Gaudete Means Rejoice!

FullSizeRender 4As the third Sunday of Advent, Gaudete Sunday seems a turning of the corner within the liturgical season. We begin to “Rejoice!” as we approach the Nativity of our Lord.

As a family, we marked the occasion by putting up our Christmas decorations. The Christmas tree will remain festooned only with lights until the 22nd or 23rd when we’ll decorate it with all the ornaments and everything else.

I decorated a little, but most of what I did on Sunday concerned another highly important thing, beer! I managed to brew a big batch (almost 25 gallons) of Religious Liberty back in October. It was ready to keg.IMG_0579

I decided, for fun, and since I’m somewhat lacking in variety this year (it’s been far too busy!) to mix up the dry-hopping.

Religious Liberty is normally all Cascades in the boil, and then also dry-hopped with Cascades. The result is a very “citrusy” pale ale, specifically orange flavors.

I decided to dry-hop two of the five kegs the regular way, but then also make a “Christmas Liberty” version, still dry-hopping with Cascades but also adding an equivalent amount of Simcoes, which are known for having a “piney” or “resinous” aroma.

Finally, since only four kegs fit in my kegerator at once, I decided to “cask” the last keg (which for me, means letting it sit at cellar temperature for 2-3 months to allow it to carbonate naturally).

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I bless and approve Star Trek V a thousand times more than this…..

….effort to destroy a most beloved American cultural treasure. Star Trek with Gene Roddenberry at the helm was perennially hilarious, campy and fun, but it was also intellectual and philosophical. It cannot be completely forgiven that Star Trek was always highly decadent, but without it and the cultural media cravings of the 1960s and 1980s, Star Trek arguably never would have come to exist in the first place.

The best parts of Trek were never the expensive “space battle” scenes with all the special effects. (* see below). No, the best parts were human. Kirk’s brilliant acumen for survival. Spock’s fountain of wisdom. McCoy’s wit as salve on dramatic moments. And their relationship with each other.

None of that survives here. It’s all just contextual for explaining what character performs what action. The actors themselves could be CGI, because they’re mere additional cast members on the roster of virtual superheroes. A franchise such as Star Trek cannot be treated purely as a vehicle for brand expansion and revenue. The result is a rendering of farcical nonsense.

* That’s Star Wars. I like Star Wars too, and it has its place. Specifically, forever at #2, directly beneath Star Trek (pre J.J. Abrams et al.).