March Madness Mai Tai

4384553_mai-tai-sml2Maybe a Mai Tai isn’t the first drink that comes to mind in March, unless you’re reading this post on Spring Break in Florida, Hawaii, or any of the other tropical hot spots. My daughter was lucky enough to go to the Bahamas with four other girls during her spring break and she’s supposed to be a poor college student. If YOU are lucky enough to be in a nice pleasant climate in March, then a Mai Tai is right up your alley. But if you’re stuck in a place where people get excited about a 60°-partly-cloudy day (surrounded by 45°-and-windy days), then you probably need a Mai Tai more than you know.


So why is the title of this post March Madness Mai Tai? Besides the fact that I love alliteration, last weekend I found myself watching an inordinate amount of college basketball. My daughter’s sorority had a fundraiser in conjunction with the NCAA tournament, and in exchange for donating, participants could create up to five brackets predicting the winners. I only had time to complete one bracket, but I have been enjoying the games now that I have a stake in them. Not much of a stake, mind you- I think there are 120 people in the pool and I am currently in 32nd place. The winner will score about $300, but I am probably too far behind to have a shot at that prize. So I’m mostly keeping track of the tournament because it reminds me of my dad, which is an extra bonus for me.


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My dad and me on my wedding day.

My dad was an avid sports fan. Actually he put avid sports fans to shame, he was such a huge, massive, enormous (insert your own superlative here) sports fan, I can’t begin to explain here how much he loved and knew about sports. For those of you who remember the sports edition of the Trivial Pursuit games, you may recall how difficult those questions were.   I could compete with the best of them when it came to the standard Trivial Pursuit edition, but I refused to play against my dad in the sports version. In fact, no one in my family would play him. Nobody could answer any of those obscure questions except for Jim Stein.


Each year when March Madness began, my dad would try to watch every game. He probably created his own brackets before brackets were even a thing. He was pretty good at picking the winners, too. Since he spent so much time watching every sport, including college basketball, throughout the regular season (and not just during playoffs as I have been known to do), he had a pretty good idea about each team in the tournament, along with their strengths and weaknesses.


My dad has been gone seven years this March, and not a college basketball tournament has gone by since then that I don’t wish he were still here to compare brackets with. I know he’s up in heaven screaming, “Why the hell did you pick Dayton to beat Syracuse??!!”


So this week, whether you’re enjoying a tropical Spring Break or following the Sweet 16 games, have yourself a Thirsty Gals Mai Tai with the people you love.


March Madness Mai Tai

1-2 oz white rum

1-2 oz coconut rum

2 oz orange juice

2 oz pineapple juice

Myer’s Rum


Mix white and coconut rums, juice and some ice together in a cocktail shaker, then strain into a glass with ice. Float some Myer’s dark rum on top. Garnish with a slice of pineapple.

1 Comment

  • Sharon says:

    My feelings exactly about your dad. He especially liked college BB. And baseball. White Sox fan all his life. Thanks for post.

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