I haven’t been around here much recently, have I? This post was first written in March, hence the out of date references. I keep sitting down to the computer, idea in head, ready to smash out a Pulitzer quality post. Two hours later I have half a paragraph and I’ve been watching Countryfile so late at night they have the lady signing at the bottom of the screen. I love Countryfile. The other night I learned about why red deer are being culled in Scotland, biodiversity in lowland bogs in the New Forest, and watched a lady get muddy on a bike. It’s hypnotic, and always makes me rethink my sedentary urban lifestyle. Then I remember that I hate being cold and wet, and creepy crawlies give me the wiggins. The countryside is pretty awesome, but probably not for me.
Anyway, here are a bunch of things I tried to write about and failed miserably.
Open It! is a beer bloggers’ event that aims to stop people from hoarding ‘special’ bottles for years waiting for a special occasion, only to find they’ve gone off. Effectively it’s a big piss up. Although I didn’t join in with the bloggers’ dinner I did meet up with them later, and hoo boy did we have a good time. Most of the bottles were imperial stouts and barleywines, as they are the ones that age well. There were a few lambics and gueuzes in there too, and I took along a bought-specially bottle of saison. Not quite keeping with the theme of the event, but I find it impossible to keep beers in my flat longer than a month. Almost all these beers were very strong and worth at least £10, and some were worth several times that. Which means that swigging straight from the bottle and declaring “it tastes like beer!” were both inevitable and completely absurd. By the end of the night I had such palate fatigue all I wanted was a glass of diet coke to calm me down.
Food I ate that was good
There was the peach and redcurrant cobbler, the greengage and cumin frangipan tart, my sister-in-law’s amazing ratatouille, a meal I had at J Baker’s in York, bacon jam, an amazing chocolate mousse birthday cake, the entire Leeds Loves Food festival, and countless other great meals that I did not photograph because I was too busy eating them.
A few months ago there was a bit of a kerfuffle about Louis CK’s tweets about Sarah Palin and his subsequent suitability for a fancy-pants political dinner. I wanted to talk about how as bleeding heart liberals we have to hold our own to the same standards we hold the people we rail againt. If Rush Limbaugh isn’t allowed to make disgusting, sexist and homophobic comments in the name of ‘entertainment’, then beloved comedians like Louis can’t either. In his standup Louis talks about why he uses words like faggot and cunt, then proceeds to call his own infant daughter an asshole. Many times. I’m not going to get in to whether or not he’s funny as that’s personal taste (though, if you don’t think he’s funny you are obviously wrong), but I think it’s important that as part of his set he explains what he means by faggot and cunt, and why he uses them. If you have that context it’s difficult to be offended by what he says, but without it he just sounds like, well, a cunt. Twitter doesn’t provide context, and isn’t just visible to people who paid for a ticket. He was drunk and angry, but that’s not an excuse. He’s incredibly smart and funny and a big supporter of gay rights, but that doesn’t give him a free pass. We might forgive him more easily for a lapse in judgement, but why should anybody else? I hate it as much as anyone else when someone I admire does something dumb, but unless we all keep trying to be better how will we maintain our lovely higher moral ground? I like the higher moral ground thank you very much.
The most sexist alcohol adverts
I probably will do this at some point. Suffice to say most women are not so dumb we need characters on our booze bottles in order to identify them.
Low alcohol wine
I’ll probably rant about this in the future too. It’s not wine! It encourages teenagers to drink! It fosters unhealthy attitudes to alcohol! It’s just a marketing ploy! It tastes fucking hideous! And so on.
Todd Akin and related douchebaggery
What the ever loving fuck? Seriously. My body does not have a way to “shut that whole thing down” when raped any more than a mouse can “shut that whole thing down” when a cat is trying to eat it. American politics horrifies me, both as a woman and a person with a soul. I probably won’t write about this any time soon because it is too emotionally draining, and I am too busy being shocked that we still have to argue about this.
The Dark Knight Rises
Do you need another review of the last Nolan Batman film? Thought not. Other films I’ve seen recently that deserve but do not need a review: Rushmore (I know, I’m a bit late to that one), Amazing Spiderman, Moonrise Kingdom (are you sensing a theme?), the second Sherlock Holmes (so boring I can’t even remember the name of it), The Hunger Games and Showgirls. God, I love Showgirls.
The horror of house hunting
Mr Cute and I are trying to move out of the city centre into the area in which we would like to buy a house in a few years, and it sucks. This post was just going to be a massive whine about how it isn’t fair, and I deserve a nice place to live and why is the rent always so damn high? I will spare you this, though if you know me in ‘real life’ no doubt you’ve already heard it. The ‘why won’t my hair just behave like a normal person’s hair?!’ blog would have been quite similar.
The awesome beer I had this week
A few years ago Duvel Moortgat bought Liefmans and subsequently stopped making Liefmans Frambozen. Which was a shame, because it was a great beer. Guess what we found in the cellar of the shop a few weeks back? Yup, probably one of the last remaining bottles of Frambozen in the country. I know at least one person I could have sold it to and made a nice little profit, but instead I invited a friend over and shared it with him over a dessert of vanilla ice cream with warm blackberry sauce and crushed pistachios. It was brilliant. Dark, barely sweet and that couple of years of aging had given it a depth and complexity I don’t remember in the fresh beer. A great match for pudding but I think it would have gone well with some goats’ cheese too, or even a steak.
So, those are the blogs you could have won. Stay tuned for a tour of Parisian patisseries.