Saturday, April 12, 2014


  1. Finally found a beer from around your way, Mike, that I've been looking forward to trying for a while note.

    21st Amendment Monk's Blood. A dark Belgian brewed with sugar and black mission figs, oak-aged.

    It's stronger than I generally prefer, but it gets two thumbs up. On tap here at Cedar Point Bar & Kitchen in Fishtown.

    72 degrees and sunny right now, and the warm weather beers are making their way back onto tap lists here in Philadelphia.

    Finally! After this just past six-month long winter from hell, the second-snowiest in recorded history, I'm not even gonna complain that it's too soon to reach 83 degrees tomorrow, which is what they're calling for. Oh well, it's better than 23!

    We're going back down to the 50s by the end of the week, but it won't be long until summer is here to stay for good.

    I'm buying my first air conditioner in eight years in a few weeks. Didn't need one during the five years I spent in Portland and Oakland, and couldn't justify the expenses of one the past two years back in Philly. Now I can finally afford not to swelter from May through October, so I'll spring for it this year. ;)

    1. Jay,

      21st Amendment Monk's Blood? A Dark Belgian brewed with sugar and black mission figs, oak-aged, you say??

      I like the way that you think, mister!

      Laurie and I recently checked out a German beer-garden joint on the Harbor between Oakland and Alameda.

      Brotzeit Lokal

      So, it's right on the water with outdoor seating and terrific beer and fabulous franks and just an overall fun and friendly and entirely casual atmosphere. Right up my ally. Y'know, you sit on the deck with friends - yammering nonsense at one another - while watching the flickering lights off the water and half listening to other conversations around you, while people watching.

      I have to tell you, tho, my man, you mention a 30 degree drop in temperature in your parts of the universe over the course of a single week? If that happened around here there would be riots! Y'know, I lived in Phoenix for a couple of years and on the very rare occassion in which it would actually rain people would practically hide quivering in their closets! The streets would flood out and fights would break out in intersections among morons.


      OK, I exaggerate a tad... but only a tad.

      Also, I do want to congratulate you on making a go in Philly. Good for you, Jay. And if it means that you can spend more time with the family that you love then so much the better.

    2. It sucks that I was broke when I was in Oakland, and never got to explore the Bay Area beer scene. I did hit up a couple of brewpubs in Oakland and Berkeley, though, and visited a Gordon Biersch (?) in San Francisco. I'm sure a lot more has popped up in Oakland since I left in 2007, too.

      I still haven't been to Frankford Hall, the Stephen Starr beer garden down in Fishtown. Might hit it up this summer sometime, if I can get in during one of the rare times it isn't crawling with douchebag dude-bros from New Jersey, Center City and the suburbs.

      I lived in Phoenix for nine months in high school. It rained once, and it DID seem downright apocalyptic. Desert rain don't mess around when it does happen.

      Went up to 85 today, and it was probably even a few degrees warmer down in Wilmington, Delaware, where I went for a couple hours this afternoon. Cool little city, but I always forget it's dead on Sundays. Oops. Still a great drive with the windows down and the radio up, though.

      Speaking of 21st Amendment, I bought a couple cans of Hell or High Watermelon at the beer store this afternoon, too. It's good to know summer's back!

      Tomorrow will be warm and sunny, too, but more rain moves in Tuesday, and we'll be back in the 50s for the rest of the week. 30s overnight Tuesday. That's a 50 degree drop in two days!

      As long as the snow's gone, finally, I'm happy though.

      Short work week coming up. I get off for the state holiday (Good Friday) on Friday. I'd honestly prefer to work it for double pay, but I don't have enough seniority to grab a shift. Oh, well, a three-day weekend is nice, too. Especially if it's dry, sunny and back in the 60s!

    3. Laurie and I were at AT&T Park today, all decked out in our gear. Must have been around 70 degrees and sunny as we watched the Giants beat the Rockies in a squeaker in 10. It was a great game, actually, and outfielder Gregor Blanco almost won it in the bottom of the 9th for the Giant's with an in-the-park home run.

      Now that was exciting, tho he was called out at the plate and the fans screamed their bloody heads off.

      Oh, and btw, I see that the guys are dropping in Philly toward the end of July.

      We'll have to make some sort-of creative wager, eh?

    4. Sure thing.

      Philadelphia - where we sweep the pavement, and the Marlins!


      The Milwaukee series doesn't seem so bad now, since they've won nine in a row. If our older guys can stay healthy (and if Chase Utley keeps up his league MVP pace!), if our younger guys continue to progress, if Papelbon can suck slightly less and if Howard can bump up his average a bit, there's no reason we can't compete for the division crown this year. I don't see any dominant NL East team at the moment. And once you're in the playoffs, you've got a shot at it all. One final run with the 2008 core isn't out of the question, if you ask me...