Vodka’s quite the little potatoey beverage that can.
Vodka has an indisputably impressive resume. Word on the street is that the vodka martini has finally surpassed the traditional gin martini in popularity. And like a wet gremlin, the vodka martini has spawned and spewed an entire race of flavored monster martinis–Appletinis, Crantinis, Rasptinis, Choclatinis, Melontinis, Butterscotchtinis, Orangetinis, Pomtinis, Mintinis, and a thousand other bastard variants with names I can’t believe anyone has the nerve to pronounce aloud in public. Vodka for White Russians, Black Russians, and the perennial brunch favorite/hangover cure the Bloody Mary (allegedly named, by the way, for Mary I, Queen of England, who burned heretical Protestants with formidable compulsion and awesome lack of compunction). Vodka for the quasi-classy classic Cosmopolitan and the blue-collar Screwdriver. Yeah, vodka does it all.
But vodka can do far more than just get guzzled down your gullet. When it’s not boosting a celebration in any of its dazzlingly delicious derivatives or darkening out the pain of a failed life, here are seven other practical uses for vodka:
#1: Vodka kills mold and mildew. That’s right, squirt vodka all over your bathroom–tiles, grout, tub, shower curtain and liner, and anywhere else you like. Reminds me of an old Gallagher joke (not verbatim): “I bought some mold and mildew cleanser. Was using it in my bathroom the other day and I started to feel dizzy. I read the label, which had a caution not to use the product in enclosed areas with poor ventilation. It was strange, since mold and mildew only grow in enclosed areas with poor ventilation!” Then I think he made a Watermelotini.
#2: For a streak-free shine, use a few drops of vodka to clean glass, and even eyeglasses (a literal version of the proverbial booze-goggles). Works well on any crystalline jewelry too. And windshields, if you’re looking to make a few extra bucks.
#3: Got a foot odor problem? Soak ’em in vodka. Don’t worry, it’s basically like stomping grapes to make wine. Sort of. In reverse. Okay, not at all. If you start producing potatoes in your vodka footbath , something’s wrong. Very, very wrong.
#4: Lots of cowardly and/or hairy kids hate having their band-aids pulled off. Fortunately, vodka will dissolve many low-grade adhesives. Pour a little over the bandage and it’ll come off without the whining. And if you catch little Billy licking his arm like a mini-madman, consider it a sneak preview of what he’ll be like as a teenager. An early jump on coping techniques is invaluable.
#5: Vodka is a disinfectant that can substitute for rubbing alcohol. And it tastes a whole hell of a lot better too. Use vodka on small cuts and blisters, and even to kill bacteria on objects. Store your razors in it to clean them and inhibit rusting. You can even gargle it and swish it around as an emergency mouthwash. Perfect for parrying god’s cruel joke next time you have a hot date with halitosis.
#6: You can also use a few drops of vodka in a vase to kill bacteria in the water, which keeps fresh flowers thriving and alive longer. Warning: may cause oleanders to become obnoxiously crude and surly; peonies to persist in telling you what a great guy you are and repeatedly proclaim their love for you; hibiscuses to lose all inhibition and inappropriately, lustily expose their stamen.
#7: Clothes reek of cigar or cigarette smoke? Is the smell lingering on your couch fabric after an inconsiderate houseguest? Mist vodka over any of it–it’s the drink that deodorizes. Works on many different stinks and on quite a variety of materials. But don’t let little Billy find out, or he’ll just be using one bad habit to hide another from you.
Okay that’s it. I’m too drunk to keep writing. Drunk on thoughts of the amazing versatility of vodka, of course.