Front Porch Chats #60/Second Pint NWIR

This might be the first actual day of Summer, even though technically it’s not here yet. Fine day for Pfriem’s Mosaic pale ale-which I presume means that they used Mosaic hops exclusively in this particular beer.

Pfriem's Mosaic pale ale, in glass on table outside

The nice thing about that is that it really highlights a hop quality; for me, this beer smells like papaya, has a mild tropical fruit flavor and pretty mild bitterness, too. I’m OK with this, your mileage might vary, of course.

There’s a reason we blend, however and that’s because it frequently gives us a better beverage. Single Malt And Single Hop (SMASH) beers are usually one dimensional. And while I don’t know the malt build for this ale, I would wager that they mixed it up to give the beer body and depth of flavor, to offer the drinker more than just two row and Mosaic.

Even with what might be a balanced malt build, I find myself rating this beer ‘okayest’ not, you know, good. I don’t hate it, but I’d like it better if there was more variety.

There’s a metaphor here for what makes good countries but it’s a little on the nose, don’tcha think? Or, perhaps, I’d have to wring a lot of meaning from just a few words. The exercise is probably left best to the reader.

For myself, I’m getting my second shot next week, which means in roughly three weeks, I could start going to pubs and drinking indoors. I could get back to my usual Monday style posts, and I could be around people again.

But the place I want to go to doesn’t exist anymore, and I’m just not sure what to do, now. If there’s something I would like, post pandemic, it would be a lodestone as to where next?

Lotta places didn’t make it through the pandemic. Lotta people didn’t, either. I don’t know how we’re going to mourn these things-the places represent the people, in a way, but the people are irreplaceable.

What I do know is that we, all of us, are going to have to set aside some time to do that: that year of possibility that we had to deny, the locations where we met and came together being gone, and the people we came together to meet.

We dug mass graves. Caregivers watched people rattle their last, angry breath against a disease they were certain was a hoax. Screaming matches erupted over wearing masks, while parents buried infants, sons and daughters buried patients, no one able to say goodbye, or I love you, or even have an unresolved hurt resolved.

We limped through our lives and I don’t know that it made us stronger. Or even better, at this point. Better would be nice; more compassionate, more tolerant, more willing to stand up for people who have been trod on by the Powers That Be for far, far too long.

What a shitshow.

I don’t know how we do it. I write, and maybe that’s all I can do. But I’m gonna keep doing it, ok? Someday, we’ll have a toast for everyone, and every place that didn’t make it-and one for those that did. My gut tells me, neither of these toasts will be jovial.

Today’s second pint goes to NWIRP.


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