Monday, November 12, 2012

Tap List 11-12

        1) Tucher Helles Hefe Weizen (Standard Hefe with banana and clove flavors, citric mouth feel, crisp finish, abv 5.3%).........      5.5
        2) Two Brothers Prairie Path (This golden ale was tested and certified to be gluten free, good "step up" beer, abv 5.1%)…..    5
        3) Ommegang Scythe and Sickle (Harvest Ale with fresh barley, wheat, oats, and rye, a creamy seasonal, abv 5.8%)……….      5
        4) Lost Abbey Serpent's Stout (Imperial Stout, tons of flavor, knock your socks off good, year-round offering, abv 11%)….       5
        5) Central Waters Glacial Trail IPA (American style IPA from Wisconsin, liberal amount of citrusy hops, abv 5.5%)……..       5
        6) Boulevard Collaboration No. 3 Stingo (From the smokestack series, with traditional English ingredients, abv 8.5)……....         5
        7) Summit Horizon Red Ale (A hybrid ale with complex floral, dry, hoppy flavors, big on malt sweetness, abv 5.7%)………        4
        8) Ballast Point Calico Amber Ale (Red Ale, hopped in a very California way, solid malt, little sweet abv 5%)……………..          5
        9) Lost Abbey Witch's Wit (A wheat ale with grapefruit zest, orange peel and coriander, refreshing, abv 4.8%)……………..        6
        10) Green Flash / St Feuillien Friendship Brew (Belgian collaboration, old-world Abbey / US craft brewing, abv 9.5%)…..        6
        11) Weihenstephaner Weissbier (#1 rated German Hefeweizen, light, floral, very refreshing abv 5.4%) (Newton's Pick)…...       5
        12) Summit Extra Pale Ale (This classic, distinctly hoppy brew was designed to be approachable for everyone, abv 5.1%)…    4
        13) Two Brothers Dark Mild (Second beer they ever made, dark sessionable ale with an intricate flavor profile, abv 3.2%)...      4
        14) Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Urbock (A late year smokebock aged in oak casks, tastes like smoked meats, abv 6.6%)..      5
        15) Lindeman's Faro (A blend of old and new Lambic, sweetened with Belgian candy sugar, abv 4.75%) (Paddy's Pick)…..      7
        16) North Coast Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout (On nitrous, full of coffee and caramel flavors, abv 9%)…………...          6
        17) Boulder Mojo (Amarillo hops give a huge citrus flavor, balanced with malt, now on nitro, abv 6.8%)……………………          5
        18) Boulder Hoopla (This American Pale was made with generous amounts of Glacier hops, festival beer, abv 5.7%)……….       5
        19) Weihenstephaner Festbier (Bavarian Oktoberfest, brewed in accordance with German beer purity law, abv 5.8%)…….         5
        20) Ayinger Celebrator (One of the truly great German Dopplebocks, full-bodied, velvety, rich and malty, abv 6.7%)……...        5
        21) Southern Tier Harvest (Fall seasonal, classic English style Extra Special Bitter, deep ruby in color, abv 6.4%)…………         5
        22) Weihenstephaner Pils (Slightly bitter, mild, with a fragrance of hops, a pilsner with character, abv 5.1%)……………….        5
        23) O'Fallon Kite Tail Summer Ale (Cream Ale style, has a slight tartness, making it very refreshing, abv 4.5)……………..        4
      24) Troubadour Magma (Belgian IPA, fruity aromas balanced with American bitterness,50 IBU, abv 9%)…………………            6
        25) Founders Devil Dancer (Triple IPA, dry hopped for 26 days, 10 varieties of hops, 112 IBU, abv 12%)…………………            6
        26) Port Old Viscosity (A monster of a beer, tons of complexity and flavor, truly a beer drinkers treat, abv 10%)……………       6
        27) PBR (Dubious claims to winning a ribbon in 1893 at the Chicago World's Columbian Exposition, abv 5%)……………...        2.25

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Homily for FUBECCA's wedding

(in case you wanted to read it)

