Sunday, June 17, 2007


It's the beer, stupid. It's one of the jillions of reasons I love living here. I love beer, and I love living in the area that is home to hundreds of microbreweries, all working hard to make the stuff that makes me happy.

Yesterday, I was lucky to partake of about a dozen damn fine brews at the Summer Brewfest where sixty or so of the best brewers around cheerfully dispensed their best.

Among my favorites:

Big Phatty Imperial Red from Water Street Brewing, Port Townsend, WA

Summer Brew from Snoqualmie Falls Brewing Company, Snoqualmie, WA

777 (Trippel 7) from Scuttlebutt Brewing Company, Everett, WA

3 Grid IPA, from Schooner Exact Brewing Co, Seattle, WA

Afterburner IPA from Flyers Restaurant and Brewery, Oak Harbor, WA (although I have an inherent distrust of a joint that bills itself first as a "restaurant," and whose url is

and of course

Imperial IPA from Boundary Bay Brewery and Bistro, Bellingham WA. Simply the best and within walking distance from my house! Life doesn't get much better than that.

Seen on t-shirts:
Ithaca is Gorges
The Liver is Evil and Must be Punished
I get shit-faced drunk. How do you handle stress?
Save the Ales

So thank you, men and women of the microbreweries, for working hard at your craft, for caring so damn much about the beer and about your consumers, and for being out there on a summer weekend so we can have a little fun and drink a lot of outstanding beer!

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Nearly Esaped

I nearly escaped. All day long I waited for them to let down their guard, to fall asleep, or to go off on a walk or drive so I could make a break for it. They didn't move. They seemed content to sit close and read their Bill O'Reilly books.

Finally, in the early afternoon, a couple of heads nodded into naptime and I heard a movie playing downstairs. I perked up as the doorbell rang: a golden opportunity! I ran wide-eyed to the door, opened it cautiously and found two women campaigning for Barack Obama. They smiled widely and handed me a brochure.

"Barack! Barack! Do you know Barack? We love Barack! You must read his books! He's smart! He's articulate! He's the answer! I hate Hilary, but I love Barack!"

"Listen," I said, stepping out onto the porch and pulling the door closed behind me, "I'm surrounded in there and you have to help me."


"Yes, surrounded. By Republicans! They're reading Bill O'Reilly! You gotta get me out of here!"

"Ohhhhhhhh. Republicans." They spoke softly. "What are you going to do?"

"I don't know. Can I join you?"

"Have you read The Audacity of Hope?"

"No. I mean, not yet."

"Oh. Well, then, no, you may not."

"Come on, ladies, please! I'm dying in there!"

"Sorry, really." They backed away and turned toward the stairs. "We'll call you later to see how you're doing," they said as they dashed away.

I looked down at the brochure. Happy Senator waving to the crowd. "I thought you were going to save me." Head hanging, I went back into the house, threw the brochure into the recycle bin, and sighed.

Friday, June 8, 2007

Visit From the In-Laws

Help me.

Someone please get me out of here.

I am a prisoner in my own home.

First they kicked me out of my room. They won't sleep on our new $1400 futon.

Now there's a Bill O'Reilly book on my dining room table.

What's next? A testifying intervention? "Have you accepted Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior, Claire? Huh? HUH???? Are we going to see you in heaven??"

They've talked about zits and shingles and they don't know what wheatgrass is and I am trying to keep from running away for the weekend but I don't know if I'll succeed.