a blind-eye to knowledge and proclaim that ignorance is bliss. Again, I'm pretty sure I've drunk laundry detergent and niggas is worried about anti-freeze? Anti-freeze? We talkin' about anti-freeze???
(To be clear again, its just a compound that's used to make anti-freeze. I don't suggest going to AutoZone and buying anti-freeze and drinking it. That's bad. Don't do it.)
I don't care what anybody says, gin is the first poison God created. Snake venom is gin. Gin rummy? I don't trust it. Gin tastes like bad decisions in Singapore brothels. Gin is Drumline 2.
I see your face. You are saying, "the movie?" No, not the movie. Let me tell you a quick story. Many years ago at Morehouse's homecoming, my boys and I all descended upon my boy's home for the weekend. In this home upon which we had descended for the weekend, he had an errant bottle of whiskey. The official brand name of said errant bottle of whiskey escapes me. All I know is that I took ONE SIP of said errant whiskey and my side began to hurt. Substantially. Enough to make me consider calling 911. So of course, niggas that we were/are, EVERYBODY decides to shoot this shit. Myself included. I was in a lot of pain. I made bad decisions. I lived to drink again. We tore the label off that bottle and put some tape on it and named it Idlewild. I have no idea what that was, but I know that my spleen hurt. I assume it was my spleen. I almost sent myself to the hospital because of some alcohol. Fireball ain't shit.
My point in all of this? I can't be upset about drinking levels of shit used to make anti-freeze. Clearly, I've been drinking poison for years. I'm just glad this particular poison tastes like cinnamon.
I like cinnamon.