This holiday season, I realized that I over-quote the film, A Christmas Story year-round. “FRA-GEE-LAY, it must be Italian.” Sorry, I couldn’t even control that outburst! The film’s humor is subtle but crisp, not overdone like many seasonal films like 2010’s, Valentine’s Day. Maybe that’s why it has reached a cult film status and is relevant to audiences. I relate the most to Ralphie’s never-ending enthusiasm for that Red Ryder BB gun. People (who haven’t figured me out) think that since I go-on-and-on about awkward instances or events in my life, that I’m a fanatical liar. In reality, I try to avoid lying since I have a hard time remembering the truth. Whenever I attempt to lie, I have to practice speaking smoothly or else I end up blurting out “Okay, I’m lying!”
Recently, my friend and I went to see a dinner theater performance of A Christmas Carol. Not only was the food during each course delicious, but the show was wonderful. The actors didn’t use too many props; the focus of the performance was on the acting and content of the play. It was subtle but crisp. The cider that was served was crisp but I wanted something that didn’t make me feel like Snow White. That evil-queen-tampered-with-apple probably tasted wonderful, but it did poison Snow White after all. It wasn’t just the bill for the cider that poisoned me, the overpowering flavor lingered for so long that it made me wonder how many apples it took to make all of the cider I chugged! I yearned for something more Holiday subtle.
During the final act of the show, one of the actors was delivering a dramatic monologue—having no direct eye contact with anyone in particular. However, when he said the word ugly, he suddenly looked right at me. Even though my reaction was a shocked how-dare-you-look, I wasn’t offended; I’m convinced the look that I responded with was a reflex since I am a theater kid at heart. End scene. After the show as I was paying the cider bill, the actor came up to me and apologized.
“I’m so sorry. I saw your reaction when I delivered that line. It wasn’t directed towards you.”
“Don’t worry about it! I didn’t take any offense…”
I wish I could say that the conversation ended there but of course I had to ramble on and reenact the whole situation…like a one-man-band. Finally my friend jumped in and said, “We’re theater kids. Good job by the way!” She saved him from my incessant babbling and helped me stop the pointless gibberish.
I couldn’t end the conversation on my own. For some reason, I unknowingly get excited about tiny and random situations. Sometimes I need someone to bring me back to earth when weird stuff happens. Anyways, I retold the entire story to my new-ish friend and she gave me the yeah-right-look. After my fellow theater kid pal told her about it at a later time, she realized it was the truth. In conclusion, this type of scenario happens constantly because I suffer from Ralphie’s: “I want an Official Red Ryder Carbine-Action Two-Hundred-Shot Range Model Air Rifle” syndrome…the smallest stories usually can transform into larger, more dramatic productions. It’s hard for me to explain anything in just a few words or stay on topic.
Well what else could I be forgetting? KEVIN! I mean BEER! (I couldn’t resist sticking in a part of a Home Alone reference.)
Anyways, during this festive time of year, I wanted to finally try winter ale. The only seasonal beers that I have tried are the Oktoberfest ones, and I love the way that they make me feel like I’m in Germany surrounded in a hoppy-nirvana of maltyness. So I’ve imagined that a winter ale will take me away to the inside of a snow globe where I can dance around in the snow like Winona Ryder in the movie Edward Scissorhands...which almost came true when I drank a bottle of Red Nose Winter Ale. There are even snowflakes on the label!
This winterful ale is made by Natty Greene’s Brewing Company which is in Greensboro, North Carolina—I do get excited when I find a great beer and discover that it was created in the good ole Tarheel state. The company is proud of their roots, their slogan is “Taste the South” and the name originated from the Revolutionary War’s Major General Nathanael Greene—Greensboro is also named after him! His picture is on the label along with the patriotic thirteen stars of the early American colonies.
The Red Nose winter ale—I finished it in minutes. It was slightly fizzy and malty…if I had a Rudolph nose it would have been blinking the whole time. I couldn’t taste the cinnamon which is part of the ingredients but I experienced the feeling you get when you taste cinnamon—warmth. It’s the same warmth found when you eat a Christmas feast or sip hot cocoa—the marshmallow edition. The flavors are rich and subtle but crisp.
Natty Greene’s Brewing Company has another seasonal beer that I have my eye on, Wildflower Witbier: “A classic Belgian-style white beer spiced with coriander, chamomile and sweet orange peel.” I’m really curious about the chamomile because I am obsessed with that Sleepytime tea. Also, I couldn’t help but notice the Germanic bier spelling—nerd moment attack!
Sorry Coca-Cola, I know Santa works with you, but this winter season, I’m going to be sipping on Red Nose because It’s A Wonderful Life when you have a winterful ale to enjoy!
Author Script…Leila graduated from East Carolina University. She’s a part of the what-do-I-do-now club, but becoming a journalist seems to be the favorite option…who knows with her spontaneous nature. She believes traveling anywhere and everywhere is the best type of adventure. Rambling is her favorite activity, especially about Pink Floyd and penguins. Don’t get her started on her half Egyptian background, she’ll start going on and on about her personal curses of the Nile.