This week, former Virginia Sen. Jim Webb dropped out of the Democratic presidential primaries. Here to comment, via seance, is Demh So Dimh, the Viet Cong member Webb killed in 1969.
JD: Comrade Dimh, I understand this is the first American political debate you've seen. Any first impressions?
DSD: Sheryl Crow's rendition of your national anthem allowed me to understand the American military better than fighting them in combat did. If that is what they must listen to, no wonder they are not afraid to die.
JD: Good point. Do you think any of the candidates on stage could appeal to Viet Cong voters?
DSD: Why would they? We are not American citizens, and most of us are also dead.
JD: You could still be a major voting bloc in Chicago.
DSD: Oh, right. Well, in that case, I think Bernie Sanders has a point about corporate power, but his economics are a little too far left for my liking.
JD: Were you surprised to hear yourself mentioned in the debate? Senator Webb mentioned you when the candidates were asked who the enemies were that they were most proud of, and it caused a bit of a stir.
DSD: Really? He mentioned someone who was trying to kill him, instead of a domestic political enemy, and he's the odd one out?
JD: Yes. All the others mentioned domestic political forces.
DSD: You know I was trying to kill him, right? I wasn't blocking a bill he had proposed. I wasn't raising money to run attack ads against him. I. Was. Trying. To. Kill. Him. I threw a small bomb at him with the intention of blasting him into little bits, and-
JD: Comrade Dimh, I understand you have strong feelings, but-
DSD: I don't mean to get angry, but if he thinks I'm his enemy, promote him from lieutenant to Captain Obvious. And your political class thinks that's weird?
JD: Some of them do, yes.
DSD: This is why I will never understand your culture.
JD: Would you consider Senator Webb the enemy you're most proud of?
DSD: Actually, no. I'm more angry at the Pho Sho restaurant in Shamokin, Pennsylvania. Bastards stole my family's banh mi recipe. $&#*!
JD: Wrapping up, are there any other aspects of American culture that fascinate you?
DSD: I've been trying to get into your baseball, but I just can't bring myself to follow it that much. The last time I threw a small, round object, it didn't turn out so well.
I gave in to curiosity yesterday and got a pumpkin spice latte. I got it from McDonald’s, since my hometown doesn’t have a Dunkin Donuts or (despite being in Pennsylvania) a Wawa or Sheetz.
In the words of Lisa Simpson after seeing the video “Bin Laden in a Blender”: “It delivers what it promises.” It tasted like a blend of pumpkin pie and coffee. As far as fall-related culinary items go, I’d rank it ahead of candy corn but behind apple cider. I’d get it again, but I don’t understand why hipsters go crazy and demand pumpkin spice everything starting halfway through August (then again, I don’t understand most of what hipsters do).
Now to the question we must ask about any new non-alcoholic drink: how do you make it boozy? (Keep in mind that I don’t have an unlimited budget for pumpkin spice lattes* and new forms of alcohol, so this is all speculation.) Vodka would probably be best here. Usually, my go-to spirit is whiskey, but I think that the whiskey might clash with the pumpkin flavor. Whiskey does go well with Coke, which is just as sweet, so we can’t rule it out completely. Rum is a possibility, but it might be a little too much sugar. Another possibility is replacing the coffee with Kahlua, but I don’t have enough experience with Kahlua to know how that would go.
*In addition to the financial hit, I have to consider the damage to my reputation from excessive pumpkin spice consumption. Consider this email exchange:
Notre Dame fan of my acquaintance: Saw you got a pumpkin spiced latte. Hope you didn’t spill any on your leggings and ugg boots…
Me: No, but it got all over my Clemson sweatshirt!