My Fellow Inebriates,

After ripping into our gifts, packing our tummies and killing our brain cells (or “cell,” as my mum refers to my neurological supply), we’re left with a lull in which to contemplate other things besides seasonal shopping mayhem and gluttony.

It’s amazing how much crazy shit happens in a 365-day space. The magnitude-9 earthquake in Japan; Osama bin Laden, Muammar Gadafi, and Kim Jong-il all toast this year; floods and natural disasters; political movements both violent and nonviolent; economic bailouts; scandalous document dumps; surreptitious bomb-grade uranium shipments—how do we make sense of it all?

It’s true that current events generally just confuse me and my little brain cell. So I thought I’d google what the Internet considered most important in 2011.

And check it out—solidly in CBC’s top 10 stories: Angry beaver roams through N.W.T. town.

According to Jason Mercredi, who filmed the animal holding up a main street, “He’s pissed.” Witnesses said the beaver was the size of a dog, zigzagging through people’s lawns and confronting their dogs with a wild, hissing noise.

What the hell is a beaver anyway? These wet, nasty-looking things were the basis of the Canadian fur trade and still grace the back of the five-cent coin. Sexual parlance, explicably or not, happily incorporates the beaver, as do literary magazines, sporting organizations and youth groups.

Basically beavers are not bad things, unless they are romping through your town scaring the pets. Emblematic on a broad spectrum, the beaver represents the ideal dichotomy of wholesomeness/debauchery.

Which leads me to THIRSTY BEAVER AMBER ALE (Tree Brewing). Admittedly it’s been a long time since I had some of this lovely dark amber nectar, but that rampaging beaver reminded me of it.

THIRSTY BEAVER is crisply carbonated, with a nice layer of foam that doesn’t dissipate immediately. Caramel and nut aromas float gently to the nose. The taste is malty with neither excessive sweetness nor bitterness, an easy drinker that quenches thirst but makes you pause to explore its character. While it’s less hoppy than some amber ales, it still asserts itself as a serious beer contender and would be welcome in my fridge again.

And with a classy name like THIRSTY BEAVER, how could such a beer disappoint? No wonder it’s Tree Brewing’s top seller.

With enough THIRSTY BEAVER in me, current events become meaningless, as do New Year’s resolutions. Isn’t that a wonderful way to end the year?

What's your poison? Drop me a line.

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