Best Life-Size Monument to Captain Morgan | Features | Los Angeles | Los Angeles News and Events | LA Weekly
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Best Life-Size Monument to Captain Morgan 

Wednesday, Oct 4 2006
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Best Life-Size Monument to Captain Morgan

Driving along Hillhurst in Los Feliz, you may have one day been startled by the appearance of a giant Captain Morgan. But how can this be? Weren’t the Marlboro Man and the Tidy Bowl Man and all their sinfully too-large kin outlawed during the last spasm of righteous indignation masquerading as social justice? It would seem not.

He’s stood larger than life and in our collective faces — but for how much longer? Cap ’n’ Cork liquor store general manager Joby Yobe(!) fills in the details: “He was donated to us by Captain Morgan Rum Co. for our grand opening on December 15, 2004, weighs about 200 pounds, stands about 7 feet tall and is one of only a handful in existence. After he was given to us, he became our unofficial mascot and is now a part of our store.” Recently, the Captain — touting Original Spiced Rum with muskets and saber at hand, one foot perched on a barrel of booze, completely masculine ascot and heavy breeches besides — was sunning himself on the sidewalk when a code-enforcement officer informed the Cap ’n’ Cork that the Captain’s inadvertent blocking of traffic on the sidewalk constituted a safety hazard. Three hundred bucks’ worth of safety hazard.

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So now, the endlessly mirthful Captain relaxes by the freezers in back, unperturbed by issues like permits or the rumors of another, similar Captain in a liquor store in South Pasadena. What does he think of all day? Silver Spiced Rum? Parrot Bay, the quicker-liquor-upper with hints of pineapple and a certain I-don’t-know-what? Private Stock, Captain Morgan’s “high end” rum? And when did this turn into a viral advertisement for Captain Morgan?

In time, Captain Morgan became, by volume, the third- (up from number four!) largest brand of spirits in the United States, and the seventh- (up from number 11!) largest in the world. In 2005, 6.5 million 9-liter cases were sold. Top five Captain Morgan markets: United States, Canada, Great Britain, South Africa and duty-free shops everywhere. Just think: There are now entirely new generations of people who can drink a concrete statue of Richard Burton under the table. Thank you, Captain Morgan!

CAP ’N’ CORK 1674 Hillhurst Ave., L.A., (323) 665-1260 or www.capncork.net

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