Good morning everyone, and happy day before National Homebrew Day. And Happy Kentucky Oaks Day (aka Day before Derby Day). And of course, Happy Friday. Wow, that may be some sort of record for links in an intro. Now, onto more pressing/silly/stupid/amusing things….
- When I read this story, I couldn’t decide what was more disturbing… That a Connecticut man “lost his life savings on a carnival game“, Or that said man’s life savings amounted to – wait for it…. $2600. But, apparently that’s what he lost playing ‘ball toss’. Have no fear though, in true American fashion he’s suing the carnival operator claiming ‘the game was rigged’. Are we sure this didn’t really happen in Florida? Regardless, I think this guy needs a visit from our good friend Red.
- See? I knew it! We’re all doomed! Apparently a team at Oxford has determined that the human race is its own greatest threat to its own existence. We’re our own worst enemy? Really? I thought you folks at Oxford were smart. You needed ‘a team of experts’ to come up with that? Their reasoning though? We could face extinction due to our reliance on technology. Technology, huh? Did they not see the story about the guy losing his life savings? On ‘ball toss’? And technology is our big risk? I’m gonna go with.. people are stupid. That’s the main problem.
- Then again, maybe those blokes at Oxford are onto something. After all, this article on CNN.com is talking about how Google’s predictive search is now coming to the iPhone and iPad. Yes, it was out already for Android for a while – but now it’s pretty much everywhere. And it knows what you’re looking for. It remembers. And it learns. And it very much is starting to sound like Skynet. Which of course brought us a system that can’t be bargained with. Can’t be reasoned with. It doesn’t feel pity, or remorse, or fear…
- And of course, what’s a Friday post without something I like to call ‘news of the odd’. And I don’t care what the reason is. Bottling 300 gallons of your own urine and keeping it in your home is just… plain… odd! For crying out loud man… how many drug tests were you planning on faking, anyways??
- And lastly, sometime you just need to laugh and have a little fun. Which is without a doubt what a judge in San Antonio decided to do when he issued a hilarious ruling on a case involving strip clubs and what the dancers must wear at the clubs. Firing off classics such as “An ordinance dealing with semi-nude dancers has once again fallen on the Court’s lap” and “While the Court has not received amicus curiae briefs, the Court has been blessed with volunteers known in South Texas as ‘curious amigos’ to be inspectors general to perform on sight visits at the locations in question”. Notice the “On-Sight” inspections reference there in the last one? Clever!
Okay folks, that’s five and I’m off to work on some beer related stuff. Yep, Beer’s brewing tomorrow to celebrate homebrew day (a pilsner style for those who want to know). And once I finish, Maybe I’ll make myself some mint juleps. In the meantime, since one of my co-bloggers decided to hassle me for using a Toby Keith song last week, and in honor of the terminator reference up there… Well, let’s just go with a song that helped make the “I need your clothes, your boots, and your motorcycle” scene so iconic….
Yep, the T-100 was Bad to the Bone..
Have a great weekend folks!
Posted in Feature
Tagged Beer, Five Thoughts, From Beermaker's Brain, From the News, Homebrew, Kentucky Derby, Random, Silly, Skynet, stupid, Terminator, Weird
Howdy folks, and another happy Friday to you. If you’re wondering about the title for this week’s post…. Well, blame my friend Kirsten from http://comfortablydomestic.com/. It all started on Twitter last night. anyhow, some interesting stuff on tap this week, and I don’t mean beer. (Not that the beer I have on tap is uninteresting. I happen to think it’s quite good!) So, Let’s get self-indulgent and get started, shall we?
- It is my great pleasure to use the first item up this week to welcome our good friend and contributor PB to the team. (If you were paying attention to the “About the Beerbarrel” page earlier this week, you noticed his bio went up) While this in no way promises to up the posting activity on the blog, we’re still glad to have you aboard PB.
- Now, about that whole beer and brownies thing. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with having a beer and a brownie. In fact, I encourage it. But that isn’t what this is about. This is about me brewing up an Oatmeal Stout to go IN a brownie. Truth be told, I think I got the easier end of the job. I already have the recipe for the beer. I don’t have to figure out how to properly make a brownie mix for it to go into. I’ll leave that to the professional. It all started based on this conversation:
And with that, I’m on the hook to make the beer. Should be fun.
