Event’s thoughts, & Travels of a Recent Past

February 26, 2014 § Leave a comment

Good morning everyone,

Today is Sunday, and it is morning. I feel like blogging , but have no real topic I feel drawn to expound upon. And so, my topic this morning will be a little bit of me and a little bit of my life. Reflections on thoughts, events, and travels. There have been too many thoughts to count, less events, but still many, and travels, there have been many little ones, and a few larger ones.

Thoughts

I had to write a paper for my Systematic Theology class that compared two types or approaches to theology: it was a doozy. The question was laid out very clearly I think, but I could not for the life of me figure out was I was suppose to write. How hard is it to compare something? Well, apparently it’s hard when you are not entirely sure about what you are talking about. I could voice the two opinions of the men that I was going to be comparing, but as soon as I tried to put them into writing, my brain failed. It wasn’t until my dear T.A. Karl broke the paper down to the point where a 5 year old could understand it. Write the paper like you were explaining the concepts to someone that had never read the articles. Oh, duh. It seems that the dumbing down of explanation dumbed down my paper. I’m not sure if I was bolstered last semester by a  very gracious TA: from whom I learned an incredible amount. And also from whom I learned of the concert addressed later in this post and thus am forever indebted to. My paper contained paragraphs that were made up  entirely of one sentence. And there actually was a sentence that did not start with a capital letter, this made the ‘but’ that it started with even less acceptable. That’s ok, why is it ok?  Because Jesus, that’s why. 

Next thought

The class that I am taking is teaching me why the answer at the end of the last thought is a good answer, and if I’m to be consistent, the best answer, or better than that, the only answer.  But now I’m just getting absurd, offensive, and exclusive.  Let’s be honest: yes, yes, and no. Actually, absolutely yes, entirely yes, and fully no. It is the fully no that engages me. There will be many of whom who disagree with me, on both side of the believing fence. Why any one on the other side of the fence would want to see that answer as anything different is beyond me, and why anyone on my side of the believing side fence could fathom it being anything else is WAY beyond me. But both are true, and unfortunately, the vocal portion of either side.

Next thought

A friend, I think we’ve been long enough to call each other friends by now, said to me that in my manifesto post, found here, had some cryptic (my word) ideas in it. Where not every sentence was not entirely clear regarding my intention or agenda. This advice has helped me greatly in some of my other writing. I often find it very fun to write things that are unclear, that have meaning that if you said ‘I think he was saying this’ I would say “no you’re wrong i was saying this” and yet not write it as clearly as I could. I dare not metacognate to deeply, but I think it has something to do with my favorite painter, Cezane.

Events

About a month ago I started the longest shift of my life. I do not mean this metaphorically because I have found that metaphors can often get on in serious trouble. Like, burning at the stake trouble. No, it was actually the longest shift of my life, it was 21 days long! I stayed at a friends place looking after their foster kids while they went off to Thailand for a mission retreat. I have to say it was an awesome time to spend with the boys. I wrote a lengthy and entertaining summary about our time together that constituted as therapy for all of the unhappy, material, events that went on during the stay. Lights broke, windshields cracked, ankles were sprained, cars died… Mamma Mia! The experience with the two boys however, I was with was fantastic. I got to really build some relationships with people that I have been working with for over a year now. I would say, progress was made!

Three weeks away from ones wife on the other hand really really really sucks! It wasn’t as bad as it could have been. She was only twenty minutes away and came to see me every couple days for a few hours at a time. Gee, I have a new appreciation for her, and also for families where one of the spouses goes away and travels a lot. That has got to be tough! 

Travel’s

Fortunately the end  of the longest shift of my life was punctuated by a concert in Fargo! Justin Timberlake! I wont go on too long about how awesome he is. You may already know, and if you don’t know, just go listen to part one and two of his new album. You will then know how good he is. His concert was astounding. It merits it’s own few thousand words so here is not the place. I will say that his unplugged stuff was by far my favorite of the show. His covers of Elvis and MJ were really a showcase of how talented he is as a musician. The rest of the show showcased JT the entertainer, and that he is. All I’ll say, I’ve been saying it for a while, I cant wait to hear JT in 20 years. I want to hear JT in the same way we hear Rod Stuart today. Cezane.

