Home > Beer Talk > Mea culpa, I have sinned. But not as much as some.

Mea culpa, I have sinned. But not as much as some.

Mea culpa maxima indeed. Forgive me, it has been many weeks since my last blog posting. I regret that I have not managed to sit down and write about the delights (and disappointments) of the last few weeks of barley nectar. In part this is because I was on holiday in Northern Ontario, and away from electricity, telephones, internet and noise. I did get a chance to allow some beer to pass my lips, and I promise that I will tell you about that soon, by way of penance. There’s not a huge selection in the Beer Store in Blind River, and the two-hour round trip by boat and car meant that shopping trips were few and far between. Alexander Keith’s Amber was the best reasonable selection that was likely to enjoyed by myself and the masses, but as I said, more later.

The other reason for slackness is that I have lately had the attention span of a goldfish, and sitting to write has been well-nigh impossible because I kept being distracted by shiny things. Damn those shiny things.

But now, this morning, I am inspired. Not by a beer, this time, but by  something I found in the internets. I stumbled across a flash animation during my morning electronic peregrination, once that highlighted perfectly the reason why drinking beer is considered to be less sophisticated than drinking wine. This brief animation (should you choose to watch it) is to be seen here, and it made me shudder for various reasons, and I’m not just talking about the spelling, either.

Beer Song animation

Beer Song animation

I can give you the jist of the animation in three words. Chug, manly and spew. It has to be said that for many people, this is indeed their experience of beer; that it’s a conveniently packaged means of getting drunk fairly quickly without challenging the tastebuds or intellect. When I lived in England I certainly saw this type of binge drinking behaviour – all I’d have to do would be to go to the Nottingham city centre and I’d see hundreds of people who were clearly intent on consuming as much as they could before staggering around to either try to get laid, eat appalling foods (frequently a curry or kebab) and all too frequently, to pee or spew in some shop doorway.

Nowadays I work (part-time) in the beer department of the Davis Food Co-op, and am blessed to be working with people (but staff and customers) who love beer for the sensual pleasure of drinking it, rather than the effects of the alcohol. It’s a great delight to talk about beer brewing, its history and favourite beers. Yes, there are beer snobs, and there are probably as many people who talk interminable shite about beer as there are wine bores. Pardon my language there, I’m sensitive to this at the moment.

Maybe the many good, small breweries of the world should unite in a glorious advertising campaign to wean people away from the tasteless wee that they’ve been programmed to enjoy, and drink real beer, like real men (and women). Of course, that will never happen. I’ve come across so many people who’ve asked my advice on what to drink, then walked away with the cheapest 12-pack because they get “more alcohol per penny”. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not entirely opposed to those who drink relativelt low-taste, even “Lite” beers. On a really hot day they may be a valuable asset to cool and refresh, but many of these folk are having friends over, but are trying to impress with quantity rather than quality, and there’s the rub.

So I may have sinned, but by Jove, not as much as I might have.

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