Holiday Cheer Delivery

Experts | Think Tank |


By Tank Hoover

Tank Ramps The Game Up Some …

Worry was in the air…his “Stupendous Spectacularness” Editor Roy was actually being nice to me. My Cromagnum uni-brow subconsciously furrows itself in confusion, “What’s wrong? Is he about to fire me?”

I need to do something, now! But what? Like a cast iron skillet slamming over my head, I get an idea. I recall Roy mentioning he likes a certain type of bourbon from Buffalo Trace Distillery. He even sends coupons for it, saying I should give it a try. Funny thing, he also sends his address along with them.

Hmmm…is this a clue? Being a cop for 27 years, I take it as one. I figure I need to get him some, quick, wondering at the same time if it’s too late. If it is, I need to figure a way of giving him a hard time without him realizing it, chuckling maniacally to myself.

The Plan…

The county I live in happens to be the largest buyer of Buffalo Trace Distillery products. It’s in such high demand; a lottery system is used for the higher shelf products. I enter and miraculously win the chance to buy a bottle of Pappy Van Winkle bourbon for Roy.

Now comes the spiteful, revenge part. Acting like I just want to safely send the bottle to him, I pack it with love and care — as I picture him trying to open his “special delivery.” It’s diabolical, deceitful and downright dazzling. He’ll never know I’m giving him a hard time under the ruse of protecting his precious parcel. Yet at the same time, if I’m wrong and my paranoia got the better of me, he’ll just assume I’m an idiot! MuuuuWHoHahahahahahaaaa…I love it! I can’t lose!

Foaming At The Mouth

So I assemble my medium sized flat-rate Priority Mail box, giggling like a buffoon. I gingerly wrap the bottle of Pappy Van Winkle in bubble wrap, setting it aside. I then shake a large can of spray-foam insulation for 30 seconds and fill the bottom of the flat-rate box. I gingerly place the bubble-wrapped booze bottle into the sea of foam like a ticking time bomb.

More spray-foam insulation is added, followed by a wad of heavy cardboard paper, to seal the deal. I quickly close the box and wrap it with shipping tape to contain the expanding ooze of goo. At maximum expansion, it turns rock hard, entombing the bourbon tighter than old King Tut himself.

Special Delivery

Feeling like the Uni-bomber, I grab the bulging box, thankful I used packing tape to contain the powerful expansive properties of the spray-foam insulation and head to the post office. The clerk grabs my parcel saying, “Boy, you really packed it in there, didn’t you?”

“You have no idea.” doing my best Boris Karloff laugh as I walk away.

The Bait

I then send Roy an email telling him to expect a package from me, dropping the hint, “You’ll be a Happy Pappy, too!” It won’t take him long to figure it out as he stakes out his mailbox.

After the third day of sitting in his side-by-side 4-wheeler with Scout and Amelie, his faithful Australian Shepherds, the package arrives. Roy floors it, Scout falls out of the 4-wheeler, but Roy’s on a mission. To the garage we go.

The Game’s Afoot

Roy’s real excited now. He’s pretty sure he has a cherished bottle of Pappy and it’s after 5:00 somewhere, ain’t it? Roy pops the top of the box and is stopped in his tracks. A hard wad of cardboard paper is glued into a hard foam-like substance that won’t budge.

Feeling like a badger trying to dig ground squirrels out of concrete, Roy brings it up a notch. Grabbing a butcher knife, he stabs the box out of frustration. He skins the outer side open, only to discover a solid blob of foam. The plan was working perfectly; his gifted nightcap was turning into a nightmare…hehehehehehe!

Fortunately he photo-documented it, as we say here in the magazine biz.


After 45 minutes, Roy finally frees the bottle from the box, feeling like King Arthur after pulling the sword from the stone. He texts triumphantly to me, “Thanks Tank! Merry Christmas! I got sorta’ sweaty from the work, but I gotta’ say, that bottle was protected.” I can’t believe it. I wasn’t fired! Roy interpreted the “bottle frozen in foam” as just another guffaw by me. Like I was bein’ nice. I kinda’ feel guilty…but just for a second as I start laughing hysterically!

We have fun here at FMG and hope you do too! Even at our own expense, good humor makes all things tolerable. Cheers! And Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays! Bottoms up!

And be wary of any packages from me…MuuuWhooHahahahahahahaha…!

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