Forrest Gump: “Life is like a box of chocolates”
Jake Armerding: “Life is like beer”
So, if life is like chocolate and life is like beer, it must be reasoned that chocolate equals beer…
The question now is whether or not you believe Armerding’s take. My question is why wouldn’t you?
Life is like beer.
Like beer, life is an acquired taste. You don’t really start learning how to taste life until you’re out of your twenties, maybe even your thirties. Probably because you’re too busy.
Like beer, life is best enjoyed with other people. While the image of nursing a pint by oneself has a certain attractiveness to it (probably the melodrama), might it also be said that many of life’s greatest, most enjoyable experiences feature both alcohol and good friends?
Beer and life have many different shades and seasons. Corona, crude as it is, goes down real well in August, when you’re really just looking to hydrate, anyway. In the winter, the more substantial brews are your choice — brown ales, dark lagers, porter or stout (itself a kind of porter). I favor Moose Drool, myself. Incidentally, beer is perhaps the only drink that also functions as food. (I don’t mean drinks that used to be food, like smoothies.)
Both can be as vacant, or as profound, as you make them. I spent a solid year feeling sorry for myself about various mistakes and mishaps, and at least another second-guessing everything I did. Those years were a couple of cases of Busch Light. I’ve also had conversations and experiences that brought me wholly out of myself and into another realm, a place I neither recognized nor understood, where all you can do is simply to be there, and be grateful. And those were like the pints of St. Bernardus Tripel I drank in an ancient, raucous tavern on H Street in Washington, D.C., listening to my best friend try to explain what it was like to see his newborn son for the first time.
Life and beer can be boiled down (literally, in the case of the latter) to a few essential ingredients. And each is enhanced by a million subtler shades of flavor: pumpkin, the smell of the ocean, the quality of sunlight, winterberries, ginger, traffic, chocolate, the way a basketball rolls off your fingers.
I suppose you could make all these claims about any number of comestibles — say, bread. But bread isn’t nearly as fun as beer, and who doesn’t want life to be fun?
If I were single, I think I’d become a monk. Then I could get my priorities straight: God, virtue, singing and beer. Plus, I could wear robes all day.