ERIE’S GOLDEN FLEECE MAIBOCK IS A GOLDEN SHOWER FOR YOUR MOUTH

Yes you can come back for a special episode, but you're going to be crazy. Also, hand over your keys...

Bibo ergo sum

Ever since Descartes took a couple of hours out of his busy day to argue with himself over whether a piece of wax was real or not, philosophers have struggled with the same fundamental epistemological question: How do we know what we know? What is the nature of reality? Much like Libby Smith of ABC’s hit musical contest show Lost, sometimes I have difficulty differentiating that which is real from that which is not.  For example yesterday:

  • I Saw Ilana return to the beach camp, only to be blown into small pieces when the unstable dynamite exploded. Which, by the way, Jack and Richard can sit in a ship cargo hold chock-full of this same dynamite, juggling sticks of it, smoking cigars, and lighting farts, and the killer-for-hire Ilana can’t carry it across 10 feet of powder sandy beach without blowing herself up. So I guess it was just her time. And note to Jacob, next time don’t look for your bodyguard on Craigslist when the battle between good and evil hangs in the balance.
  • I took my wife’s pants to the dry cleaning.
  • I approved a personalized calligraphy sign-off for my beer blog that someone else made for me in their spare time.
  • In an incredible case of something-imitating-something, I Learned that Jim Nance and Fred Couples used to practice the Masters’ Green Jacket Ceremony together with Fred as winner and Jim as announcer when they roomed together in college as teammates at the University of Houston, sadly in the days before Youtube and webcams in every dorm room, only to get the chance to act it out in reality many years later at the 1992 tournament. Tom Mix wept.
  • I saw a picture of A-Roid accepting a World Series ring.
  • I requested my local art house theater to schedule a screening of Birdemic: Shock and Terror.
  • I did the Maltercation podcast with Dr Ripped, Brother Barley, Magnus, the elephant from Donnie Darko, and, wait for it… Baron Sudsy Von Brue!

All of the above seem far-fetched, even absurd, and despite my unmistakable memories of the events in question, there are contradictory clues regarding whether any of them actually took place that I left for myself in my Flash Forward. In this digital age of meta-entertainment, it can be tough to pin down authentic experiences. Let’s review the facts:

  • First off, I’m pretty damn sure Ilana was blown up, it was near the beginning of the episode, and quite shocking and terrorizing to the senses. It will haunt my dreams. And frankly it made the sushi a little less appetizing.
  • I remember taking her pants to the dry-cleaner and told the Alewife as much, yet there they sit, hanging on a chair in the dining room, leading to consternation and head-scratching all around.
  • We’ll have to see after I post this…
  • I know that wasn’t A-Rod; he wasn’t orange enough.

    A-Rod '09

    A-Rod yesterday covering up the gulf he feels in his soul with a big stupid grin; also less orange

    This leads me to conclude a doppel-ganger or some such thing had been deployed. The real A-Rod must be holed up in a bunker somewhere with real David Ortiz, playing cards, MLB 10: The Show on PS3, and watching Basketball Wives.

  • Pretty sure I did that, the email is still in my sent messages folder and time stamped: Date: Tues, Apr 13, 2010 at 2:02 PM
    Subject: Birdemic in Pittsburgh
    To: info@severin-films.com
  • Not posted yet, but I remember doing a new episode on the internet’s #1 BeerCast The Maltercation and The Baron was in the house!! Or on the line. He was on Skype.

Baron, what I’m trying to say in my own convoluted way, is nice to meet you, and I’m sorry I may have inferred in the past that you didn’t exist, or that you and Dr. Rip were the same person. I know you are not; he is a much bigger dickhead than you, having reneged on a blood oath to break federal law and mail me a diverse and expensive sampler box of bottled beers, and now is acting like I made the whole thing up and to stop calling and emailing him about it.

My therapist, who like the character Libby Smith in ABC’s Lost claims to be a psychologist, calls these notions “Suspicious Thoughts” stemming from a traumatic experience in my youth, which after much navel-gazing we eventually pinned down to a warm bottle of Sam Adams Cherry Wheat I drank at a Zeta Psi rush barbecue back in 2000. I am supposed to test all Suspicious Thoughts with behavioral experiments that can be quantitatively measured, and then proceed accordingly. Thus, I am giving your Maltercation debut 3.25 Hops! Great job!

