Friday, 9 December 2011


Hello and Welcome!

I suppose there is but one place to begin and that is with the oft-overrated, and even more frequently under-appreciated introduction (which will include a statement of scope and purpose).

I know that questions of my identity and purpose are foremost in anyone's mind who might 'wander' in and, well, before I go any further, I personally am pondering who you are and what brings you here.  Let me know in the comments if you come for the beer, Linux, the politics, or the baseball and I will (probably not) attempt to appease you!

What is this blog about?  Well, as an amateur beer aficionado who is somewhat dissatisfied with every organized rating option I can find, I have decided to write about craft beers in one consistent and searchable place for myself and for anyone else who cares to know what I think.

But... though beer will be my focus, I will also write about other interests if the whim strikes me.  Those interests range from left-wing politics and social issues to Linux and Free and Open Source Software, from baseball and the Toronto Blue Jays to life as a new parent and graduate student.

If relevant, I can elaborate on myself and/or my studies, and perhaps even waive anonymity, but my purpose in writing is partially to draw on the anonymity of the web and to make the focus not the author but the text, and therein not as art but as forum.  As long as you don't troll I welcome your engagements!

On the relevant topics, I have this to say by way of introduction:

Though I have always appreciated a good beer, it is only in the past few years that I have learned to truly appreciate quality beers and I am only beginning to both learn my palate and to understand how to express the qualities I am noting in a given beer.  In a way, this blog is my attempt to practice and grow in my appreciation and expression of admiration for the beers I consume.  That said, I have tasted and rated 353 beers and counting.  I have, however, lost 35 pounds this year (with a goal to lose 25 more) through hard exercise, tracking my food consumption (with sparkpeople), and willpower and have to watch my calories and carbs to fit in those few beers every week and they won't always be new or necessitate excessive comment, though I will post what I can when I can!

I began using Linux (or GNU/Linux as you may prefer) in 1998 with Red Hat, though hardware issues and the lack of any friendly assistance led me to go back to Windoze fairly quickly.  I tried Mandrake around 2000 and lasted a bit longer, but despite numerous attempts, a failure to get Evolution to connect to my POP server pushed me away once again, but in 2008 I switched for what I am sure will be for good.  I started with Ubuntu 8.04 (Hardy Heron), but have since moved on to Linux Mint as my main OS, and through virtualization am frequently trying other distros.  I am a big fan of Debian based distros, but also really like Slax, and enjoy lighter-weight desktops (especially Fluxbox and LXDE).  I may or may not write much about Linux, but it has become a part of my identity in a way that a Microsoft or Mac product never could, because of the open-source values that underpin its distribution and community.  I find that to be crucial to my personal values and I have often pondered reviewing distros as I will begin by reviewing beers.  Who knows... I may one day do so here.

I am also a huge baseball fan and, having lived the majority of my life in Toronto, I am a committed Blue Jays fan.  Insofar as this blog is not strictly a baseball blog, I will not comment on every Jays move/game/story (like the much appreciated, and always thoroughly read Bluebird Banter, Tao of Stieb, Jays Prospects, Drunk Jays Fans, and of course Fangraphs).  I will comment on major moves and share my thoughts from time to time on directions.  In fact, this is more likely than Linux posts, even though Linux means more to me than the Jays... and that is saying something!

What are my politics?  They change... and they should.  Politics should not be a rigid commitment to an immutable ideological stance that is divorced from the changing social realities of the world.  That said, however, I am committed to holding the rich accountable for the ways their wealth comes from and through, and exacerbates the marginalization of the poor.  I am on the left and I seek a more egalitarian world.  I find myself moved to occasionally comment on global, Canadian, and American politics most frequently, and this will probably come up from time to time as well, though links are often my way in this regard.

I have some thoughts on beer and baseball which will arise shortly, but for now, that is the intro.  Stay tuned and thanks for 'listening'!

1 comment:

  1. What a variety of interesting topics! I'll keep checking in to see what you're up to!