Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween Everybody!

Well here we are the eve of my favorite night of the year. Oh yes, it’s Halloween. Who does not have great stories of Beggar’s Night? Running wild in the streets and grabbing mass amounts of candy from total strangers. Excellent.

How many of us had to take their candy to the local hospital to be x-rayed for razor blades and needles?

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How about that crazy lady who lived in every neighborhood that handed out candy that was covered and cat hair and smelled like cat piss.

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Who can forget such great classics such as throwing eggs at the house whose owner handed out that shit candy? You know the stuff I mean, the ones that looked like Metropolitan ice cream and those marshmallow peanuts. What about that old woman who, despite all the warnings on TV took the time to cook up those home-made goodies that parents wouldn’t let us eat because it may be poisoned?

I remember all that and so much more. “It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown.”, and Christina Smalls dressed like a valley girls tripping in her mother’s heels, giving Seth and I a perfect shot of her underwear. Fuck that was awesome.

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Some day I will tell you all about the time my best friend and his wife came to a Halloween party dressed as Mickey and Mini Mouse. He got so drunk on the “jage” he passed out in the middle of the living room floor with his arms wrapped around a jock-o-lantern filled with jello shots. serial I think you call it.

Tomorrow night my wife and I will be handing out candy and drinking hard apple cider by the firepit. We will be dong our part to make a safe and fun night for the trick-or-treaters.

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It is my honest wish to all of you, have a safe and happy Halloween and look out for one another.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Beer from the Internet

Ugh! Frustration! Catch-22 to the max!

What do I mean? I mean that ordering beer on the internet has got to be frustrating and a major dilemna, at least for me, for this reason: shipping costs! I just tried to order some beers from a website called Liquid Solutions. They offer coffee, tea, but feature BEER!!! They have a nice selection of over 700 beers, which is, to me at least, an impressive number. They are, of course, missing the one heavy hitter I am dying to get, which is anything from Three Floyds, as well as Goose Island, but I am not surprised at things like that. I have been dying to try Russian River's Pliny the Elder, but, of course, with my luck, it is out of stock! So I went to order a few beers I can't find here by me in New Jersey, including the Russian River Damnation and the Rogue XS Old Crustacean. I never like to go crazy when trying an unknown site, so I decided to order about 5 bomber bottles of different beers. So far so good....

The cost of the 5 bottles came to be about $41.....not bad....but because of the way they ship the beer, the fucking shipping costs came out to be $38!!!!!! Now, personally, I have a hard time paying as much for shipping as I do for the beer. So the website nicely shows the schemata of the shipping boxes, giving you the friendly reminder that in order to save shipping costs, order more beer. Well...to fill the boxes then runs into costs of well over $100, depending on the beer one buys.

UGH!!!! I want some of these beers, but Mr. Cheap Jew (yes...I am Jewish....) in me doesn't want to pay for all that shipping, and I really don't want to buy a lot of beer from a place I am unfamiliar with yet...maybe I'll just take the plunge...or maybe I will take a visit this weekend to my incredible beer store, the Oak Tree Buy Rite Liquors, which is about an hour's drive, but does have over 900 types of beer, where the shipping will be free, and I will get that free drinking vessel when I spend over $100.00.

Ok...had to rant...hopefully I am not alone with my dilemna...

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Recovering from last night's recording

Last night we recorded our 4th episode of Brain Gravy 2.0, which was our martini episode. BuBBy, Z, Whiskey and myself welcomed our special guest, good friend, and expert martini drinker, Paradox, to the party. And it was a party! Drinking martinis for the better part of 4 hours is probably not something one should do on a regular basis! By the end of the recording session, I think it was safe to say that everyone was pretty well in the bag. But I know I learned a great deal. My forte has more been in the realm of craft beer, and I admit that my knowledge of harder alcohols like gin, vodka, tequila and the like is pretty weak, except that I know what is good, and what I like to drink.

Last night, as I said, was an education for me. I learned a great deal about gin: its history, how it is made, the different types of gin. I learned a great deal about the martini, including its history, shaking vs. stirring, different garnishes and the importance of the olive, vermouth ratios, etc. I myself did a spectrum of bad to good gins, starting with a martini made with Seagrams gin (very bad), moving on to Bombay Sapphire gin (very good) and ending with Hendricks gin (my Hendricks deflowering, and an unbelievable top shelf gin). It made me sad that it took so long to finally try Hendricks; or maybe that was a good thing, because I'd probably be drinking a lot more martinis than I have in the past....

It was a blast recording, but I will get the final evaluation from BuBBy in the near future: things that seem to be going great when a bit under the influence don't always translate in the sober state, but I think last night's content was spot on. We covered so much ground, that I think this will end up being a two part episode. In any case, I just wanted to jot down some thoughts, get them out there, and I do look forward to another Hendricks martini later this evening....and you should too!!!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Brain Gravy 2.0 - Episode 2 Some Stouts

Yes! Episode 2 of Brain Gravy 2.0 is now out!

BuBBy is a little burnt out with work, life, etc and that's
about as creative of a title there will be for now.
The new direction of the podcast is reviews for the Gravy of the Brain and reviews it is. (For those who need a hint as to what we are talking about, its ALCOHOL!!!) In this episode we drink the Founders Breakfast Stout, the Southern Tier Mokah and some Cognac.
Cheers!

Monday, October 19, 2009

The Weekend is Over, Let Vacation Begin!

