Back at the start of 2012, I started keeping a diary of my thoughts when I woke up. I wrote while completing my morning bowel movement. In theory, I managed to clear my mind and colon all before I finished my first cup of coffee.
Dear Diary (Jan. 4th 2012),
This morning my ass asked me question. I was half asleep when it happened - like any other early morning fart. I’m not sure what my ass said but it was definitely a question. The fart had that inquisitive inflection that all questions have. Perhaps it asked, “When you getting up, buddy?”. Or “You know it’s not Saturday, right big guy?”. Or maybe just a simple “How’s it going?”
My backside has the cutest high pitch voice. A soprano for sure. Probably because my ass has no testicles. Following this logic, my front genitalia, has a deep voice. Which makes sense - a boner should bellow - “nobody knows the trouble I've seen, nobody knows my sorrow.” Imagine the voice of Franco Ventriglia, but a cyclops.
Dear Diary (Jan. 13th 2012),
Last night I had a dream I was drinking two beers. One was called “Barely Legal“. The other was called “Legal“. I was really afraid to drink the Barely Legal beer. I’m not sure why. I mean it was legal, barely, but still legal. Right?
I half woke up after said dream and snuggled Wife. “You’re legal,” I mumbled.
“What?” she said.
“Beagles.” I said softly as I fell back asleep.
Retrospectively speaking, the Wake Up Diary was not ever going to live up to expectations. How could it? I only wrote those two entries. While on the topic of disappointments, I'm working on a memoir.
With regards to beer, here are some of the more disappointing beers I've bought over the past year - disappointing mostly because of a higher price that raised my expectations. Call it buyer's remorse. To keep with the cosmic ebb and flow, I've thrown in some success stories as well.
Flanders Fred (7.5% ABV) - this a collaborative ale, a Belgian strong Pale Ale, between Hair of the Dog and De Proefbrouwerij (a Belgian Brewery). It seems to be, according to what I've read on the Internet, a combination of a Flanders Lambic and a version of Hair of the Dog’s Fred that the brewers brewed together. Don’t get me wrong, this was good, and I would drink it for days, but at $23 for 25 ounces? I would not pay that again. It was a limited brew, brewed only once, so I probably won’t ever have this problem again, and I’m glad I tried it, but I wasn't blown away in the way I thought I would be.
Bitches Brew (9.0% ABV) - released for the 40th anniversary of the Miles Davis album with the same name, I had been looking for this for a few years, so the disappointment is more related to anticipation than price (only $13 for 25 ounces). This Imperial Stout had some strange flavors that I wasn't too fond of, reminiscent of candies I’d been given by old ladies when I was a boy - very interesting flavors, but not in a “wow” sort of way. I do have another aging in the basement (I bought 2 at the same time), so hopefully that one wows me a bit more.
Cease and Desist (11.0% ABV) - also known as Disputin, this Russian Imperial Stout by Brouwerij De Molen was renamed after some legalities with Old Rasputin by North Coast Brewery. Most Russian Imperial Stouts pour like used motor oil. This was different from the start - thinner and lighter, not black as night. The hop profile of this beer is different than most other Imperial Stouts I've had, so that was strange. Something about it reminded me of a heavy roasted pilsner. Afterwards I had an Old Rasputin, to compare, and it ruined that beer for more me as well- all that stood out was the anise/licorice taste of the Old Rasputin. I could barely finish what is usually an enjoyable standard of the style. And the 12 ounce Cease and Desist was $14. Not worth it.
And now for some great ones - I won’t go into as much detail with these because they were amazing and the price, whatever it was, was worth it…
Brux, another collaborative brew, this time from Russian River and Sierra Nevada. Amazing. It bubbled like champagne and had a great mild funk to it with a very refreshing Saison-like backbone.
Tart of Darkness, a stout aged in oak barrels by the Bruery, had a great sourness that subdued the roastiness of the stout in a way that made you think about what was happening on your tongue. You didn't necessarily taste the stout of it all, but you felt it and knew it was in the room with you. Really great.
Black Hole brewed by Mikeller, which I wrote about here.
Bourgogne de Flanders, a Flemish Red Ale, is pretty mild in terms of sour beers and typically doesn’t get rave reviews but I thought it was delicious. Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of sour beers I’d take over this but something here was really enjoyable - perhaps mildness and a lack of complexity can really hit the spot sometimes. Wife said it was the best beer she ever had.
I was going to put links for all these but I got lazy. Complain in the comments.