Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Best Place, Beer History Tour (Set 1)

Welcome to the Pabst community! Lots of beer history in Milwaukee.

This impressive building has a 'castle' feel to it.

Another photo of the building outside.

In the main court, a statue of Captain Frederick Pabst welcomes everyone.

This was found inside one of the buildings.
Before we actually tour, we are entertained with some history and a beer.
For those unaware, the "B" stands for Best.
Jacob Best is the founder.

On our way to tour one of the buildings, we are greeted by King Gambrinus, the patron saint of beer. This particular statue is on loan from the Illinois headquarters of Pabst.
But as 'Best Place' owner Jim Haertel reminded us, possession is 9/10 of the law.

Lots of great architecture can be found inside this building. 
Also older Pabst signs and memorabilia.

As we toured some of the common areas, 
we learned Jim intends to turn this into a Beer/Bed/Breakfast. 
Each room containing it's own beer tapper.

As this photo shows, there is a lot of work to be done.

Beyond this point we were forbidden. Not all of the building has been cleared for tour groups.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

I Didn't Have Time

R.a.n.t. of week 10/28/12
I think I've spent enough time in the past few weeks ranting about things I directly have control over. This time, however, I've decided to go on about something I have less control of. As a parent, there comes a time when you have to assign duties or chores to your children. These chores can involve washing the dishes, sweeping the floor, putting the thyme away I accidentally left on the kitchen counter, I think you get the idea. What I hear time and time again when I check to see if the duties are done is....... You guessed it, "I didn't have time". (Okay, I'm done throwing in a 'time' reference for each sentence, well after this one). What annoys me the most about this statement is how inaccurate it really is. What our kids really mean is, "I mismanaged my time". The other day my oldest used this line to explain why his chore wasn't done. It was a reason he gave the second after he paused a youtube video he was watching. I inquired about the video and his response was he "just sat down".

It almost makes me wonder what the inspiration is for all the film and TV shows about time travel. No one is really interested in seeing the past or future, they just want to sit and watch TV all day and still have time to go to work. I half expect when Doctor Who goes off the air, the final episode will be him returning home just as his wife gets back from the grocery store asking if he found time to clean the leaves out of the gutter. To which the Doctor will reply he "didn't have time".

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Muskego Park - Enjoying An Autumn Day

Enjoyed a nice walk in the park on Saturday. Most of the colour in the trees had fallen already so I looked for beauty in other places.

 The carpet of fallen leaves is cool, and fun to walk on. Listen to the crunch as you take each step.

A few leaves are stubborn and hang onto the branches for dear life.
'Autumn Leaf', fall. Do not be afraid.
I will recite some lyrics to capture your beauty.

Looking up to view a few coloured leaves, I found this guy staring at me.

With the coming of the setting sun, the trees lit up in orange radiance.

Okay, so I'm a sucker for a sunset. Just look how it enhances the horizon!

If the sky was orange like this all the time I'd LOVE it. Except it would stop being special.
On second thought, I'd hate if the sky was always this orange.

The day has come to an end. 
The sun is gone, the fun is done.
Thanks for sharing my day with me.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Mind If I Cut In?

R.a.n.t. of week 10/21/12
Word Of The Day
Dance - [dans, dahns] verb,
1. to move in a pattern of steps.
2. to engage in the art of conversation, esp when trying to get to know someone better.
3. to do what one can to be noticed by another.

I think one of the worst things a person can ask another, is if they can "cut-in". It's kind of like saying, "I think you've had enough fun with this individual, it's my turn now." Well, there is one thing that could probably be worse. Your dancing partner could eagrly agree. How is THAT supposed to make a person feel? As you might have guessed, I'm speaking from experience. This literally happened to me just a few months ago. I had a strong urge to deny the request, but my personality wouldn't allow it. I sheepishly agreed and slunk back to my seat. Dancing, for me, especially in a social setting, is not easy to do. But when the music hits, I've been known to get over my fears and cut a rug. This time however, I was already feeling depressed. Typically my choice in dancing partner is slim to none, and I wasn't expecting another any time soon. (Shyness sucks). How I hate people who "cut-in"!

Of course that was a couple of months ago. A recent dance analogy happened this weekend. There I was, once again, trying my utmost to impress the girl. Ever try to dance with someone and they seem distant, not really there? Same thing as this weekend. I can never figure out if it's because I have two left feet, or I'm just not that interesting to dance with. Whatever the case, I tried again later, in a more group setting where everyone was dancing to a much faster song. I'm really not built for that any more, and my shyness was creeping in, but something clicked and I gave it another go. In retrospect, maybe not the best of ideas. I think I somehow tweeked my shoulder because it's not feeling right. The things I do to try and impress the girl. To make matters worse, I later saw her dancing with another guy and she was seemingly, enjoying it. Later when it was time to go, I tried to say goodbye but despite being right there, she seemed unaware of my presence. I guess her conversation, I mean dance, with the other guy was more important. Oh, cripes! Wait! Was I trying to cut in? Have I become what I hate most?

