Tonight, the Western world is gearing themselves up to end yet another tiresome year of existence by running head first into a wall of booze and then pissing themselves to sleep, while snoring vomit into the bowl of their mate's toilet.
As most of the liquid you'll consume tonight will be passing your tastebuds twice, do yourself a favour and mix up one of these delicious (and sensationally easy) cocktails. Your future self who is regurgitating it along with the kebab your going to cram into your sorry gob will appreciate the flavour.
1. Yo! Juicy
Ingredients: 3/4 Prosseco, 1/4 Watermelon Juice.
The Yo! Juicy is a fatally simple drink that a customer at my old job as a waiter at Yo! Sushi helped me create.
The young woman who was heading off to somewhere a bit sunnier than Gatwick Airport in winter asked me for a cocktail. I reminded her that she was in a sushi bar. She suggested that I just mix her a drink. So, as a joke, I told her that I'd pour her a glass of prosseco and then put some watermelon juice in there.
After judging that she was not joking, I scurried off to collect the drinks. "Really?" I said as the small bottle of watermelon juice hovered over the rim of her prosseco glass.
"Yeah! What's the problem, why do you think this is so weird?" she said. The customer is always right.
I passed by a short while later to see how they were getting on and sure enough, she wanted another prosseco to finish off her watermelon juice with.
Lo, the Yo! Juicy was born.
2. Spanner in the Works
Ingredients: Tequila 2/8, Orange Juice 5/8, Soy Sauce 1/8
This cocktail arrived at a time in my life when all I did was be a mechanic. I lost everyone that I loved to my workaholic appetite for fixing machines and getting paid for it.
It was late one night on New Year's Eve, when my reluctant cohort, Jez, and I were climbing a radio tower just outside Ipswitch. We were tasked with fixing the Ryan Air communication's dish, so we had a load of recycled cardboard strapped to our backs to patch it up.
It only took us a few seconds to replace the dish once we'd reached the top, but even so, Jez was pissing me off with his attitude towards the job. No sooner than we got a confirmation bleep that all the luggage had been lost on the latest arrival at Gatwick, Jez had poured us a tequila sunrise. Hanging 400ft above the English forest and farmland, our faces lit by a periodically blinking red light atop the mast, I had my go at him.
"Jez! We're at work!" I abated him scornfully, "can't you wait until the weekend? You bloody alccy."
"Cleary, we've been working 21 hours a day for a solid month," he said, tears welling up in his eyes, "I need a fucking break. And anyway... check the time."
My heart wrenched itself away from work for the first time in four months and I saw in the urgent shade of blinking red how tired Jez looked. He lifted up his wristwatch to me and I saw that it was 23:59:45. I looked up at him, smiled and we both counted down to New Year's Day. Three... two... one!
I dare not speak of what happened between me and my coworker beyond the countdown, hanging from our carabiners up that radio tower, but I can say this: once we had gotten round to our drinks, breathless, each of us saw a small drop of something fall into our glasses. We heard a snickering from above, then a flap of wings. Only at a later date did we realise that the drop was soy sauce.
That's the tale of how the mysterious Spanner in the Works cocktail was made.
Ingredients: (nice) Cider 3/4, Strawberries 1/4.
After that night I quit my calling as a mechanic and thought new year, new start.
Within a week I was aboard The International Space Station, playing cards and eating toothpaste for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It's safe to say that I was bored shitless within an hour of starting my new job. Fortunately, so were the rest of the staff.
One evening we all decided to take the night off. The solar flares, measurements, repairs or whatever it was we needed to occupy ourselves with on the space station could wait. Each of us had brought booze from our respective countries with us.
Around the plastic white dinner table, we tasked our assistant android, Pope, with mixing us random cocktails from our selection. Of all the combinations we tried, Ms. McCrowley's cider, fermented and bottled in Londonderry, plocked with a few sliced and dashed strawberries took the biscuit.
A lot of heart-warming research was undertaken that night.
After sifting and sipping these insanely easy (and brand new) cocktails, your NYE is guaranteed to be as smashing as Nigel Thornbury thinks everything is! Happy New Year!