Showing posts with label beer. Show all posts
Showing posts with label beer. Show all posts

How to Fake Being a Beer Connoisseur

If you are like me, you don’t know anything about craft beer or imports or even the pale yellow stuff that comes in a gimmicky bottle. For the adventurous, one way of learning about beer would be to take one of the various beer tasting class where they teach you how to order, look at and smell a beer before tasting. But if you don’t have the time, do what I do: fake it.

Most people don’t care what you know about beer.  Friendly beer drinkers find out what other beers you like and make suggestions. But there’s always going to be that guy at the office or the girl who’s dating your best friend who tries to win influence and gain respect by throwing around terms like hops and Lovibond and Parnesian Slow Drip Open Cask Fermentation Technique. If you find yourself backed in a corner and you have to fake beer knowledge, follow these steps.

It’s best to ask your beer nemesis what they suggest.  Let them make the first move. No matter what they say, just reply, “Are you going to drink that out of a tall boy PBR can?” This will A) make them second guess their choice and B) wonder for the rest of the evening what the hell you were talking about. While they are still reeling, tell the bartender you’ll have the beer that has the most animals carved into the tap.

Somehow the color of beer affects the taste or the taste of the beer affects the color.  I don’t know. What I do know is that you can stare at a beer for a good long time. Take a couple angles on it: over the top, through the glass, from the bottom. Then, without a taste or a smell, send it back and ask for something else. When your companion starts to question your actions, ignore them, look at their beer and say, “Are you really going to drink that poisonous swill?”

Waft and Tent
Once another brew shows up, make a big show of smelling the beer.  I like to set the beer on the table and use both hands to shovel the air over top the glass into my face.  It’s best to make questioning noises at first and then work your way into agreement mumblings and finally full out orgasmic grunts.   Then, put both hands over top of the glass like a tent and stick your nose in the opening. Turn your head and exhale then dive right back in.  Once you are finished, proclaim that the beer is slightly earthy with an acrid tooth.

Hold the glass to your face.  Ask the beer connoisseur at the table if the beer feels too cold. If they touch the glass with their hand to test the temperature,  say, “Oh, you don’t use the Trappist Monk technique?” If they ask what the Trappist Monk technique is, smile and say, “I’m sorry, I've said too much already.”

Here’s where it gets tough.  By this time, your beer nemesis will be thrown off by your bizarre techniques and will want to step up with their knowledge of both taste and ingredients. Let them! Just reply back to anything they say with, “I can see where you would say that,” or “I’m sure that’s probably what you were taught.”  If they start to question your questioning, just gargle the beer while they are talking and then reply, “What did you say? I couldn't hear you during my Over Tasting procedure.”  If they start talking again, gargle louder.  After about three minutes of gargling, you should look down to see that they are gone.

Congratulations! You've won. Now order a tall boy PBR and let that cold, tasteless swill join the pride that fills your belly.  But not before you give it a good tent wafting!

Half Tie, Beer Leg... Two Tales of Friction

Here are two related tales that I like to call, "Half Tie" and "Beer Leg" which both hold hands with our good friend, friction. Enjoy.

Half Tie
Handsome Joe and I used to wear ties out on the town at Ohio University. It seemed like a good way to pick up classy chicks. I had an awesome flowered tie that was obnoxious and suave. I wore it out one snowy night in Athens.

The ties didn't work and Handsome Joe and I headed home alone together. On the way, we ran into a number of students who were sliding down Jeff Hill on stolen cafeteria trays and cardboard boxes. Half drunk kids would slide down the frozen, brick street, screaming the whole way. At the bottom, they would generously hand off their makeshift sleds, giving guys in ties a chance to sled down.

We ran up the stairs that paralleled the street with drunken stamina. At the top of the brick street I took a running dive and flew down the hill. It was exhilarating.

At the bottom, I handed off the tray to another student. Handsome Joe almost took me out as he flew by. He handed off his sled and noticed that my tie was sticking half out of my jacket. Actually it was all sticking out of my jacket, just that half of it was missing.

My tie got caught under the tray. The brick street, though nicely iced, caused a bit of friction. The tie was frayed. It was destroyed. I still wonder why I didn't choke to death. God bless the Double Windsor.

Beer Leg
One beautiful snowy Athens evening, Joe, Knitter and I were stealing beer out of a friend’s screened porch. It wasn’t really stealing because it was rightfully ours. Had we been inside the house at the party, we would have polished the entire case of beer. Since we didn’t like anyone at the party, we took our beer to go.

