This blog exists because Jo Wood told me I needed to start one, and when Jo Wood tells you to pull your socks up you have to listen.1
This whole thing started over a year ago when I began co-writing writing the Beer Column for Victoria Uni’s Salient Magazine. For several reasons, that finished after only two columns. Unfortunately however, I’d developed a taste for foisting my opinions on the unsuspecting masses. I’m back co-writing that again with my colleague Dave the Beer Guy, but it’s only once a month and my need to put pen to paper (or 1s and 0s to silicon) is strong.
The real catalyst for this blog though came from me achieving the impossible: winning an argument on the internet. You see, in the early days of 2013 I attended a beer tasting. This one to be exact. The whole thing was a bit controversial and kicked off a bit of a kerfuffle.2 Terms like ‘elitist’ and ‘wanker’ got thrown around a bit and I decided to throw in my $0.02, with what I hoped to be a considered and (fairly) polite response.
Long story short, I found myself with an apology and a deal of notoriety around Wellington. I was also gathering praise, both from people at the tasting and strangely, people who weren’t The thing that really got to me though, was the number of people telling me I should take up blogging.
Now I won’t lie, I’ve considered it before. But it seems like every Man, his dog and his dog’s fleas are writing blogs at the moment.3 So you might understand why I was reluctant to start this whole thing.
The kicker came when Sean from the Thirsty Boys asked me to write a guest entry for their blog (pending). What is this? Is the whole world conspiring against me? To write a blog? I asked Phil Cook this and he said “Yes, we had a meeting. It’s been decided.” Well, ok world. You want me to write, I’ll write. Qué será, será. Just remember world, you asked for it.
I don’t know precisely what form this beast will take. It’s been suggested I do a beer-for-a-year style thingamy, but I’m reluctant.4 I want it to be a beer log-cum-reviewing exercise but who knows? Maybe it’ll go the way of most other blogs: half-a-dozen updates then eerie silence that makes you wonder it the author died and was eaten by their cat. I guess it’s time to find out. Pass me the bottle opener please!
1. Miss-quote, Jo Wood quoted by Michael Donaldson in A Beer Nation (Penguin Books, 2012: 213). Credit/blame should also go to Phil Cook, who mentored me, often by proxy.
2. I considered writing a blog post about the tasting as my opener, but I have very little to add and didn’t want to stir up that shit-storm again.
3. Pardon the excessive gendering of those pronouns, but it’s an old saying that loses punch with “hirs” or “xe’s”.
4. The updating schedule is the main impediment, but also because working in the somewhat-ivory-tower that is Hashigo, finding a new beer that I’ve never had before every day is a bit of a challenge.