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Jeremiah Weed

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Guest RaptorKeeper

Ok, so even though I've been to the OPS bar a time or two, I've never had the pills to ask, "what's the deal with shooting Jeremiah Weed?" Why is that the poison of choice? is there a story to it, or is it just because. Thanks for educatin'

RK

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Guest Hoser

Told in the book Sierra Hotel, Flying Air Force Fighters in the Decade after Vietnam by C.R. Anderegg.

Here's what he wrote:

The True Story of Jeremiah Weed

Every USAF fighter squadron has a lounge where the pilots sometimes gather for a cold beer after the flying day is over. Every refrigerator in each of those lounges contains a chilled bottle of a 100-proof product called Jeremiah Weed. For special occasions, and sometimes for no reason at all, someone will bring out the Weed, fill a shot glass for each person present, and propose a toast. At the conclusion of the toast, all down their Weed in a single gulp. It is not tasty. To many it seems like drinking kerosene, and it leaves a very strong aftertaste.

Be that as it may, few refuse because the downing of a Weed is a ritual deeply imbedded in the fighter pilot culture. That ritual started long before today’s squadron commanders were even in college, and stories abound as to how the custom started. A famous newsman once said, “When there is disagreement between the legend and the truth, always print the legend.” Since I disagree, here is the true story of Jeremiah Weed, and I know it’s true because I was part of it.

On December 1, 1978, I was flying as an instructor in the back seat of a F–4E, tail number 649, on a BFM hop out of the 414th FWSq at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada. The student in my front seat, Maj. Nort Nelson, was a highly experienced F–4 pilot with hundreds of combat hours. Leading the flight was Capt. Joe Bob Phillips, who had in his back seat Capt. Larry Ernst, an instructor who was just along for the ride. The mission called for Joe Bob to attack Nort in a scripted scenario that gave Nort the opportunity to use his best defensive BFM to defeat Joe Bob’s attacks. The mission did not last long. On the first engagement, Nort managed to put the airplane into a position from which I judged that recovery was impossible.* I ejected both of us from the jet. Neither of us was injured, and within an hour we were picked up by a helicopter that returned us to Nellis. It probably goes without saying that Nort and I had different views: he thought he could miss the ground; I did not. It was too close to bet my life on. The accident investigators agreed with me. They determined that ejection was the only possibility for survival. Further, they believed that if I had delayed more than a second, one or both of us would have died in the desert seventy miles north of Las Vegas.

A year later, both Joe Bob and Nort were members of the F–16 Multinational Operational Test and Evaluation squadron at Hill Air Force Base, Utah. On the first anniversary of the accident, they were flying to Nellis to participate in Red Flag. As they passed over the crash site, which Joe Bob easily found since he had circled our downed position many times, they sketched some brief road maps on cards in their cockpits and decided to return to the site by car.

* The details are for another story, which I will tell in a future book.

The next day, a Friday, they drove out of Las Vegas with a friend, Pete Mock, intending to find the site and camp out in the crater that the crashing airplane had gouged in the high desert. However, it was dark by the time they got to the dirt road they thought would lead them to the site. After a couple of aborted attempts to drive up dirt roads to nowhere, they decided to go back to a roadside café they had passed to ask directions.

They entered the Paranaghat Bar and found no customers, only a bearded bartender who looked a lot like Grizzly Adams. When they told the bartender what they were up to, he was delighted to tell them he had seen the fire from the crashing airplane the day of the accident. Further, he was very pleased that he had three real fighter pilots in his bar. He had heard that fighter pilots knew many bar games (true), and he wanted to play games for drinks. When they balked at the idea, he persisted, and after much cajoling asked them if they knew the game “horses.” They shook their heads no (not true). Over the next several minutes, the bartender “taught” them horses, finally saying that whoever lost had to buy a round of drinks. After three games of horses, the bartender had bought all three rounds.

And after three rounds the pilots were a little less stressed to get to the crash site. Joe Bob asked the bartender if he knew how to do afterburners. No, the bartender said, he had never heard of that game. So, Joe Bob explained to him how a shot of brandy in a shot glass is ignited so that the alcohol on top burns, and then the drinker throws down the flaming shot. If done correctly, all the brandy is emptied from the shot glass, so that when the drinker puts the glass down, a small, blue flame still burns in the bottom. The bartender was eager to play but said he had no brandy. Nort suggested that any high-proof booze might work, and the bartender fumbled around under the bar for a moment. He straightened up and plopped a tall, brown bottle with a brown and green label on the bar, and said, “I’ve got this here stuff—it’s 100 proof.” The brand name on the green label proclaimed that it was Jeremiah Weed. The three fighter pilots filled their shot glasses and demonstrated, all three glasses returning to the bar empty except for a small blue flame flickering at the bottom.

