It is difficult to watch television, listen to music, or shop for an item without witnessing some type of product placement. Formal commercials seem to have fallen by the wayside, as informal methods of positioning product has zoomed to the forefront. Are they effective, and get the products to subliminally “stick” in the minds of the consumer?
One might say that they are successful, that the repetitive nature of these products popping up makes them effective — you can only go so long without noticing something. How many times will you page through the catalog for a company like Pottery Barn, as you search for a sectional for your newly-refurbished living room, before you notice the bottle of No. 209 gin placed ever-so-covertly on the coffee table? As you envision yourself in this party, possibly working in the same office with such beautiful people, and finally focus on the main topic of the Bud Light Platinum being peddled, is there still room in your mind to absorb the TWO pairs of Beats by Dre headphones on the DJ table? I’m sure Budweiser hopes that their pretty blue bottle has taken up at least 98% of your attention by then.
We can’t all notice these subliminal maneuvers. I mean, how many of us focused on the bottles that Tony Stark had on his backbar as he poured a drink in The Avengers movie? Yeah, we noticed Scorpion Mezcal and a couple other brands, but would your girlfriend have seen them if you didn’t tell her? Maybe so, and that’s why you’re with her — but just in the case she didn’t, she’s probably similar to countless other people. Oh well, ponder that while watching the “Happy Hour” of Around the Horn & Pardon the Interruption on ESPN, shows that have everything in common with their sponsor.
What’s in your cocktail cabinet? Arbitrary bottles, the Ghosts of Parties Past? Treasured gifts opened once every Blue Label moon? A steady parade of cascading and rotating bottles, mostly of a mainstream variety?
Congenial greetings to those who hold to keeping wondrous offerings in their cocktail cabinet. Whether at home or on vacation, visitors abound — they must be catered to with fervor and warmth. Anyone can offer someone a bit of hooch you can pick up from any corner store. But to have a collection of offerings that make the person really take note that it’s more than just having bottles, and exudes the effort undertaken to bring them all together. Pair that with some attractive and functional glassware and cocktailing tools to make your favorite barkeep smile, and you’ll be on to something. Take care of yourself, and the ones around you. And always stay prepared for The Hour.
“With the introduction, in the 1920s, of a new social pastime — the cocktail party — a new piece of furniture was created, inspired by the 18th-century sideboard with its ice drawers and fitted decanter cabinets. Intended for storing all the accoutrements associated with the making of cocktails, the cocktail cabinet contained fitted shelves and bottle holders.
It often took the external form of a traditional writing desk, while its modern interior was frequently a flamboyant, conversation-making piece of furniture veneered with a host of exotic woods, equipped with lights, and lined with mirror glass. Far from its original intention as a piece of furniture designed for writing, the cocktail cabinet added a more frivolous and decadent note to the fashionable interior that chimed with the contemporary taste for luxury and glamour, which persisted throughout the Jazz Age and the Great Depression.” — Furniture: World Styles From Classical to Contemporary, by Judith Miller
Funny how connections of drinking culture pop up everywhere you look, even when you’re “not” looking. The Dark and Stormy cocktail — Goslings’s Black Seal Rum, Barritt’s ginger beer, with maybe a squeeze of lime —is said to be the national cocktail of Bermuda. I found out about it after drinking a bastardized — but still tasty — version of Appleton Estate and ginger beer, while living in London for six months. I was recently Googling “dark and stormy” and came across this chaise lounge. The “dark and stormy” connection was the description given to its appearance by the reviewer: “like a dark fog on a stormy night”. I am unsure if the person seated upon this attractive, architecturally-influenced piece of furniture would be sleeping, reading a book, or drinking a Dark & Stormy, but I can think of many less enchanting pieces for any of those functions.
“In most cases, however, the seats of art deco chairs and sofas were lowered, with subsequent readjustment of proportions. Because of the new lower seats, lower tables were required, and art deco can be credited with the development of the coffee table, or cocktail table, as it was then called.” — Interior Design Innovators — Cherie Fehrman & Dr. Kenneth R. Fehrman.