The cause of and solution to all of life’s problems

Beer is a big part of my life. I make it, drink it, read about it, and write about it.

It wasn’t always this way, though. I was never a big beer drinker. When you’re a teenager, you drink whatever your parents have in the liquor cabinet, never the beer. You figure they know exactly how many bottles of beer are in the fridge but they don’t always know the precise level of the vodka. When you do drink beer as a teenager, you’re definitely not drinking good beer – you’re drinking whatever cheap-ass shitty beer you can convince your friend’s 22-year-old cousin to buy for you. And of course you don’t like it – you’re drinking the shittiest beer ever made.

Then you get to college, and your tastes change. You’re still underage, sure, but at least now the parties are better because you have friends who are over 21 and while cheap beer is still the best for binge-drinking, it’s usually something slightly better than the warm donkey piss you’re used to. Still, hard liquor is still the fastest way to get blackout drunk, and that’s the goal during these years, right?

It happens to most of us.

For me, I remember the first time I was really aware of what beer I was drinking. I remember what it was. I remember who bought it for me. I remember what bar I was in and even where I was sitting. I remember what month it was, but not quite what day. I remember it so well because it was absolutely a ‘fork in the road’ moment (that had nothing to do with beer, incidentally), and I chose my path that night.

ANYWAY, I had recently turned 21 and was thus able to appreciate all the choices before me. Up to then, I’d been drinking Bud Light (what my boyfriend drank – but don’t worry, he’s reformed now), or Killian’s Irish Red (what Mom had in the house). Beer wasn’t my favorite and it seemed like a waste to branch out and spend money on something that I probably wouldn’t even like.

Then That Night happened, and I haven’t looked back. At beer, anyway. The other thing… yeah. Ha.

I forget exactly where I was going with this. It just struck me last night as I was reading about extreme beers that I could pretty much pinpoint my conversion. I saw the light, man.

So we’re about to make a super-hopped ale, which I cannot wait for, but I will have to. That’s going in bottles, which means a good three or four months from brew day to drinking day. It better be worth it. In the meantime, we’re making a Sam Adams-style as our first attempt at kegging. If it’s successful, then I have a feeling we’re going to go broke buying more kegging equipment, and the vague, unformed plans to run beer lines from the basement to the kitchen will come to fruition.

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