Friday, May 11, 2007

Take me out to the ballgame...

Fran and I are making our annual trip up to Coors Field to (hopefully) watch our San Francisco Giants win one against the Colorado Rockies tomorrow. They lost last night. For whatever reason the Rockies seem to have the Giants' number more often then not. We try to attend at least one game a year, and it really will be just one game this time around as the other two road trips the Giants make out here occur during the week.

We have a routine. We get up there around 2pm (the game starts at 6:05PM) and hit two of our most favorite bars - Falling Rock Taphouse and the Breckenridge Brewery. Falling Rock has an insane number of great beer's on tap, plus ratebeer just ranked it (#20 out of 100) as one of the best beer bars IN THE WORLD. And of course Breckenridge has a plethora of yummy beers (Hefe Proper, Oatmeal Stout, oh and SummerBright is pretty tasty on a hot summer day) all its own.

Since I'm talking about beer (and it's making me might thirsty - Thank God It's Friday!)... I found it ironic that the Rockies announced today they've banned draft beer from both the visitor and home dugouts. Here's a stupid question: why in tarnation is beer available inside ANY clubhouse in the first place? An athlete + alcohol usually doesn't equate to a high degree of performance. Hell, get a beer or two in me and I have a problem hitting the urinal cake in the toilet!

Time to relight the odd beer facts and quotes section... here we go!

Odd Beer Fact (story) of the Day: As I've mentioned before, Saint Arnold is the Patron Saint of Brewers, and is legitimately recognized as such by the Catholic Church. I even have a shirt from Saint Arnold Brewing Company down in Texas (thanks to my buddy Steven) saying so. Anywho... here's the story of how ole Arnold (also of Austria) got to be "the man." (thanks to the Beer Church for the info)

Saint Arnold was born to a prominent Austrian family in the year 580. Even back in those days the Austrians were famous for their love of beer, and admired for their brewing prowess. Beer was a proud Austrian tradition that was not wasted on young Arnold.

As a young man, Arnold entered the priesthood and began moving his way up that earliest of all career ladders. At the age of 32, he was given the title Bishop, and in 612 was named "Arnold, Bishop of Metz." (Metz is in France.)

He is said to have spent his life warning peasants about the health hazards of drinking water. Water was not necessarily safe to drink during the dark ages, especially around towns and villages. Nasty stuff. Arnold always had the well-being of his followers close at heart.

Beer, on the other hand, was quite safe. Arnold frequently pointed this out to his congregation. He is credited with having once said, "From man's sweat and God's love, beer came into the world." It goes without saying that the people loved and revered Arnold.

In 627, Saint Arnold retired to a monastery near Remiremont, France, where he died and was buried in 640.

In 641, the citizens of Metz requested that Saint Arnold's body be exhumed and carried from the monastery to the town of Metz for reburial in their local church - The church where Arnold had so frequently preached the virtues of beer. Their request was granted.

It was a long and thirsty journey, especially since they were carrying a dead bishop. As the ceremonial procession passed through the town of Champignuelles, the tired processionals stopped for a rest and went into a tavern for a drink of their favorite beverage - Beer. Much to their dismay, they were informed that there was only one mug of beer left, and that they would have to share it. That mug never ran dry and the thirsty crowd was satisfied.

Every Saint needs a miracle. That's how the Church decides you are a Saint. The story of the miracle mug of beer spread and eventually Arnold was canonized by the Catholic Church for it.

Huh... how about that?

Beer Quote of the Day:
"From man's sweat and God's love... beer came into the world. " - St. Arnold


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