Reviews, Commentary and Opinions on Midwest Craft Beer and Microbreweries

January 23, 2012

Beer Diary:

Litter, Literally

On safari with Eddie Glick as he paws through the Midwest’s roadside garbage.
by Eddie Glick

I like my beer like my women: pale, strong, full-bodied, and extremely bitter.
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Depending on who’s doing the counting, somewhere between 90 and 95 percent of the fermented malt beverages consumed in America are vaguely yellow, watery, mostly tasteless substances produced on an industrial scale that some people like to call “beer.” So it stands to reason that 90 to 95 percent of the “beer”-related garbage in the world would consist of the packaging that once held the aforementioned vaguely yellow, watery, mostly tasteless substance.

That’s not to say, of course, that littering is the sole domain of shit beer drinkers. I’ve seen plenty of carelessly discarded bottles of craft beer during my various wanderings around the Midwest. But the fact of the matter is, even though at best 90 percent of the beer sold in this country is of the macro variety, it sure as shit seems it makes up 99.9 percent of the litter.

During my latest research, also known as “when the Gremlin broke down out in the middle of fucking nowhere and I had to walk three miles along a deserted country road,” I encountered the usual suspects—lots of Bud Light, Miller Lite, and Coors Light cans and bottles, usually in groupings of three or four at a time—but I did come across some rarer species during my safari through the backroads of the Midwest. Below is some photographic evidence of my short, extremely pointless journey.

Above you will see a severely crushed but still recognizable specimen of Cervesa Shittius, commonly known as Old Milwaukee. The irony of Old Mil is that you think that by buying it you’re saving money, but in actuality you end up spending more on toilet paper the following day (sometimes, days). Believe me, I know, since the two weeks or so I was in college I drank about a twelve pack of that shit a day. Then again, I was mooching both the beer and the toilet paper off my roommate, so score one for the Glickster!

Probably as common as the “premium” shit beers, Busch Light is known infamously, at least where I come from, as “Blue Smoothie.” I must admit I’m stumped as to the provenance of this moniker, since the beer is neither blue nor smooth. In fact, I would say it is the exact opposite of smooth, both going in and coming out, no matter which orifice you choose to eject it from.

This photo is of a pristine sample of a can of Natural Light, known among the lay population as Natty Light. It is brewed by Anheuser-Busch InBev as an even cheaper option than Busch Light. Favored among college students with less taste than money, college basketball coaches with a million times more money than brains, and the mouth breathers and nose pickers that apparently road trip up and down this lonesome country road.

Ah, Bud Ice. I sucked down a few of these beasts back when I was even stupider than I am now. Ice beers were developed by the Japanese back in the late ’80s and were intended to literally taste as close to water as possible. They pretty much succeeded. I had thought the Bud version had died out some time in the ’90s, but beer brands apparently have the tenacity of a venereal disease. Once they’re there, you’re pretty much stuck with ’em.

Last but not least, we have an intact can of Busch, the non-diet version of Busch Light. Since all those super shit beers taste the same and pretty much cost the same, I sometimes wonder how people decide which brand to buy. The colors? The name? And I understand everyone has unique tastes, but a fucking silo of Busch? I can only imagine what life choices were made to bring the purchaser—and drinker—of this can of beer to such a state.

Please, people, drink some better beer, and for the love of Jeff, pick up after your damn selves.