The porch was locked, but the window was not. I crawled through the narrow, screened window, flopped on the porch floor and passed the case of beer out to Knitter and Handsome Joe. Someone from the inside started to come outside so I dove out the window and we ran laughing through the back yards.

At Mill Street Hill, I took the case of beer from Knitter and did a running dive down the icy sidewalk on top the case of beer. It was just like a sled! I made it about half way down the hill before I ran out of ice. Knitter and Joe caught up and we continued home.

Once we got back to 19 Palmer Street, I made two observations and one conclusion: 1. My right pants leg was wet. 2. Eight beers had holes in the bottom of them. Conclusion: The cardboard was eaten through in half circles by the ice and sidewalk and the little smiling faces were drooling beer. The case somehow retained structural integrity so that the beer could leak out and on to my jeans. 16 beers is not as good as 24, but always better than zero.

Friction is a bitch.

Performance Plus

Conny was in town this weekend. If we learned one thing, it’s that in Ohio, you cannot buy beer from a store past 1:00am. We tried three places and all of them, even the seedy one, denied us. We felt a little like 18 year old kids on prom night, with girls begging for wine coolers, knowing that they would be running off with the olda boys if we couldn’t provide.

(Into the time machine we go, back to 1997.)

Conny and I worked together at the same museum way back when. In 1997, Conny decided to move on as I decided to stay with the organization. Every year during our annual review process, we would learn about our bonuses. In years past, bonuses were a big deal. The company would talk about the huge pool of money there was to draw from. The monthly meeting before the bonus dispersal was always exciting with people discussing what cut of the pot they thought they would get. The pot announcement was always a big affair. In 1997, as we all anxiously waited for the announcement that never came. Later we learned that resources were being utilized in other areas and that the pot was much smaller. There would be bonuses, just not as big in years past. Everyone was disappointed.

Every year we were told not to consider the bonus part of our salary and that it was in fact, just a bonus. The bonus was divided up and given out in quarterly portions, so people did end up budgeting their lives around the bonus. During my review, I was told what my raise was going to be and my bonus. When added together, I was actually making less than I was the year before. I was in a pretty good position with the company at the time and was able to act disappointed. My VP understood and wished there was more she could do. I then reiterated that I was very disappointed with a head tilt and shrug that suggested that I was going to look for another job. She crossed her arms and put her hand on her chin to suggest that I could go fuck myself for pretending like I was going to quit when she knew I wasn’t. I leaned back in my chair and put my hands behind my head to communicate that not only was I going to quit, but that I might burn down the building and piss on the ashes. With that and a head nod, she said that was all she could do and left.

About ten minutes later, she came back with exciting news. She said that due to an odd coincidence, she was able to pull together an additional $200 to add to my bonus. Not much, but it was a very thoughtful gesture. I thanked her and thoughtlessly spent the money at the nudie bar.

The bonus system got smaller and smaller until it just wasn’t there one year. Everyone saw it coming and they did a good job of weaning us off of it.

Years later at a party, someone brought up the old bonus system. I told the story about how I squeezed an extra $200 from the company. That’s when Conny said, “$200? Back in 1997?”


“That was my bonus that they took away from me.”

Conny had been a part timer in 1997 and they got smaller bonuses, but $200 was huge to a guy like Conny. When Conny moved on, he was told that he would still get his bonus. A day later, he was told that because he was leaving the company, he was now ineligible for the bonus. He was alright with that until he found out that other people leaving the company got to keep their bonuses. He got dicked.

Because I bitched, I stole Conny’s bonus.

I have to laugh at that story because Conny now makes a lot more than I do. I think he pays in taxes what I net every year. Conny says he’s over it, but last night, I caught him counting out $200 in quarters from the change jar in the guest room. He said he was just seeing how much change was in the jar, but we all know that he’s still bitter.

A condom in my beer

Imagine finishing off a delicious, cold glass of beer...

when you notice that in the bottom of the glass there is a condom.

Yeah, it's not a condom, but it's about that size & shape with the large word Trojan. I couldn't help but think of there being one in the bottom of my drink the whole time. The advert is glued or melted on the bottom of the glass.

{UPDATE} My buddy Shorty pointed out that the bottom of the glass is actually a pig's nose, just like the pigs in the Trojan commercials. When you tip the glass back, it would look like you have a pig's nose from the front. Now that is clever!