This month’s Session topic (a regular query posed by a chosen member of the beer blogging world) comes from Bryan Roth over at his “This is Why I’m Drunk” site: Finding a beer balance. Or, in short: How do you, the consumer, blogger or whomever, maintain a sane and healthy lifestyle while pursuing an interest in craft beer?
I think the real question at the heart of this month’s topic—if you distill it down—is simply: How do I explore craft beer without becoming a complete, drunken blowhard?
The more you drink, the more you learn. But, it can be easy to forget that quantity and variety are completely different approaches to “more.”
To each their own, for sure. But, over the years I’ve seen enough to know when someone’s on the right path, or the wrong path when it comes to exploring, learning and sharing the beauty of craft beer.
You’re doing it wrong if:
* Special tastings or brand showcases at your local pub turn into an excuse to get drunk.
* When out drinking with friends, you turn into the guy who continues to talk about beer when the conversation’s ventured elsewhere.
* Instead of posting informative contributions on beer rating site forums, you derail topics.
* You can’t remember how you got home from the beer festival yesterday.
* You can’t manage to keep beer in the fridge.
* The longest you’ve been able to cellar a beer is two days.
* You’ve stopped trying to figure out beer.
You’re doing it right if:
* You pregame your beer session with a run, swim, walk, bike—or shots…with a basketball.
* The history, culture or science of beer inspires you to explore topics that have nothing to do with beer.
* You have a responsible understanding of when a session beer should be in your hand, as opposed to a barleywine.
* Your beer conversations are collaborative, not combative or condescending.
* You enjoy learning about the people and process behind your pints.
* Beer is a singular, colorful thread woven into your greater fabric.
* You subscribe to DRAFT.
Some of the best stories in beer have nothing to do with what’s inside the glass. So if you really want to let beer flow through your life with value, balance and ease, take your nose out of the pint once in a while and look around.
How do you balance beer in your life?