Raise your hand if you've recently started an awkward party conversation with "I was on Pinterest the other night ..."
Consider both my hands raised.
Something about the mind-numbing way I sift through posts from my friends every night makes me think I have Martha Stewart superpowers. I suddenly want to organize the kitchen I don't own, try a new braid in the long hair I don't have and plan new craft projects with the kids I definitely don't parent.
Typically, I snap out of it. Mine is a world of pre-packaged oatmeal mixes and store-bought cards. I don't have the time, Mason jars or scissors to do half of what I see pinned each night, which has likely saved me many dollars in raw food and glitter purchases.
But then came the drinks boards. Unlike hand-painted neon coat hangers, cocktailing as craft is a concept I can get behind. So down the rabbit hole I went.
Pin-trial no. 1: Save money, mix at home. You cannot escape the budgeting advice on Pinterest. So in the interest of saving a few bucks one week, I decided to live and drink on just what I had around the house. Learned: Don't mix Dr. Pepper and whiskey in a closed water bottle. Cleaned: Entire kitchen to eradicate sticky mess. Reminder: Never shake a soda.
Pin-trial no. 2: Gourmet Jell-O shots. Unlike the plastic cup-encased disasters you mixed in college, Pinterest Jell-O shots take a little more creative effort. Cups? Never! You'll be pouring the boiling liquid into lime, lemon and orange rinds to cool and slice into faux-fruit slices. Instead of classic combinations such as "Blue and Everclear," Pinterest suggests upgrades such as caramel apple, strawberry margarita and pink lemonade. In theory, a great idea. But buying the multiple bottles of booze needed to create these pint-sized delights is more than I can rationalize. With only the funds for one box of Jell-O and one type of booze, you can expect my post on "Strawberry-Andre champagne" Jell-O shots to hit the web soon.
Pin-trial no. 3: The Painkiller. If anyone balks at your preference for sweet rum-and-juice blends, just snap back that tiki cocktails are very, very in right now. And if you run into a pin on how simple a little mix of rum, pineapple juice, orange juice, coconut cream and nutmeg is, keep in mind the following: Coconut cream is probably not available at the grocery store down the street. No, a mix of coconut milk and condensed milk is not an acceptable substitute. And once you've committed to a strong dash of nutmeg, the only counter-solution is to add more rum. In fact, just pour the whole handle of Sailor Jerry into a plastic juice pitcher and go from there. Cocktail experiments are best when shared with friends. Live and learn.
Emily Van Zandt is a RedEye reporter. She just found out tonic water glows under a black light and is mildly horrified. firstname.lastname@example.org | @redeyedrinksCopyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times