Category Archives: Benevolence

Concussions and Comrades.

Head InjuryMy most epic of bungles always seem to be born of these moments of perceived desperation. Or, well, maybe desperation isn’t the right word, but… Moments that urgently need to be seized.

I haven’t surfed in a few weeks, so I’ll push myself twice as hard today. (Or, nearly drown.) The end [of summer] is nigh; That rope swing is THE key to rounding out the season. (Or, to breaking my fingers.)

You know, I hadn’t heard many stories about the perils of rope swings until I began sporting a massive splint on my middle finger while struggling to pull espresso. Then, commiserators appeared with peculiar frequency. “Ah, I once shattered both patellas on a rope swing,” they’d say, as if relieved to finally admit that they harboured hard feelings toward a favorite symbol of youth’s wild abandon.

Skiing, on the other hand, is a pastime fraught with tales of terrific crashes and nature’s fury and the consequences of “one, small misstep.”

Personally, I’d experienced a few mediocre falls on skis. That time I got more air than I could handle and skittered down the Dumont Cup course in spectacular fashion. On my back. That time I forward rolled down Airglow on a powder day. Thankfully, I think my years of gymnastics had finely tuned my chin-tucking instincts and I’d never really bonked my noggin.

Last Saturday, I was in prime carpe diem mode (spring is imminent) when suddenly, I was face down on White Heat. Stupid mistake. I am the queen of clumsy. But I was also in this headspace where it didn’t matter that my legs were tired; I needed to keep skiing. Soon, the snow would be slushy and corny, and then it would be gone.

Long story short, I am writing this between long blinks and purposeful stares at anything that isn’t emitting blue light, or any light, which hurts my brain. My instincts failed me this time.

Concussions are weird. This is my first (of which I’m aware) and hopefully, my last. I am really, really grateful that I always wear a helmet and that this particular folly resulted in a “Grade 1” concussion and nothing more. Despite my renewed appreciation for audiobooks, I have to say, these things still suck.

It’s easy to slip into a boo-hoo-I’m-all-by-myself mindset when doctors are saying things like, “Can someone drive you?” and “It’s better if someone’s there while you’re sleeping.” And the responses are “No,” and “Who?” respectively. I will not be complaining today, however.

Last Saturday night, I declined my friends’ offer to sleep in their guest room; I kind of just wanted to be home. But admittedly, I’d heard way too many “don’t go to sleep with a concussion” warnings not to be wary of shuteye. So, um, what I’m about to disclose may make me sound paranoid, but I asked my West Coast friend to call and wake me up before she went to sleep (2 a.m. my time). And another friend to call me when she woke up to go to work (at 6). They both did. And a couple of people texted me in the morning. I didn’t feel alone. And I realized that in my experience, most situations in which you initially feel completely alone turn out to be the ones that make you feel least alone. Think about it.

P.S. I hear a side effect of concussions is saccharine prose.

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The year is new.

Oh, so it is. I’m usually much more on top of my New Year’s posts, but 2013 was one heck of a year and I wasn’t really sure where to start. Then I thought, I’ll just begin with what’s always closest to my heart: the food. (And drink.) And I’m gonna preemptively put a few dollars in the proverbial jar, because I’m about to sound like a… well, maybe just don’t read this if you’re prone to fits of jealous rage. Right, the food…  Continue reading

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Sap Sap Sappy Thanksgiving 2oThirteen.

This Thanksgiving Eve finds me sitting at an Ikea kitchen table that I shared with an ex, once upon a time. It’s now in my bedroom. In my parents’ house. There’s only one chair. (The other one was lost in a flood.) It’s also from Ikea. This visual gets more depressing with every passing detail. There’s even a candle. Unlit. And an opened box of Entenmann’s “donuts.” And a feline reposing in my lap. Just kidding… about those last two things, anyway.

The floor behind me is, literally, covered with books and laundry and 10 pairs of shoes and five pieces of luggage and 37 pieces of cameras and a statue of Ganesha.

So, at 28, this probably isn’t exactly where most people would want to be. But I am thankful to be here.

