Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Ireland or Bust!

It's time.

This is the last post before I depart for Ireland and I am ready to get my drink on.

I am ready to be spoiled by beautiful sights and wonderful beer.

I am ready for the fact I may never want to drink American Guinness ever again.

I am ready for a 50 degree drop in temperature.

I am ready to stay in castles and tiny local bed and breakfasts.

I am ready and armed with miniature shampoos, soaps, and deodorants.

I am ready with my MAP (see below).

I am NOT ready to drive on the wrong f*$#in side of the road.

Stay tuned for my returning post on May 13th! Drink happy until then.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Pre Vacation Stress

Ireland is less than two weeks away. I've got the sleep medication to knock myself into a coma for the
plane ride. I've got my mini bottles of shampoo and deodorant. The hotels are booked. Everything is good to go. But the one thing you can't put on hold as an Engineer is your work. How do you cope? If you're lucky, you give it to someone else. But in my field it's not that easy. No. Instead you bust your ass before hand to try to catch up, only to come back to a pile of emergencies. Is it worth it? YOU BET.

Of course that means I haven't had much time to do much beer drinking or brewing. I did have a banana bread beer that was awful, and therefore will remain nameless. Not Chelada bad, but bad. So here's a trip around the internet.

The Top 20 Breweries Taking Over America
It gets me all sorts of excited to see how craft beer is taking over America. It makes me wish that I could jump on the bandwagon while it's roaring down the dirt road pulled by way too many oxen that you purchased along with your way to many cases of ammo in Oregon Trail. Regardless, for now all I can do is sit back and drink all the goodness it provides. Some of these breweries on the list I've never remotely heard of, so I assume they're out of my region. I'm really happy to see New Belgium, Sierra Nevada, and Bell's near the top of the list. They all produce some killer beers. I am a little surprised about the number one pick. Many craft beer purists are going to thumb their Beer Snob noses at the first place selection, but read the article and decide to yourself.

Advanced Stainless Steel Growler and Personal Keg
I love me some innovation. There has been an influx of new growlers coming out. But this one takes the cake so far. Not only is it totally sweet looking, comes in different colors, and is engravaeble; but it also has a system to turn it into it's own little mini-keg. Looks like the project will be moving forward as they've secured 236 thousand dollars of their requested $30k.

Can you turn bad beer into good beer?
Can you use a french press to turn bad beer into good beer? The idea seems sound. You are just going to have to read this one and find out the results. Some praise to Gizmodo for at least loosely following the scientific method.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013


As an engineer it's pretty natural to the stereotype that I'm a bit OCD. Some of the typical things get me like bad grammar, people pronouncing height "heighth," guys who flush while peeing at the urinal than flush again because they timed it poorly (this habit still confuses me).

But then there's somethings that really bother me that are pretty unique. Don't get me started on the
person asking for meat samples at the deli while there's 5 people waiting behind you. The people that walk around with complete disregard for the flow of traffic. Blatantly stupid people (is that too vague?).

That being said, my desk at work is pretty messy for your standard OCD person. I consider myself a lot more relaxed than your typical OCD. But one thing that absolutely drives me crazy is when something computer related all of the sudden stops working. "Operating system not found" will lead to an interrupted day, hours at the computer, and probably loss a a half a night of sleep. PS3 wont connect to the internet? That's another 4 hours. Sound isn't coming on? There goes the weekend.

I had (and am still having) one of those times right now. I went to spend a little time working on my Raspberry Pi Digital Beer Menu on Sunday afternoon, only to find it inoperable. The background is coming up, but I'm not getting anything else. I lost the rest of the afternoon to troubleshooting this problem. I ended with the assumption that I have to start from scratch. This time I'll be making a solid backup of everything that's working RIGHT. It seems to have started after I tried adding the feature to be able to sync the data with the "cloud."

So now I sit, and after I'm done blogging I'll be cruising into the night setting up my SD card so I can start over. I still have my PHP code, just have to set up the basics; which since I know what works and where to go, shouldn't be all that bad.

Did I just rant for an entire post...?

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Hops Coming to the Northeast?

Just got an article from my mom.. Apparently hop farms are attempting to come to where I was born and raised in the Hudson Valley, New York...

This is an interesting proposition if you ask me. Don't get me wrong, I think that's absolutely
fantastic. But so many hops come from just a few regions, Pacific Northwest, England, and Germany. Mainly because they have just the right mixture of humidity, porous soil, cold winters, warm summers, and daylight. Not saying that New York doesn't have those things, but it seems to me that hops from a new region would be bread as a whole new strain of hops. Hops are known to come from very specific parts of the world. Cascade is an American hop from the northwest, Fuggles from England, Tettnanger from Germany. It makes me wonder what they are planning on growing. Well more power to them!! I hope to hear more information about this production in the near future!

It's amazing how time flies. Soon I will have time to brew again, but between work and coaching track things have been crazy. What little  time I get I spend relaxing from the hectic week with my wife. Soon though it all comes to a head with my Ireland trip at the end of April. Afterwards my coaching is finished. I can start brewing and vaulting myself again. Time to do some things I haven't gotten around to in some time.

Random question. I was checking out my traffic sources on my google analytics. Why are some of my traffic sources from Russian porn sites???