We are all a part of teams. At Radio Maria, Matthew and I often work together as a team. At carle, bridesmaid Sarah and I are a part of a team. I am a member of a softball team with several people here. Families are also a team.
When two people get married they become a team. There are truly only two people on this team. Today, the team that we're making is Matthew and Rebecca. The rest of us, all of us here, are fans of this team. We are not on the team. We can support this team, like we support any other team, but we are not on the team. Even those of us who were there at the earliest meetings of this team, are not on it.
The contract binding this team together is one of love. Yes, we just had a formal signing of a contract, but that piece of paper is not the thing that will keep you together. Only your love for each other will keep this team contract in place.
There will be things that try to break this contract, from arguments about money, arguments over the hours that each of you work, to arguments over the amount of beer and shots that either of you may drink.
Do not ever let these small things come between the love that you have for each other. At the time, an argument may seem like the end, I assure you that your love for each other can be stronger than any outside influence.
Every team has an opponent. So who or what is the enemy of this team? Honestly, your opponent is the world. The world will do everything it can to tear your team apart. You will be tempted by the world. You will be tempted to fight over those things I mentioned before. You will be tempted to fight over things we don't even know exist today. When you have these fights and arguments, remind yourself that you are a team. Everything you do is for the team. Do not let the world win.
I've heard a friend say before, "I can never win, when I argue with my wife". And that's true. You should never try to win an argument with your love. You two are not adversaries in marriage. You ARE the team. Always try to see the point behind the other's argument. Defend your ideas, do not attack the other person. Soon, (if you aren't already there) you two will know more about each other than anyone else in the world knows about the other person. You will know what things hurt them the most. When you have an argument, and you think you are losing; it's better to lose the argument, than to unleash the thing that you know will hurt the most; just to "win". In marriage, you can never WIN against your spouse. You will only win WITH your spouse.
Never forget the way you feel today. Always remember how beautiful Rebecca looks in her dress. Always remember how awesome FU looks in his kilt. Always remember why you chose each other. These are the things that will get you through tough times. Tough times don't last, strong teams do.
There's already another person who needs this team to be together. In the future, there will probably be (at least) another who needs this team to be together. The team of Matthew and Rebecca, or Fubecca as I call it, needs to be the strongest team around. If the team of just you two is strong, it will support the other family teams that you make.
I wish nothing more for you, than to be the best team out there.

(also, there was a slight change while spoken, as it was changed to "we will soon have a formal signing")

Friday, May 11, 2012

time for reflection (oh, you look nice narcissus)

Time for reflection;
Around the birthday, I tend to think about where (in life) I'm at. I'm in no way disappointed in my life, my life is great. But I sometimes wonder, what is it supposed to be like? How is a guy "my age" supposed to act? Am I doing it right?
At this age, (and with facebook making it easy to compare to others my age, in my high school graduating class), where am I supposed to be?
It seems most everyone my age has kids. I don't, that probably explains my ability to do most of the things I do with my free time (not that there's a lot of it). Instead of going to the kids soccer game/lacrosse/hockey/little league, I'm doing it myself. Granted I'm kind of busy with work at Radio Maria on Sunday's but I'm on two softball teams. So, instead of going to the kids games, or being the kids coach, I'm on a team, and I'm the captain. Instead of taking the kids to boy or girl scouts, I'm in the beer club. I'm ok with that.
I do have a mortgage, so I guess I'm somewhat responsible in that manner. I don't rent, I'm not in an apartment, I'm not giving someone else money to make payments, so I'm good on that one.
