Category - Spokescharacters

SideBlog: Meet the Man Who Brings The Most Interesting Man in the World to Life
Clint Eastwood Guest-Vlogs Here
Tiki Timeout: Vince! He’s Back!
Johnnie Walker Knows Marketing
Ask Bruce Willis
My Hero, William Shatner, On Frying Turkey

SideBlog: Meet the Man Who Brings The Most Interesting Man in the World to Life

Meet the man who brings “The Most Interesting Man in the World” to life. Dos Equis wanted a young Hispanic man. Fortunately for them, they picked Johnathan Goldsmith instead.

Clint Eastwood Guest-Vlogs Here

So, Clint Eastwood showed up at the Republican National Convention last night to endorse Mitt Romney… and The Pegu Blog ensued.
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Tiki Timeout: Vince! He’s Back!

Yeah. That guy. I had thought that Vince, the World’s Most Awesome Pitchman® was gone forever, after his little misunderstanding with a hook… the Law polite society. But no! He’s back, with a new product and a long-form infomercial that is playing now. It’s even better than the one he did for me way back when.

I know it’s Tiki Month and all, but you need to take two minutes out of your busy schedule to see my man use what he’s got. It’s almost Shatnerian at its zenith….

Oh, alright. You should watch it build from the beginning, but if you must get back to your life immediately, go to about 57 seconds in from what looks like the Moment of Awesome.

But wait! There’s more

That’s right, Vince. Because the flight attendant is just warming you up (so to speak) for the big moment right after that. Keep all beverages away from the keyboard while you watch.

Johnnie Walker Knows Marketing

The Striding Man knows his marketing. Johnnie Walker, makers of damn fine blended scotches and the greatest liquor ad video ever (you rock, Robert Carlyle) have hired a new spokesperson to promote their product.

No show has more concisely embodied the retro appeal of the modern cocktail renaissance than Mad Men. Johnnie Walker has nabbed perhaps the show’s biggest star as its new face of entertaining.

Which star, you ask? Surely it is the icon of cocktail cool, Don Draper’s Jon Hamm? Sorry Jon. The Scotsmen know how Rule 5 works. Behold Jonnie Walker’s hostess with the mostess, Christina Hendricks! (She even better in Firefly, folks….)

Christina Hendricks Johnnie Walker
Click to embiggen. (If that’s possible…)

Christina Hendricks Johnnie WalkerChristina Hendricks Johnnie Walker
Christina Hendricks Johnnie WalkerChristina Hendricks Johnnie Walker
Thanks to Ace, who so, um, pithily drew this major announcement to my attention.

Thanks for the link from The Other McCain, originator of Rule 5, who notes in his headlines that this is likely Johnnie Walker’s clever attempt to bring back the concept of The Double….

Ask Bruce Willis

Got troubles? Life getting you down? At a fork in the road, and don’t know the path to take? Can’t find your car keys?
Bruce Willis has your answers! Just ask him.
This invaluable service is brought to you by the makers of Sobieski Vodka, and can be accessed on their website for the low, low cost of telling them your birthdate.

Bruce recently became “part owner” of Sobieski. Just what this means, I’m not sure, since the purchase of one share makes you a “part owner” of any company. I’m “part owner” of Diageo, for instance. But regardless, these days Willis is all over the Sobieski website, including this new interactive advice interface. His head looks appropriate, but I can’t quite make out where the big “8″ is.

I happen to really like Sobieski, for at least three reasons. Firstly, a bottle of their vodka was my first ever Liquor Fairy free product sample I got through blogging on this site. They will always have a warm spot in my heart, just for that. (Here’s my post on Sobieski from 2008.)

Second, I think it is damn good vodka. Moreover, it is damn good vodka at a more than just competitive price. At as little as a third the price of many “ultra-premiums”, Sobieski is possibly the best value to be found in any kind of spirit in the US market.

Third, I have always found their advertising and marketing efforts refreshing, entertaining, and above all offering some great insights into the nature and challenges of the vodka industry. That last is, I’m sure an unintended feature, but it makes it no less valuable to anyone who is interested in the business of liquor, especially vodka.
All vodka makers are in an inescapable bind. Sobieski has from its introduction not tried to ignore or, worse, deny the issue. Instead, they have embraced it and made it their strength. Here’s the bind: Almost by definition, you cannot compete in the straight vodka market based on the quality or distinctiveness of your product. Vodka is defined by law as being colorless and tasteless. You can (and many makers do) argue all you want about quality, but if you are holding your deep-diving championships in the local YMCA pool, Guillaume Nery won’t be able to beat my daughter.
Sobieski turns that bind on its competitors. The first, and still best, tagline of theirs that I saw was, “Distilled 5X, 8X, 39X. Oh, please. How about distilled enough?” A recent one is “The next gimmick in vodka is, well, the next gimmick in vodka.” Visit the Sobieski website, even if you don’t need the Part-Owner’s advice, for lots more fun stuff. They clearly have fun with their ad campaigns, and you will too.

