Monday, November 4, 2013

Guinness Christmas pudding: holiday overindulgence ahead


Depending on your point of view, the first week in November indicates the holidays are either (a) just around the corner and not a moment too soon, or (b) the right time to up your meds to holiday strength. Darkness swirls in earlier, the Halloween season just past re-awakens lurking, evil thoughts towards one's fellow creatures, and the north face of autumn can mean a cold, bitter slope with a fatal crash into the none-too-festive retail season ahead. 

Better get to your doctor right away, then.

Many folks just banish all the misanthropic gloom with the joys of over-indulgence and damn the expense -- and calories too. Just in case you've misplaced your Christmas pudding recipe (and, you thought, just in time for the holidays, too -- lucky you!) your luck's run out; here's the replacement: step-by-step instructions from Barrie Pepper's The Bedside Book of Beer. The collection is a convivial compendium of beer and ale in British literature -- and, of course, English politics. 

The book was originally published by CAMRA, the Campaign for Real Ale, complete with CAMRA application form in the back. Here are cartoons, limericks, poems, histories written by authors high and low and anonymous about the joys and sorrows of bitters, plains and smalls through the ages. No need during the impending months to belabor the point: there's too much to do to just sit and read about beer, when there's a holiday party somewhere we're all going to be late for. Cheers ....

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