December 31, 2015

125 Root Beers!!!

The short story: I like to drink different root beers and talk about what each one tastes like.  I've done it with one hundred different kinds... until now!!!!  Here's twenty five more!!!

(The long story, including the first one hundred root beers, is here... )
101. CHICAGO: Open a decent root beer up in Photoshop then turn the opacity down to about 65%.



104.  HOSMER MOUNTAIN:  Slightly tart, slightly creamy, slightly sugary.

105.  BIG BEN'S:  Bike inner-tube made of black licorice, inflated with cigar smoke.

106. OLD RED EYE:  Candy hearts, Doublemint gum, melted lime Slurpee.

107. GENE AUTREY:  Cinnamon and heavy cream.  Spicy and sweet.

108.  ANCHOR GINGER ROOT BEER:  The ginger is very subtle and comes
across as more of a tingly freshness than the spicy, blow your nose off effect that I was expecting from something labeled as a ginger drink (which is a good thing, I think.)  There's actually more of a molasses flavor with a hint of ginger to finish it off.  It's like a Molasses Trojan Horse, but when the Ginger Trojans jump out they don't kill you, they give you a kiss on the cheek and then skip away giggling.

109.  ROCKY MOUNTAIN:  The label says it's made with beet sugar which is exciting in theory but... it doesn't taste very good.  Kind of like wintergreen, bbq potato chips and glue stick.

110.  BROWNIE CARAMEL CREAM ROOT BEER:  Tastes like caramel, cream, and root beer.  While you shouldn't normally judge a book by it's cover, in this case you'd be totally justified.

111.  DOUGIE DOG BUTTERSCOTCH ROOT BEER:  I'm not a huge fan of butterscotch, but this was actually really good.  Just enough butterscotch flavor to sweeten it up and set it apart from a normal root beer, and a really good, lightly spiced root beer flavor underneath.

112.  BEGLEY'S AND BILL' S:  boysenberry, leather, and aspirin.

113.  HIPPO SIZE:  Dark and sweet, like spelunking in a cave of brown sugar.  With a molasses rope.  And the cave has mint bats but you're not scared of them because you're Mintbatman.

114.  CICERO BEVERAGE COMPANY SALTED CARAMEL: You may think this root beer would taste like salted caramel.  And you'd be right.  The end.  And on a side note, this Salted Everything trend has got to stop.  Who wants to drink salty root beer?  Gross.  No.

115.  OZARK MOUNTAIN BOTTLEWORKS:  Crest toothpaste and sugar.

116.  O-SO BUTTERSCOTCH:  Butterscotch- check.  Root beer- check.  Tequila- check?

117.  ST. JOHN BREWERS VIRGIN ISLANDS ROOT BEER:  More sweet than spicy, more watery than creamy, more average than above average.

118.  FEST PECAN ROOT BEER:  Tastes kind of like there was this random, leftover flavor in the flavor factory that tasted kindof like root beer and possibly a little bit like a pecan, maybe, and the flavor elves were like "What do we do with this one?"  And then the other flavor elf was like "I don't know, let's add it to sugar water and sell it."  So they did.  And I bought it.  Once.

119.  JOBY JOE'S:  If you told me this was peach flavored sparkling water, I would wish it tasted a little more like peach but I wouldn't question whether or not it was actually root beer and that you were really just a silly prankster person.

120.  ROCKY MOUNTAIN?  I noticed that this bottle didn't say that it had beet sugar so I thought I'd try it again.  It was just as bad as the first time.

121.  SPRECHER HONEY ROOT BEER:  As a small child, you watch Winnie the Pooh eating fist-fulls of honey, and you imagine that it's the most bliss-inducing snack that ever existed.  Then one day, as a bigger child, you somehow gain access to a large amount of honey, and you decide that the time has come to Winnie-The-Pooh that business.  And when you do, you are introduced a sweetness so sharp that it numbs your tongue and burns your throat and most of your esophagus.  You curse all bees and Walt Disney.  And you wonder how a thing that seemed so good in your imagination could be so, so bad in reality.  Then you remember that Tigger also ate a fist-full of honey, and he had a similar reaction- something to the tune of "BLEGHHH.  Tiggers do not like that icky, sticky stuff."  Sprecher Honey Root Beer is not that bad, but I have to admit, I felt more like Tigger than Pooh when I drank it.