My Hero, William Shatner, On Frying Turkey

It is November, so it is obviously time for my annual post/repost on how to fry your bird for Thanksgiving (or any other day of the year where you crave copious quantities of the best fowl you’ve ever had). I might have skipped it this year, were it not for my personal hero, William Shatner.

Hey wait!
I thought I was your hero…

Don’t pout, Alton Brown. You’re my hero too. And as it happens, both you and Bill have worked to keep people safe and happy when they fry their turkeys.

I’ve gone over a lot of what Alton has come up with on frying a turkey before, but the Shatner’s deal is new this year. It is actually an insurance PSR from State Farm, who is apparently getting tired of paying for new garages every year at this time. Behold the awesomeness that is “Eat, Fry, Love”, the inevitable winner for this year’s Oscar for best short documentary.

As with all things Shatner, it needs to be watched in full to absorb its majesty.

Unfortunately, it is a bit shallow, and misses a few very important safety tips. (State Farm, what the hell?) I’ll run down where Bill is still in danger of setting himself on fire in this safety video, touch on a few other points, and then repost my annual rundown on the complete, nearly bullet-proof, procedure below the fold.

I’ll start with the turkey fryer kit shown. Each year these get better, and closer to actually being safe and effective. But only closer. I still recommend you build your rig from individual parts. The kit pots are often too narrow or too small to hold enough oil. A larger pot is both going to produce a better cooked bird, and be safer. One of the critical elements in a deliciously fried bird is maintaining the proper oil temperature. The more oil you have going, the easier it is to maintain your temp when that huge amount of room-temperature flesh goes in to cook. But nothing is more important than keeping that oil inside the pot, as the video demonstrates, so a bigger pot is essential. See the post below where I describe how to exactly determine the right oil level before you heat it.
The second, and larger, problem with most fryer kits is the burner. This is usually the disqualifier. Your burner must be ballsy enough to keep all that oil hot, and to make it recover its hotness quickly after the bird goes in.
And from a safety standpoint it must be ridiculously stable! If you can’t stand on it and safely do the Watusi, you probably need a lower, sturdier, burner. Get a more powerful one while you are at it.

Shatner also touches on the fact that your bird must not be frozen. If you put a frozen bird in your oil, it will be a lot of paperwork for your State Farm agent. It’s the holiday season and she’d really rather be out fighting the Black Friday crowds than arranging for your new garage and hiking your premiums. Also, it is nothing compared to the paperwork your doctors and nurses will have to do down at the hospital….
I usually try to buy a fresh bird so no defrosting will be needed, but if you must go with a frozen turkey, remember that defrosting in the fridge is safest. This will take a day for every four pounds of your bird. So get cracking.

Next, is the “dingle-dangle”. For safety reasons, call this a “lifter”. Calling it a dingle-dangle will likely result in an immediate atomic wedgie from any of your friends who hear you use such a dorky name… even if all your friends are elderly ladies. Do not ever be tempted to use the coat hanger-like upper handle! To use this, you must actually put your body right over the oil at the most intensely risky part of the frying process: initial immersion. The best way is an apparatus like the turkey derrick I rip off from Alton Brown describe in the Spa Day for Tom repost below. If you don’t want to go to that trouble, attach a hook for the lifter to the middle of a long broom handle and two people can safely lower the bird into the oil while maintaining a couple of feet distance. If nothing else, it will save you spatter burns. No matter how dry you get your bird, there will be a hell of a lot of popping when it first hits the oil. Just like you don’t fry bacon in the nude, son, you don’t put your hands over that fryer.

And kudos to Shatner and State Farm for mentioning at the end (though not portraying in the film where people will actually see it) the most important turkey frying safety precaution of all: Turn off the damn flame when the bird is going in! No matter how careful you are, freak accidents happen. If that pot tips, the boiling oil is lethal enough. If there is a flame…
If Bill had actually just dropped a bird into boiling oil that then sloshed over like that onto a lit burner, we’d have had a year of Shatner Memorial ComicCons around the country. Kill the fire until the bird is in and the bubbles have stopped rising. Then relight it quickly.

Enjoy your Thanksgiving, folks, and thanks to Verum Serum, where I first saw this video.

P.S. That looks suspiciously like a Gin ad Tonic that Bill is enjoying while frying his bird. Don’t. Even. Think. About. It. Until after the bird is out and resting.

Below the fold is a reposting of last year’s version of Spa Day for Tom.
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