This has been one crazy year (so far). I didn’t realise until my mum brought it to my attention, but I set foot on five continents in eight months. That’s, like, the definition of a crazy year. But also the definition of a remarkable year.

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The Yankee Beer List

This is what happens when you don’t eat dinner before a Friday night at BK Brewery. Photo: Ms. Megan Whitney Moore

In my five legal (and absolutely zero illegal) years of beer swilling, I’ve had quite a few American-made concoctions. I feel it would be painful to retroactively track down each and every one of them, so I’m just going to start anew and add as I imbibe/recall. As usual, they’re in vaguely alphabetical order and the newest additions will be in bold. Enjoy…

  1. 16 Mile Brewing Company Harvest Ale
  2. 16 Mile Brewing Company Inlet India Pale Ale
  3. 21st Amendment Brewery Hell or High Watermelon*
  4. Abita Amber
  5. Abita Purple Haze
  6. Allagash Black
  7. Allagash White
  8. Allagash Brewery. Portland, Maine.

    Allagash Brewery. Portland, Maine.

    Allagash Saison

  9. Allagash Dubbel
  10. Allagash Tripel*
  11. Allagash Golden Brett
  12. Allagash Session Brett Ale
  13. Allagash Curieux
  14. Allagash Confluence
  15. Allagash Coolship Cerise (2014)
  16. Allagash Victor
  17. Anchor Brewing Co. Steam Ale
  18. Anchor Brewing Co. Liberty Ale
  19. Anchor Brewing Co. Summer Beer
  20. Anchor Brewing Co. Our Special Ale (Merry Christmas 2012)
  21. Atlantic Brewing Company Bar Harbor Real Ale
  22. Atlantic Brewing Company Bar Harbor Blueberry Ale*
  23. Atlantic Brewing Company New Guy IPA
  24. Atlantic Brewing Company Coal Porter
  25. Ballast Point Big Eye IPA
  26. Bar Harbor Brewing Company Thunder Hole Ale
  27. Baxter Brewing Co. Amber Road Amber Ale*
  28. Baxter Brewing Co. Phantom Punch Winter Stout*
  29. Baxter Brewing Co. Stowaway IPA
  30. Baxter Brewing Co. On The Count of 3 Imperial Hefeweizen (Anniversary Ale)
  31. Baxter Brewing Co. Tarnation California-Style
  32. Baxter Brewing Co. Pamola Xtra Pale Ale
  33. Baxter Brewing Co. Summer Swelter Ale
  34. Baxter Brewing Co. The Daughters of Poseidon Black IPA
  35. Baxter Brewing Co. Maple Pecan Porter
  36. Baxter Brewing Co. Trail Mix Ale
  37. Baxter Brewing Co. Lime XPA
  38. Baxter Brewing Co. Orange Blossom Honey Pale Ale
  39. Bear Republic Brewing Co. Racer 5 IPA
  40. Bissell Brothers Brewing Company The Substance Ale*
  41. Bissell Brothers Brewing Company Baby Genius
  42. Blue Moon Belgian White
  43. Blue Moon Summer Honey Wheat
  44. Blue Moon Harvest Pumpkin Ale
  45. Blue Point Toasted Lager
  46. Blue Point Blueberry Ale
  47. Blue Point Summer Ale
  48. Blue Point Oktoberfest
  49. Blue Point Pumpkin Ale
  50. Blue Point Oatmeal Stout
  51. Blue Point Winter Ale
  52. Boston Beer Company Tenacious Traveler Shandy
  53. Breckenridge After Rakin’ Autumn Ale
  54. Brooklyn Lager
  55. Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout
  56. Brooklyn Brown Ale
  57. Brooklyn Centerfold
  58. Brooklyn East India Pale Ale
  59. Brooklyn Blast!
  60. Brooklyn Winter Ale
  61. Brooklyn Summer Ale
  62. Brooklyn Oktoberfest
  63. Brooklyn/Post Road Pumpkin Ale*
  64. Brooklyn Radius
