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Never Been Kissed

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Never Been Kissed

Image credit: Never Been Kissed, 1999.

Somehow, my life has turned into a Drew Barrymore movie.  I’m a fully grown adult woman about to attend her first prom, 18 years late. Also, I’m really hoping to be kissed by a hot teacher (preferably, the one I’m married to). Am I nervous about the big night?  No- because Never Been Kissed (Disc/Download) is there to show me the way.

In high school, I was totally Josie Grossie. Bad skin, retainer, oily hair, hands permanently attached to a book. Prom was too terrifying a prospect for that girl to handle. But then I grew up, lost the retainer and the zits, got a stylish bob, started writing books in addition to reading them, and realized maybe a big school dance isn’t such a scary thing after all. Drew Barrymore certainly handles it well in this movie, as an adult posing as a high school student for her newspaper. She wears her Shakespearean prom gown with confidence, knowing she’s way past all the pettiness. The mean girls still exist, and they still try and torment her, but the great thing about growing up is that you realize how lame the bullies are. Plus, this lady can legally drink  and they can’t.  That privilege trumps flawless Jessica Alba skin any day.

The prom theme of Never Been Kissed is great literary pairs. This got me thinking about cocktail pairs—those two ingredient drinks that are a perfect combination. High school Elizabeth would have gone for beer, but adult Liz gravitates toward fancy liqueurs. So why not combine the two? While watching Never Been Kissed, I recommend drinking this Pink Satin cocktail.

Pink Satin

1 oz Campari

6 oz IPA beer (I use Ballast Point Grapefruit Sculpin)

Grapefruit bitters

Fill a highball with ice, and pour in Campari and beer. Stir gently to combine.  Top with a few dashes of grapefruit bitters.

Forever Young

It’s pretty rare in life to get a do-over. Not that I regret my high school experience, but I don’t think there’s a single person out there who wouldn’t like to pass some of their adult knowledge onto their younger self. Personally, I wish seventeen-year-old me would have known the following things:

  • You will never be thinner than you are right now. Enjoy it.
  • Don’t stress about not having a boyfriend. You’ll find your prince charming, and he will make you laugh every single day.
  • It’s okay not to know what you want to be when you grow up.  You’ll figure it out eventually.
  • Turtleneck and a sweatshirt- not a good look.


The Wedding Singer

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Image credit New Line Cinema, The Wedding Singer, 1998

Image credit New Line Cinema, The Wedding Singer, 1998

As my five year wedding anniversary approaches, I’m reminded of a film that was a big inspiration to me in the planning of my nuptials. Namely, it was an inspiration of the kind of wedding I didn’t want. No big hair, or behemoth dresses, or tacky reception halls, or drunken best man speeches for me and my beloved (though the orchestral version of Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin” did make an appearance during my aisle walk, in steel drum form). The film I referenced was that classic homage to the 1980’s, The Wedding Singer (DVD/Download). I like to watch this every year in the spring as wedding season rolls around, to remind me of how lucky I am that I didn’t get married in the 80’s. Shoulder pads and perms- oh the horror!

The Wedding Singer is a sweet movie starring Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore as two people who are unfortunately saddled with fiancés that are totally wrong for both of them. He’s a wedding singer, she’s a waitress, and they meet cute at a catered event as Alexis Arquette covers Boy George songs and pre-teen boys drink too many rum-and-cokes. Sandler and Barrymore are absolutely adorable together, and the script is chock full of hilarious 80’s references. I never really cared for Adam Sandler before this movie, but in The Wedding Singer, he proved that he can be funny and heartfelt (and that he can totally rock a permed mullet). Supporting roles played by Christine Taylor, Jon Lovitz, and the always amazing Steve Buscemi add to the comedic scenes, and even Billy Idol makes a cameo toward the end. If you’re a fan of 80’s nostalgia and romantic comedies, trust me, this is your movie.

My drink this week was inspired by #1 Miami Vice fan Glenn Guglia, Drew Barrymore’s fiancé. Glenn is your typical 80’s smarmy frat boy/stock broker type, and his drink of choice is the classic 80’s cocktail, the Alabama Slammer. It’s sweet, boozy, it’s empty of anything substantial- it’s the 1980’s in a glass.

1 oz Southern Comfort

1oz Sloe Gin

1oz Amaretto

2oz Orange Juice

Garnish: Orange wheel and maraschino cherry

Add all the ingredients into a shaker filled with ice. Give it your best Tom Cruise-in-Cocktail shake, then strain into a highball glass filled with ice. Garnish with orange wheel and cherry.

Alabama Slammer

My advice to you on this one- watch your alcohol consumption closely because you don’t want to end up like Julia Guglia, climbing into a Delorean with vomit in your hair. Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore would go on to make many more movies together over the years, but this one is by far my favorite. The soundtrack is great, and I dare you not to be humming “Do You Really Want to Hurt Me” long after it ends. Just be careful of “Ladies Night”- Jon Lovitz has a tendency to get into my head and never leave. Cheers!