1995 MUSIC NOSTALGIA : BALANCE BY VAN HALEN

1995 and I had temporarily moved to Bangalore for a year for studies at the age of 19. One of the albums I bought during my stay there – and also helped me to adjust to life living away from my family and staying in a college hostel which was really bad as was the food and well loneliness – was Balance. I also remember reading an article in a Guitar magazine about Eddie’s change from Musicman to Peavey (which I think was just after the same time) for some reason.

Anyway, from the somewhat controversial art work on the cover to the more heavier sounding songs and what I believe at the time was called a more guitar-centric album, I enjoy this album a lot. The Seventh Seal & Don’t Tell Me What Love Can Do are more heavier and I love the guitar riffs and solos on the latter. Amsterdam & Take Me Back are more lighter and fun while the ballads “Can’t Stop Lovin’ You” &”Not Enough” are pretty solid ones.

However my favourite track is the instrumental Baluchitherium which is forever in my playlist. I think this was a really good album that closes out the Van Hagar era.

Drinking Eggnog Around The Holiday Season Sounds Just Right; Here Are Some Eggnog Facts

1. Eggnog Was Once Only A Drink For Wealthy Aristocrats

Oh, you fancy, huh? In the 14th century England, only the well off could afford eggnog, as milk and eggs were both scarce and expensive, as was the sherry used to spike the mixture.However, that changed in the American Colonies where they had easier access to dairy products and liquor. Many Americans had their own chickens and dairy cattle so tossing together a glass of eggnog was an easy feat, making its popularity soar.

2. The Word Eggnog Has Many Origins

Many etymologists believe the name stems from the word “noggin” which referred to small wooden mugs that were often used to serve eggnog. Others posit a similar story but explain that “nog” comes from the slang term to refer to strong ales they also served in those cups.

3. Washington Enjoyed Getting Sloshed On Eggnog

When toasting your glass of eggnog these holidays, charge a glass to George Washington. Kitchen records from Mount Vernon indicate the first president served an eggnog-like drink to visitors. And since the general was a wealthy man, he didn’t’ skimp on the booze. Washington’s potent recipe included three different types of liquor – rye whiskey, rum, and sherry.

4. The FDA Limits The Amount Of Egg In Store-Bought Eggnog To 1%

If you pick up a carton of eggnog with your groceries, you may be getting more “nog” than yolk. Due to our fear of raw egg, U.S. FDA regulations limit egg yolk solids to no more than 1.0% of a products’ final weight to bear the eggnog name, while your typical homemade version has roughly one egg per serving

5. Eggnog Was Responsible For A Riot At West Point

In 1826, the Superintendent of West Point, Colonel Sylvanus Thayer set strict rules forbidding purchasing, storing, or consuming alcohol. However, several cadets took Thayer’s regulations as a challenge and celebrated the Christmas festivities with alcohol-laden eggnog. A riot ensued, two officers got assaulted, and the North Barracks vandalized. Ultimately, 19 cadets and one soldier were court-martialed for their involvement in the riot, resulting in eleven dismissals from West Point.

6. There Is No “Right” or “Wrong” Alcohol With Eggnog

With no hard and fast rules, eggnog can be made with any number of different distilled spirits, or none at all, known as “virgin eggnog”. Rum, sherry, Cognac, and whiskey are all suitable for eggnog. Some suggest that it should be a mix of two dark distilled spirits to balance out the sweet treacle flavor of eggnog, but it’s best to try them out and see what works best for you.

7. Vegan Eggnog Exists, And It’s Spectacular

While not technically using any eggs or milk, vegan “eggnog” can be made using a variety of products and is ideal for not only vegans but also those with lactose or dairy intolerances. “Milk” is used, in the form of soy, almond, coconut, or cashew and traditional eggnog flavors and spices remain such as vanilla extract, cinnamon, and nutmeg. And of course making either alcoholic or virgin vegan eggnog is your choice, depending on how bearable your relatives are!