You'd have to be a pretty incurious sort to not at least want to find out which club it is I joined - the Playboy Club? The Hair Club for Men (and now Women, I see)? The Press Club? The Rod and Gun Club? The Explorers Club?
While I wouldn't mind joining some of those above-mentioned clubs (and would like avoid a few, if possible), if you guessed any of those, you guessed wrong.
I'm talking about joining ... (drum roll, please!) ...
The Sour Toe Cocktail Club!
Of course, what else, would it be?
I am actually celebrating my second anniversary of having joined that illustrious club, so I figured I should shout it to the world (or at least the Internet!)
For those not familiar with the Sour Toe Cocktail (or without the inclination to click on the link above, because you just can't tear yourself away from my riveting prose!), essentially, it involves taking a shot of your favorite liquor libation which also shares a glass with a (get ready for this) a sour toe - that is, an actual human toe that has been dehydrated and preserved in salt.
And - get this - in order to actually qualify, you have to drink the drink and let the toe touch your lips at some point while drinking.
Like the club motto says, "You can drink it fast, you can drink it slow - but the lips have gotta touch the toe."
Only in Canada, you say ...
The tradition began in Dawson City, in the Yukon Territory. Originally, the toe (the original one thought to have been "donated" by some "sourdough" from the Klondike Gold Rush days, probably one lost through frostbite while mushing down the trail) had to be placed in a beer glass full of champagne in order to be an official, genuine Sour Toe Cocktail.
These days, it's a bit more relaxed, it can be any drink - even non-alcoholic, apparently - but where's the fun in that?
|Captain Dick welcomes me to the fraternity.|
Now ideally, you would become a member of the club by drinking the cocktail in the Yukon. However, Yours Truly became a member in Vancouver, during the 2010 Winter Olympics.
Like many other tourism boards, Tourism Yukon hosted an event during the Games.
It was at that event I had the opportunity to sit down with Captain Dick, the official head of the club, and became a member of this illustrious group. So in a sense, I was sort of on "Yukon soil," kind of like when you're at a Russian embassy in a foreign country, you're considered to be on Russian soil.
For half a second, I toyed with the idea of putting the tip of my tongue on it to really see what the toe tasted like, but common sense quickly overruled that, and the picture was taken. Whew!
It didn't really taste that bad, the whiskey was good, went down quick - and I became a card-carrying club member for life.
By the way, although you get a membership card and certificate, you don't get to keep the toe - you have to give it back.
Now, if you want an opportunity to join this elite group, this would be a perfect year - in fact, this month would be the perfect month to do so. The Yukon is hosting its 2012 Yukon Sourdough Rendezvous Feb. 23-26, to mark the 70th anniversary of the Alaska Highway (also known as the Alcan Highway).