Beer and Pavement

Clubs

Posted in Life by SM on September 28, 2011

Blogger’s note: This was a post I started a couple of days ago and didn’t have time to finish until right before bed. No links. No footnotes. Take for what it is. The true magic happens in the comments.

I moved to Middle Missouri just over six years ago. We arrived with no friends (other than the two of us), forcing us to start over. At first, we only hung out with co-workers. This was fine, but many of these co-workers (certainly not all), did not share the same interests we had/have. This was cool at first, but eventually, we needed relationships outside of the workplace.

My partner has coped in her way. I helped establish and joined some clubs. There have actually been several organizations I’ve joined in one way or another, but a few are on my agenda at all times.

The Columbia Beer Enthusiasts started up about three years ago in an attempt to improve the craft beer scene here in Columbia. I attended the first tow meetings of the CBE when all we really did was meet at a restaurant with loads of beer which we proceeded to consume. The group has evolved as the scene has done the same. Now, I’m an officer with said club.

The COMO Record Swap happened recently. It was a way for a bunch of us vinyl lovers to get together and swap some records without having a proper record store in town. It’s turned into a nice little community. I’ve even improved my record collection through both subtraction and addition.

The Brew Day Facebook group was an off-shoot of the CBE. Friends set up their all-grain brewing system every Sunday morning and we worship the gods of malt and hops. I’ve made it a couple of times, but this past weekend I participated by brewing my own Simcoe-dependency IPA and I’m hungry for more.

Part of me wants to create a club of partners who have followed their significant others to this god-forsaken place to realize their tenured dreams of glory. However, it doesn’t have to be that organized. I’ll just drink beer with those dudes.

A group I want to establish in the future is one that will plan and establish a Columbia community festival, much like the one I used to enjoy in Columbus, OH. Columbus’ Commfest was a weekend of bands and beer as a large park was shut off in order to allow huge amounts of people to walk barefoot in the grass with mugs of beer as many favorite local bands played. I see a lot of possibility for the same thing here.

So, why all the clubs and organizations? What do clubs say about us?

Upon moving here, I felt a need for community. I waited for it to happen, but often it didn’t. Instead, I’ve had to either start something or join in and be a part of something bigger than myself. Some of that community happens online, but it isn’t as fulfilling as what happens face-to-face. Sure, most of it is meaningless, but it makes the daily grind worth it and erases some worry.

That’s partially how I see this blog. That’s why I created a Facebook page. I want to chat with people who feel the same way I do about beer and music. This is what makes life interesting. These are the details we remember.

This post had a point when I started and I thought there was more to the narrative. However, it’s a simple dedication to the ideas of community and the purpose of clubs to make that happen.

As usual, leave comments and let me know what you think.

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2 Responses

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  1. jeffmenter said, on September 29, 2011 at 8:45 am

    I’ve also followed a partner here (not for a tenure position but rather for a PhD). We both started mostly from scratch which is kind of fun/terrifying. I can totally relate to your story.

    Brian and I were brewing a mid-week batch yesterday—a Kölsch for a party in a few weeks—and as I was smelling the 1 oz. of Willamette that goes in at 30 minutes I thought to myself: the Internet doesn’t smell like this.

    Which is to say: I think the internet has provided some pretty amazing outlets, avenues, and means of getting people together but man, there’s nothing like the sights and sounds and smells and tastes of meat-space/IRL.

    I keep forgetting to ask how the IPA is doing?

    /end random sentences.

    • builderofcoalitions said, on September 29, 2011 at 9:31 am

      Fermenting away, slow and steady. And she smells sooooooooo good. I can’t wait to dry-hop.


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