Organic Dread Brown Ale

Nearly porter-deep this beer from Santa Cruz Mountain Brewing is a hearty brown ale.  My first thirsty quaff objected a bit to this one, a bit harsh and unrefined, but I’m quickly warming to this get-well gift from some colleagues.  Fairly bitter, with deeply roasted roasted malt, I’m not finding it to meld quite right, possible due to lack of body.  For a beer this deep, the frontend is awfully wet.  On initial examination, my first observation was the large bubbles of carbonation clinging to my pint glass and that there was a notable lack of head.  I believe that a beer this deep and dark needs a nice frothy head.

Now, don’t get me wrong, this is not a bad beer by any stretch.  In fact it’s nearly a very good beer.  A bit of fine tuning, perhaps accounted for even by batch variation, could make this a wonderful though challenging beer.  Slightly less caustic hops and a better carbonation process could keep me coming back to this again and again.  And I will certainly drink another Organic Dread Brown Ale given the chance.

Toe update

Thanks for all the well-wishes and such.  My toe is healing, soccer is a long way off but I’m planning to return to work tomorrow, and drove a car today for the first time since Thursday.  woohoo!  Pain is way down, pretty much completely off the meds, but stinky because showers are a hassle!  cheers.

Beer in the Skidmore?

Could it be true?  Word on the street is that beer will be flowing from the Skidmore fountain in about 10 minutes….3pm, September 22.  I haven’t found any real confirmations, but a lot of rumors and such.  And me bound to the house. arrrr!  Always the bridesmaid, never the fratboy doing a kegstand over the Skidmore Fountain.

Bum toe

Sitting on my ass today because I had surgery this morning.  Nothing too significant, but I am missing the rest of the soccer season.  Three season, I guess.  There was some bone matter and cartilage mucking up the joint in my big toe.  My kickin’ toe.  I asked to bring the pieces home in a jar but I guess it’s hospital policy no to alow that.  I was good and didn’t play soccer last night in hopes of not bashing it up worse than it is.  Good times, now I’m hopped up on vicodin or something.  No dancing for ricky this weekend, I’ll just be hanging out drinking beer.  I guess it could be worse.  cheers.

more scared kitty

Alright, so according to google I’m now the #1 repository for “scared kitty” and it’s taking quite a bit of traffic. Beer drinker gets plenty from the internet community, so I’ll keep holding onto it. BUT I’ve lowered the quality of this pic…saves me about 10KB per transfer which is more than it sounds like. You can still get the original at By original, I don’t mean that I created it, because I didn’t and I have no idea who did. I did the same thing to the beer disaster picture. The original is now at

btw, the original kitty post is here and the original beer disaster post is here.

Class Reunion

So I’ve been in Oakdale and Modesto the last few days for my high school reunion.  15 years holy crap.  I think I’ll submit my denial in the existence of time right now, and if you’re the noting type, please note that.  But that’s not what I’m here for today.  I need to send props to my classmates for being a super-cool bunch of people.  I saw a ton of people (metric) who I haven’t seen in a long time.  Some 15, some more.  A few less.  I don’t think it will be that long again.  I have to send props to Christie and Robin for makeing the whole thing come together too.

An event like that is totally surreal.  We’re all different than we were 15 years ago, but not that different.  And our differences are smaller and less arbitrary than back in the proverbial day.  Being there, waiting in line to get in, remembering faces, names, and personalities was very heady for awhile.  I made a few rounds and eased back into the groove.   The beer (easy drinkin swill) may’ve helped a bit too.

Don’t hate me, but I’m one of those who actually remembers high school fondly.  Not pining for it or anything, but I had a good time.  It was a tough time, one of changes and conflict and really stupid mistakes, self-discovery on a grand scale, but also freedom and joy and a sense of new.  And tension.  That is when I became aware of the bonds between people, and those bonds were this tension, that pushed and pulled, twanged and snapped.  Not the tension of Johnny Cochran’s closers, or that quiet moment right after a domestic squabble in front of guests, but tension where the relationships are stronger than the people, and exist outside of them.

So we danced and drank and were merry.  Tony grabbed the mic, and Frankie rocked and Denise danced, and I laughed with Dave and harassed Natalie and sidelined with Debbie and screamed with Manita (and got some sweet photos with her and Brandy (E)) and wow, I can’t go through it all, I saw too many people who mean too much to me.  And we had a blast—I’m speaking for everyone.  Except maybe the spouses.  What a rough gig a reunion must be for the spouses.

A lot of us hit the Cow Track afterwards for more revelry.  Thanks for the lift Brandy (J).  You rock.  I had a few more beers, got more ridiculous, and made the switch to water.  Cow Track closed and we cruised by Danielle’s for a little after-after party.  Thanks for the lift Irvin.  More water, Rick slowing down.  3am yoga.  Irvin busts some inverted shyte, whoa.  I struggle with eagle pose.  Phinney jumped in the pool.  We’re out, more lift props to Irvin and Debbie.  Good 4 hours sleep cuz my head’s still spinning, I check out, grab a sausage biscuit at Jack in the box, and drive back to Modesto.

I have to say it again…my high school class rocks.  We can party.

Futsal is fun!

We got a squad (Moist) in at the brand spankin new futsal joint in SE Portland for this season. In fact, our team had the honor of winning the very first league futsal game ever at the new arena. It was a bit of a blowout at 28-2. Not very nice, I think a few guys had some frustrations to unleash after our men’s team was crushed by PSU the day before. Really bad. I also earned the dubious distinction of being the first league injury. Yay me. Stupid toe.

Anyway, in case you didn’t know, futsal is a Brazilian sport played a lot like soccer. There are four field players and a goalie on each team. It is played on a field the size of a basketball court, indoors or out. The goals are smaller than indoor goals, somewhere around 5′ by 5′ or 6′ by 6′ but I’m not sure. The ball is somewhat different, being smaller and having less bounce that a soccer ball.

Futsal is a quick game with very close quarters. It is very tactical soccer. There are a lot of shots, and they travel hard and fast. Capitalizing on transitions is key as well.

Portland futsal is a pretty cool place. It used to be a tile factory or showcase or somesuch, and you can see the samples in the upstairs lounge where you can play PS2 FIFA Street, or watch any of the three fields in action. There are two full-sized futsal fields and a smaller field probably to be used for 3v3 or juniors play. They do not (yet?) sell beer, nor do they have ice, both being things that would’ve made my injury less painful.

Musicfest NW

Alright cave-dwellers, time to explore beerdrinking venues for the merit of their tunes rather than their ales.  And lagers if that’s what you’re into.  The Musicfest NW is going on, and there are a lot of great acts to see.  Last night the Black Keys rocked.  That’s the only show I saw, getting a late start and opting out of the Dandy Warhols.  Tonite, there are so many bands conflicting that I am a bit conflicted myself.  Perhaps I’ll kick it off at Berbati’s at 9 with the Woggles, then either stay there for the Mooney Suzuki of head up to Fez for The Upside Down, who don’t seem to get enough credit around here…they are an extremely talented local band.  Of course, that’s if I don’t end up at the Crystal watching Viva Voce.  After my 10pm conundrum, there’s the question of 11—Stephen Malkmus or the High Violets?  I don’t know anything about any of the other bands, so que sera there.  And then at midnite I think I’ll drink a beer and catch the Silver Jews.  Or if I need a bit of twang on, Power of Country is tight.  But maybe Supernaut or Ditchliquor since at 1am I’m thinking of cruising over to Kelly’s Olympian for the ridiculously rockin Starantula.
Goddammit this wristband is throwing me for a loop.