Archive for May, 2012

Spiritualized at the Theatre of Living Arts (TLA), Philadelphia, May 11, 2012

Posted in Concerts, Good Times with tags on May 19, 2012 by Verge

There’s always a pre-game before a concert. Monika and I split a Sam Adams Belgian Ale, kind of similar to Victory Golden Monkey, a perennial pre-game favorite.

my beautiful bartender before we left for the show.

we wanted more friends to come with us to see Spiritualized, but they are kind of an obscure band. And, it would be hard to live up to the last time we saw them, at Radio City Music Hall with Kreg and Kat.

Of course, we took the Patco into Philly and down to the TLA. There was only one opening band, so we left pretty late. I hate to have to wait through 2 plus hours of crap just to see the main band start at 10:30 at night.

I don’t know how, but we just walked up to the stage, row three, because it wasn’t too crowded, and watched the show from right in front of J.Spaceman.  Great show, sounded amazing.  Monika buddied up to the lighting guy at the end of the night, and scored the set list from him, which is now hanging in my studio.  Been seeing this guy for almost 20 years now…it’s amazing he’s still alive.

The Tenth of May, Two Thousand and Twelve

Posted in Daily Pictures with tags , , on May 11, 2012 by Verge

In the vault at NFL Films, we have this old chart of shows. We hung it up just so visitors could look at a piece of history. It’s really just garbage, but, eh, people seem to think it’s cool.

Since Kodak went out of business, er, I mean declared bankruptcy, we bought a shit ton of film from them just in case Fuji couldn’t keep up with our demand.

Kreg painting his new molding. He’s been remodeling his house in anticipation of guest coming in for his wedding NEXT MONTH!!!

We had to stop by our local “motivation office” for some liquid refreshments.

And, speaking of remodeling…

Flying Dog Tour Toast

Posted in Brewing, Good Times with tags , on May 8, 2012 by Verge

A few months back, the Barley Legal Homebrewers took a day trip to Flying Dog Brewery in Maryland.  Back then, I didn’t have time to post all the pictures, but I wanted to post this toast, given by our gracious tour guide.  Cheers!

Barley Legal Big Brew Day 2012 – National Homebrew Day

Posted in Brewing, Fermenting, Good Times with tags , , on May 8, 2012 by Verge

Cinco de Mayo.  An annual event that is usually spent at a Mexican Restaurant eating crappy, over-cilantroed chips and salsa and swilling Coronas, Dos Equis and Sol while wearing a loud sombrero and fake, “dirty-mexican” mustache.  In New Jersey, that is.

Need I say anything?

Barley Legal Big Brew Day (aka AHA National Homebrew Day).  An annual event held by my Homebrewers club in Maple Shade on National homebrew day where a few hundred friends get together in a parking lot, make beer all day, and serve for free to anyone that shows up delicious, home made beer.

In 2012, the two collided last Saturday under an overcast sky at Iron Hill Restaurant in Maple Shade, NJ.

Monika, Craig and I left early because we had volunteered for the first hour of admissions desk duty…taking donations, selling raffle tickets, selling merchandise and id’ing and wrist banding all the brewers.

There were about 30 different stations where people were brewing and serving. Club members are pretty ambitious, so everyone set right up and started brewing as fast as you can.

We met up with Gina and Scott from my homebrew store and we had planned to do a joint 12 gallon brew of raspberry cream ale. President Obama showed up as well, started out with a beer, ended up having a few cigarettes, lost the suit for a Barley Legal t-shirt and caught a serious buzz.

One of the assistant brewer’s got up super early and got to Iron Hill to run a batch of Mash for us in the morning. This cuts brewing time for brewer’s in half. Basically, it cuts out the first step, which is basically pouring hot water on grains and waiting for two hours. This is us all lined up to get our sweet wort.

This is a member getting his “keggle” filled. That’s a converted half-barrel keg made into a brew kettle. The smell inside a brewery while mashing and sparging is simply delicious. No, it does not smell like beer. It’s not beer yet!

This still isn’t beer, but it’s a start. We had previously steeped grains, oats and rice and drained them into our keggle. Got it up to a roiling boil and stirred in some hops.

propane, huge amount of boiling water, and drinking high alcohol content beer. It’s amazing there aren’t any accidents on Big Brew Day.

well, almost none. Mike, from Isaac Budd Farm, brewed all day, then dropped the glass jug it was in, and lost it all.

Kreg keeping a close watch on our two keggles…er, one keggle.

This brewer was doing all the brewing himself, as opposed to having the brewery help out with the first step. As you can see, it get’s a little more complicated. But, it sure is a lot of fun.

We tried to finish up early so we could hang out, have some food, give out some of our beers and try some of the other brewers’. On tap, we had an American Cream Ale, Russian Imperial Stout, Magic Hat #9 Clone, and my Iron Brewer Contest entry, a Mint Chocolate Chip Dessert beer.

We mingled for a few hours. Craig, Scott and I smoked a few cigars. Then, the raffles started, and we hung out listening to numbers being announced for an hour or so while prizes were awarded. I didn’t win anything, but I didn’t really try, either.

Kreg found someone with a guitar and jammed on that for a while. I think at this point he was really feeling the scene. Afterwards, we helped clean up the site for about an hour before heading home.

My beer is bubbling away in the kitchen as I type.  Should be ready in about two months.  Just in time for Summer.  Hope it turns out well.  After all, we made it while drinking.  If it does, hope you can try a sample with me!  And, if you weren’t there, try to make it out next year.  It’s always a great time with great people.

Special thanks to Beer-Stained Letter for some of the pictures you see above, and for being the un-official photographer of the day.  And a shout out to Happily Hopped, who kept the first picture up on his blog long enough for me to steal it for mine.

Oh, and another special thanks to the officers of the club:  Evan, Cleteor, Ryan and Devin.  They worked hard as hell to make this all happen.

Robyn O’Brien @ TEDx in Austin

Posted in Cinema Reviews, Vegan and Vegetarian Lifestyle with tags , , , , on May 8, 2012 by Verge

Please take a look at this video.  It’s only 18 minutes long, and explains what’s wrong with the food industry in this country today.  I know I’ve posted movies before.  Some of you might not want to see slaughter houses, or sit through 90 minutes of slanted documentaries.

I can understand why.  But this one is very different.

Robyn O’Brien was just like every ordinary American eater and mother.  She wasn’t a health food nut, or a vegan, or an organic non-GM eater, and never thought there was a problem with food in America.  Then something terrible happened which lead her down a path of discovery about the truth of modern food in America.

I highly encourage all of you, but especially the skeptics who think genetically-modified is fine, organic is expensive and un-needed, and kids with allergies are the result of paranoid parents, to watch this video with an open mind.  It doesn’t come from PETA, but instead, someone just like you.

Please visit her webpage to learn more.

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