Okay, I had started to write about my night at Kapono’s and McKinley’s class of 1972 (huh?), but I just read a piece in the Honolulu Advertiser that gave me pause.

In a column entitled “About Men”, Michael Tsai (we’ll just call him “Ug” from here on out) asserts that “real men” don’t drink “frou frou” drinks like Creamsicles or Crantinis. These are “girl drinks” that are best left to be consumed by women. “Ug” also suggests that men who opt for such drinks are less masculine than men who drink beer or a neat sour mash whiskey.

Oh please. Somebody take this man out back and shoot him or beat him over the head. Or something. I myself appreciate all sorts of alcoholic drinks --- beer, wine, mixers, etc. I don’t marry myself to one sort of “drink” and turn my nose up at all others. For me, it’s about taste and what I’m in the mood for, rather than image.

My honest opinion? Guys who drink only beer are usually guys that drink beer all the time (translate: drunks). These are guys who hang out in each other’s garages 3 or 4 times a week with other guys to scratch their nether-regions and challenge each other to see who can drink the most. My opinion is further validated by “Ug’s” statement “In my high school days, there was a simple solution for guys who wanted a buzz but didn’t like the taste of alcohol. We called it pot.” --- Yeah, there’s a real man for you.

I admire a man who isn’t concerned or embarrassed about ordering a “girl drink” in public. Does it mean he’s sophisticated? Not necessarily. But at least it tells me that he is beyond worrying about what other guys think of him. 

I was at Ryan’s Grill a short while ago with a guy, and I ordered a lychee martini --- which, by the way, is a GREAT drink. Did he look at me funny or criticize my choice of drink? NO. In fact, he ordered one himself. And by all accounts, he liked it. I thought that it was sweet and uncontrived of him, and my already high regard of him went up a few more notches after that.

I also got together with some old friends from high school this past weekend. Normally I bring a six-pack of a microbrew or even Coronas to this type of gathering, but this time, I chose to bring some Zone vodka infused with melon flavor and white cranberry juice. Of course, the guys were all --- “what is THAT?” But after having a taste, they agreed it tasted good. One of them went a step further and downed several shots of the melon flavored vodka in a Precious Moments shot glass. 

Those are the type of guys I like to be around --- NOT afraid to try new things, and NOT closed-minded cavemen who are quick to criticize something they’ve never tasted. 

Can I also mention that from the headshot of “Ug” featured with his column, he looks all of a buck-o-five and is far from being a true representative of a “man”? Want to know who is manlier than “Ug”? Everyone. Get me a phone book --- George D. Fitzsimmons? Manlier than “Ug”. Darlene Andrews? Manlier than “Ug”.

I’m sorry – I know this is a free country and everyone is entitled to their opinions. But what next? Is he going to say that guys who choose drinks ending in “-rita” and “-tini” are gay? Gay men are manlier than “Ug”. 

There’s a place for men like “Ug” --- it’s called the Stone Age.

Forget about guys like “Ug” who want their grog in a dirty glass. Give me the dude at the end of the bar who ordered his B-52 blended, and is using the little umbrella to pick his teeth…