This is a phrase, taken from the Steeldriver’s song Drinkin’ Dark Whisky and Tellin’ White Lies, recently covered by Gary Allen.
Sometimes phrases or words catch a hold of my imagination and won’t let go so this time I’m gonna try to expand on what it means to me.
To set the mood, I’m sitting here with a crystal glass of Edradour Straight from the Cask (Barolo Cask Finish) bottled in 1995 after 14 years aging. It is darker, but less finished to my palate, than my bottle of The Arran Malt 10 yr old. But, Im sentimental since I picked this bottle up at the distillery, Scotland’s smallest, in Pitlochry. It is properly poured into a bell shaped glass with a very small piece of ice to release the vapors and very good!
In many ways I am much like dark whisky. It is a temperamental, moody thing. But, overall, good medicine for what ails and a valiant salute for what cheers. Dark, oily, sensuous with a smoky aroma. In fact, it is a product forged by fire, the peat which is burnt to malt the barley and the oak which stokes the copper kettle. Funny, my Scottish surname means “Son of Fire”. MacKay in the Gaelic is MacAoidh, Aoidh being fire and Mac son of. The pronunciation is closer to Mckie with a capitol I.
Like dark whisky, I get better with age. More refined and smoother, but I still burn all the way down. I can be habit forming and am probably not at my best with children or pregnant women. But I am just the thing you want to share a bank side moment with, along with a good cigar or pipe, between catching rising trout on the bountiful Mayfly hatch.
I am no longer young, or quite so transparent as I used to be. Not as rough and hell for leather. You don’t want to gulp great quantities of me and Im not much of a partier anymore…but I am a good accompaniment to a good book and a soft, leather chair beside a rustling fireplace with an old Lab at your feet.
Maybe this is all so much moonshine. More a reflection of what I wish than what is. But, if we don’t aspire to be something, we will never be anything.
Here’s to Dark Whisky!