- Okay, how in the heck do I follow-up now? I’ve got an introduction sitting at number one, and a public plan for a collaboration for a beer infused brownie after that. How do you get from there to somewhere else? Well, sometimes you don’t end up where you thought you were going to go. Especially when the plane you’re on LANDS AT THE WRONG AIRPORT! (How’s THAT for a segue?) Honestly, it’s 2012. With all of the electronic guidance equipment in aircraft these days, how do you land at the incorrect airport? And did no one at the airport control tower bother to ask the pilots why they were landing at an airport they weren’t scheduled to land at? Sheesh. And to think, I need to get on a plane soon!
- One of the cooler things in the news recently has been the Mars rover (named Curiosity by NASA) that has successfully landed on Mars and started operating (Even with the slew of bad “Hope Curiosity doesn’t find any cats on Mars!” jokes). Almost predictably though, the world has acted to keep the positive news in perspective as a prototype Moon lander exploded during testing yesterday. A bit ironic isn’t it? Right after they put a vehicle on Mars, a lander for the moon, a much closer target, fails.
- Lastly, not another boom, but rather a splash (Or maybe smack is a better word). This has got to suck on multiple levels. There isn’t any other way to put it. You train your entire life. You work incredibly hard to qualify for the Olympic Games as one of the best in the word at your chosen sport. And in the moment of a lifetime…. Your dive that you’ve spent a lifetime preparing for goes horribly wrong. You not only get scored zeroes, you get booed out of the pool, and your dive gone wrong instantly shows up on the internet. Yes, you just did the “Nestea Plunge” in the Olympics.
Okay folks, that’s five and Beer’s brain is saying it’s time to go! So when the brain says “Let’s Go!”… we go!
Have a great weekend folks!
Posted in Feature
Tagged Beer, Blog, Commentary, Commercials, Features, Five Thoughts, Food, From Beermaker's Brain, From the News, Homebrew, NASA, Olympics
Howdy folks, and welcome to another edition of Five Thoughts. before we get going, let’s touch on the title of today’s post. In other words… Happy Star Wars Day. Don’t get it? Here’s a clue… say the part of the title that’s in quotes. Still no? Okay, say it again then listen to this.
Okay, now that we have that out of the way (Hey, I’m just the messenger here folks) let’s see what we can cover today…
- We’ve got one heck of a mixed bag assembled this week. Wait… did I just say “Assemble”. You know, there’s a tiny little movie opening in the States this weekend after a big opening overseas. And it uses the word assemble. It also uses two of my co-blogger’s favorite words. In fact when paired together, I think it may well be his favorite two word combination. What are they? Hulk, and Smash. As in.. “Hulk? Smash.” Might need to go see this one.
- I’ll leave it for you to decide. Cool, creepy, ego-maniacal, or just someone having some fun because they can. And which picture is more disturbing, the ice in the glass, or the stretched out photo on the side with the person holding the ice cube in the tongs? Yes, we’re talking about ice cubes. Made to look like Sir Richard Branson.
- So, imagine you’re walking along the beach. Just sort making note of all the stuff that you’re finding washed up. All the normal stuff, you know… Seashell, dead fish, oh, there’s a tiny little crab running around, rocks, seaweed, Harley Davidson, wait…. what was that last one? That’s right. Harley Davidson. Washed clear across the Pacific ocean from Japan. The things our planet can do at times.
- Staying on/in the water for a moment… If you’ve ever needed a bigger boat.. This is probably not the auction for you. The U.S. Navy is auctioning off it’s stealth ship. Now, before you start making plans to import large amounts of Cuban rum and cigars into the Florida Keys…. The ship will be disassembled. Boo. Well, maybe the market for the scrap metal will be more than the winning bid.
- And for our fifth item today, let’s talk about something for Cinqo de Mayo. I’d like to make a small suggestion on this busy, busy day. You see, it’s not only Cinqo de Mayo (aka any excuse to throw a party, right?). It’s also the 1st Saturday of may. Which means two things. It’s National Homebrew Day. That’s right. A day dedicate to making your own beer. Pretty spiffy if you ask me. The other event? The Kentucky Derby. The most famous horse race in the world. So, my suggestion? In the middle of all the revelry for Cinqo de Mayo and Big brew… take a few moments out around post time for the Derby (6:24pm EDT) and have yourself an All-American drink on Cinqo de Mayo. Have a Mint Julep. Then go right back to your beer, tequila, and tacos. Have fun, but be safe!
