My Gray Stripes

Becoming whole through family life. Desserts help.

Why beer?

IMG_3094My friend, Bonnie, talked her older brother into purchasing a six-pack of Michelob beer, a big win for teen-aged girls.  To add to the drama, Bonnie was told to go at a particular time to a particular city field and find a particular tree where the beer would be left for pick-up.  Like pirates searching for treasure, we nervously roamed as the sun set. Finally, Bonnie announced, “That’s the tree” as she ran ahead to claim her gold.  Just as quickly she said, “It’s not here!”  Disappointed, someone asked, “Are you sure that’s the right tree?”  She replied, “I’m positive! There’s only a six-pack of Rolling Rock here!”

Bonnie died in her thirties.  At her funeral, we gathered to cry, pray, and honor her.  We told so many stories, including the above, and laughed remembering her reaction.  I’m sure we teased her unmercifully, when it was confirmed that her brother couldn’t get Michelob and got Rolling Rock instead.  So many stories bittersweet, like beer.

Nobody asks my husband why he enjoys a good beer.  I don’t know why people ask me.  The above story encompasses much of my answer.  Beer is connected to some of my favorite life memories.  I remember happy, laughing, friends and family.  Beautiful and handsome faces flash through my mind when I hold a beer in my hand.  And there is more.

My heritage is predominately Irish.  We have a beer gene.  I have a special fondness for Irish beers: HarpSmithwicks, Guinness.  Mix two together.  I cook corned beef with the magical stuff.

As a Catholic, beer isn’t prohibited.  My soon-to-be son-in-law gave me a bottle of the exceptional World Class Westvleteren XII for Christmas. Score! Made by Trappist Monks.

Speaking of Belgian beers, I love them.  Gulden Draak  opened my eyes to the international beer scene.  Beer is a fascinating topic to discuss with international friends.  A global unifier.  Almost as good as soccer.

Here in Phoenix, it’s all about excellent craft beer.  I’m ready for a Four Peaks Arizona Peach as soon as the weather warms. From Coronado to  San Antonio to Denver, craft beer is a great way to socially engage in a local community.

There’s little better than an ice-cold beer at a ballgame, and how my love for baseball and beer dance together deserves its own post soon.

I’m at a season of life that affords me the luxury of beer.  I can afford it.  Abstaining during pregnancy is in my past.  I appreciate the aesthetic of beer.  My body benefits from it.  I’m able to enjoy just one.  I have time and space to be creative.  I’m comfortable in my skin; I don’t need beer.  I still love Rolling Rock.  It’s a good season.

As Bruce Springsteen isn’t for everyone, neither is beer.  Yet, I hope everyone finds a simple and life-enhancing beverage to enjoy.

What’s your?  Cheers!

Gray Stripe Earned: Claim and enjoy simple pleasures that fit one’s life in a special and positive way.


3 comments on “Why beer?

  1. andrewmstevenson
    March 13, 2013

    Stout was always popular with adults as I was growing up.They said a good test was pouring a little on a seat and sitting on it. After a while,with warmth from the bum, if your pants stuck to the chair as you got up, it was a good brew! Micro breweries are doing very well here.
    Love from me.

    • Angie Mc
      March 13, 2013

      Andrew, thank you for sharing such a charming story! I’ve never heard of that tradition. I love stout, especially during the cold winter. Oatmeal stout is fun with brunch 🙂

  2. stan
    March 13, 2013

    Ah beer – the drink of my youth – many a night was spent drinking mass quantities – now if I could only get back about 1/3 of what I spent on it LOL. In high school it was millers, little kings, and mickey big mouths (so named cause they were shaped like little kegs and the top was at least double the size of most bottle beers) – nights spent hanging with my best friend with beers tucked in the tray where the moon rook sat when closed – didn’t matter it was 30 degrees out – the beer was cold!!! In college a roommate whos dad was in the air force and stationed in Germany sent us Elephant Malt Liquor – a brew designed in Belgium (I think – if I recall correctly) – and meant to be drank warm – not chilled. It wasn’t pasturized – so chilling ruined the taste. It was also about twice (or more) the alcohol content of American brews – which made for some interesting drunken nights! But also spoiled me for american beer – not necessarily a bad thing – my fav beers now are german wheat beers, a nice mix of guisness and bass makes a nice Black and Tan, and on a nice hot day slipping a lime down the long neck of a corona makes for a refreshing drink. Thanks for the trip down memory lane Angie 🙂

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This entry was posted on March 13, 2013 by in Feast & Famine and tagged , , , , , .
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