This past week my darling wife was under the weather. She made puppy dog eyes at me until I made her an Orange Sunset, one of her favorite drinks when she is sick.
Making the drink was the easy part. Selecting an appropriate mug, on the other hand, took a bit more time. I am not a superstitious man when it comes to most of my daily habits, but I do admit to a certain degree of mystical practice when it comes to selecting the proper vessel for a heated beverage.
Very simply, the mug must match the purpose of the drink.
For example, in the morning, my coffee mug must be minimalistic and energizing. There must be no floral patterns or fancy type fonts. If I select the mug with the Colorado columbine, I might as well drop a couple of vicodin and bring a pillow to my desk.
On the other hand, if I want to settle myself down at night with a nice cup of chamomile or jasmine green tea, I will go for the gray mug with the winter forest scene or the free mug I got with my last Gevalia order that greets me with delicate gold lettering, "By Appointment to his Majesty the King of Sweden." If I pick the mug with the snappy logo that I got at a technical conference, I will be up all night trying to list all the movies that Tim Burton directed that Danny Elfman did NOT do the music for.
So, I very carefully chose the winter forest scene for my wife when I made her the Orange Sunset, and I am totally and completely convinced that it helped in her convalescence. Had I picked the wrong mug, she would have been up all night hacking and coughing and mentally writing middle eastern choreographies for her dance troupe. And all because I gave her a hot, soothing drink in a Far Side mug.
Who am I to taunt the lesser deities of warming beverages? This is serious stuff.
Anyway, here is the recipe for Orange Sunset.
2/3 mug of orange juice
1/3 mug of water
1 tablespoon of honey
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
3 whole cloves
Mix all ingredients together. Simmer on a low heat for about 10 minutes. Serve warm.
If you do not like whole cloves in your teeth, strain the drink before serving. I, on the other hand, fully believe in the healing power of whole cloves, so I always leave them in the mug and suck on them when I have finished the drink.