Okay folks, that’s Five on the fourth and I am done for the week. So let’s head out into what should be a pretty good party weekend with something a bit more contemporary than what we’ve been using lately. And since it is Star Wars Day, I thought this would fit absolutely perfectly.
Have a great weekend folks! May the Fourth be with you!
Posted in Feature
Tagged Beer, Features, Five Thoughts, From Beermaker's Brain, From the News, Holiday, Homebrew, Mint Julep, Movies, Star Wars, Tequila
Howdy folks, and welcome back to another one of Beermaker’s crazy, silly, occasionally amusing, and always self-indulgent posts in the “Five Thoughts” series. What are we going to talk about on this gray, wet, and rainy Friday? Well… let’s find out!
- For starters… It’s the first day of fall. And.. The sky is falling!
” Satellite still on course for Friday re-entry; destination still unknown”
Now, when I said it was raining I meant actual rain. You know, water. Not giant hunks of flaming satellite remnants! Then again, the satellite is only 6 1/2 tons and the size of a school bus so the odds of someone somewhere on earth are only pegged at 3200-1 by NASA. Those don’t seem like great odds, do they?
And the destination unknown? That’s bothersome. Not only because of the uncertainty, but because it got this song stuck in my head!
- And in the “This is no shock” department.. Some people have no sense of humor. Apparently, a mom group has a problem with the new Ben & Jerry’s ice cream flavor, Schweddy Balls
Wait – women who DON’T like ice cream?????? Ok, cheap shot, I know. But how can you not get a laugh from this?
- I have to mention this next article, strictly based on the sheer amazement I felt in realizing the amount of work people are putting into redesigning… A Ketchup Packet!!
Seriously… This was a problem? After over 40 years? The old ones stopped working or something?
- As has been fairly well documented by now, I was out traveling around last week. And I returned home to a dead refrigerator. Actually, it’s wasn’t completely dead. The power was still on and it was recirculating warm air instead of cold. Let’s just say I have a pretty good idea what a dead body would smell like now. And apologies to the trash guys who picked up that garbage can. They probably thought they had found Jimmy Hoffa. Nope, just spoiled beef and turkey.
- Fortunately, being a homebrewer generally leaves you with two things that make returning home from vacation to such a situation as I did far more bearable. Those being:
-A Second, (and in this case – a Third) spare refrigerator.
Amazing how something like a few cold brews can help out.
(So much for another Alcohol Free edition, huh?)
Okay folks, that’s five and I’m out of here. I’m out of here to start in on my weekend. And as for the dearly departed fridge? You what the worst part was?
Not the lost food. Not the money the new one cost us. No, the worst part of coming home to a dead fridge? That Smell.
Have a great weekend folks!
Posted in Feature
Tagged Beer, Features, Five Thoughts, Food, From Beermaker's Brain, From the News, Homebrew, Homer Simpson, NASA, postaweek2011, story, Travel
Happy Friday folks, and welcome to another Friday. What’s been going on.. well… Let’s jump right in and find out, shall we?
- Beer’s currently writing this from an undisclosed, secure location. No, I’m not being guarded by the Secret Service. You see, I know I had mentioned last week that we’d talk about some homebrewing and stuff this week, and that was indeed the plan. Then the 7-11 storm hit. No, we didn’t get pelted with Slurpees. That would have done less damage. We got a nasty storm. 70+ mph winds. Broken trees. And no power. Yuck. So, no writing at the house, and no beer brewing for Beermaker.
And by broken trees, I mean like this….
- Why no beer brewing? Well, for one.. I use electricity when I brew to run a small pump. More importantly though, the brewing equipment is in the garage. And I couldn’t open it. Yes, I know exactly how the emergency release works. It was actually the small matter of my electric line laying across the top of my garage that kept me from trying to open my metal garage door. See how that works? I like NOT being electrocuted.
- Other than that, it really hasn’t been horrible. It hasn’t been unbearably hot, so the house is comfortable. We kept the freezers closed, so we didn’t lose anything (What is with some of these people who throw out their whole freezer after 5 hours?), although I think the frozen turkey may have acted as a giant ice block. And… I got to play with a chainsaw again! And got stung by a bee. The chainsaw was definitely the more fun option.
