The Old Gimlet Eye

November 12th, 2009

Last weekend we attended a little party at a neighbor’s house and I brought the ingredients to make vodka gimlets.  I have wanted to try making this drink ever since I did some research on the word ‘gimlet’ for the breathlessly exciting segment of my blog known as ‘word o’ whenever‘ which used to be called ‘word o’ the week’, but things quickly went down the drain when I realized that I could not keep up with the relentless demand every seven days of finding a new word, learning the definition, re-writing the definition in my own words… and see… SEE… SEE how uninteresting that is!  I almost fell into a coma just writing about it!  Imagine trying to actually DO that every week!  Maybe I should have called it ‘word o’ the WEAK’.  Strangely, as soon as I let myself off the hook (at which I am an expert) and changed the name from ‘word o’ the week’  to ‘word o’ whenever‘, I suddenly cared again!

Go Figure!

I love making my own rules!


I was searching for something to wear to this little shindig. For some reason the usual ensemble of jeans, t-shirt, and ratty sweater was not going to do. I ransacked my closet for something just a tad more interesting. Something that did not shout forty one year old, rapidly decroding, matronly, flesh packet. I was hoping instead to find something that said





But no too TRENDY!

But sort-of TRENDY!

How about TRENDSETTER!?!


How about MOTHER and yet so not a MOTHER!

What I really was looking for was an outfit that said - VODKA GIMLET!

I found it!

My mom’s orange double knit polyester evening gown with a floral festooned coordinating jacket!

And LOOK!  You can also use the jacket for a Thanksgiving tablecloth!

Or draperies!

Or an area rug!

Or a very festive wall hanging!

To make a vodka gimlet, you will need vodka, limes and sweetened lime juice.

My friend Kim will demonstrate how you make the gimlets (against her will I might add).

Basically there is measuring….

And pouring into an improvised shaker.

And shaking with your hand over the top of the cup.

Because our neighbors did not have a ‘real’ shaker.

In fact, no one at the party owned a shaker.

This completely shaker-less world in which I live caused me to ask the following searing questions…

Who does buy those shakers?

And what kind of people are they?

And why don’t I know any of them?

And how do I find them?

And are the people who have shakers in the shapes of penguins and race cars a subset of shaker owners?

Or are they all the same group?

Then Kim squeezed a lime around the rim of the glasses…

And poured the gimlets into martini glasses with lime wedges on the sides.

You can find the recipe that we used here.

And then I gave the old gimlet eye to the CD.  Actually – that is not much of a gimlet eye… that is more of a ‘withering’ look.  I can do a much better gimlet eye.  You’ll just have to trust me on that.

And please note the fabulous belt!

Do I not totally rock that belt!

Where is the decroding matronly 41 year old flesh packet?

Where I ask you?

It is impossible to decrode while wearing that belt!  It is like a magic belt! Plus it is so unbearably hot to wear two layers of double knit polyester against your waist that you can literally feel the flesh packet melting off of you.

Bring back the polyester double knit!

Such a multi-faceted fabric…

Hot, thick, sturdy, itchy, fabulously versatile, and just plain uncomfortable too.

The perfect fabric for evening wear!



  • Jennifer:

    On the show “Cybill”, Cybill Shepherds buddy (Cristine Baranski) drank gimlets. I had such a fantasy going about how elegant they were. Then I had one and ended up putting packets of sugar in it. Too tart! I moved on to martini’s and margarita’s as my cocktails of choice.

    But I see you used sweetened lime juice. Perhaps mine didn’t have that. I’ll have to try again..

  • You look so cute, and I’m glad to see your perky self again!! :)

  • You ROCK that belt! I am consumed with jealousy, or something like that.
    And gimlets? gimlet eye? Why don’t I ever get invited to soirees like this?

  • Lisa D.:

    I have dial-up internet (feel sorry for me please!) with very slowly loading photos. All I needed to see was the top of your shoulders in that first photo, and I was like, Excellent! She brought out the orange dress again!
    I so love doing things like that to my mother, too. Your mother must so regret that she allowed you to get your hands on that dress!

