There was a time when Jen and I could organize, prepare for, and host a parade party for 100+ people on our own. It was several days’ worth of preparation, purchasing and manual labor. By the time the last float passed the house and people were picking up their chairs to return to the backyard, we were tired but usually had enough gas in the tank to power through until the sun went down, and at that point we closed things down to relax. We’d be tired and dirty and still a little tipsy but we could drag stuff back inside and then pass out to the sound of the Catonsville fireworks going off over the hill.
These days, I’m good until maybe an hour after the end of the parade, and then it’s go the fuck home o’clock. We hosted our sister and brother-in-law and their kids yesterday—cooking nothing crazy, just some burgers and dogs, guacamole and coleslaw, and drinking some beer—and it damn near wiped me out. Perhaps it’s also the aftermath of the six Coronas I drank through the course of the day, but this Tuesday I am a withered husk of a human being. We did have fun, and it was great to see the family, and the parade was good (although still slightly less engaging than years past) but I’m straight exhausted, and that’s after a good 10 hours’ sleep last night.
As I get older I understand more and more why my uncles all drank Coors Light out on the lake at this age. Heavy beers don’t treat me well. I enjoy the flavor but I can’t handle the headaches they give me these days, so I’m writing them out of my life. I went through the kegerator last week and consolidated a bunch of beer I’d been avoiding into a six-pack container: several heavy chocolate stouts, double IPA’s, a Troegenator, and a coupe of others that all registered over 8.5ABV. About two hours before the parade I ran them next door to my neighbor’s, who has a liver made of cast iron and hosts a party for roughly 30% of Catonsville: surely someone there could put them to better use than I.
That also means I’m going to organize and put the homebrew equipment up for sale in a week or two, as it’s just gathering dust in the basement. It’s a sad situation, but I can’t brew anything that doesn’t give me a headache anymore. I’ve got a couple of go-to commerical beers I enjoy very much, so I’ll continue drinking those and retire the homebrew hobby for good.