Just What The Hell Is Going On With Girls These Days?


I’ve got a bone to pick with you ladies. Especially the younger ones. You know, it used to be that a woman could go to a bar and order a vodka-cranberry without feeling like a total pussy for not downing bourbon like it’s what she puts in her breakfast cereal. However it seems those days are over because everywhere I look, women of all ages, are drinking whiskey as though they actually enjoy it. They’re nursing a Maker’s Mark on the rocks or savoring a Glenlivet neat. No coke. No water. Just whiskey. WTF!

Now, I kind of get women of a certain age doing this. If you’re someone who’s clocked a lot of hours at the bar over the years, it’s natural to reach a point where you no longer go out just to get drunk. At some stage, most of us advance enough in our drinking careers to appreciate liquor for the way that it tastes, rather than just the way it makes us feel. So of course there are women (like myself) who will truly appreciate the buttery body of a Chardonnay with dinner or the silky warmth of a digestif afterwards. However, whiskey is a whole different ballgame. It’s a special kind of lady who actually enjoys a Johnny Walker to the point that she can drink it straight. Quite frankly, it’s the kind that intimidates the hell out of me because a chick who can discern the difference between a single malt and a small batch is one who’s been some places and seen some shit. Don’t ask me why, that’s just the way it’s always been.

Until now.

Girls straight out of college are stocking their cabinets with Bookers and Basil Hayden’s and it’s making my thirty-five year old ass look like a complete idiot when I show up to a party all like “Hey guys! Check out this Swedish Fish flavored vodka I found! If you mix it with Vitamin Water Zeros it’s only like three Weight Watchers points!” You might be wondering what the hell I’m doing hanging out with kids in their early twenties to begin with but remember, my most recent former job was full of them. In fact, one of my best friends is a twenty-two year old and every time I go to her place, all she has is Jack Daniels and fucking Cardhu! I’m sorry, but I feel like she’s missing a few steps here.

You don’t just leave high school and make a twelve year old scotch your signature beverage. It’s only fair that you earn your drinking stripes first in the form of throwing up a night’s worth of Malibu Bay Breezes and Slippery Nipple shots on at least a few dozen occasions. I mean, isn’t that part of what’s fun about being that age? That you can drink nothing but sugar and you won’t get fat and no one will judge you for it? But instead, they’re out there with me, putting my drinks to shame. Do you know how emasculating it is to have someone thirteen years your junior slamming liquids you could fuel a diesel engine with while you’re struggling to finish something that comes with six different kinds of fruit?

At first I thought maybe this whole whiskey thing was a front. Like it was something that girls were only doing in bars just to be cool. I couldn’t blame them for that. I’m guilty of it myself. I drink vodka sodas with a splash of pineapple. It’s mortifying. So whenever anyone asks me if I want a shot, I always go for a Jameson’s but only to slice the bitch factor of pretty much having had a Mai Tai in my hand all night. I don’t like it though. You’d never catch me tossing the stuff back in my living room. However recently I’ve been seeing pictures like this all over my Instagram:


Girls are infusing their own scotch now. At home! With scary things like habeneros. Then there’s women like this:

Nicole Austin

Meet Nicole Austin. She’s a whiskey consultant and master blender at King’s County Distillery and she even looks like a badass with her lumberjack shirt, brown leather jacket and green highlights. Now, I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with women concocting their own whiskey blends at home or holding high ranking positions in the whiskey trade. In fact, I think it’s pretty awesome, it’s just super hard to compete with.

I’ve always fancied myself as kind of a tough girl, even going to great lengths over the years to perpetuate that image with things like weird haircuts and piercings at times. I got a tattoo for fuck’s sake! However, there’s only so far I’m willing to take it and being the kind of girl who drinks rye with anything, just simply is not within my ability.

I think I may have found a solution though.


That’s right. Moonshine! Suck on that whiskey drinkers! Or rather, don’t. This is what I’ve started drinking recently to keep up with you, so hands off, OK?

So yeah, moonshine. It wasn’t even legal until, I don’t know, is it legal? Well this kind is, I suppose, but the label does proclaim it was “made with the law on it’s heels”. You hear that? THE LAW. The best thing though, is that it tastes just like apple pie. This way, when I drink it, I don’t have to pop a blood vessel trying to maintain a face like it’s no different than gulping an iced tea, which is exactly what I do every time I shoot a Powers. Yet I can still say “Dude! last night was crazy! I drank half a bottle of moonshine. Oh, what? You were drinking whiskey? That’s cool. I guess.”

Mind you, the fact that it tastes just like apple pie is also the worst part about it. It’s easy to forget you’ve had five or six when what you’re drinking goes down like candy. If you’re not careful you’ll inevitably wake up the following morning in need of one or more forms of life support. You know, because of all the MOONSHINE.

But at the very least, I know one thing’s for sure. Between doing shots of whiskey to keep up appearances and now having jars of Midnight Moon within arm’s reach at all times, I’m bound to expire of liver failure any day now. And we all know how cool it is to die young! However at this point, I may even be too old for that.

Ah fuck it, Christmas is coming. Just pick me up a bottle of Midori.

  • Christina Mc Bride

    Damn, I felt all sophisticated now that I’m a scotch drinker! (I’m also 35) Maybe I’ll find some psuedo-Speakeasy and try moonshine too.
    BTW- you’re totally a badass

    • RheelDaze

      I commend you! You are sophisticated. I only wish I could partake in all of the sophistication which you would think that at my age (35 also) I would have achieved by now. Yet I would happily order Banana Daiquiris year round if it weren’t for odd stares and pitiful looks I would receive from doing so. And you should definitely try this moonshine. It comes in all kinds of delicious flavors.

