The First Time

It was my birthday this week, so I’ve been a bit chipper than usual. I celebrated the usual way, by drinking beer and watching Leonardo DiCaprio being mauled by a bear. It was an odd documentary and would put you right off camping.

I’ll be continuing the celebration this weekend by watching Captain America in the cinema.  Some may say it’s a fairly childish way to spend a 37thbirthday, but I’ve a child’s mind so it fits my M.O.  Anyway, who wants to be an adult facing the full horrors of the world we live in?  One look around and any sane person would just lay down and await the inevitable heat death of the universe.  But I digress.

As I thought back over my life’s achievements (it didn’t take too long), I thought about how I first started drinking craft beers all those years ago.  For many, the foray into more adventurous beers is due to a sense of disillusionment at what bars usually have on offer (and the memories of vicious chemical induced hangovers).  For others it’s a chance to try something new and different.

For me it was to stop people stealing my beer at parties.  And it worked.  Everyone hated my beers and kept well away from them.  Granted, I also hate them.  But I’m a petty, petty man and was more than willing to suffer rather than give in to thieving scum.

For the longest time there was little in the way of variation when it came to buying craft beer here.  I’d walk into the off-license with the same melancholic resignation only felt when taking a scrubbing brush to a toilet bowel victimised by the remnants of a vibrant night before.

Thank god we’ve such a selection now.  You don’t even have to have a “Go to” beer anymore.  You can pick and choose depending on your mood.  There’s a style of beer for any situation.  Want a few drinks when you’ve work in the morning?  Try a pale ale.  Trying to forget a lover who viciously abandoned you for a quantity surveyor named Kenneth?  Try a Belgian tripel.  Organising your collection of used teabags and realised you should have ordered them chronologically and not alphabetically? Sort your life out, mate.

There’s never been a better time to delve into the world of craft beers, especially if you’re one of those “I don’t like craft beers” people.  That’s like saying you don’t like food.  Sure, there may be plenty of foods you don’t like, but there’s too many different types to have a blanket ban on them all (plus, you’ll starve to death).

For the rest of you, do you remember when you first tried craft beer?  Or why you decided to try one?  Was it curiosity?  Paranoia?  Did you lose a bet? Was it a voodoo curse?