The bartender immediately poured one for himself and lit the top. Now, these were no ordinary twentieth-century shot glasses. Joe Bob thought they might be from the 1800s because the glass was very thick, and the bottom was probably an inch of heavy glass. When the bartender picked his up, he held it by the bottom while he licked and smoothed the mustache of his thick beard out of the line of fire. He took several moments on his grooming, not realizing that as he held the thick glass at the bottom, the top near the fire was heating quickly. By the time he tilted his head back and put the glass to his lips…..well, Joe Bob says you could probably hear the s-s-s-s-sizzle of the hot glass barbecuing the bartender’s lips halfway to Las Vegas. Then the bartender made his second mistake and flinched. The flaming Weed went all over his beard, and by the time Joe Bob, Nort, and Pete could beat out the flames, the bar was filled with the smell of cooked lips and singed hair.

As soon as things calmed down a bit, the trio, feeling badly that they had not paid for a drink all night and greatly embarrassed that they had nearly immolated their new friend, bought another bottle of Weed from him and left again for the crash site, this time guided by one of the bartender’s friends who had entered the bar just in time to witness and smell the blistering. The friend showed them the correct dirt road, and the trio found the crash crater, where they spent the rest of the night camped out and drinking the entire bottle of Weed.

The next morning they dragged themselves out of the crater, gathered a few souvenirs from the parts still lying around, and headed straight for the Nellis Air Force Base Officers’ Club. There they found the manager, showed her the empty bottle, and strongly suggested she add it to the bar stock. She did. Soon, the Nellis fighter pilots were downing shots of Weed (nonflaming) for no good reason except it was different, and it was a good excuse to toast “fallen comrades.” As Red Flags came through the Nellis club, they saw the weapons school guys doing it, so they did it, too.

And that is the true story of how Jeremiah Weed started. I have a bottle in my freezer.

Cap-10

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Excellent part of Air Force history...hopefully the PC police/leadership won't try to take that away too.

Thanks for the read Hoser, I was just wondering about the Jeremiah Weed story yesterday.

[ 30. January 2006, 20:54: Message edited by: Mambo ]

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So the big question is...any truth to the rumor that the Jeremiah Weed distillery is OUT OF BUSINESS?! WTF?

I've tried, in vain, to find/order it several times and no one can even find it in their catalogs.

I've also heard a rumor that the Nellis O'club bought 1000+ cases when they found out that production was stopping. Any truth to this??

Luckily, I scored a bottle at Keflavik last year. On sale even. $4.99. hehe

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Guest Hoser
Originally posted by Bergman:

So the big question is...any truth to the rumor that the Jeremiah Weed distillery is OUT OF BUSINESS?! WTF?

I've tried, in vain, to find/order it several times and no one can even find it in their catalogs.

I've also heard a rumor that the Nellis O'club bought 1000+ cases when they found out that production was stopping. Any truth to this??

Luckily, I scored a bottle at Keflavik last year. On sale even. $4.99. hehe

I don't think it's going out of business.

Not sure about the Nellis O'club.

The class 6 here on base always has plenty of bottles on the shelf (approx $13.69 a bottle)

Cap-10

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Bergman have found a place to buy it online, and through my research the distillery is actually owned as a subsidiary of nabisco, which was at one point owned by KFC before Pepsi took it over. However the plant is still there, if you look at the bottle and do a search and surf throuhg a few pages of nonsense it should come up. The main thing you will find is links t osome sort of vacation sightseeing place ownde by the people that started the distillery.

Bergman If you want me to track down the online link to buy JW pm me, its prolly gonna cost you around $15, still the happiness this bottle brings is definitely worth it. I did 10 shots new years nights in 3.5 minutes (in unison with dos Gringos at every "Fox" and then one last time at the end.. I was obliterated.

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Weed is no longer sold in the state of Mississippi, not even in the class 6. It was great justification why we HAD to go to cross country before the next naming.

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Guest illini52

I bought a bottle the other day for $11. There's always dust on the bottle at the booze store.

