A southern girl in the Pacific Northwest

Pliny the Younger!

Today’s cheerful mindset is made possible in part by our projected 60F weather here today! WHAT! I’ll take it, even though it’s only a blip. We’re dropping back down and getting rainy again starting tomorrow. But today I will revel.

The coolest thing ever happened last night – my Great White Whale hunt for beer had a happy resolution!

Russian River Brewing is in California, and every year they make a beer called Pliny the Younger. It is a much-ballyhooed brew, sought-after by beer lovers all over, but especially here on the West coast because it is a very limited brew and it only happens one time per year, and the bars which DO get it only get a keg each. VERY limited supply.

So the beer community of Portland has been going NUTS over it, trying to find it. Bars have long lines to buy tickets – limited to one per person, and one draw per ticket – and then you come back on yet another day to drink the beer along with the other masses of humanity. Places announced they would have a keg and tickets sold out in MINUTES. Craziness!! Wild-eyed fervor, and the kind of obsession that while convivial is still annoying to me. But I was prepared to do it, to jump through hoops because I wanted to taste the Holy Grail of the West Coast Beer Universe.

My buddy Chad mentioned he’d heard somewhere that the Horse Brass, my hands-down favorite bar in Portland, would get a keg. I called and they weren’t aware they were getting one, but I decided to go anyway. So I left work early yesterday and headed over there… and there was no one there. No line out the door, there were plenty of tables… AND yes, they had gotten a keg of it and no, we weren’t limited to just one draw! Which was excellent. I had 2, and a basket of fish and chips, and a pint of something else, and a lot of great conversation. I worked on my outline before friends arrived and the whole thing was so low-key, laid-back, chillaxed… made me love the Horse Brass even more.

And now my hunt is over.

Tonight: outlining. I have gone about it differently this time, using Scrivener in a different way and trying out this new “lots of bad things happening” formula with which to roadmap my way through the project, and so far it is working well. I’m doing a Three Act structure, with each Act broken into three Blocks, and each Block broken into three Chapters. This is tremendously helpful to me, and GOD. Learning how to actually use Scrivener to OUTLINE has made SO MUCH difference!!!!!

So Act 1 is done, and now on to Act 2. I don’t know how people whip this stuff out. It takes me a paaaainfully long time. And there is always the urge to just start writing, but I know for a FACT that at some point I will falter, either in inspiration or resolve or in entertaining myself, and THAT’S the point at which the outline becomes invaluable. So it’s gotta be done, no matter how long it takes.

Tomorrow: bottling St. Brigid and a gathering at Jon’s house. Looking forward to both.


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