Sunday, October 14, 2012

The Newest Odd Couple

R.a.n.t. of week 10/14/12
If I had to use a TV show to describe my home life, I'd go with the Odd Couple.The ironic thing is I play both parts, though it goes in cycles. First I'm Oscar Madison. Throwing my clothes on the floor, never hitting the hamper, used dishes laying about wherever I've finished with them, kitchen, living room, bedroom, basement, bathroom. Wait, scratch that last one, that just sounds gross. I'm not one of those toilet eaters you know, just trying to be funny. Additionally, mail tends to pile up, mostly just weekly circulars filled with flyers and coupons. I almost let it get away from me, then I suddenly turn into Felix Unger. Walking through the house, shaking my head as I'm putting clothes in the sink and dishes in the hamper. No, scratch that... reverse it. Also I suddenly have the motivation to go through the mail, or throw it away as is usually the case. When I get into my cleaning mode, I almost enjoy it. Generally because I'll have my music with me. No, I'm not whistling while I'm working [for that rant click HERE], I have my Iphone playing. Another interesting similarity, Oscar is a writer, Felix is a photographer, I'm both. And like both, I'm a divorcee. I'm starting to see something here. Maybe I should write a premise for a new version of The Odd Couple and submit it to ABC. I could call it 'The Newest Odd Couple". I can't call it the 'New Odd Couple' because that was already done once before using black actors. The gimmick I'll use for my show, are you ready for this? Instead of having two people, there will be only one but with a split personality. One personality a neat freak, the next a slob. Hmmmm, maybe I better not say any more. I need to get writing, see you next week.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Oktoberfest - 2012

This year I went to Heidelberg Park for Oktoberfest. 
Live music was, of course, German.

Time for the ceremonial 'opening of the keg' is greatly anticipated.

Once the keg is tapped, free beer is provided while it lasts. 
(It doesn't last long).

Enjoying my Oktoberfest - first year, first beer. 
Hey, that almost rhymed!

"Anton" performs with the band for a while.

Dancing is almost mandatory. Funny story about that, just ask.

It wouldn't be a good beer event without food. 
Pork is provided as well as Brats. Gotta have a brat!

Another random shot of people dancing and having a good time.

Next year I plan to have more photos of beer. Wasn't really sure what to expect this year. Now I know for next time.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

It's Just a Job

R.a.n.t. of week 10/07/12
If there is one thing we can almost all agree on, it's jobs are (for the most part) not fun. Essentially they are boring and tedious. Much like the photo to the left illustrates, many jobs suck the life out of us. Of course my friend Ray is the exception. He works at a brewery and LOVES his job. Good for him I say! But for the rest of us, it can be tiresome. The problem is, some people let the job completely get away from them. There is a point where we need to 'buck up' and take the job seriously, despite the unpleasantness of it. Mostly because some jobs are essential, performance can mean the difference between something finely crafted, or complete crap. In some jobs, you actually need to deal with other people. Take a doctor for example. Treating this important job as 'just a job' can mean the difference between removing a patients tonsils or toenails.

As I mentioned last week, my dad took a bit of a tumble and broke his hip. A bored and inattentive doctor may well have inspected my dads lip instead of his hip and determined nothing was wrong. This week, he's out of the hospital and in a rehab centre. Visiting him has reminded me how important it is for the staff to pay attention to the needs of those under their care. For example, just this morning I went to visit my dad. From one of the first rooms I passed, a frail sounding patient was calling out for 'water' as if he hadn't had a drop in a week. Then I passed an elderly lady in a wheelchair trying to get coffee from a reception area. She was obvious a resident because she had a lost look on her face. My step-mother went to offer assistance, with the receptionist sitting close by. Following is a partial transcript of the conversation:
Sue (Step Mom): Are you trying to get coffee?
Resident: I don't know. I like coffee.
Sue: I think you overfilled your cup. Let me help you.
Resident: Thank you.
Sue: What's your name?
Resident: I don't know...... Eugenia.
Sue: Do you take cream or sugar Eugenia?
Resident: I don't know. I like sugar.
Sue: Are you going back to your room?
Resident: I don't know.
Sue: Where is your room?
Resident: I don't know.
Sue: (Asking receptionist) Do you know this resident?
Resident: I came from that direction. (Pointing down the hall).
Receptionist: Yes, her room is over there.
Resident: I can find it, thank you.
She went on her way, so we decided to go on ours and visited with my dad for a bit. The visit went well, but on our way out, from one of the last rooms we passed we heard a frail sounding patient calling out for 'water' as if he hadn't had a drop in a week and 40 minutes.

I'm not certain what the circumstance are for each case, but makes me wonder at times how sincere some of the care workers are that are helping our elderly parents, family or friends in care facilities. I don't work in such a place so it's hard for me to image what these care workers have to deal with on a regular basis. I just hope these residents have family or friends that checks in on them, because the care workers realistically have no emotional bond. I've felt depressed before when I've felt lonely, but to feel lonely or abandoned in this type of situation really makes me think I've got to 'buck up' next time I'm feeling like that. My dad's lucky, he's got three daughters and one son that visit him regularly. His wife visits him daily. He's also getting many calls, cards and visits from a plethora of friends. (Yes, I know what a plethora is). Do you know someone in a care facility? Has it been awhile since you've visited? Maybe now would be a good time to schedule a visit. Bring them some joy, bring them some love, bring them some water.