122. NEW YORK SELTZER ROOT BEER:  I knew going into this that it would end up being a "root beer flavored thing", as opposed to a "root beer made by a thing", but I figured I'd do it anyway.  For the record, I was right.  Tastes like seltzer water with root beer flavoring in it.  Moving on!

123.  INDIAN WELLS SPECIAL RESERVE:  Do you like eating black licorice?  Do you like DRINKING black licorice?

124.  DAD-GUM-IT BUTTERSCOTCH ROOT BEER:  At the top of the waterslide you had a wide-mouthed cup full of generic cola.  And at the bottom of the waterslide, you ended up with this.

125.  O-ZELL ROOT BEER FLOAT:  You know when you're downtown and you walk past a bar, and even if you don't see that it's a bar, you smell it and you just know?  It's a specific stank created by layers and layers of yeast and vomit and bleach.  Okay, now, imagine that you walk past a bar that serves nothing but lemon drop martinis.  Got it?  Now bottle that smell and call it O-Zell Root Beer Float.

December 31, 2013

My son hiccups more than I do.

My son inherited my overactive diaphragm.  
Hopefully he doesn't end up with my lazy eye too. 

September 9, 2013

Attack of the Ceiling Boob!!! ...or... Congratulations on purchasing your first DEAL WITH THIS!!!!

Last week we were getting ready for bed and we discovered the ceiling had grown a boob.  This was concerning.  Turns out that somehow a clever clog in the bathroom drain had figured out how to defy physics and cause a flood in our attic.  How does this happen?  I'm still not quite sure.  But because of it I now know a lot more about about air conditioning condensation drip lines.  And knowing is half the battle.

The clog was actually a blessing in disguise because it not only lead to my extensive condensation drain knowledge, but also the discovery that the condensation drain wasn't only overflowing through the access hole, but it was also leaking out of a very large crack in the pipe.  So had the clog not caused the overflowage, it would have just dripped continuously all summer long, and we'd be swimming in mold by Thanksgiving.  Happy Hazmat Christmas!

Figure 1.  The Ceiling Boob
This is what happens when water soaks through fiberglass and drywall and stretches out layers of paint on your ceiling.  It turned out to be only about half full once I punctured it.

 Figure 2.  Portrait of a home owner
 This is me after spending about twenty minutes in the attic trying to figure out what exactly was going on up there.  No, I didn't wet my pants, that's sweat.

As of today, the AC is fixed, but now there's a giant whole in the ceiling that will need to be repaired before we feel comfortable using the baby's room as a baby's room.  Until then it will remain a mysterious extra door with a tarp under it.

January 12, 2013

One Hundred Root Beers!

Some people collect baseball cards.  Some people collect ex-girlfriends.  
I collect gourmet root beer.

I've mentioned this before here almost exactly a year ago, and I'm excited to announce that I have now tasted one hundred gourmet root beers and recorded my thoughts on each for the benefit of all mankind.
You're welcome.

So here are my findings on root beers 76 to 100.  Special thanks go out to Rocket Fizz in San Luis Obispo, which allowed me to knock off a baker's dozen in one trip, and my friend Ryan who flew all the way to a brewery Colorado JUST to get me my one-hundredth root beer (and no other reason, right Ryan?)

