Quarantine Diaries XXXII
Wednesday April 29th 2020
On Wednesday we received the news that Texas is planning to re-open on Friday. For my small and perpetually confused brain, this caused a number of conflicting thoughts and emotions. Obviously, the idea that we could be nearing the beginning of the end would be a major cause for celebration – I absolutely cannot wait to return to the real world! But is it too soon? Will the substantial array of checks and balances put into place be sufficient to keep us safe? This could be the start of us reclaiming our lives, or it could be a pre-emptive step that sets us back further in the long run. I’m totally lost amid the influx of differing data, not to mention the innumerable skewed statistics, pseudo-science and conflicting advice out there, but the one thing I’m confident I know is that I don’t really know anything. And with most businesses here in Austin refraining from opening their doors, not to mention the reluctance of many people to resume regular routines, what will re-opening really mean? And closer to home, will these missives still be Quarantine Diaries once Texas is officially out of quarantine? Just when I thought things couldn’t get any stranger, this feels like a new type of strangeness – the sense that we will all be watching each other, keeping our fingers on the social pulse (as well as our actual pulses), and taking our cues from one another as to how much we begin to actually interact. I will be approaching the Texas Reopening Experiment with caution (and fully masked up), and for now at least, the Quarantine Diaries will continue.
Sierra Nevada Torpedo Extra IPA
The Torpedo has an extremely special place in my heart for a number of reasons. While the legendary Sierra Nevada Pale Ale was my first terrific introduction to the magical world of American craft beer, it was the discovery of the Torpedo that catapulted me into mega-hop-fandom. I had, quite simply, never tasted anything like it, and the very fact that I could just walk into a corner store in New York City and pick up a bottle added to volumes to my burgeoning conclusion that this really was the country I should be living in. This was over a decade ago, but my love for this beer has not, cannot diminish over time. Every sip is intoxicatingly laced with memories, from running riot through the streets of the Lower East Side to lovely JB wooing me with bottles of said hoppy nectar (he always knew the way to my heart), this is such a special beer for me, and however many fancy new-fangled brews I enjoy and get excited about, nothing can ever diminish the power of those first tastes of fist-clenchingly flavoursome West Coast hops. My love affair with Sierra Nevada, their consistent ability to deliver delicious, supremely high-quality beer on an epic scale, the way that they successfully innovate without sacrificing that quality, and their general all-round awesomeness, continues to grow, nurtured by excellent new releases and regular revisits to classics like this. Pure hop joy.