If the applicant is young, tell him he’s too young. Old, too old. Fat, too fat. If the applicant then waits for three days without food, shelter, or encouragement he may then enter and begin his training. -“Fight Club”
When it comes to ordering in a bar, or picking up singles at a specialty beer store, we’re pretty adventurous in our selections. But if we’re grabbing a six pack on the way to a party, or to meet up with friends, we tend to reach for one of a handful of brews on our unofficial “approved” list. (To make the exalted list, it must be a beer that we enjoy on the third round as much as the first. We’ll try to compile a complete list of those beers in another post).
But what to do if we see a six-pack of something interesting, yet untried, that catches our fancy? As veteran beer drinkers know, there are ways to get around this problem. Our favorite is the tried-and-true “don’t-ask-don’t-tell party swap.” Using this method, one shows up with a six-pack of something interesting, yet untasted. If not satisfied after the first beer, the beer drinker then simply grabs whatever beer strikes his or her fancy from the refrigerator. The moral basis for this approach is tenuous, but simple: the party-goer whose beer we are swiping is free to take one of ours, as well.
(There are rules. You can’t show up with shitty beer and then swipe good beer from the other guests. It is also bad form to deny, if confronted by the beer’s rightful owner, that you are drinking his or her beer–“Oh, this is yours? I found it stashed behind the salad dressing and assumed it was fare game.” Of course, it is also bad form on the beer-bringer’s part to accuse a fellow party guest of stealing beer. That’s why this is called “don’t ask don’t tell.” If you’re that uptight about your beer you shouldn’t be allowed to socialize with people.)
We mention all this simply to direct your attention to a blog that we like (hat tip: JB) started by a group of coworkers who meet once a month for a beer exchange. Basically, everyone shows up with a six-pack of one beer, and leaves with a six-pack of six different beers. Like most great ideas, this one is simple and easy, requires almost no planning or foresight, and involves beer. Good job, Brew Club.