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BAD NEWS: Called Macdill AFB Class six to put in a pickup order today. Said they have been out of weed for 6 months and the warehouse is empty of it and its on backorder. I was a bit dissapointed, so I siad.. Tyndall maybey they will have some, called them, they were out too. and Eglin has the same problem.

Spoke to the Manager at Tyndall Class Six, and foudn out that for some reason AAFES decided to stop carrying JW (thats the craziest thing I have ever heard) they decided since the demand was so high to order it from some other vendor outside of the AAFES warehouse in Atlanta. So Tyndall now has 15 cases, going fast. So if some of you are having trouble finding it, that might be the reason.

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Guest thefranchise

Vance Class 6 has it still.

you can order it online also although shipment is limited to select states.

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Any liquor store can order it if you can convince them to. I told one once that I'd buy the whole case if they ordered one...they had it 5 days later. And this is a liquor store 30 min at least from the nearest base.

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Friends don't let friends chug Jeremiah Weed when trying to get drunk 'cuz they broke up with a chick (unless it's gonna be really funny!)

Toughnight.jpg

Me, Kadena, 1995. Yes, it's raining...............................but notice the beer is upright. :thumbsup:

Edited by brickhistory

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If you weren't in the AF and lacked the history behind this swill, why would you drink it? In other words, do they still make this crap just for us?

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All I keep thinking about with this topic is how the phrase

"When one lieutenant drinks, they all drink!!" has been my downfall on many a night. . .

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Guest Light the Wick

Here's a hint. If really loud small jets aka fighters are flying around your base.......chances are there is weed a plenty! :thumbsup:

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Noone has mentioned chomping a raw egg before a shot of Jdub! That's the only way to get the full effect preferably with this toast..

Here's to this unborn chicken,

and our unborn wives!

lol, down the hatch!

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The good news is, I got this email...

We have just added the capability on the Jeremiah Weed website where you can search to find where Jeremiah Weed is sold in your area. Just go to the website, and in the upper right hand corner you should see a link that says, "Can't Find Jeremiah Weed?" After you click that link, you should be able to search for Jeremiah Weed by zip code and state.

The bad news is, I tried my zip code and got, well, zip! And I do have a local source for Weed about two miles from my house. It doesn't even show up in the state listing for Texas.

However, the mere fact that there is a state listing is good news! :rock:

Cheers! M2

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I love the J-Weed as much as the next guy, but anyone think doing this whole youtube, with the guys shadow thing and all a bit on the gay side. If its just me Ill shut up and color as you all say.. but just my thoughts, before they launched the site, Jeremiah Weed himself friended me on youtube because of my videos I have up of the DG Tommy rocker show.. so I got a sneak peek I guess you could say.. Cool that they are trying to make it more well known.

Any of you think it might take away some of the mystique-ness (is that a word) of it, being that its such a cult following on it, I also wonder if the economics of it will work out, lets say they make this big push and it fails, might it cause them to discontinue making it?

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Actually on the bottle its spelled Liqueuer, I did a little playing around with google, found this, albeit this is not at all a rock solid source, but here it is.. http://crazywriter84.blogspot.com/2008/04/...-vs-liquor.html

A liqueur is a sweet alcoholic beverage, often flavored with fruits, herbs, spices, flowers, seeds, roots, plants, barks, and sometimes cream. Basically, it is infused with something, or has sugar added. Liqueurs are not usually aged for long periods, but may have resting periods during their production to allow flavors to marry.

Liqueurs include: Crème de Cacao, Godiva Dark Chocolate, Kahlúa, Baileys Irish Cream, Crème de menthe, 99 Bananas, Limoncello, Grand Marnier, Midori, Triple sec, Sambuca, Amaretto, Frangelico.

Liquor is most often referred to as a spirit. A spirit is a distilled, alcoholic beverage made from a fermented mash of various ingredients.The distinction between liqueur and spirits is not always simple, especially since many spirits are available in a flavored form today. Flavored spirits, however, are not prepared by infusion. Their added flavors are just... added. Whiskies, Vodka, Gin, Rum are examples.

So that's the basics. A liqueur is sweet and has added flavor. A liquor usually isn't.

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A Houston-based liquor/fine wine/cheese? chain called Spec's sells it and they always have it in stock. You can order it by the case online if you're really that desperate. Good thing it's cheap. www.specsonline.com

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Was browsing a liquor store in Abilene the other day and ran across Jeremiah Weed Sweet tea vodka. Just wondering if it's as delicious as the original before I waste my money on a poser. :beer:

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