Front Porch Chats #10/Second Pint PRM

Unsung Lumino lagerUnsung’s Lumino Mexican style lager is what I’m drinking today. It’s got a faintly sourdough nose, a bit of lemon in the body and possibly one of the crispest finishes I’ve drank all year.

It is a perfect beer for yesterday, when it was 91 degrees out. Even on an overcast day like today though, it’s still pretty good.

A couple years back, while talking about California’s ecological crisis (the fires of that summer) I’d said that America had become ungovernable.

Goddamn I hate being right.

I used to love being right. Because being right is evidence of a correct way of living, yes? Better than whatever someone else was doing because they were incorrect. Sure, you could also say that it was partially a way to boost a damaged self-esteem and you wouldn’t be wrong.

But still; there is nothing quite like being right.

These days I hate being right. Everything I’m right about sucks. There isn’t even the satisfaction of having things change because I’m right, because the people who should care about that-not necessarily ME being right but actually just BEING right-don’t.

We don’t vote until November, quite possibly our last chance for non-violent change. In the meanwhile, people are righteously angry and acting accordingly, because the contract that they have made with the rest of us isn’t being kept. They’re angry, their parents are angry, their children are angry.

They get killed, and nobody fixes that wrong. What else is expected but anger?

So we get an ungovernable country.

Broken contracts means that we don’t have to accept this anymore. This death, this suffering, this poverty; these broken systems. We shouldn’t accept the defense of these things. They don’t have to be this way and we know it.

As long as we do accept that, we get what we deserve-and the thing is, we all deserve better.

Today’s second pint goes to the Portland Rescue Mission

First beer 2020

At least, the first one I brewed. This is the year I’m working on making cream ales, so this will be the first of many reports on that process.

Pale ale 2020Nose has an element of roasted quality-something I can pick up from the malt. There is a pretty strong head on the beer, too: very clean.

But it’s old, and it’s a little dependent on a good pour. Because what I’ve noticed is that if some of the yeast from the bottom of the bottle gets in the beer, you can taste the stale qualities; a bit of a wet paper thing.

But if the pour is clean-and that’s not always easy to do but when I manage it!-this is a pretty solid beer. My goal was to shoot for a lighter ale (visually), but the honey malt put a kibosh on that. Still; a solid beer that, for being 4 months old, I am proud of.

Brew date: 1/12/20

Steeping grains
6 lb Lamonta
2 lb Serenade pale
1.5 lb dark honey malt

Fermentables: 4 lb ExLME

Hops

1.5 oz Cascade, .75 oz Hallerltau @60
.25 oz Cascade, Hallertau @5

Yeast: Imperial House yeast, 3rd use
Added .5 tsp Irish Moss for clarity

OG: 1.07

FG: 1.01

ABV: 8.1%

Front Porch Chats #9/Second Pint FNB

Hopwors Upstream IPA

Got us a Hopworks Upstream IPA today. Nose has guava and papaya on it, the head is pleasantly frothy. The tropical flavors don’t show up much in the body, which I’m down with.

The body of the beer is pretty clean; this is a crisp ale, with the finish being just bitter enough to keep it from being a pale, but not so intense that I have to scour my mouth.

I think I’m fond of this one.

It was the second time I went to Proper Pint to pick up some ale that I realized that I should slow down a little.

The staff recognized me, even with the mask-one of the benefits to being a regular, I suppose, but they also wanted to chat a little. I was, unfortunately, pressed for time and I wish I hadn’t been.

Because I got the impression that they could use a little company. Thinking about it, since we’ve settled in to the pandemic (Welcome to month three, America) more and more people seem to be calmer. And with that calm comes the patience-and the desire-to connect with people again, see how they are.

Bartenders used to get chatted up 8 hours a day. Now nobody wants to hang out. That’s gotta feel weird.

But that’s everyone too: those little things we used to do we don’t do-at least if were being kind.

And we should be kind. So I’ve been trying to give myself a little more time, to give to other people. Yeah, conversation is a bit challenging with a mask, yeah, I have to enunciate more than I did before (and I’ve always been a little sloppy at it), but slowing down to allow for a little more pleasantries in life isn’t a bad thing at all.

Today’s second pint goes to Food Not Bombs.

Common Ales: Sam Adams Spring Wheat

Samuel Adams Summer aleThe initial nose offers sourdough, and then the finish gives me a little lemon zest quality.

But about a third of the way in, this flips and the nose has some lemon zest, with malts coming up more in the midrange. There’s also a spicy quality, maybe coriander? The summer ale finishes with more lemon zest, though.

It’s a very subtle beer and has a pretty light touch. Good to drink in the shade of a tree in the summer, or with any number of summer-related vittles.

Front Porch Chats #8\Second Pint RFS

“To whom much is given, much is expected.” – Luke 12:48.

I’ve been thinking about that quote all week, and then I came across this article. Don’t mind me, I’ll just sip this beer while you read it.

West Coast Grocery pale aleWest Coast Grocery’s Window Shopper IPA is what’s on; a beer I literally picked up window shopping. The hop nose is prominent, which is good, but it fades pretty fast, which is less good.

The finish on this beer is vegetal. If I didn’t know any better, I’d say that they canned beers that were in the keg and getting old, in order to recoup the losses of having a pandemic fuck everyone over.

On the one hand, it’s hard to blame them for pivoting their beer into a product I can purchase.

But the beer is vegetal.

So, done with the article? Cool.

Responsibility is a word that gets pushed around quite a bit, especially right now.

What’s interesting are the people talking about responsibility, not actually start taking responsibility.

When I said last week that we deserve better, part of that better is the shouldering of a responsibility we have to others.

Because no matter what the technology we have, it isn’t magic. It has consequences and we really do need to think about should not just could.

Similarly, the rights that we have, those are magic freedoms. As my Mom said to me today “everybody wants to talk about their rights, but nobody wants to talk about their responsibilities.”

If we deserve better, then we are responsible to and for each other. Not wholly; I’m not your dad, folks.

But because I want to live in a society that functions and supports people and is one that we deserve, I am responsible to take all the actions I can to protect us. It means wearing a mask, it means staying away from people (some of whom I like quite a bit), it means not getting to pet dogs I encounter on my walks (something I miss very much), but it means one thing more than anything else.

It means doing the work. The work that it takes to suss out charlatans who want to manipulate people for personal gain, and set those people in a mental corner. And do the right thing for people, even when I’m inconvenienced. Which is all that it is: an inconvenience.

Work isn’t easy: If it was easy it would be called fun. But the work is what we are responsible for. Not my rights. My responsibilities.

But I can put it in terms of rights, too; its my right to not be exposed to reckless people who will get me sick without thought to the consequences. It’s my right to live a life free from the persecution of fascists. It’s my right to legitimate information about what is happening, so that I can make the choices that are my responsibility.

Go ahead and substitute “my” in those last three sentences with “everyone’s”.

Now the responsibility comes in; because its my responsibility to not expose people recklessly, to stand up to fascists and tell them to get fucked, to demand the truth from leaders in their field and hold them accountable to THEIR responsibilities.

Oregon’s primary vote ends tomorrow, folks. You have to deliver your ballot personally, if you didn’t put it in the mail by last Thursday. I hope you vote(d).


Today’s second pint goes to Run For Something.

A beer and homebrewing blog