Vodka is Meant to be Tasteless

It’s 11pm. I couldn’t sleep so I started learning the alphabet in sign language. I’m on letter K.

*****

I was at the grocery store today spending an excessive amount of time choosing vodka. I don’t drink much vodka. Vodka, to me, is a vice of drunken sorority girls trying to impress pre-pubescent boys by dancing on tables. Above my kitchen sink, behind several bottles of antacids and ibuprofen, there’s a bottle of 1800 silver tequila and a Johnny Walker, Black Label. Why Vodka? Why now? Why the sudden change of heart? I don’t know. I bought a plastic jug of Cranberry Cherry 15% juice. And, I guess, sometimes I just want to feel like a cheap sorority girl.

Vodka’s a rather cheap commodity. When reviewing vodka, people always say that vodka is supposed to be tasteless. By tasteless, they mean it tastes like shit. Vodka’s supposed to taste like straight alcohol, the type of alcohol you could use to sanitize and disinfect kitchen countertops and bathroom shower curtains. When people say it’s tasteless, it means it taste like straight alcohol, no preservatives, no remnants of oak barrels, no spices from Africa, no tannins and extracurriculars. Just alcohol.

I spent most of the time between labels: the price tag underneath the glass bottle on the shelf, and the flag labeled beneath the glass bottle I was holding. Apparently, Sweden engineers their own vodka. I don’t know if I trust Sweden and its socialist molecules; its population of 10 million people and how they say their breaking grounds on humanitarian rights by censoring their newspapers. However, on the shelf is the illuminated Russian brand. Russia: a country that built an entire empire on vodka, whose loudest news ‘is’ the censorship of their newspapers. I decided to choose the cheaper of the two. The Swedish brand provides a 50% price cut. At the end of the day, I’m choosing between rubbing alcohol and rubbing alcohol. Both are disinfectants. Both are trying to do their job, and trying to forget what it looks like.

When I get home, I fill a porcelain cup a quarter up with the Swedish flow of clear transparency. When I pour in the pink fluid of cranberry cherry, it looks like a magic trick. One drink in and I feel like your typical sorority girl: mediocre grades, failing relationships, and the want and struggle to keep everything together, altogether forgotten and forfeited just for one weekend and the hope to restart again.

For a moment, I feel better. For a moment, I enjoy temporary.

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