  65. Brooklyn Gold Standard
  66. Brooklyn Monster
  67. Budweiser
  68. Budweiser American Ale
  69. Bud Light
  70. Carton B.D.G.
  71. Cisco Brewers Winter Shredder
  72. Cisco Brewers Indie Pale Ale
  73. Cisco Brewers Grey Lady*
  74. Coors Original
  75. Coors Light
  76. Dogfish Head Raison D’Etre
  77. Dogfish Head Shelter Pale Ale
  78. Dogfish Head Festina Peche
  79. Dogfish Head Pumpkin Ale
  80. Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA
  81. Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA
  82. DuClaw Brewing Co. Sweet Baby Jesus! Chocolate Peanut Butter Porter*
  83. Dundee India Pale Ale
  84. Earth Eagle Brewings William Wallace Scottish Gruit
  85. Earth Eagle Brewings New England Gangsta’
  86. Fat Tire Amber Ale
  87. Fat Tire Somersault
  88. Flying Fish Belgian Abbey Dubbel
  89. Flying Fish Exit 4
  90. Fort Collins Brewery Major Tom’s Pomegranate Wheat Ale
  91. Foundation Brewing Company Blaze Farmhouse IPA
  92. Founders Brewing Co. All Day IPA
  93. Founders Brewing Co. Porter
  94. Founders Brewing Co. Breakfast Stout
  95. Geary’s Pale Ale
  96. Geary’s Autumn Ale
  97. Geary’s Hampshire Special Ale (HSA)
  98. Geary’s Winter Ale
  99. Geary’s Hudson Red Ale
  100. Geary’s Wee Heavy Scottish Ale
  101. Geary’s / Mac’s Red Ale
  102. Geary’s Summer Ale
  103. Gneiss Brewing Co. Gneiss Weiss
  104. Goose Island Honker’s Ale
  105. Goose Island India Pale Ale
  106. Goose Island Bourbon County Stout
  107. Green Lakes Organic [Amber] Ale
  108. Gritty’s Best Bitter
  109. Gritty’s Halloween Ale
  110. Gritty’s Mt. Abram [Red] Ale
  111. Gritty’s Scottish Ale
  112. Gritty’s Red Claws Ale
  113. Gritty’s Vacationland Summer Ale
  114. Harpoon Ale
  115. Harpoon IPA
  116. Harpoon UFO Hefeweizen
  117. Harpoon Summer Beer
  118. Harpoon Octoberfest
  119. Harpoon Chocolate Stout
  120. Harpoon The Long Thaw White IPA
  121. Harvest Moon Full Moon Pale Ale
  122. Harvest Moon Jimmy D’s Firehouse Red
  123. Harvest Moon Dark Side of the Moon Black IPA
  124. Heartland Red Rooster Ale
  125. Heartland Smiling Pumpkin Ale
  126. Josh’s Maple Brown Sugar Cranberry Xmas Ale
  127. Josh’s Vanilla Porter
  128. Kane Brewing Co. Cloud Cover
  129. Keegan Mothers Milk Stout
  130. Keegan IPA
  131. Keystone Light
  132. Kona Brewing Co. Longboard Island Lager
  133. Kona Brewing Co. Koko Brown Nut Brown Ale
  134. Kona Brewing Co. Pipeline Porter
  135. Lagunitas Brewing Company A Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale
  136. Left Hand Milk Stout*
  137. Leinenkugel’s Honey Weiss
  138. Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy
  139. Leinenkugel’s Berry Weiss
  140. Leinenkugel’s Oktoberfest
  141. Leinenkugel’s Creamy Dark
  142. Leinenkugel’s Snowdrift Vanilla Porter
  143. Lively Brewing Company HESTER
  144. Long Trail Brewing Co. Long Trail Ale
  145. Long Trail Brewing Co. Double Bag
  146. Long Trail Brewing Co. Pumpkin Ale
  147. Long Trail Brewing Co. Summer Ale
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My new favorite badge checker. Okay, the third one I’ve ever liked.

Her: How was it–bad?

Me: No, it was fun, actually!

Her: Good. That’s how it’s supposed to be!

So true. Spread the word.

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