Friday, December 17, 2010

The Penultimate Post

This is the last post before the post describing my 1000th beer.  It's weird how conscious I am of every beer now.  Starting this is endeavor, the 1000th beer seemed almost impossibly far away.  Prior to even, say, beer 700, every beer I drank seemed like Don Quixote taking another swing at the windmills.  You slay the mighty 1000 Beer Year by drinking one beer at a time, but I was fully expecting to find out the goal just couldn't be accomplished.  I'd get sick of drinking.  I'd just flat out get sick.  I'd run out of money.  I'd find that it was effecting my studies too much.  I'd find that it was effecting my health too much.  I'd find it that it was effecting my job hunt too much.  I'd find that it was effecting my life too much.

But the thing is, I never found out any of those things.  Drinking beer remained fun.  And, surprisingly enough, writing about drinking beer remained fun.  One of the unexpected parts about this year was finding that it was sometimes difficult to post.  When I started this thing, I figured that of course I would have at least 15 minutes a day to sit down and write something unique and entertaining about my previous day's drinking.  I thought I would have 365 discrete things to say about the life of a beer drinker, each one more insightful and funny than the last.  Well, as you probably noticed, that turned out not to be the case.  I feel like this thing has had its moments.  To the day I die, I'll still believe that the moral compass line in the BrewDog post was the best thing single sentence I'll have ever written in my life.  The sentence I just wrote might stand amongst the worst.  So what's so hard about writing amusing musings* every night?  Well, at least 65% of my beer drinking took place while hanging out at night on the couch with my wife.  You know what I like to do while drinking beer and hanging out on the couch with my wife?  Nothing.  Here's a real life conversation I had with someone in the past year.  This is exactly how the conversation went down, and I know you might not believe that based on how absolute douche-tastic this is going to sound, but seriously, this happened.

[setting: a party at a family friend's place.  a handful of us are about to play Scene It: Seinfeld]
Person: I've never seen Seinfeld.
Me: You've ever seen Seinfeld?
Person: Ummmmm, I'm too busy living my life in New York City to watch a show about people living in New York City.

And scene.

I hate to invoke that type of sentiment, but often I found I was too "busy" drinking beers on the couch with my wife to write about drinking beers on the couch with my wife.  Add to that the fact that I never got any better at actually describing beers, and sometimes writing would be a bit of a chore.**  But on I wrote!

Back to being conscious of every beer.  I went out to lunch with some friends after my last final yesterday.  We went to the Heartland Brewery in Union Square.  I had myself a Smiling Pumpkin Ale.  It was pretty good.  But then I thought, do I really want this to stand as one of my last 10 beers?  This is rarified air for a beer to be in (in which to be [that still doesn't seem correct]).  And normally I would get a second beer, because, you know, why not?  But I couldn't!  I had to think, "I have three days left of beer drinking and only 8 (now 7) beers I can drink!  Ration man, ration!"  And then I realized that every subsequent beer I would drink between then and the 1000th would likely take place on my couch.  Well, not wanting to spoil my last 6 or so beers on the dregs of a Park Slope Coop mix pack, I hit the Whole Foods beer store and got some supplies.  I picked up a Lagunitas Little Sumpin' Wild and an Avery The Reverend Belgian Quad, both of which I drank last night.  I also picked up a Long Trail Imperial Porter, which I'll probably drink today while cleaning my apartment, and a Dogfish Head Bitches Brew which I'll split with my dad when he gets in on Saturday night for the ol' 999th beer.

I'm pretty excited about the 1000th beer.  Not to get into it too much here (as my 1000th beer post is going to be the one that I finally talk about why I did this whole thing), but that'll be the 1000th time this year that I did something that I really like to do.  Can you think of 1000th things you did this year that you really enjoyed?  I can!  And with friends and family coming out, well, that'll just  be the icing on the cake.  I did the index for the book Beer and Philosophy.  In there is an article that I thought was pretty stupid at the time about Beer and Friendship which talks about the special bond you have with a person while going out for a beer together.  In my headier, analytic days, I thought the whole article was filled with too much continentally-I-can't-describe-it-but-I-know-it-when-I-see-it-or-feel-it type of gobbledegook.***  But now?  Now I sort of get it.  It forces you to communicate in an immediate and intimate way that other activities just can't.  Even going out for a meal with friends, you still have the breaks while you're actually eating.  When you get a beer with someone, it seems like you have to mean it.  And I've been extremely privileged to share a lot of beers with a lot of people this year.  Sunday, you should all come down to the Gate at 5 o'clock.  Because I sure would like to have one more beer with all of you before this year is through.

Total Beers: 994
Countdown: 6

*If I ever get a "color column" in a local, small town newspaper, I'm going to name it that and write under the name Hank Higglesworth.
**Here's a question, what's less interesting than writers writing about writing?  If you answered "Nothing.  Literally nothing is less interesting than writers writing about writing.  And aren't you being a pretentious ass calling yourself a writer?  And isn't this blog supposed to be about beer drinking?  Why aren't you writing about beer drinking?"  Well, you're probably correct!
***And you thought I would go the whole year without using that word.  You owe me ten bucks, Mr. Higglesworth!

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