27 February 2016

You Never Go Full Polkaroo

Hey you.
Yeah, you, the guy at the end of his rope after a bad day.
Wanna get a case of Old Mil and just drown your sorrows in shitty macro lagers? Sounds awesome doesn't it. But what you don't know is that all that is going to do is make your day worse and your morning a disaster. Chug away anyway but don't say I didn't warn you.
That was what I used to do when I had a rough day. Get hammered and ease my mind out of the conscious world into the unconscious one. It was so easy to just pound tasteless beers into my gut one after the other until I could barely remember my own name, let alone all the garbage that life was throwing at me. But of course this never solved what troubled me, it only made it worse because I would now be hungover and still have the problem to deal with.
I have many times explained how craft beer helped me to slow down, engage my beer in a responsibly and generally stop being such a jackass. I mean, I'm still a jackass, but with nicer beer glasses and of course, better brews. Check out one of my earlier posts, A Brief History of Me  for a summary of how I came to be here.
What happens now when I have a rough day? I still want to get hammered and forget all my problems. Sometimes it is very strong, that siren call of oblivion. But I no longer respond to her tasteless, empty cry. Instead I let my emotions run their course, vent a little to someone I trust and begin my ritual of choosing a beer for the night. I describe some of my techniques for slowing down in my post Just One Beer. The biggest thing I can do when I have one of those days, that we all do sometimes, is to remind myself that I have stared into the abyss of losing everything so many times and kept going. That's good solid advice there. How many times have you thought you can't possibly go on and look at that, you're still here. You and I are pretty awesome.
Last night was one of those times and I really took my time in choosing my beer. I wanted something to just sip and enjoy so that I could roll my issues around my head while keeping it clear. I have shared how I have developed a process I call The Ritual, that helps me to really consider what I am doing and choose my beer accordingly. It is important to me that I embrace all the flavours, aromas and textures of my beer every time I have one. A new beer means a chance to write a review, attempt to take an "artsy" picture and share it with the world. This is my favourite time of the day and I don't want to ruin it by just mindlessly pounding shitty beer. Or good beer. Never waste good beer on a bender. That's just stupid.
Artsy beer pictures are my thing now. Weird.
I chose a big 9 % ABV Cameron's Brewing Company Obsidian Rum Barrel aged Imperial Porter and it was delicious. A large flavour profile beer that I knew would keep changing as I drank it, so I really sipped and savoured. Just a great beer for helping to see that even the worst of your problems have a solution or an end. And if it's just not going to get better for a while, why not at least have an hour where all you do is embrace your beer. It worked for me, along with some tunes, and I felt like a human being again.
So the next time you think cramming shots and chugging flavourless macro brews is the only thing you can do to forget your problem, try to consider what I've shared with you. I am proof that you can still drink beer and not give in to that inner voice that wants all the beer, right now. Call a friend, take a walk or do something to get your mind moving. Then open the fridge, pick something amazing from your favourite brewery or maybe a new one. Pop the top, pour it into a glass and settle down to contemplate what's troubling you. Let the beer be part of the solution, not an addition to the problem.
And remember kids.
Even though it sounds awesome...
You never go Full Polkaroo.
It doesn't end well.

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