(Korean) Summer Lovin’

Not always a cruel summer…

Here’s to summer

Summer is a hard season for me.  This season of leisure and relaxation poses challenges for a reluctant participant like myself.  I had some pretty awful summers growing up.  During summer breaks, my parents would have me study workbooks that were way too hard for me, thinking I could just study myself into prodigy-hood.  I didn’t concentrate too good on those word problems and complex fractions in the oven that was our apartment.  

Summer night + park = beer, Prospect Park, Brooklyn

My sob-story summers are nothing you haven’t heard before, especially for those of you who grew up immigrant.  Just insert the “You-know-you’re-an-immigrant” liner as follows:  “You-know-you’re-an-immigrant” when your family counts going to the park three blocks away from your apartment as “getting away” or when you eat fried bologna sandwiches as sustenance and not to be ironic or trendy.  Of course, as a kid, I didn’t know I was pegging myself on the lower end of the income spectrum by eating bologna sandwiches…and who knew they would make such a raucous comeback, according to John Schumacher of Columbus, Ohio!

Pint No. ?, Library Ale House, Santa Monica

Popping open a cool one back then was out of the question, but look how good I am at making up for lost time.

Michelada for one, San Antonio

But here we are, already in October, saying our long goodbye to summer, and me not yet readying my yarns and knitting needles for that afghan project!  Summer’s end makes me somewhat wistful now because I’m not a kid anymore.   Back then, I was mostly glad it was over so I could go back to school which, I guess at the time, was my version of “getting away.”  But that’s the gospel according to one inner city kid.

The dog days of summer

What does one do with these bad memories of bad summers?   No, you can’t erase them (unless you bump your head, get amnesia and spend two hours in a stranger’s arms like in a Lifetime movie).  The best you can do is balance them out by making new good ones, of course.

Michelada (to Help Make New Good Memories)

The ingredients *

beer, I stick with Modelo or Pacifico

Valentina Salsa Picante Mexican Hot Sauce

lime juice from fresh limes, about one lime per glass

lime wedges for garnish

coarse salt for the glass rim

ice, optional

The steps

1. Chill your glasses before prep if you wish.  Rub the rim of your glass with lime, dip in salt.  Fill half way with ice if using, squeeze in fresh lime juice, add 2-3 dashes of Salsa Picante, or to taste, and stir.

2. Pour in the beer slowly.  Garnish with a lime wedge and serve.

*There are many variations out there, ones that call for adding soy sauce, worchestshire, Clamato, liquid amino (!), but this is the way my friend Jon Crow makes it and I like it this way.

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