Pour yourself a glass of this Tequila Monkey Gland, a cocktail that typically calls for gin, which I’ve simply swapped out for this agave based spirit, and settle in for story time.
From ages 12 to 17, I lived on a farm. I’m sure the will come as a shock to many of you who consider me a city mouse who spends most of her time eating, drinking, or shopping.
So, let me be clear, when I say I lived on a farm, I mean that we lived on 24 acres on the outskirts of Cambridge, Ontario. Sixteen acres were farmland which we rented to a neighbouring farmer who cultivated a rotation of crops year over year. The remaining eight acres were a mix of forest, an expansive front yard, a backyard and a barn with stables.
You probably won’t be stunned to learn that I had a horse. My horse was a beautiful Belgian quarter horse named Charlie, a mare. She was a lovely chestnut colour and let me acquire a whole series of new accessories, from riding boots to felted helmets.
Charlie shared the stables with a one-eyed pony named Buddy, two roosters, and on occasion, our rambunctious, yellow-eyed bearded collie, Jude. I was also the proud owner of a bichon-poo named Arny, after my favourite childhood actor, Arnold Schwarzenegger. Unlike the other animals, Arny was a lap-dog and preferred lazing about the house than being outside. We also found a tiny multi-coloured kitten mewing under our deck one day, who we adopted as our own and named Nutmeg.
It was quite the menagerie on the farm. I’ve previously told stories about my misadventures at a myriad of weird and wonderful day camps: from rowing to bowling. At age 12, after spending a week of outdoor ed at a camp over the course of the school year, my parents decided to ship me off for two weeks at an all girls camp in the Muskokas, Tanamakoon.
The experience at summer camp wasn’t quite what I’d enjoy when we went on our school trip. We were constrained to drab uniforms comprised of dark green shorts, knee-high socks, and pale yellow t-shirts. Our time was structured to the nth degree and, oh, did I mention, it was ALL girls?
While I was away at camp, my parents were doing some renovations around the house. They had a painter, Kathy, in to freshen up the walls.
One day, at the end of her shift, Kathy told my Dad that she’d seen Jude, the rambunctious bearded collie, get a bit rough with one of the roosters.
My Dad said, “Oh, I’m sure he was just playing.”
“No, REALLY rough,” replied Kathy.
Jude was fond of pawing at the roosters and once while my Mom and I were mucking the stalls, Jude came in and started terrorizing them. He was chasing them around the barn until, in a frenzy, one of the roosters had the half-baked idea of trying to escape his menace by trying to squeeze under the stall door. It’s colourful little head was stuck right in the inch-wide gap under the door and he stopped moving. We then managed to get hold of Jude, but to our terror, thought the rooster had committed suicide in a desperate attempt to escape the dog.
We screamed for my Dad to come and help us deal with this situation, dispatch of the lifeless rooster and restore peace to the barn. My Dad sauntered down to the barn and when he went to free the rooster from its final resting place, it squawked back to life. It was playing possum.
Well, on the fateful day when Kathy the painter told my Dad that Jude had got REALLY rough with the rooster, it wasn’t quite such a happy ending. Jude, like the many-faced god, demanded a name, and he got his due. While “playing” with the rooster, Jude had managed to pin down the rooster’s head with his oversized paw and then took it clean off like the fucking executioner.
For the record, Jude was otherwise an exceedingly friendly dog who, really, just didn’t know his own strength. My poor father had to deal with the rooster remains and I returned from camp a week later to find we were down a rooster in our little animal house. From that point forward, we kept Jude well away from the poultry.
Tequila Monkey Gland
- 2 oz reposado tequila
- 2 dashes Dillon's absinthe
- ½ oz lemon juice
- ½ oz orange juice
- ½ oz grenadine
- 1 strip orange peel, for garnish
Shake all ingredients (except the orange peel), with ice, then strain into a coupe. Garnish with a twist of orange peel.
Recipe adapted from: Ward, Paul. “Glandula del Moro.” Death & Co. Modern Classic Cocktails. Berkeley: Ten Speed Press, 2014.