The Beers of Our Life


Session #142: One More For The Road

The Session, a.k.a. Beer Blogging Friday, is an opportunity once a month for beer bloggers from around the world to get together and write from their own unique perspective on a single topic. Each month, a different beer blogger hosts the Session, chooses a topic and creates a round-up listing all of the participants, along with a short pithy critique of each entry. 

Four thousand, two hundred and ninety nine days after I hosted the first Session one March 2, 2007 it comes to me to host what presumably will be the last on Dec. 7.
— Stan Hieronymous

One last time we can come to The Session and offer our contribution on a monthly topic of beer. As would be only appropriate, Stan Hieronymous who hosted the first issue also hosts this last one — One More For the Road. And just as appropriate, he asks us to write about the last beer — the ending beer.

Pick a beer for the end of a life, an end of a meal, an end of a day, an end of a relationship. So happy or sad, or something between. Write about the beer. Write about the aroma, the flavor, and write about what you feel when it is gone.

The Beers of Our Lives

I've been to many funerals in my life. I don't enjoy attending, who does? But if you allow yourself, you can learn a lot about life by learning about dying. Yes, you can glimpse into the life of the person who’s life has recently ended. And you learn a bit about the character of those compelled to speak on behalf of the loved one. What were those things remembered by those that remain? What were the experiences worth speaking about? What lasting influences did they have on those lives? Yes, the time can be extremely valuable if you think about the life and death.

Most importantly I think we learn about ourselves.

As I'm writing this, President George H. W. Bush, the 41st President of the United States was just laid to rest. Our country and the world recounted many of his life’s accomplishments and memories left by those his life touched. He was a man that loved his family, his God, his country and was compelled to act on those convictions. And that caused me to examine my own life — for the better or otherwise.

Beer As Memories

I recently interviewed regarding my Beer Cellaring Journal and thoughts on aging beer. I enjoyed the time Ken Goldwasser — Trails2Ales — and I had together. I had pulled a few bottles from my collect to share the stories of why they had been set aside. One was from a family vacation in Maine, some were selected from traditions, others just because I enjoyed the taste, and some because I was simply curious. They all were important, perhaps only to me.

I think about those bottles as more than just beer but also as memories of my life. Some I know I will enjoy, some alone and hopefully others with special people in my life. Some perhaps will be enjoyed by those who remain after I am gone from this life. I don't know but it’s an interesting and deep muse.

At some future, if you are reading this after my passing to the other side of this life, and you are going through my belongings and come across several boxes of beer, please enjoy them — that is their purpose. Let the flavors fill your mouth and nose and thoughts completely. Sip, savor, drink laviously. Read the labels from the places they were collected. Drink some now, save some for later, give some away to my friends and yours. They were meant by those that brewed them and those that drink them to bring pleasure to life. Cheers!

Thank You Jay & Stan

I’d like to say thank you to Jay Brooks and Stan Hieronymous for hosting The Session, a.k.a. Beer Blogging Friday all these years. I discovered this forum only a few years ago and have hosted it a few times. I’ve always looked forward to the monthly theme and reading the posts of other beer writers from around the world. Too, it was an excellent way to discover the work of other writers. It is sad to think this will not continue but will enjoy revisiting the work and memories. The Session’s themes helped me to become a better writer and thinker about beer. Cheers!