- Speaking of chainsaws… There is something inherently ingrained in the male psyche about power tools. The bigger the better. So when you head around the neighborhood and everyone has the little 14″ toy chain saws for cutting shrubs, it’s very satisfying to look down and look at this one.
It also brought this to mind…
- Since this post has been mostly about destruction, instead of homebrewing… How about closing with a news item that combines a bit of both (at least allegedly) from across the pond:
Boston explosion: Unconfirmed local speculation of home brewing at unit
Now, a couple of quick thoughts on this… As a homebrewer, I find it highly unlikely that if they were brewing something, that it was beer. I’ve had beer “explode” before. It is not a violent, rapid, flaming explosion. That would be cleaner. No, when fermenting beer “explodes” it’s generally because the airlock on the fermenter plugged up with the gunk (called krausen). The resulting CO2 pressure then usually blows sticky, slimy stuff all over the place.
Now, if they were DISTILLING something on the other hand… But, that’s a story for another day.
Ok, let’s head on out. And since I have been talking about a lack of power, let’s head back to the 80’s for an easy solution.. Power Station!
I’m off to spend the weekend with my chainsaw… Might be a BABF in my near future. (BABF = Big A$$ed BonFire)
Have a great weekend (with electricity) folks!
Posted in Feature
Tagged Blackout, Chainsaw, Commentary, Electricity, Features, Five Thoughts, From Beermaker's Brain, From the News, Home Improvement, Homebrew, postaweek2011, Silly, Slurpee, Trees
Howdy folks! Did you miss me? Probably not considering my co-blogger not only filled in for me last week, but I log on today to find that he actually posted something else? 2 posts from him in less than a week? I almost fell off my chair! Still, let’s see what we’ve got here for our vacation shortened week this week.
- Meant to put up a trip about the recent vacation, but kept getting sidetracked. And once it wasn’t up by Wednesday evening (we got back Tuesday night) well, it wasn’t gonna get finished. Yet another post for the scrap heap. I’m not big on comparing notes with others, is it normal to have more unfinished posts than posts?
- Sticking on the road trip theme… For the Independence Day holiday (aka 4th of July) Beer did the All-American thing, the road trip “up north”. That’s right, we hooked a trailer on the back of the truck, burned up a bunch of gasoline and headed to the lake. Nothing says “Americana” like burning a bunch of gasoline and blowing up fireworks. Except maybe playing with the chainsaw. Or the dock breaking. And beer. Definitely beer. Homemade, even!
- (And this one goes here because after drinking beer.. well…) I don’t know how they’ll pick the lucky “volunteer” for this, but I’m guessing it’s either gonna be lowest rank or shortest straw that “wins” the honor of testing it out….
NASA’s Stillsuit: Atlantis Crew to Test Pee-Recycling Bag
“One of the four astronauts aboard space shuttle Atlantis will test the recycler — with an experimental fluid, not their own urine — toward the end of their 12-day mission”. Blech.
- Arriving in the mail right after our latest vacation? Details on our NEXT vacation. Hey, it’s a tough life, but someone has to live it. Right? As for the details? When we get back. I follow my own advice, and don’t publicize the dates and times of my trips all that much. It’s a good one though folks, trust me. (And yes, this one was purely self serving. You get to do that when you write it.)
- As I alluded to in a tweet earlier this week, I stumbled across my old copy of Knights of the Old Republic again this week. And yes, I installed it and played a little bit. Still a very fun game, even if it looks a touch dated now. And it is not helping at all knowing that Star Wars: The Old Republic, the shiny new Star Wars MMO is looming on the horizon. Might even be enough to pull me out of Warcraft. Yes, I’m still playing. Not as much, but still there (Not playing much of anything right now, it’s summer and things are busy. It’ll pick up soon though). Still, it also has me thinking about retro gaming. Might be a fun little feature.
Ok, that’s five all over the place thoughts. Sorry for being so scatter brained, but after being off on vacation, a quick 3 workdays was all that stood between me and the weekend. And the brain took full advantage of that. So, we’ll work on something a bit more focused for next week, but until then, have a great weekend folks!
And for all you Star Wars fans out there… here’s a trailer for the new MMO:
Have a great weekend folks!
Posted in Feature
Tagged Beer, Features, Five Thoughts, Fourth of July, From Beermaker's Brain, From the News, Homebrew, NASA, postaweek2011, Random, Silly, Star Wars, Vacation, Video Games, World of Warcraft