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Drink Like a Pirate Day

On Facebook today is International Drink Like a Pirate Day. I like the caramel coloured drink. It's great straight or mixed with fruit. My favourite rum drinks are the mojito and the caipirinha. Maybe I just like limes.

Rum has a long history in the British West Indies. I would venture to say rum is synonymous with the West Indies.

Some of the many other names for rum are Nelson's blood, kill-devil, demon water, pirate's drink, and Barbados water.1

Barbados water? Yes, Barbados lays claim to being the oldest rum producing country in the Americas.

So what am I, a man from the West Indies – the place where rum was first distilled from cane sugar and molasses2 – to do on International Drink Like a Pirate Day?

For my birthday my sister-in-law and her husband bought me the rock glass and ice ball. It's the perfect glass for drinking fine rums and scotch. A small amount of the best I have available – Mount Gay 1703 – swirled around an ice sphere in a glass designed to evenly chill that liquid seemed just the way to celebrate. Don't mix this rum with fruit juice on penalty of being made to walk the plank over shark-infested waters. Mount Gay claims to be the oldest rum distillery in the world with production going back to 1703. My friend +Mohit picked some up for me on a trip to Bermuda. Thank you, Mohit.

But before I could sip my libation I remembered that I needed a photo for my 52-week project. I also needed some practice with my strobes. I'm doing an action and portrait shoot for some martial arts – Tae Kwon Do – black belts next weekend and I know I need to get more experience with the lights.

I found a white sheet of craft board, placed it on a chair, positioned my subjects, and started firing away. It took me a few shots to get the lighting to something that felt good enough. Good enough for me anyway. I still need a lot of practice.

I downloaded the images to my iPad and did some minor post-processing in Snapseed. I used autocorrect and cropping features. I like the result.

Now back ta enjoyin' me rum, aaaarr! What is your favourite alcoholic drink?

Camera: Nikon D40
Lens: AF-S Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 VR
Software : Snapseed for iPad

  1. Wikipedia entry on the Etymology of Rum 
  2. There is evidence that something like rum -- a sugar wine -- was distilled in Asia. Check out The Tradition of Rum and the Sea on the Ministry of Rum website. 

August 27th, 2011 - "god of the storm"

hurricane - ORIGIN mid 16th cent.: from Spanish huracán, probably from Taino hurakán ‘god of the storm.’

Tropical Storm Irene is making its way up the north-eastern coast of the United States of America. Despite growing up in the British West Indies or Anglo-Caribbean for the geopolitically challenged, I've never experienced a hurricane. Somehow, despite living in Antigua, Barbados, St. Lucia and St. Vincent my family always seemed to somewhere else when a major storm hit.

Funny thing is I've experienced a few minor earthquakes — Antigua is on a fault line — and blizzards. I expect we'll have more rain — and flooding — than strong damaging winds.

One thing I found while doing my research is that a hurricane is a type of cyclone that is unique in that it has a warm core. Hurricanes are called different things depending on geography — typhoon, tropical storm, or tropical depression. Lot's of people get depressed after a hurricane.