'Cheers' To Rim Country Concoctions



There's an old tune by singer/songwriter John Prine called "Yes, I Guess They Oughta Name a Drink After You."

It's sung from the point of view of a trod-upon guy who suggests that perhaps the most appropriate drink to commemorate the woman who dumped him might be Near Beer.

In fact, naming drinks after people, places and things has been going on a long time. The Bloody Mary, for example, was named for Mary, Queen of Scots, and is thus considered the "queen among drinks."

The Gin Rickey, a mixture of gin, carbonated waters and lime juice, was named after Civil War Col. James K. Rickey, who ordered it so often that a bartender named it for him.

Kickapoo Joy Juice, a home brew favored by early settlers in Pennsylvania and Ohio, was named for the Algonquin Kickapoo Indians who also enjoyed the beverage.

The Manhattan Cocktail was named for New York's Manhattan Club where it was first mixed in the mid-1870s.

And the infamous Harvey Wallbanger was named for California surfer Tom Harvey, who often overindulged on this blend of orange juice, vodka, and Galliano, and just as often walked into the wall when exiting his favorite bar.

In case you're muttering, "So what," this is all leading somewhere very important. Just as New Orleans is world famous for its potent Hurricane, so the Rim country needs to establish an overpriced drink or two that will enhance our sense of identity while simultaneously filling our coffers with the dollars of tipsy tourists.

Here are 13 suggestions to get us started:

Mogollon Monster. Named for the legendary bigfoot-type creature spotted lurking in the forests of the Rim country. This one is served in a monster-sized glass and is rumored to grow hair where none existed before.

Beeline Bomb. This one is exactly 87 proof and is served in a commemorative glass bearing the image of an Arizona 87 road marker.

Juniper Joy Juice. The juniper berry is used to make gin anyway, and lord knows we have an inexhaustible supply.

Schum Shot. Since statues are expensive, this could be the first in a series of commemorative beverages honoring our civic leaders. Each one could be introduced with an official proclamation by the Payson Town Council beginning something like, "Whereas, Mayor Ray Schum has served our community with valor and honor, and whereas, we have to drink something anyway ..."

Wet Your Wolfe Whistle. If we're going to honor our illustrious mayor, maybe our dapper vice mayor should also be recognized. This drink should also be huge with "Wheel of Fortune" fans.

Shoofly Shooter. Perhaps the real reason for the demise of everybody's favorite prehistoric civilization, this concoction is served with an arrow-shaped swizzle stick.

Monsoon Mama. Packs a wallop, but tends to be a little on the dry side. Just in case we get lucky, it is served with one of those paper umbrellas.

Rim Country Cooler. Lest Valley residents forget why it is so important for them to come up here and leave their money. This is called playing to your strength.

Harvey Wal-Marter. Life in the Rim country begins and ends at the Supercenter. Served in a glass adorned with yellow smiley faces, this drink comes with a disclaimer that reads, "This establishment not responsible for injuries caused by falling prices."

Developers' Delight. Since "the developers are now in charge," we best pay homage to them with a drink that is, of course, filled to the very brim.

Water Saver. One way to conserve water, this baby is 100% pure booze. Not available on the rocks.

The Star Valley Stinger. Not exactly an endearing name, but historically accurate considering what the Apaches did to the man the community was named after.

Payson Punch. Speaking of history, this one captures our rough-and-tumble days as a cowboy town.

Happy Hour, anyone?

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