|Vince Capano is a two time winner of the prestigious Quill and Tankard
writing award for humor from the North American Guild of Beer Writers.
Vince's column is now a regular feature of beernexus.com
Check back often for the next installment of
Vince's Adventures in Beerland
| Beer Dreams
by Vince Capano
My friend Arty is a dreamer. To be clear, he’s not the kind that envisions world
peace, low taxes and honest politicians. Arty dreams about beer.
I was sitting next to him at our usual Tuesday watering hole when he told me that in
his last dream he found himself in what had to be the world’s largest beer store.
His joy quickly turned to horror as he looked around. Every bottle on every shelf in
every aisle was crammed with cans of Coors Light with Lime. Of all the places in
all the world his dream had to be here. To make things even more chilling, every 3
minutes and 13 seconds, the infamous Coors Light train barreled by, covering him
with ice and snow. It was a frost brewed nightmare.
Forgetting his dream wasn’t taking place in Switzerland, Arty began screaming for
a St. Bernard rescue dog to bring him a bottle of Dogfish Head 120. Instead, an
exit sign appeared with a burly guard at the door demanding that my craft beer
loving friend chug a bottle of the Coors Light with Lime or forever be marooned in
the store. After several long, frustrating minutes the guard demanded an answer.
“I’m thinking, I’m thinking” said Arty.
When I asked Arty why he just didn’t drink the Coors Light with Lime to get out of
there, he said even in a dream it would taste like water processed downwind of an
artificial flavor factory. Besides, he said, the dream was actually a warning to
move from his apartment on Elm Street.
Arty then confided in me that in one of his other dreams he was driving a tractor
trailer filled with barrels of Chimay, Orval, Westvleteren, Rochfort, Westmalle, and
Achel. For what seemed like hours he studied the truck manifest but to his dismay
no delivery destination was listed. Totally frustrated, he pulled his big rig onto the
most beautiful beach in all of Belgium. Wonder of wonders, this very beach was
hosting a Victoria Secret’s Models’ Convention . Way to dream, Arty!
Arty opens the truck and began to pour free pints for each and every one of the
models. He vaguely recalls wearing a ‘Belgium is for Beer Lovers’ t-shirt , along
with one very big smile.
In my capacity as official dream analyst, my interpretation is that this dream
means Arty really wants to be a Trappist monk. Well, it’s either that or he just
want to drink great beer on a beach with pretty girls.
When I asked some of my other beer brethren if they ever dream about beer I was
surprised to find that Arty was not alone. Kevin, my sports addicted buddy, told
me he was watching Olympic curling late into the night while polishing off a six
pack or two or three when he dozes off. He sees himself sitting at a long bar. The
bar top was made of ice. Kevin shouts for a pint of Anchor Liberty Ale and within
seconds the bartender begins to slide a filled to the brim pint down what now was
over a football field long bar. As the glass begins its journey, each of the 216
people at the bar take out tiny whisk brooms and begin to furiously sweep the ice.
As the glass picks up speed it begins to knock off various other pints that have
popped up out of nowhere. Their evil attempt to block Kevin’s glass fails as the
Anchor Liberty sails on. Bump and bang - there goes a Bud pint, say bye-bye to
that Miller, off flies a Corona, so long Busch Light.
Finally the victorious glass of Liberty begins to slow down and comes to rest just in
front of Kevin. As he takes his first sip, Kevin looks up and is startled by the
bartender who is now standing in front of him. Upon closer inspection Kevin
recognizes the bartender. It’s that icon of the American Revolution, Patrick Henry
himself, proudly wearing a t-shirt with a huge “1776-USA” logo on the front. Mr.
Henry jumps on the bar and shouts “give me Liberty or give me ….. …..Anchor
Steam”. Kevin , a patriot to the end, nods in agreement, finishes his pint, and
says “1776, that’s the spirit”.
Another good buddy of mine, Brian, told me he actually took his online screen
name from a dream he had about beer. Seems Brian was watching the movie
Beer Fest when inexplicably he was now actually in the film, playing, of all people,
himself. I guess that’s what is called type casting. As the plot moves towards its
climatic showdown drinking contest Brian has become a member of the American
team. (Feel free to begin a brief “USA , USA, USA” chant at this point if you’re
reading this article aloud to friends.)
As the American group is ready to take on the burly Germans in the final
confrontation Brian’s teammates suddenly fall ill. He has no choice but to take
each of their places. Brian miraculously keeps pace with opponent after
opponent, glass after glass. The score is tied going into the last challenge, the
It’s come down to Brian vs. Fritz in a chugging contest to end all chugging
contests. In the not too surprising denouement, Brian wins by, what else, a drop.
When asked by reporters how he could defeat such a prodigious drinker like Fritz,
Brian points to the beer and says “it’s because this beer is good”. At that, a
parade of Mummers marches past playing the Ballantine Beer theme song from
1959. Brian looks down at his gold medal and instead of the eight Olympic rings
he sees the classic Ballantine three rings of “purity, body, and flavor”.
You now know why Brian uses the online handle of ‘threeringale”. By the way, in
case that was taken his second choice was MrDasBoot.
Karen, yet another of my beer loving friends, reluctantly admitted that she too had
a “beer about dreams”. Don’t worry, I knew what she meant. In her dream Karen
finds herself bartending when a skeleton walks in. The skeleton immediately
orders a beer and a mop. Seeing no humor in that (she does have a point) Karen
refuses to serve him. Next, two hydrogen atoms walk into her bar. One says, 'I
think I've lost an electron.' The other says 'Are you sure?' The first says, 'Yes, I'm
positive.' Then Descartes walks in and the Karen asks "Would you like a beer?"
Descartes replies "I think not" and POOF, he vanishes. As you can see, Karen is
an intellectual even when she’s sleeping.
Dan, a great colleague and pal, is a bagpipe playing craft beer lover. Now before
we continue please let’s dispense with all those offensive bagpipe jokes your
thinking right now. Oh you know the ones like ‘why do bagpipers march when they
play? To get away from the sound’. And I don’t want you to think about the old
saw of what do you call ten bagpipes at the bottom of the ocean? ‘A start’. Ok,
now that we’ve cleared that up here’s his dream. It seems Dan was playing one of
his favorite tunes Whiskey in the Jar or maybe it was Danny Boy. Then again it
could have been Whisky in Danny Boy. Whatever.
In his dream Dan is playing in celebration of Pennsylvania Beer Day at the
Yuengling Brewery when he suddenly falls into a vat of beer. Members of his beer
club suddenly appear and without regard for their own safety immediately begin
drinking the beer in an attempt to save Dan. It took them nearly 20 minutes, not
counting the time used to visit the men’s room, but Dan lived to drink another day.
All of which proves some dreams do have a happy ending.
As for me, I once dreamed there was the perfect beer. It was filled with the finest
ingredients, perfectly nuanced and complex. I could barely make out the beer’s
label in the distance. As I got closer the clouds began to clear and I saw it. The
nirvana of beer. It was a firkin of cask conditioned Founders Nemesis!!
Ok, none of that is true but you never know when a positive mention like that might
mean a case or two will be coming my way from Founders very soon.
I know, that’s not likely to happen, but I can dream, can’t I?