I love road trips. The drive was around four and half hours. Rachel and I got to talk about all sorts of things and really dig into conversations. There was lots of silence, and there was lots of music. With nine hours in a car there will be opportunity for lots of lots of things. That why I love it. The trip kind of takes on a life of its own and is, in itself, it own story.

Traveling around Fargo we went to a place Called JL Beers where they may really fantastic burgers and have many many high quality beers on tap. I had an option of three flights of beers. I opted for the ‘on the dark side’ flight which featured stouts, porters and an ESB. The ESB which more resembled an IPA was my favorite: no surprise there. Rachel and I were privileged enough to sit beside one of the regulars of the place. This was really lucky, there is something different about talking to someone who is comfortable and is not concerned about anyone or thing. They open up and talk and talk and talk. The tourist and non regulars are just markers on their time there. They come and go and come and go, and if one of them decides to chat a little thats nice and if one wants to sit and talk for an hours all the better. All of the regulars have probably heard of each other stories. Fresh ears for old jokes. That’s the thing, I want to hear the old jokes. They have been tuned. The stories have been embellished to just the right degree, and the teller knows how to manipulate it to most affect each new hearer because they have told it to so many people in so many ways. I’d like my marker on this guys time hopefully to be a little more than a tick, not an signature, that’s a little presumptions. Maybe just a smile face with the initial tick being the right of left eye.

Next travel

My parents and grandparents are in Mexico. Woo hoo for them!

It’s almost Sunday afternoon so that tells me my time of writing this needs to come to an end or I’ll have to change the introduction more than I really want to.

God Bless everyone,

Andrew

Time for a loose cuppa? *saint’s blend*

November 20, 2013 § 3 Comments

I’m going to take this quiet moment to bring a tea blend I’ve recently found and enjoyed to our loyal reader base… King, I hope you’re reading this, because I think this is just for you; other wise I just lied about having a loyal reader base. But, in that case, maybe no one will have read it. In which case I’d just be lying to myself. We all know what happens when you lie.

Let’s, assuming there is at least two of us, carry on with the loose cuppa. The blend I have been enjoying for the last few mornings is quite simple. Fill half of one side of the tea ball with Earl Grey, and the rest of that same half with Black Chai. Granted they are both flavoured black teas so it’s not to much of a stretch, a distance, an exploration, or a challenge to your delicately tuned  sensors which reside on your tongue until you sip a too hot cuppa and burn them off like the savage monster you are, but it’s not really meant to be.

I think I enjoy it because it s some how reminiscent of the ever beloved Cascade hop. Now this isn’t to much of a stretch either, because Earl Grey is a black tea flavoured with orange oil, and chai tea; cinnamon, star anise, fennel, ginger, cardamom, cloves, black and white peppercorns all kept in place by the omnipresent fermented black tea leaves. Now, Cascade hops have wonderfully strong characteristics of grapefruit and, for a lack of a better term, hoppy flavours. So it reasons to say that when orange oil, which comes from the orange, of course, of course, which is distantly related to the grapefruit, comes into a life surrounded many foreign flavours, it might change a little.

As Oz Clarke in,  Oz and James Drink to Britain, has taught us you can best taste a beer you drink “On the burp” As crude as it seems, it’s very much the truth. With this blend of tea, when tasted, on the burp, it actually tastes like I have been drinking an IPA that has been very well hopped with Cascades. Weird Weird Weird but so so wonderful. So wonderful in fact I am going to have another right now.