  • You ooze “edgy mom with indescribable radiance”, Rechelle. And that tablecloth would make a dandy jacket. I mean, that jacket would make a dandy Thanksgiving tablecloth. I’m going to have to try a gimlet soon. I’ve been wondering about them all through reading Julie and Julia, mostly because she mentions them about every other page. I like vodka. I like lime. How could I not like a gimlet? Although the name does sound like some sort of fuzzy creature who shouldn’t be fed after midnight or gotten wet.

  • Theresa:

    I love that evening dress. I can’t get over how great you look wearing it. It’s as if it was made for you!

  • Clayvessel:

    They owned martini glasses but no shaker? How odd.

  • Kelsie:

    Clayvessel–I just happen to have a martini shaker, but no glasses! Perhaps Rechelle’s neighbors and I are destined to meet someday.

  • I would guess that after a few Gimlets you might not care what you are wearing…there fore solving the problem of what to wear???
    You do look good in that dress! Orange is not a color that I could wear but on you it looks fab!!

  • Wondering Woman:

    Uh oh — I have a shaker AND a dress like that…………

  • Meg:

    I dare to say, with a gimlet held aloft with that certain je ne sais quoi, any outfit would do, but the orange evening gown was fantastique!

  • I’m making one of those the next chance I get! They were my grandmother’s favorite…and she was a fan of elegant polyester too. Imagine!

  • I do believe that burnt orange in your new signature color.

  • #1…if you use that dress as a tablecloth (and you look Awesome! BTW) make sure you use the belt as the table runner

    #2…I have a shaker on my x-mas list b/c we have never owned one. We just started drinking again now that the last “baby” is 2 and sleeping through the night and we can do that and not feel irresponsible.

    Since vodka is on the list I’ll add the lime juice and make a new drink. Thanks!

  • Obviously I need to travel more, because being a native Pacific Northwesterner and having been no further east than first Denver and later Austin (but nothing in between), I’m sad to say that my first thought on seeing these pictures was “They have Grey Goose in Kansas?”. I don’t know what I was thinking, maybe that you would make a vodka gimlet with light beer? In a can? Yes, please throw things at me. Like corn. Or maybe wheat.

  • Jean:

    But you look so good in the outfit! PW would be green w/ envy!

  • pamcake:

    As a tavern owner with more years of bartending experience than I care to admit here, make sure you ask for a “vodka” gimlet if you order one at a bar. A gimlet is typically made with gin. Big difference. Enjoy!

  • AngAk:

    you had me at Grey Goose. I’ll have to take mine out of the freezer. Although, I do love a gin gimlet. It will be a stretch to use the vodka. I bet that lovely polyester number would pack well for traveling. and I had to LOL at CilleyGirl.

  • AngAk:

    wait!! is that a water faucet on the wall over her stove? gahhhhh. I have faucet envy over that. So great for filling big pasta pots right on the stove. just in case you might want to eat something after those gimlets.

  • I must say you look absolutely smashing. I find nothing odd in wearing drapery material. I have been told on occasion that I look “upholstered”.

    I do like MamaBug’s suggestion to employ the belt as a table runner if the need arises.

  • Fran:

    Rechelle, I believe that you were born in the wrong decade!

  • I just found your blog last night and want to say thanks for the best laughs I’ve had in ages! My husband thought I was crying I was laughing so hard at some of your past blogs. The I gave The Pioneer Woman lice one just slayed me! Anyhow, you have a follower in me for sure. I have 2 teenagers at home – I need all the laughs I can get. By the way, you DO rock that belt.

  • Tracy:

    I have a ‘shaker’ and it hardly ever gets used! I believe that most of our friends have them too (it’s probably 50/50 on those who use them and those who don’t). I am going to try the gimlet, maybe it can become my drink.

    Since none of your friends has a shaker, you now have a perfect gift idea. Love the tablecloth dress, you wear it well.

  • Now see I own a shaker. I actually inherited it from my grandmother who abhored liquor. She one time poured all of my uncle’s beer out…IN HIS HOUSE> She went into his house opened his refrigerator and poured out his beer. That is how much of a teetotaller she was. So what the hell did she DO with a shaker? Oh and it was one of the real ones with the strainer and matching shot glass.