I've got 2 jobs. Both of which I enjoy. The first time I touched a PC, a real one, not the ones we had in high school in '88; I figured that'd be something I'd want to do (I believe it was Dan Fuss' PC). Now, 20ish years later, I've got a career doing that. It pays well. I'm ok with doing it. Can I see myself doing it for another 20 years until retirement, yeah. My other job is as bartender and beer guy at Radio Maria. The first job pays the bills, the second one gives me my "walking around" money. I do the second one for fun. Whenever it gets busy, or I start to get angry at the other job, I remind myself, that I'm just doing it for fun. That changes my mood. It's like my hobby. I get to play with beer. I get to play with other liquors. I don't "need" to make a certain amount in a weekend to pay my rent. It's my hobby, and it pays damn well. (thank you to everyone who tips me). My buddy jim (in stl) has a hobby with jeeps. Skot is in a motorcycle club. Joy does gardening. Chet goes fishing. I get to make people drinks. I don't spend money at my hobby, I make it, which is pretty cool. That kind of sets me apart from the others that I work with, but not completely. I can go into work happy, because it's my choice to be there, not a necessity to pay for my phone. It doesn't mean I'm not going to take the money that I've earned/been given, you should still tip your bartender appropriately.
I'm not married, I have been. I have no plans to get remarried. I'm happy with where I'm at and what I've got. I don't like being told that I should get married (it really pisses me off). Kridz is fine with what we've got too.
I'm not at a point financially that I actually have extra money at the end of the month. I've still got debt, but after I pay my bills, there's money left over. That's just with the first job, the second job is like a bonus, again, it's walking around money. It feels kind of weird to pay the bills, and have money after. In 5 years or less, I'll be debt free (except for the mortgage), I'm good with that. It's not just going to be a light at the end of the tunnel; it'll be the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.
I've got everything I need: a place to live, a car to get around in, clean clothes, and food to eat. I eat well. I haven't made hamburger helper in over two years. My idea of dinner isn't "what can I do with a pound of ground beef". I think I'm doing ok in that regards. Not that there's anything wrong with hamburger helper, I'd rather have beef tenderloin.
Yeah, I drink. Some might say I drink a lot. I don't feel I have a problem. It hasn't caused any problems with my relationships, and isn't hurting me monetarily. I'm not drunk every night. I don't drink every night. Last night, I had a beer at the Stube, and had a couple of ounces of something Skot brought over. Wednesday night, I was hammered, but I was at a concert. Tuesday I was pleasantly buzzed. Monday had a beer at my meeting at Radio. Sunday, didn't drink. Saturday, didn't drink. Friday, had a couple of beers after working. I don't drink everyday, and I don't get hammered every time I drink. When I do get drunk, I have a driver. I'm actually somewhat responsible. Yes, there are times when I've driven when I shouldn't have. I don't like to do that. I'm pretty sure most people who are drunk don't want to drive. But there are probably those that do. My girlfriend drives me to drink, then she drives me home. So, I guess this paragraph is, NO, I don't think I have a drinking problem (I don't think I'm an alcoholic).On nights when I don't go out, I don't stay at home and drink a case of beer, I don't drink a fifth of cheap whiskey/vodka/gin. If I have a beer at the house, it's probably something to go with what I'm eating. Or it's something I'm sharing with friends that are over to the house.
Speaking of friends, I have a very diverse group of friends. I think my group of close friends is an amazing bunch. (Who isn't glad that they are friends with who they are friends with?)Everyone who is with me most of the time is into craft beer (they didn't all start that way though). My softball teams are all people who I'd hang out with, and have hung out with. It's not just a collection of who's new and best and biggest. Some of the teams we play against, I can't fathom sitting down with them at a bar and having a beer. If all you are playing for is to be on the best team and only win, as opposed to having a good time with people who are your friends, I feel bad for you. I'd rather lose with people I care about, than win with people who I don't necessarily like. Of course, I'd rather win with my friends.
I have a Mohawk, I've had it for 5 years. I guess that's something that people my age aren't supposed to have/do. I'm not trying to fake being young, I just like it. I think it suits me. Yeah, I get it dyed every now and then, but that's because it looks better darker than with white. Sometimes, it does look good with a white streak, but then I want it to look different. The white in my mustache/beard… that's what makes me look old (I pluck that, or shave it off for vanity, because I don't want to look old and gray).
So, I think I'm pretty average for people my age. Yeah there are things I do that others my age don't, but that's because I don't have to have the kids in bed by 9. I've got more in common with people my age than with some of the younger… kids… that I am friends with. But, I just think I'm experienced… not old. I don't feel any different today than I did at 29 (when I got out of the army). I didn't feel different at 29 than I did at 25. I still think of myself as 25ish. Granted, I'm going to be 25 with 16 years of experience at it.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

