Down there by the train: MixMo Tom Waits

Down there by the train

I’ve lived in magnolia, a lame island neighborhood in Seattle for 2 years. Thus, I have done the super sketchy late night bike ride through the train tracks a few hundred times. Tom Waits, is frequently on the ipod for this ride, and the late night special cut that comes up a lot on this ride is: “Down there by the train.”  The song was made famous by Johny Cash, or like “downtown train,” made famous by Rod Stewart, and also written by Tom Waits, or like “Long way home, “ made famous by Scarlet Johanson but again another song about trains by Tom Waits.

The hobo's taxi

There’s a place I know where the train goes slow
Where the sinner can be washed in the blood of the lamb
There’s a river by the trestle down by sinner’s grove
Down where the willow and the dogwood grow

It is fairly obvious that this is a song about death.  More specifically, it compares a hitching yard/train station to the river stix.  In a less dramatic way, for me it is just a song about being done, and being tired,needing relief and forgiveness.  Cocktails are liquid forgiveness.  And as  I have remarked before, when listening to Tom Waits on my ride home, I wasn’t sure if a train was behind me.

this is down there by the train

You can hear the whistle, you can hear the bell
From the halls of heaven to the gates of hell
And there’s room for the forsaken if you’re there on time
You’ll be washed of all your sins and all of your crimes

This is a song about people that didn’t make good decisions, and at the end of what seems to be a thankless shift, on a cold dark night, riding through the tracks, one might want to think that things can be better than what happened.  I wanted to create a drink that shows a well thought out cocktail, made of simple honest ingredients, basic but new.

There’s a golden moon that shines up through the mist
And I know that your name can be on that list
There’s no eye for an eye, there’s no tooth for a tooth
I saw Judas Iscariot carrying John Wilkes Booth
He was down there by the train

I love porter, bourbon and Tuaca.  I decided to take these 3 leftovers that and use them as ingredients like pub owners did to make the original porter, that is to say, take the leftover sour/stale beer, mix it with something fresh and something mild.  It was called the “entire butt” meaning that the finished what was left.  It was the drink of the porters, who couldn’t afford better.  But my porter is getting Blanton’s.  I stir an ounce and half of porter with an ounce and a half of bourbon, a whisper of Tuaca for sweetness and then I smoke the cocktail in a carafe with hickory to remind me of the steam a hear and see on my ride.


Down there by the train cocktail

1.5 oz porter

1.5 oz bourbon

.25 oz Tuaca

stir and strain over smoke, dump that into a bucket

If you’ve lost all your hope, if you’ve lost all your faith
I know you can be cared for and I know you can be safe
And all the shamefuls and all of the whores
And even the soldier who pierced the side of the Lord

This drink suits the feeling of this sound, it validates leftovers.  It works like the  day after thanksgiving cranberry sauce sandwiches.  It ain’t high brow, or easily understood, or common, just like Waits and this song, but the combination is just as mysterious and beautiful as being confused by a junkyard ballad.

Well, I’ve never asked forgiveness and I’ve never said a prayer
Never given of myself, never truly cared
I’ve left the ones who loved me and I’m still raising Cain
I’ve taken the low road and if you’ve done the same
Meet me down there by the train

I think this is as far as a beer and a shot can go.

but here it what everyone else did, all things awesome:

Mike McSorley : Tommy the Cat, Tom Waits talking crazy on the Primus song from “Sailing the Seas of Cheese.”

The lesson, without moonshine, sabering champagne bottles and coupe towers, you are missing out on life's finer points

From the London Cocktail Guide:  Grapefruit Moon, from Tom Waits’ “Closing Time,”  a song to fall in love to if you are young enough to do so

A tobbaco infused variation on the classic blinker.- A sentence I would have on my tombstone, regarding my life

From Cocktail Virgin, Slut:  A great mocktail inspired by Tom Waits’ life on the darkside, and coming around to be sober.

People that don't drink matter too, and are worthy of such great consideration

A Dash of Bitters:  Admits procrastinating

AJ Rathbun:  Most of Tom Waits’ “Rain Dogs” in a glass, and like an episode of Futurama, you don’t know which part is a quote from elsewhere and which part is script

Showing off his Waits collection behind his whiskey bottles, you know what they say "behind every bottle of whiskey is a good Tom Waits record."

Devin Hahn: A mule Variations inspired drink with a nail swizzle stick.

gonna stir my brandy with a nail boy

Ganymeda: a scotch chronology, a scotch-ology of Tom Waits progression

My life in cocktails:  What do you drink on taco tuesday?

Sincerity by the pitcher

Paul Clarke: seems that Paul, like me, has had to host solo cocktail parties based on a bachelor’s fridge, Grapefruit Moon

I want to see a trend of boiler maker inspired cocktails, or at least freezing beer into ice cubes for mixing

From the Fogged in Lounge:  The grinding of the buzzsaw, what you want that thing to say? well uh, don’t misspell her name, she is “The One That Got Away.”  Funny thing is, I missed this one, the other funny bit is it I always tell people, “oh that drink, I just made it up for the one that got away.”

Vodka espresso? Pedestrian. Espresso, gin, absinthe and galiano? Inspired. A hard boiled drink of mystery, intrigue and there is probably a good bit about sex in there too .

I think my blog gets too much spam, I just found 3 more posts:

Urbane, not Cosmopolitan:  Frank’s Wild Years.  I got tattooed by a woman named Samantha listening to this record, she pulled a cog off of her bike to trace for it.

I will make this shot for my enemies and friends, to decifer which is which. I only I had enough knuckles to tattoo "orgeat" on one hand and "fernet n' rye" on the other.

Felicia’s Speakeasy:  growler stories

Every story and aside I've mentioned so far is completely true, and so I know that every word of this one must be real, so real that it might have happened more than once.

Marginalia Walker:  2 cocktails named for songs, Gun Street Girl and Tango til They’re Sore

A song that sounds old a dusty best played on a rainy night, a coktail that is a kick in the teeth that you'll ask for again

thanks everybody, some of these comments ended up in spam, i subscibe to too many erectile disfunction website, if youy post didn’t make it, send me an email

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8 Responses to Down there by the train: MixMo Tom Waits

  1. Rowen says:

    Dude, um, I think you missed mine. I replied to the announcement.

  2. Ian McCarthy says:

    Care to illustrate, or at least elaborate on, this smoking carafe?

  3. Pingback: “Cocktails Are Liquid Forgiveness” | Little Miss Attila

  4. Love the photos. Great post!

  5. Pingback: MxMo — um, a little help?

  6. Onthod says:

    help you to make your pet healthy hxxp://PetCareHelps[com]

  7. anthony says:

    This has got to be the coolest shit i’ve ever seen….putting them all on my bar menu……..

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