  • OMG … my mom has that same suit, except in GREEN! I’m totally gonna go snag it from her and put it on my fastly-approaching 42-year old hip, but not too hip, self! Oh, and I have a cocktail shaker … invite me to your next soiree … I’ll bring it along!

    • Linda – You MUST send me a photo of you or your mom or someone wearing the green version of this dress. I HAVE to see it! PLEASE!

  • Inga:

    I have a shaker and I am not afraid to use it! Love the polyester.


  • I have two shakers and many martini glasses. I live here. Would love to have you over sometime – I can borrow some 1960′s polyester from my mother as she never throws anything away. True story – still has bridesmaid dresses I wore in the 70′s… We could have a bridesmaid dress party – complete with floppy hats. And martini’s or gimlets .. think about it.

  • I’m sweating just looking at that polyester outfit. I also get the feeling it doesn’t move very well. Ah well. Vintage has its merits.

    I much prefer a gin gimlet with lime and simple syrup. I don’t like Rose’s much. And, I have to say, I too was shocked! at the Grey Goose. It’s no Chopin, but it will do.

  • ” forty one year old, rapidly decroding, matronly, flesh packet”

    Oh that perfectly describes how I am feeling lately. Except I don’t drink. At least I don’t drink anything stronger than a gourmet Hazelnut Cocoa. I guess I should find the Thanksgiving tablecloth. Perhaps wearing that will make me feel young again. Thank for the belly laugh! I really needed it today.

  • Dee from Tennessee:

    That jacket makes me think of Scarlett and GWTW. And for just a teensy second, I thought you had written “giblets.”

  • beautiful look!

    all i can say is, over-40 moms rock the world! :)

  • Debra:

    Oh my, you are so funny! But you do look great in the polyester!

  • Sayrahk:

    You are rocking that poly ensemble. You should have done a beehive to match! Who knew that polyester would ever come back?
    What was I thinking when I sent all of Mom’s polyester to Goodwill and just kept the cashmere sweaters? I could have made a retro fashion statement too!
    But wait – we can probably dig up some landfills and still find some perfectly preserved polyester garments!

  • Melissa:

    Do you have a picture of your mother in THE dress?

  • Sandy in MI:

    The dress! I’m so happy to see it again. And so jealous that Linda has it in green.

  • bob:

    A little splash of club soda will make your “greenie” unforgetable.

    Although a few greenies will cause you to forget almost everything.

    If you’re really adventurous, try tequilla.

  • First- Yes you totally rocked that belt! Wide belts are all the rage and I for one couldn’t wear a wide belt- You go girl!

    Second- I’m a vodka lover and have never had a gimlet- I will check out your recipe!

    Third- I have shakers- many shakers, one is even in the shape of a Polar Bear…
    Now that you’re a gimlet girl- you really need to invest in a shaker!

    Glad you had fun!

  • You may be itchy and sweaty, but you are wrinkle FREE, and likely impervious to stains in that outfit. It’s like a teflon suit!

  • Also, I had to look up “decroded”, only to find that it was not a real word, but a movie reference. You ARE hip!

  • Tish:

    Target has a nice selecton of plain shakers (aluminum and lucite- some of the lucite ones have tropical scenes which are probably not Gimlet-y). For the trendy penguin shaped ones, I think I saw them on my last trip to Cost Plus World Market or maybe Pier 1. I don’t know what kind of person owns one, except maybe the type of person who shops frequently at CPWM or Pier 1. (I didn’t buy one- sorry. I only go there for cheap candles, Hello Kitty cookies, and pasta shaped like cows and sombreros.)

  • I’m requesting a re-do! Apparently the party didn’t really get started until after I left. Either that or the pain meds made me completely lose my memory of the evening’s activities! I, however, happen to own a shaker. A real shaker. Please? Can we reconvene the party?

  • I bought an awesome shaker at the junk store for 50cents. I see many cocktails in my future.

    You rock that belt lady!