Ice is genius. The cube is genius. The ice cube is genius times two to the third. No doubt a large number. And yet, the ice enthusiast maintains aspirations.
Like transparency. Many a cocktail engineer employs distilled water, double-boiled water, double-boiled distilled water or an enormous machine that squeezes out the air bubbles, yielding perfectly clear ice. He carves the crystal into big, bold blocks that make drinks colder — and cooler.
On the flip side, many an ice aficionada fills her trays with berries, flowers and herbs — frozen fossils that dress up chill concoctions.
Both approaches suffer from the same design flaw. Ice is crafted from water, and water tends toward watery. In a tumbler of scotch, a bit of melt is the goal. In everything else, it's a nuisance. Which explains the current craze for redundancy: Coffee cubes for iced coffee, chai cubes for iced tea, cookies-and-milk cubes for no good reason at all.
Watermelon is one step ahead: just cut and freeze. The cubes tumble out pretty, tasty and incapable of diluting a drink. Genius, minus the fuss.