Sunday, March 1, 2009

Time out

One of the maddening aspects of being unemployed is having too much time on my hands. Some days I spend too much time dicking around and accomplishing nothing. Those days are a disappointment. Other days, I take care of business. And lately I have been reading. A lot.

Too much time and a lot of reading leads to projects. So one idea I have is to learn how to sew properly. Not just putting a button on, but proper hemming and stitching. That way I can tailor my clothes myself. The value in doing this is buying discounted clothes that are slightly ill fitting and tailoring them to fit well. I could save a lot of money this way. Plus, it would be getting into the family tradition; my grandfather was a tailor.

Another money saving project I am working on is brewing my own booze. Now, making booze isn't hard. Yeast 'n stuff, really. And "we" have brewed before, but that was mostly Dawn. I helped put the yeast in!

Now Dawn is really into making cider. And making cider is fun and all, but it is expensive. Honestly, it is cheaper to buy hard cider because you have to buy cider from a cider mill because it can't have preservatives. Preservatives will kill the yeast. Farm fresh cider is expensive. And then there is the honey for extra sugar, which is also expensive.

Another strike against brewing is that wines take a long time to age, so wine is out of the question. Hard liquor is impossible without a still. Dawn won't let me get a still because it might blow up. Come on, I'll leave it in the storage locker; no worries. But no, no still. That leaves beer, and I don't usually drink beer. I've explained that one before, let me know if you want my anti-beer rundown again.

But now I've come back to brewing. Did you know that 150 years ago it was common for some distillers to make Irish whiskey out of oats instead of barley? It was apparently distinctive and smooth, but the practice was abandoned when oats became too expensive. So now I'm thinking that I'd like to try some, but I doubt anyone will ever make it. So maybe I can just make some really strong beer from oats and see if I like that. I liked that Oatmeal stout, so maybe this will be both tasty and cheap. Oats are cheap.

So there you have it. I have plans, man. I am trying to put my time to good use, and save money in the process. The only problem is motivation. It is too easy to procrastinate when you are unemployed with no prospects.

Hard Cider in Utero

This is Nate's carboy, which we will return the next time we drive down to Kentucky, or drive someplace where Nate is (maybe we will all meet up in Chicago one day?). In the mean time, I might as well put it to good use.

Brewing Must 3

We have a big pot. I just need the raw materials: oats, yeast and maybe some sugars. Maybe hops, but probably not.

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