  • http://blog.stephaniecourt.com/ stephanie court

    I’m a fan of whiskey and scotch. My go-to drink in college was Jack & Coke but eventually the Coke got left behind and it was just whiskey or scotch on the rocks (neat is a little much for me – I prefer some chill to it). I haven’t had it in a while though because of the conflicting opinions on whether it’s safe for those of us with gluten intolerance (the fact that I’m even concerned about that shows my age … ). So I’ve found myself drinking wine mostly now, and the occasional pina colada on vacation. Moonshine, though? Holy cow. I don’t know if I could handle that. I tried absinthe once and puked as soon as it hit my stomach. Scotch is about as strong as it gets for me. You are definitely the bigger badass. 😉

    • RheelDaze

      I highly doubt that what I’m drinking is anywhere near what true moonshine is. I had a sip of the real stuff once in high school and almost fainted. Midnight Moon is like candy only since it says moonshine on it, I get excited. I’m definitely more of a wine and vodka type girl. But I am thoroughly impressed by all of the lady scotch and whiskey drinkers out there. More power to you. But the gluten thing is a bitch. Haha! Yeah, probably wouldn’t have been a concern for you in college :)

  • http://www.wanderlyn.com/ Eternally WanderLyn

    I’m actually a fan of whiskey, as well as all the fruity sugary drinks! I’m a jack of all trades really. And moonshine has actually become legal in my boyfriend’s home-state of Mississippi if you want to try the real thing! Though I’m not quite sure what you’d be doing in Mississippi…hah. 😀

  • http://thefearlessscribe.blogs

    I can’t drink the sugary, fruity drinks anymore either. (sloe gin fizzes, how I miss you) These days I’m a boring ol’ beer drinker.

  • Awesomely Over-Zealous

    LOL You are a bad ass Kelly! You quit your job and holding down the fort :) I actually enjoy whiskey scotch but I can’t handle it neat, yet. Here’s a fun trick: splash ginger ale and lime over some whiskey or scotch on the rocks (I prefer Scotch) and you can still look like a bad ass while enjoying the taste 😉 Baby steps. And yes, sometimes I’ll say fuck it and just order a Strawberry Daiquiris. :) Have a great one Kelly! -Iva

  • http://voyageofthemeemee.blogspot.com/ Amanda MeeMee

    Moonshine is sooooo awful! I’ve had it before and just THINKING about it makes me want to gag… and makes me see blurry.

    • RheelDaze

      The real stuff truly js disgusting. I wouldn’t offer it to my worst enemies. But the Midnight Moon is really good. However, like I said, it can get away from you. I’ve had some rough mornings the day after.

  • Lonesome Jackalope™

    Being a whiskey (straight, neat and chilled a bit) man myself, I admire women stepping up to enjoy the Sauce. Frankly, my “Kryptonite” would be a smart, funny woman in heels hitting stride with me in whiskey drinking. That would be my undoing. A lovely way to go, however. 😉

    • RheelDaze

      I don’t blame you. Unfortunately these women whiskey drinkers are also my undoing as I’m desperately striving to keep up with them. I put the apple pie moonshine in my hot chocolate tonight. Not quite as sophisticated, but I’m taking baby steps.

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  • http://eatwellpartyhard.com/ Claire Suellentrop

    Gotta apologize here–I am absolutely one of the girls you’re referring to in this post. I’ve never been into sweet, fruity drinks (all the sugar makes my stomach feel funky), so phasing out mixers happened pretty quickly after college–you know, when what was most readily available was suspiciously-labeled coolers of “Jungle Juice.” Once I started buying my own alcohol, I’d cut it with some ice and water, but once I got used to that, the taste of the whiskey by itself grew more and more appealing; at this point, I’d take a straight pour over a fancy cocktail any damn day.

    You know, maybe “apologize” isn’t the right term. Really, I’m just saying that this is me, and this is the stuff I like to drink, and even if my go-to is a neat Bulleit Rye and yours is apple pie moonshine, that is totally okay and I’d still be way down for getting drunk together. My lifelong best friend’s drink of choice is pineapple or raspberry wheat beer (depending on which liquor store we hit up), and regardless, we still love each other and will continue to enable each other’s bad decisions until the cows come home.

    • RheelDaze

      I don’t think there’s a drink in the world that would stop me from getting drunk with someone so regardless of the fact that I’m going to look completely juvenile ordering my Malibu Bay Breeze next to your lighter fluid neat, I would still welcome the invitation. So cheers!

      • http://eatwellpartyhard.com/ Claire Suellentrop

        Cheers indeed!

  • http://jaybirdblog.com/ Alicia | Jaybird Blog

    Wait, wait–you can handle moonshine but you don’t like whiskey? Moonshine terrifies me! I’m all about a nice bourbon or single malt as something to savor slowly…I think whiskey has become more popular among women as well as craft beer. I love seeing women in the industry like Nicole Austin. Whiskey consultant would be such a cool job!

    • http://www.therheeldaze.com/ RheelDaze

      It’s totally girly moonshine. It comes in Apple Pie, blueberry, strawberry. Not cool at all! It’s basically like an amplified Schnapps so I can’t really brag about it. And yes, although I don’t have what it takes, I love seeing women whiskey consultants. If there were any industry I’d like to be a pioneer in, it would be one as fun and as reckless as the alcohol industry.