Gratis = Free Bier

free beer
Sorry for the poor photo skills. Let’s blame it on my ageing smartphone.

People ask me all the time. Why Germany? Well, the answer has remained the same for the past quarter century: girls and beer. I know. It sounds kinda lame, especially when one considers my age and desk ridden stamina. I suppose the answer should be: beer. Notwithstanding my waistline. After hearing how long I’ve been living in Germania a few other questions arise. “So do you like it there?” I usually respond: “It’s ok.” “So you speak German then?” “Have you seen any castles?” “Is that guy from the second world war still alive?” “How fast can you drive there?” “Do the girls shave their armpits or not?” And one of my favs is: “Do you still use outhouses?” Nomatter. There’s one question asked of me (and it was asked only once) that resonates when I’m questioned at all. “So have you gone native?” Yeah, that question gets under my skin–and the girls do shave. So let’s get back to beer, shall we? One of the things that I really like about Germania is the beer. And I’m not talking bullshit beer like you have in the US these days. There ain’t no micro-breweries here or bullshit IPA distributors. I call them bullshitters because, well, as far as beer drinking goes, you can make the funky flavoured stuff as much as you want but if you can’t make a basic, simple Pilsner that is as bitter as my third wife then you’re not a beer maker. Indeed. The bitterer, the better(er), baby! I mean, come on. Imagine some smart ass rich guy that inherited money and he’s been bored out of his mind his whole life until one day he wakes up and says to himself and the bottle of Bud resting on his belly blocking the view of his wide screen: this beer really sucks. And most American beer does suck, dear worst-reader. But it doesn’t suck because it tastes like coconut or cherry or banana or aged oak or the fucking bar stool. It sucks because it’s made with rice. It sucks because of its ingredients and the fact that the makers don’t really care. It sucks because it’s all snake-oil. And it also sucks because of its cost. Seriously. I can’t believe what Americans pay for beer. The greatest consumer driven society in the world whose fuel is (in part) beer (the other girls) can’t figure out how to price beer. Indeed. America = way over priced everything. But the worst part of it all when I’m in the US (trip coming soon) and weeping when I have to pay so much for a twelve pack of (whatever) krapp beer is that dimwits are out there buying krapp of another kind for even more money. Hence, you’ll only be able to get me into some dimwit micro-brew dump when I’m limp and even more lifeless than I am now. The only thing worse than über-expensive beer is flavoured beer that is social. With that nonsense in mind, I came across something rather fascinating the other day at my local (North Cologne) beer dealer. An entire palette of “Gratis” beer. Gratis means free, baby. Seriously. I even took two. Good luck beer consuming suckers of the world.

Rant on. -tommi

P.S. Free beer isn’t bitter enough.