Friday, February 27, 2009

No. 16

Beer: Boston Local Flight (Fishermaster, Cisco Whales Tale, BBC Coffeehouse Porter, Honest Red)
Date: February 26th, 2009

Place: Sunset Tap and Grill, Allston, Massachusetts

Met Chris, Christian and DJ to have dinner before going to see Theophilus London.

Ordered a flight of local beer. Four 5oz. tastings. It was one beer on the menu. Don't judge me.

The beers lasted longer than London. Who after 22 minutes left the stage. Probably to sulk - the crowd was quite anemic.

Too bad he hadn't been with us. Because we had a blast.

No. 15

Beer: Hobgoblin
Date: February 22nd, 2009
Place: Carolina Beach, North Carolina

The thought of doing anything for any serious amount of time is daunting. Mainly because time seems so fluid. It moves whether you do or not. I think a lot of us just get tired of holding on to whatever is affected by time and we just move on to something else that time begins to toll on. Case in point: I've not kept a job longer than two years. Because the thought of staying the same, of not progressing, makes me claustrophobic.

Fortunately, time doesn't seem to matter to Marianna's grandparents, who celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary in North Carolina on the sixtieth year and second day of their wedding.

What's exciting in this whole time thought, is that the exponentiality of time makes it such that we are winners. Observe: as of last week, Marianna's GM+GP were married one hundred and twenty time longer than we have been. In six months, that time becomes only ~sixty times. I think we've got the cat by the tail.

I extended my ticket and extra day to see my friends Hal and Jen down the coast on Carolina Beach.

I first met Hal on the phone. I was riding my bike on a trail in Atlanta, and I happened to get a call when I stopped to rest. Hal was calling because I'd put in my resume at Patagonia. Hal wanted to set up an interview.

And he called on the one day in which I happened to be doing something related to the job that I would start in a month.

I started the week that Hal and Jen were on their honeymoon. Which was almost five years ago now. Which is twelve times less than GM and GP. Which is also exponential.

I got into a Bible study with Hal and worked with him (or for him, as the manager/employee relationship is perceived) and rocked out to music and shared meals and went to church and became close, fast friends and fell in love with his dogs and felt like they were family.

Hal and Jen were right there with me on my last night in Atlanta. After I'd packed up the UHaul and got ready for my move to North Carolina. When I was excited and scared and broke and missing them already and thinking that time was such a cruel thing - that we'd known each other a year but that we didn't wring more out of our times together. And that time was such an amazing ally. That in a year, I became lucky enough to become fast friends with such a solid couple.

So I had Number 15 on the coast of my wife's home state. In honor of time.

Monday, February 16, 2009

No. 14

Beer: Coors
Date: February 15th, 2009
Place: Manchester-By-The-Sea, Massachusetts

Four years ago, when I'd flown into North Carolina for my first job interview, I had lunch with the folks who were interviewing me. It was in the American Tobacco Campus in Durham, and McKinney was the job in question. We went downstaris to Symposium, and had a beer with lunch. How great must a place be if you get to have beers at lunch? Pretty great, it turned out.

A great place to start out. A great place to burn out. A great place to meet a wife. All of those great things.

One of the guys who was with me that day was Matt. Who had been at McKinney for a bit. Months ago, Matt moved up here to take a job. A job which is out in the country (or ocean, rather) for now, but is moving into the city later. While we could, we took the trip up that way. Wishing it was cooler, but taking a beachfront stay any way we can.

I thought it fitting to share a beer four years later with the guy (and his wife) who got me a job and by transitive property, a wife.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

No. 13

Beer: Sam L. Smith Organic Ale
Date: February 11th, 2009
Place: The House, Somerville, Massachusetts

The last time I didn’t do something for two weeks was years ago.

I think I gave up coffee or beer (theme?) for Lent. No. Chocolate. I gave up desserts for Lent. And it was six years ago. And I was on a plane to New Zealand and I’d forgotten that I had nixed the desserts and starting eating my cake and realized what had happened but figured that Lent wasn’t enforceable over international waters so I kept eating. If there ever were an easy time for God to smite me, it would have been right there. On the far left side of the International Date Line.

The most recent time has been now. It’s been two weeks and two days since I’ve had a beer. I’ve met friends out and cooked a number of times and had happy hours at work and all these times are times where I would love a beer but I’ve had to settle for Scotch or wine or tea. Yes. Last Friday as the masses were reveling in a mixed case of Sam’s seasonal beers I was having English Breakfast.

Now, I’ve had to abstain because in my fervor to spend time with friends and share a brew I’ve spent too many beers – I was really on pace for a 144 year. Which is about 44% too many. I stopped the carnage before it resembled Wall Street. There is no beer bailout program being debated in the chambers.

This is the first time, as well, that I’ve really been aware of my cutting back. It’s hurt a bit. It is tangible. There is less that I can have. There is a beer sitting in my fridge staring at me telling me it’s time and me telling it that it is indeed not time, not yet, and please take this watering our of my mouth. I’ve realized what I’ve come to –although not anywhere near it’s fullest – there is a limit on earth, and the further we back away from that limit through wise decisions the more there will be from everyone.

Abstaining from beer has caused me to buy a low flow showerhead.

There is, however, one grand reason to break my fast this evening. The UNC / Duke game. With Marianna and Kelly and Roy Williams.

If I were more of a man, I’d wait until the end of the game, to make this not an observational beer but a celebratory brew. However, if I did that, based on consumption trends over the last fortnight, I think I might wake up with a headache.