76.  CRATER LAKE: Fruity and Flat

77.  DOROTHY'S ISLE OF PINES:  I don't know if it's just the name playing with my taste buds, but this one actually tastes like pine.
78.  CAPONE FAMILY SECRET:  Pretty straightforward, root beer-tasting root beer.  Except for the sawdust.  Is that the secret?
79.  HOSMER MOUNTAIN SARSAPARILLA ROOT BEER:  Say cough syrup was a woman.  Now say you fell in love with that woman and all of the sudden cough syrup didnt have quite the same connotation.  Now say that that woman had a sister and that sister had a lovechild with brown sugar.  That child is this root beer.
80.  GOOSE ISLAND:  Nine parts marshmallows one part vodka.
81.  FIREMAN'S BREW:  Burnt brown sugar and cinammon Mr. Sketch marker.
82.  POLAR CLASSICS:  Peacefully sweet and creamy.
83.  MERCURY BREWING CO.:  Has a slightly sour, limey kind of flavor.  Like a root beer margarita.
84.  ROCKET FIZZ ROOT BEER FLOAT:  There's a very definite "vanilla" flavor, but the problem is that it's "vanilla flavor" flavor.  Tastes like a root beer trying to taste like a root beer float, which it is.  I'd much rather just put actual icecream in my root beer.
85.  LION BREWERY:  This root beer is decent and dependable, capable of succeeding in any task if only it were memorable enough for you to ask it.  In high school it was not the president of the chess club but it didn't start fights after school either.  It is the boy next door that you never really had a thing for in school, and when you see him at the reunion you say, "Wow, he looks great.  Good for him!" and then you continue the conversation with the girl from Econ, hoping you'll remember her name before something awkward happens.  By the way, in this scenerio, you were a girl next door but not THE girl next door.  You weren't a band geek in high school, nor were you a cheerleader, although you were on the color guard your freshman year.  You took three years of French and got straight A's but you hardly remember any of it now, the same way you don't remember the name of good ol' what's her face from Econ.

86.  BAUMEISTER:  Sugary, doesn't taste like berries... Or does it?

87.  SIMPSON SPRING:  This is a MAN'S root beer.  By that, of course, I mean it tastes like iron and shaving cream.  (Note: while this root beer honestly does taste like iron and shaving cream, I'm actually very satisfied with the flavor and, understandably, REALLY want pizza right now.  Touche, Simpson Spring.  Touche.)

88.  READING DRAFT:  Steak Sauce.

89.  OLDE PHILADELPHIA:  "I'm afraid this beverage is just too sweet for me."  -Thomas Jefferson.  ("I've had sweeter."  -Benjamin Franklin)

90.  SPRING GROVE:  Sugar, hope, innocence, spearmint.

91.  JOHNIE RYAN:  Lemon Heads dipped in A1

92.  FROSTOP:  Kinda Fruit Punch-y, kinda Peptobismol-y, kinda... Dill-y...

93.  TOMMYKNOCKER:  Cloves and black licorice.

94.  AVERY'S:  Jacuzzi water.

95.  DEATH VALLEY:  A lot of black licorice, a little bit of burnt toast, and a hint of an unplaceable, plastic/metal/mystery material taste which Jenette has dubbed "Walmart".

96. RED ARROW:  Sugar and spice and everything nice.

97. GRAY'S:  Has a nice, smokey sweetness that's overshadowed by the fact that it tastes watered down.

98.  CARUSO'S LEGACY- ROBUSTO ROOT BEER: Pretty good but not as robust as I would expect from the name.  Maybe "robusto" is Italian for "pleasantly above average".

99.  GUS GROWN-UP SODA- DRY ROOT BEER: So, take some strawberry-orange juice, you know, the Dole kind, and add about a gallon of water to it and stir it with a stick.  Now suck on the stick.

100.  B. STIFF & SONS: Not too sweet, not too spicy.  Perfect blend of innocence, zing and mountain spring water.


I don't have Instagram but if I did it maybe it would look like this.

January 6, 2013

Christmas Time Machine

Okay.  Whew.  I'm ready for December and Christmas and stuff.  Let's do this.
What?  It's January?  Oh.  Dang it.  Well, how about next year you check out some Christmas recordings I was involved with this year.  (This year being last year.)  They're very different sounding albums, the result of different approaches to recording and music making, but they're both pretty great, if you ask me.

The first is with my new friend from my new church.  I played drums on two songs.  One of them sounds like this:

The second is with my old friends from my old church.  I played drums on all of the songs.  One of them sounds like this:

There are many more great songs on both albums so go ahead and download them both and then put them in a folder called "Do Not Open Until After Thanksgiving".

October 28, 2012

Chipotle Fail

Chipotle is great because the burritos taste delicious and they're big enough to split.  
Chipotle is not great because the burrito engineers are sometimes unreliable and prepare pathetic, half-sized wannabe burritos that make you sad.

"SF" normally stands for Steak Fajita, but today it stood for Size Fail.