You’re telling me all I have to do to celebrate today is drink beer? Challenge accepted.
This seems rather random in the land of holiday celebrations. It’s not very specific and it’s also something that a large portion of the world’s population does everyday anyway. Still, you can’t ignore the celebratory nature of beer. Sure you can drink a beer for the pure refreshment of it, but you can also enjoy beer when you are commemorating or bemoaning any of life’s events. I decided that today should be about that kind of celebration. It’s not the beer we are celebrating but rather how beer brings us together.
When I saw this holiday coming, I decided to reach out to my former marketing mates Mike and Patrick to see if they wanted to celebrate. We have been in contact via texting over the last two months and we have made promises here and there to get together, so I figured this was as good of an occasion as any. Surprisingly, it worked out schedulewise for all of us and just like that, the plan was set in motion. We decided to meet up in Framingham, MA which just happened to be the geographical center for all three of us (Mike lives in New Hampshire and Patrick in Connecticut). Patrick suggested the British Beer Company which worked for us (and also an excellent choice for Drink Beer Day.)
We met up at about 5:30. The place is designed to look like an English pub (which it does in that Americanized version way) and it seemed somewhat busy for a Wednesday night. Mike and Patrick had already sat down in a corner booth and it took me a minute to find them (it’s kind of dark in there), but I could hear Patrick’s voice over the din of the crowd which made it easier to locate them. We gave some hearty welcomes to each other and quickly ordered up some beer. The beer menu here is impressive with 33 drafts available and probably another 50 bottles. I ordered a lager that is brewed locally in Framingham, Jack’s Abby Hoponius Union. It was good, although as I explained before, I’m still a Miller High Life/Bud Light guy at heart (sorry, I just am). I stuck with the Jack’s Abby though to keep in the spirit of the day and ended up having three by the end of the night.
It was the first time I had seen these guys since August and the last time I had seen Mike, we were having a beer together to help us wrap our heads around our being “removed from duty” earlier in the day. But these were the two guys that I spent most of my time with when I was working, so getting back to being comfortable around them and laughing with them came with little effort. I thought that the night would bring a lot of commiserating about everything that happened, and there was some (deservedly so), but for the most part, we were just back to laughing and having fun. It was good to be around them. We got the opportunity to discuss some things that we still were trying to understand and we also got to hear about what was happening now in each other’s lives. I realized that if I’m raising glasses, there are few people more fun to hoist a few with then these two.
Later in the night, Patrick had a friend join us who lived nearby in Natick so our chatter broadened to more universal subjects like the debate and television, but we still kept having a a few good laughs. Were it not for a 75 minute ride ahead of us for each of us, we probably could have spent a lot more time together (and had a lot more beer) talking about the good old days, the good old people and having more fun. Still, it was great to see their faces and to celebrate with them. Sometimes when you are having a beer, you look around and you realize you are with the good people in your life and that makes you want to celebrate. That’s what we did tonight and it really made me hope we have more chances to do it again in the future.
I would also like to point out that tonight was also the night that the Boston Red Sox clinched the American League East. As a Yankee fan to the core, that’s a hard sentence for me to write, especially because they celebrated their clinching in Yankee Stadium (as a side note, tonight was a great night for the Yankees who beat the Sox with a Grand Slam in the bottom of the ninth – the Sox just happened to clinch thanks to a Blue Jays loss). But if you watch their celebration, you’ll see the players are pouring champagne everywhere but they are drinking beer in true holiday form. That’s what drinking beer is all about – marking life’s special occasions with a little happiness and fun. Well done Sox.
Next Up: National Coffee Day