Here’s a clip of Oz and James Drink to Britain

I did say “a clip” not “the clip”

Enjoy

Brainstorm Brew

September 7, 2013 § Leave a comment

A response to the latest Brainstorm Brewery Podacst

Great cast guys! I am a homebrewer and beer snob and cube crack addict. I started listening to your show so I could somehow afford the stupid hobby known as Cube Management… I’m not sure that the type of poll you have put forward to your guests is vary fair one. You guys are such a ridiculous mix of characters that pinning the cast down by one beer is just mean.

Corbin, this cat is practical, he is good at his finance and is very level headed, doesn’t seem to be too bombastic which might lead to reason this guy would be hip to a Bud Light Lime… not that I endorse this in anyway shape or form because it is like supporting the Strcty of the beer world. For Corbin the beer I would make in his likeness would be a kolsch or a cream ale. Light beers with serious integrity! The cream ale is the best stepping stone for BMC (BudMillerCoors) drinkers to take into the good beer world. It incorporates rice corn and barley which will be familiar to their palate but it is not watered down thus tasting much fuller (BMC literally waters down their beer) and has a slightly more pronounced hop character to start them on their journey towards being a full blown hophead!

Marcel, this chap is obviously the slickest of all y’all, I think the Cascadian Dark Ale (credit where credit is due! Screw the BJCP!) Is where his beer lies. We can make the obvious connection of colour but it it runs so much deeper than that. If you are drinking a good CDA you’ll met by two things right away. The pop from the late hops and smooth roastyness from the dark malts. IMNSHO a good CDA should have less early boil hops because the bitterness they impart with conflict with the bitterness of the dark malts. Once you have this different/smoother (Dark malt+ early hop) type of bitterness the flavour of the late hops have a totally different framework in which they get to shine. Their sweetness is contained inside the slick roasty bitterness. Marcel = CDA = Dark, Slick, Sweet, Roasty with a Pronounced yet Balanced Bitterness

Ryan – Sounds like the most genuine of all the guys on the cast. Often overshadowed by the banter on Jason and Corbin and then further overshadowed by Marcel breaking up the banter. I got Ryan on a Smoked Beer! Yes, a smoked beer! These poor beers are overshadowed by big IPA’s, big Imperial Stouts, show stopper after show stopper after show stopper… But when you finally reach down and say “Ok ok ok, i’ll try this smoked beer” You are astounded, they are reasonably rare, so you are from then on looking for smoked beer where ever you go. Smoked beer or rauchbier is originally from Germany; and the German’s did not care about big fancy beers. They like beers that you can drink multiples of in litre steins. What that means is the smoke can not be like BrewDog’s version of a smoked beer where it tasted like they used a months worth of ashtray garbage to filter the beer. No, it is sensible and minimal yet apparent and poignant.

Take this weeks pick of the week, it was not some silly enchantment tutor from 100 years ago. It was a inexpensive (sensible) uncommon (minimal) enchantment killer (apparent) with real profit potential (poignant) that would be overshadowed by something flashy like Sterling Grove (BIG IPA’S… Dogfish 90) that will be super super appreciated for people who realize and go deep on ware/tare when it goes up and they love it (Smoke)

If you haven’t tried a smoke beer I recommend you do so! Listen to Ryan!

Jason – Arrogant Bastard by Stone (This is a great beer… sorry for the underhanded compliment)

So, I really think you guys should do a 4 pack, alas I will weigh in and vote for a stout. It does satisfy at least one of the character trait of each of the cast members.

Corbin- This is the biggest stretch, but Guinness has claimed to suppose to have enough nutrients that you could have it as a meal replacement. That’s is arguably practical… the Egyptians were payed in beer when building the pyramids because it contained enough calories to sustain them while building (THE Stout has links to historically practical beer… whoa and that’s my yoga for the day!)

Marcel – well, it’s dark slick and roasty

Ryan – There are smoked stouts and they are damn good

Jason – I have had some really really aggressive stouts!

This was fun, thanks for encouraging a mash (bahahaha) up of 2 of my loves!

Andrew

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