On The Rail: Ranger Station

I wandered by the Ranger Station twice last night; once on my way to see Doomtree, once on my way back and nobody was inside. Sure, it was a Tuesday but seeing a place that’s deserted is still very strange.

“I gotta check this place out.” Because that is how I think, so a day later I’m off to check it out.

On my way there I saw a kid in a Machine Head shirt, walking next to his dad.

“I’m jealous I’m going to miss that show,” I say to the kid and his dad and I start talking. Apparently they’ve been waiting to see the band for two years and tonight, it’s just Machine Head for two hours. No opening acts, no filler. I can only imagine how excited they must be, getting to see one of their favorite bands play for so long. It actually makes me wish I wasn’t out writing.

However, we make our choices. I’m reminded of something a lawyer friend told me, about how laws are enforced by the people who choose to enforce them or whom they will prosecute and who will be allowed to go their way. (For just a moment, I’ll set aside the hideous injustice that often comes with this so I can make my point). We make choices about how to spend our time and it is possibly the worst expenditure of that time to regret.

They’re having a great time at the show. I’m going to have a fine evening myself, it just won’t be there. Everything is OK.

At the Ranger Station I am sipping a Buoy oatmeal stout, wondering what’s next. This location has changed hands so frequently in the past ten years that I wonder what it’s going to take to give this the magic spark to be a neighborhood bar that people take up residence in. I’ve even written here at least once before when it was another place.

This beer is not bad at all. Reading up on oatmeal stouts, I can sense that this is pretty close to style, though I don’t get much oatmeal flavor, there is a slightly richer mouthfeel happening that I attribute to the addition of oatmeal. Overall, it’s sweeter, with the more roasted qualities showing up in the finish to provide a bit of complexity. It makes a good first impression for the brewery.

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