Since Dr. Fauci was noticeably absent at yesterday’s United States daily coronavirus press conference, on day eight of my literary cocktail exploration, I’m gravitating to Tim Federle’s The Island of Dr. Merlot. I don’t have merlot right now, but I do have a leftover bottle from when I had some wine-loving friends over a few weeks ago. It’s Ferrari-Carano Siena, a “sangiovese” wine according to the know-it-all who sold it to me at Lund’s liquor store.
All of my protagonists in my trilogy, When Life Was Still, are into social justice and comment in their narratives about today’s American society through their historical perspectives. If I was still writing my trilogy, my characters would actively be searching for Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, because they would probably view him as a potential superhero in the same way I do. When Dr. Fauci said that prematurely scaling back mitigation efforts in the United States would be dangerous in the battle against the spread of COVID-19, I was sure that he was going to be the one to model critical reasoning in my country and save the day. I’ve been reminded far too frequently the past few years that I suffer from magical thinking. When my wishes don’t come true, I create a desirable scenario that I try to wish into existence.
Right now I believe that Dr. Fauci is on an island that is not vulnerable to the pandemic—or uphill battles because the curves are flat and the people are reasonable. Only people who wash their hands and are fully committed to participating in social distancing and isolation when necessary during a pandemic are allowed there. When he arrived on the magical island, he was greeted by a chorus of cheers from James Comey, Robert Mueller, James Mattis, John Kelly, William Taylor, Fiona Hill, Alexander Vindman, Marie Yovanovitch, and other potential superheroes that I once thought would save the day. After Dr. Fauci’s arrival, President Barack Obama waved to him as he kitesurfed around the island, trying to think of things he could tweet to help save America. As I type this, Dr. Fauci is enrolled in superhero boot camp on the island where he is practicing jumping in front of a microphone and pushing a dummy down. While he does that, I’m going to mix my sangiovese drink called The Island of Dr. Fauci.
These are the ingredients:
- 2 ounces Ferrari-Carano Siena sangiovese—because I don’t have merlot
- 2 ounces pineapple juice
- 2 ounces simple syrup (I’m simply a master chef now when it comes to cooking this)
- ½ ounce orange juice
- ¼ ounce lime juice (my lime from a few weeks ago was still too hard to cut, so I boiled a nail and pounded it into the lime, with the hope of getting some juice out of it—it worked, and it’s proof that I’m resourceful enough to survive on a deserted island, preferably one with reasonable superheroes inhabiting it)
- Pour liquids in a glass with ice and stir for 10 seconds, then strain into a wine glass over fresh ice
- Garnish with a piece of bacon (I’ve never read The Island of Dr. Moreau by H.G. Wells, and I’m afraid to know why there’s bacon in this drink, so you can Google “bacon and Dr. Moreau” if you want to know)
My review of The Island of Dr. Fauci:
One out of five stars. It’s bitter, or maybe I am. My thoughts might be getting mixed up with my taste buds right now because I’m overwhelmed by knowing that even Dr. Fauci can’t save the day.
To absent friends!
© 2020 by Julie Ryan. All rights reserved
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