July 15, 2008

Beer, birthdays and bittersweet memories

You know the game "Either Or"? It pretty much goes "Would you rather _____ or _____?" and then you have to choose one and whatever you choose says deep, meaningful things about your personality and life (maybe). Inevitably, someone asks, "Would you rather always be too hot or always be too cold?" I feel I always pick the opposite of whatever the climate is at the time because I'm fed up with the side effects of the cold/the summer. If it's summer, I say, "too cold!" but if it's winter, I say, "too hot!" But seriously. Being too hot blows massively and I'm not saying that just because it's been 85+ for several days/weeks now. Remind me of this in the winter when I'm going to say, "I'd much rather be too warm!" Although I do think I've said too cold before since when it's cold, at least you can put on layers. If you're hot and overheating, it's just hideous.

I first discovered the joy of a cold shower when I worked at Jesus camp in 2005. The best thing to do on my free Saturday afternoons was to take a cold shower, even if there were bugs everywhere. Since then, cold showers have been a staple of my summers, especially since I haven't lived anywhere with air conditioning for the past few years. Last summer when I worked at Jewish day camp, I'd come home from work, grab a beer and jump in the shower immediately. The best beer for drinking in the shower is Leinenkugel's Summer Shandy, a delicious mixture of wheat beer and lemonade. I'm in love with the Shandy and wish, wish, wish like hell someone in New Haven sold it. The only Leinie's I've found in New Haven has been Original and the Trix-cereal milk flavored Sunset Wheat. If you happen to be a New Haven bar owner reading this in search of adding a Leinie's line to your bar, avoid Sunset Wheat at all costs. Go for the Shandy and you will have my business for life.

Another beer I'm looking forward to at the end of the summer is Summit's Oatmeal Stout. They only brew it for the Minnesota Irish Fair. Drew, Amy and I had the lovely experience of touring the Summit Brewery in St. Paul so we were able to get a preview of the Stout before the fair, and let me tell you, I made plans right there and then to hit up the Irish fair. I'm not a huge fan of Summit - I've always thought their EPA tastes like soap - but the Oatmeal Stout won me over with its dark coloring, sweeter flavor and creamy head (I really just wanted to say creamy head).

When I'm in Milwaukee for the Irish Fest, I think it might be fun to go to the Sprecher Brewery. I've really liked the beer I've had at Irish Fest, and I've been a big fan of the bottled Hefe Weiss and Mai Bock. Plus there's free beer at brewery tours so... there's no reason not to go.

Today's the boyfriend's birthday so we had a delicious Birthday Breakfast at Bruegger's Bagels before I ran off to take my oral exam in French (a lot of b words at the beginning of that sentence). We went to see Ringo Starr and his All-Star Band last night, which was fun. Ringo Starr's an amazing dancer. Here's my video:

Tonight there's a secret birthday surprise and then Friday we're going to the hideous Maple Grove, aka suburban consumer hell, for dinner with his high school friends and then to see The Dark Knight. Saturday we're heading to Blarney's in Dinkytown for drinking in town. Huzzah for birthday plans!

I've been around Hamline and while it's the same place I lived for four years, it's not at the same time. This becomes more and more apparent as time goes on, people move away and things change. Not that it's necessarily bad, just different. I've had the unlucky pleasure of passing by my old, beloved apartment above the Mirror of Korea and seeing lights on in Natalie's old bedroom and my old bedroom. I always think to myself, "Who do they think they are, living in my room. I'll cut them. They had better be awesome enough to deserve to live there." And then I continue on my way, passing houses and buildings where people I know used to live. The whole Midway neighborhood sometimes feels like just a facade of a life I used to know; a place that looks the same, but at its core, isn't. It's sad passing by my old apartment and not going inside, but then at the same time, I'm going to a place that's different but good in it's own right. I don't think I'd want to go back to restart my senior year over again, but I feel nostalgic nonetheless.

I never really felt this way about high school places, but I was never one of those people who thought that high school was the best time of their life - quite the opposite.

Anyway, Andrew's bugging me to go to birthday dinner (can you tell that I just add "birthday" in front of everything that happens on one's birthday?). Later, friends! PS the temperature is sunny and 91 F.


Patti said...

Good post Linz. Touched a chord for me I guess....

Huzzah to Andrew for an awesome birthday!

Lindsay said...

you are a big fan of drinking in the shower, mom...

FeministGal said...

Hey Lindsay!! :)
As a fellow Connecticutite (is that a word?) at least for school, i was hoping you could help promote HollaBackCT for me a bit on Female Impersonator? With all the universities in CT and biggish cities, i'm sure there is LOTS of street harassment going on, we need to be actively working on a solution! :)