Hello everybody. It’s your old pal Mr. Whiskey. Had a great  start to my vacation over the weekend. Got a chance to meet up with an Internet buddy and share some beer…thank you Paradox. The most notable beer we shared was Stone Imperial Russian Stout. I have to tell you, that is some smashingly good stuff. I will be grabbing some more this week.

I am settling in and watching the Broncos and the Chargers tonight. On that subject of football. Over the last few years “Monday Night Football” has really struggled with announcers, I honestly think they finally have it right.

Dead_Guy_AleTonight I am enjoying Rogue Dead Guy Ale and thinking about joining my buds for Martini Monday at www.tokbox.com.

I am off work for the week so I plan on doing some sampling and some other fun things. Tomorrow is $6.00 movie day, so I am thinking of checking out “Zombieland”. Or maybe I will just sleep in, get some Chinese food, and watch movies.

Finally, here’s what sucks. My Xbox red-ringed. a couple of weeks ago.  I was planning on getting some game time in while I on vacation but obviously life has other plans for me.

Well, that’s it for me so far gang. Have a great week and remember, Live, love and drink beer.

And now, some link love.

Weekend recap

The end of the weekend is always a sad time for me...especially Sunday nights, because it means that work will be upon us in a very short time. This weekend was not as bad, because I happened to be off today (the price being a fun weekend full of call!), so I will get the same anxiety in a few hours from now that I would normally get yesterday. However, for me, tonight, there is Yankees baseball followed by a pretty good Monday Night Football game (Denver vs. San Diego....not only two good football teams, but cities that are home to some awesome beers as well!). If you didn't know by now, I am a sports junkie, this being my favorite time of year: End of baseball, football in full swing, with hockey and basketball just starting. But, that's for another post.

The weekend was an okay one. We took off a week from recording an episode, because we have the editing on the next episode well in hand by BuBBy, with the third booze episode recorded. In a production meeting last night (ok...it was myself, BuBBy and Z shooting the shit, but future episode concepts were discussed, making it a production meeting as far as I am concerned), what was exciting for me was the fact that we will not just talk about beer, but plan to also talk about other types of alcohol, which, for me, is fantastic, because it means that I will get to educate myself, since what I know about alcohol outside of beer can fit inside a thimble...so the goal for me will be to educate you, our loyal listeners and blog readers (all 7 of you by last count) as I educate myself.

The next episode we tentatively plan to drink and discuss the classic martini, with Mr. Whiskey wanting to do Gibsons. Luckily, we have resident martini and gin experts BuBBy and Z, and maybe we'll throw in a special guest. I was already warned by BuBBy that if I show up with appletinis, I am off the podcast...so I will be going out and buying a bottle of Hendricks sometime this week to supplement my Bombay Sapphire Gin. Other episode concepts are being whiteboarded, and we will all look forward to sharing our future drinking adventures with you!

Until next time...peace and love!!

JH

Friday, October 16, 2009

It's Friday!!!

I don't know about you, but Friday has become my favorite day of the week. Maybe its because it signifies the end of a long work week, with a few days to relax. Maybe its the realization that you don't have to awaken to the sound of an alarm signalling the beginning of another day from hell. Maybe its something else altogether...

For me, it means all of that and more. It means I get to stay up half the night if I want. It means I get to indulge in one of my favorite habits: the drinking of fine craft beers and hanging out with friends. The beauty of the latter is that, to me, we live in this wonderful age where there are no longer any sort of geographical boundaries to friendships anymore. Thanks to the internet, flash technology and clever companies and websites, I get to talk to wonderful friends all over the world in real time. I am in New Jersey, and I get to talk to friends in Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, Wisconsin, Maine, Minnesota, California, Canada...all in real time!!!! It truly is a wonderful thing!

Our technology of choice is a website called Tokbox. It allows video conferencing in real time an allows up to 20 people in a same window chat, although, I have to admit, it does better with 10-12 people at most. The video resolution is darned good, and the audio quality is very clear (except for me...I tend to have some degradation over time, where I start to garble, which has been affectionately named by BuBBy as "Darthing" because it sounds like Darth Vader. Luckily it clears up with a reboot..but I still need to get a new analog to USB adapter..). Tokbox also allows us to share videos and pictures right in the chat window. Its a wonderful technology, and a far cry from our early days on Userplane (the less said the better about Userplane these days...).

For those of you who know us, you also know that we are craft beer fanatics...and, as such, have refocused our podcast to include a great deal about beer and craft beer reviews, although we also like to drink and talk about booze in general; mainly drink...yeah...lots of drinking...

So, as today is Friday, I look forward to later tonite, where I will grab a good craft beer, probably keep my Jagermeister close at hand for a few shots, settle in, and enjoy a wonderful night of hanging out with my friends. Come look us up and join us if the mood so moves you. Cheers!!!!!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

We're back!!!!

After a long hiatus...way too long hiatus, we are BACK and with a vengeance. We have decided to shift the focus of the podcast, and we hope you all like it! After years of geeking amongst ourselves about beer and booze, we decided to change the focus of the podcast to geeking on beer and booze, with our own Brain Gravy style. Expect more than just booze talk, with some of the old Brain Gravy "stuff" thrown in every now and again....

Episode 8 is actually our first beer episode, with episode 9 in the editing room and episode 10 already recorded! (I was going to say taped, which I do often; its just a product of my age....).

We also hope to have companion posts here on the blog, which might involve anything and everything. BuBBy promises a scathing expose on hand sanitizers, and JJJENNNNN threatens to give her view of Frankenberry...

So...fasten your seatbelts...we are back!!! Hope you all enjoy!