Despite the fact that (one or two) people I respect have been enthusiastic about it, I've always felt somewhat eye-rolly, not to say dismissive, about absinthe. Or to be more specific: the absinthe trend. As with the commoditization of Bukowski, Kerouac, granny bikes, juice fasts, and yoga, it's not the object of the fad that inspires my squeamishness, it's the followers. (Those Frat Boyz outside the cigar bar? They're not savoring the leaf; they're Buying In.)
This New York Times article finally crystallized those feelings for me. I think Eric Konigsberg says it best when he says: "To follow the arc of this craze... is to see just how quickly something that was once illicit â?? and acquired notoriety because of that very illicitness â?? can lose its sheen of mystery and become, well, rather uncool. Once the naughty aura of the forbidden fruit is removed, all that remains is a grasp at unearned sophistication."(I also laughed out loud at this: "If absinthe were a band, it would be Interpol, third-hand piffle masquerading as transgressive pop culture. If absinthe were sneakers, it would be a pair of laceless Chuck Taylors designed by John Varvatos for Converse. If it were facial hair, it would be the soul patch. If absinthe were a finish on kitchen and bath fixtures, it would be brushed nickel.")
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