Enough yammering, on to the tasting note. We decided to Maltercate about Spring seasonal ales or something, which no one seemed very sure what that even meant.  I stopped at Brews Brother Six-Pack Emporium (The Growlers have landed!) but nothing was jumping off the shelf at me. I called Brother Barley McHops, at the same cell number he got back in Boston in 2001, which to me is just a mindblowing accomplishment, having had roughly 40 different cell numbers in that same time span, and I think it speaks volumes about Brother Barley’s granite-like resolve and character, or perhaps his utterly justifiable fear of change.

He was of no help at all. He may have been on the toilet… he muttered something about a bock, and ended the conversation. I grabbed a sixer of Erie Brewing Company Golden Fleece Maibock, mostly because of the hungover goat on the label, which later turned out to be a sheep:

We proceeded to cast the pod. It was pretty fun. If you don’t want to listen to the whole hour-long show, which basically why would you, the gist  is that spring is the overlooked beer season, with Summer, Fall, and Winter all having more distinctive beer-dentities and styles associated with them. One of the few brews our synapses zap when we hear the word “spring” is the Bock beer style; strong, malty, and many times dark lagers first brewed in Roman Catholic monasteries in Germany during the 1400’s. During the spring religious season of Lent, monks were required to fast and the high-gravity Bock beers were higher in food energy and nutrients than lighter lagers, thus providing increased sustenance during this period. Little boys were also off limits during this most holy time.

The Maibock is  a paler, less malty subfolder in the Bock hierarchy. Maibocks “mai” be hoppier than others within the Bock continuum, but still overall low in IBU’s… so basically what you get when you’re dealing with this style is a light, not-so-malty, not-so-hoppy, high calorie beer that was designed to help keep priests from fondling children in the springtime sun. Sound good? It’s not.

The Erie Brewing Company Golden Fleece Maibock is a representative of this style.  Hefty 8.5% alcohol, reddish color, lightly sweet and malty nose, a taste that starts with notes of peaches and maple and ends in disappointment. But as Brother Barley noted in his seminal relativistic beer opus Sierra Nevada Glissade, even good breweries can lay stinkers every once in awhile due to the constraints of the style they are attempting. I thoroughly enjoyed Erie’s critically panned Ol’ Red Cease and Desist Scottish Wee Heavy and respect the fact that in an era where no beer name is too shocking or avante-garde, their Hard Cock Ale and Lager stand tall and proud. I also like the Railbender. So why didn’t I write about those instead of this one? Get off my back man!

I award the Erie Brewing Company Golden Fleece Maibock 1.5 Hops, and may God have mercy on its soul. If this is the best spring has to offer, bring on Octoberfest:

C’mon Aleheads, get me out of this foul mood! What spring beers should I be drinking?? Don’t just sit there staring at me with that slack-jawed expression you always have. God I hate that.

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8 comments

  1. All I know is that Blue Point’s Spring Fling is NOT the way to go. I also believe that the reverse exorcism may have had more to do with your suspicious thoughts than the Cherry Wheat.

  2. Sorry but should have noted that the above post may contain spoilers.

  3. There’s no elephant in Donnie Darko. Frank is clearly a rabbit.

    Sometimes I doubt your commitment to Sparkle Motion.

  4. Commander · · Reply

    I can testify from personal experience that you had Suspicious Thoughts the first day I met you, in 1997, when you and I ridiculed a fellow 18-year-old hiker (we’ll call him “Ed”) for his claim that he once drank an entire keg in a sitting.

  5. How dare ye Slouch? I am not a communist. I may be a liar, a pig, an idiot, a communist, but I am NOT a porn star. How dare ye?

    Sincerely,
    Dr. Ripped

  6. Sweeney · · Reply

    The downside of living in the west is that everyone in U.S. is drunk before you.

  7. True, but when we’re hungover, you’re still drunk. That’s a plus.

  8. Lindsay · · Reply

    I’m a little late on this one- but I saw that Ilana situation from a mile away, and I wasn’t bothered in the least by it. Now Frank, that would be a loss. I expect Miles to die in each episode, and welcome it.

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