hearts and minds

Joshua 6:21 And they utterly destroyed all that was in the city, both man and woman, young and old, and ox, and sheep, and ass, with the edge of the sword.
1 Samuel 15:14 And Samuel said, What meaneth then this bleating of the sheep in mine ears, and the lowing of the oxen which I hear?
War used to be a complete destruction of those that opposed you. If you went to war, you fought until everyone on the other side was dead. If they ran away, you chased them and killed them. When you killed them all, you won. War was for one purpose, land acquisition (and the resources that came with it). If you were there, in the place that I wanted, you (or I) died. That was war. There were no insurgents afterwards, they were all dead.
Gradually, the process went from killing absolutely everything, to killing only the men (keep the women, and everything else).
The US Civil War was a gentlemanly battle (mostly). There were distinct places where people fought. It wasn't that big an area, have you been to Gettysburg? Thousands of men died on a field, just walking towards each other shooting. There's a town right next to it, but they fought in a field. (fuck that). The ground gained was a field. Except the battle wasn't for ground (well not that land), it was for a REASON (well, several reasons). The actual place of the battle didn't matter, it could have been a field anywhere, that's just where the two armies happened to meet up at the time.
In WW1, there were set battle lines, everyone knew where the front was, there was a trench, there was no man's land, then there was the other trench. Guys would jump over the top, run towards the other side, and try to kill someone before they died. No civilians were on the battle field, it was evident where it was.
In WW2, things changed a bit more (this war evolution happened quickly), the advent of better tanks, and aircraft changed things drastically. Instead of fighting for a few feet, armies fought for miles in a day.
Next came Korea, the communist north wanted (and still wants) to take the south. We went there to help some buddies.
Vietnam changed almost everything. The troops didn't know what they were fighting for, (communist expansion, right?) They didn't care, losing Vietnam didn't mean anything to them. The Vietnamese don't look like them, don't talk like them, and are just different.
The last time the US fought a war for actual territory was the original 91 Desert Storm. Saddam took land, we took it back.
Modern wars are totally different, we aren't fighting for ground. We kill people for reasons, not for property. It's ideology. We are right, you are wrong. We don't like how you are behaving. It's a little more violent than just misbehaving, but basically, you are doing something so bad, that we have to kill you.
Because war has changed from killing everything, to just simply trying to kill the people who don't like you, it's allowed people to become sensitive. Since we are pretty good at just killing the bad guy while leaving everyone else intact, we become outraged about civilian casualties.
Here's why I'm writing this.
Modern society wants us to treat the enemies with respect. The current scandal with the military is of US troops posing with dead bodies of insurgents.
Top U.S. military and civilian officials rushed to condemn the soldiers' actions Wednesday, calling them repugnant and a dishonor to others who have served in the conflict. The Army said an investigation is under way.
When people in the military kill, they are either killing one of two things, an enemy (who is a thing), or an actual person.
Why is there so much post traumatic stress disorder? Because most people have an aversion to actually killing a person. Killing an enemy, who is a thing, them, the bad guys, something less than us; is much easier to do, than actually having to kill a living breathing human.
When does the enemy who is hated and deserves to die, switch to something that must be treated with respect? At the point of death?
Soldiers used to take trophies of their kill. This gruesome prospect has been outlawed. With modern phones, and cameras, it's much easier to just take a picture.
If I had to go from just killing a thing that was beneath me, to suddenly respecting the corpse, that might be a difficult transition to make, especially if that thing was trying to kill me (and had probably killed one or more of my buddies). Fuck that guy.
Do you think the German soldiers who had to kill Jews had difficulty at first? They were taught to think of them as less than human. The first few would have been tough, but after a while, they are just a thing… Jews. They had to have felt they were beneath them. Killing millions of people would be difficult to do. If they are nothing more than ants that need to be exterminated, that makes it easier to do.
So, now we've got a bunch of people in the armed forces who have spent multiple tours in Iraq and Afghanistan killing our enemy (and they are called all sorts of things, just so that they aren't identified as HUMAN) and we back home get outraged when our guys do something that we don't like.
There are rules to war, but it is bullshit. Short of killing everyone we can never win over there. Anyone over there who sympathizes with the way an enemy combatant is treated after death is a sympathizer with their cause. For us to win a war, those people must be killed. Anyone over here who thinks that the troops did something bad, needs to stop thinking of the recently killed enemy as a human; and needs to think of them as a thing. Something like a used pizza box that deserves to be thrown out with the trash.
Do you think our enemy will treat our casualties with anymore respect? Do you think they would hesitate to "desecrate" a corpse of one of our guys?  Do you think our enemy thinks of us as humans? (If we are not Muslim then we are less of people and deserve death anyway).
I have a friend who had several kills in Afghanistan, including stabbing an enemy. He was a normal kid who played the drums in high school. He joined the National Guard (probably for the tuition benefits), then he got sent to Afghanistan. Look at any high school yearbook from 2000. Most likely, there's someone in it, who has killed someone in a war. Which one from that yearbook do you think it is?
Killing people isn't normal. Was that person normal? If you talk to them about that, did they think of the person they killed as an actual human or as something else. (Don't bring it up unless you are willing to resurrect some old memories that they probably don't want to deal with and have difficulty dealing with).
Is posing with a dead enemy any different than posing with a deer that you killed? Be thankful that they are just taking a picture, and not doing like hunters and having the thing mounted in their living room.
We've created nearly a generation of killers. We can either let them behave like people who killed a thing and let them sleep at night. Or we can try to get them to believe that they killed a human, who had dreams when they were growing up, probably wanted to have a wife and kids, probably wanted to have a house, wanted an education… and turn our guys into serial killers.
Which would you rather deal with? Your friend who killed 13 humans, or your friend who killed 13 baddies (or whatever other word they used to describe them)
Since we aren't just going to level the whole place, that is why we are going to lose Afghanistan. We are too concerned about the "hearts and minds" of people who live there. In order to win a war, you have to go back to Jericho. Kill them all. Let them be less than human in the eyes of our boys. If you don't, and get outraged when our guys do something that you wouldn't expect (like treat enemy as less than human)then we are creating serial killers.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Iowa Caucus

Rick Perry spent $6,035,705 on tv ads in Iowa. He received 12,604 votes, that's $478.87 per vote. Even if he won with Romney's total of 30,015 votes, he would have paid $201.09 per vote.
Romney spent $4,665,342 and got the above 30,015 votes, for $ 155.43 per vote.
It's a crazy amount of money spent on tv ads in Iowa, for almost no votes. There were just over 120,000 voters (caucus goers) and a whole lot of cash thrown at them. Looking at the chart, it looks like over 15 million was spent in Iowa by the candidates on it. That's $125 per voter. Wouldn't it be more effective to just hand a person $125 and say vote for me, than to give the money to tv stations?
If Iowa didn't have one of the lowest unemployment rates, I'd think this money could have done something better to boost their economy.