Weihenstephaner. That's the name of the beer I'm drinking. Don't ask me to pronounce it...something like "Vie-en-schtefaner." Apparently Weihenstephan is a place in Freising, Germany. This particular libation is a dunkle, Korbinian to be specific, which basically means dark...as in foamy and heavy and solid. And oddly sweet. So here I am drinking a pint (which is how all good beer oughta come, but more on that later) and I'm getting buzzed. Granted, I'm on an empty stomach, and the room is hardly moving, but this is barely half of the pint bottle...then I see that it's no less than 7.4% alcohol by volume. Sure, you say, that ain't much! But for you piss beer drinkers, thats nearly double what a Bud has. Michelob, MGD, Corona...they all have around 4% or so. Of course, my favorite drink, vodka, is 40%...80 proof. Woo. Hoo.
Anyway, moving on. Ever used those #@$%ing self-checkouts in the store? You look at the long lines of people with loaded carts waiting to be waited on, and then you glance over at the nearly deserted 'self-serve' cashiers, then down at your small handbasket with milk, beer and bread. What the hell, you think. Give it a shot. So you saunter on over to these mini-checkouts and set your basket down in a recessed area that looks about perfect for putting your groceries pending unloading.
"REMOVE item from loading area. Unexpected item in loading area."
What the fuck? you think, looking around rapidly for the person who just very loudly addressed you.
"Please REMOVE item from loading area."
Then you happen to look at this dinky little computer screen down at the end of this contraption, which has a picture of a person taking something off of a...what the hell is that? Oh, its one of these things! Hastily, you remove the handbasket, at which point the picture stays onscreen for what seems like an eternity before resetting to a friendly "Welcome to [Store Name Here]" screen. Sheepishly, you glance about again to see if anyone heard, then you press the helpful 'Press Here To Start' button.
"HELLO. Thank you for choosing [again, Store Name Here]. Please place items in loading area."
Very gently, you place your basket in said loading area, treating it like an armed explosive device.
"THANK YOU. Begin by scanning your first item."
You dart your hand into the basket and snatch the bread, then wave it over what you assume is the scanner. After a beep, the machine announces to all present at what seems an asinine volume that you have just purchased Aunt Hattie's 12-Grain Whole Wheat Bread which just happens to be on special for $2.99. Now everybody can know you ain't watchin' those carbs.
As you stand there guiltily, you pass the beer over the scanner, only to hear "PLEASE place previous item in bagging area."
Christ but this thing is loud, you think. You snatch the bread from next to the scanner and fumble about with a bag until you get in in one. Then you re-scan the damn beer.
"PLEASE wait for cashier. PLEASE ready your identification for cashier."
Do I fuckin' look under twenty-one?? The friendly little cashboy, who looks about twelve and covered in zits, comically asks you please-can-I-see-your-drivers-license-sir in a voice straight outta the Simpsons...the nerdy pimply dude. You offer it over, he looks at it for an eternity, maybe running the math in his head, then he hands it back without a word. He ambles over to his kiosk and hits some keys, and then your pal the electronic Satan says, "THANK YOU. Please proceed."
You remember to first PLEASE place the beer in the bag. Then you scan the milk, put that in, and then sit trying to figure out what to press next. You find the 'Finish and Pay' button and stab that, making the weird laptop-like screen ripple.
"DO YOU HAVE ANY COUPONS?" This time it's a chick's voice, even louder than ever.
"No," you say aloud as you pinion the corresponding button.
Heh. Pinion sounds like onion. But only if it was inyun.
There is a moment before you are prompted, thankfully without voice, to place your cash in the cash thingy, and then as you grab your bags..."PLEASE remember your change." Snarling, you reach one-handed and grab up all the money you see and almost forget the reciept, but as it's about a mile long you snag it as you go.
Actually, pinion isn't good word choice...since to pinion is to stab then pin something...
You leave through the automatic doors to the chorus of "THANK YOU, and have a nice day!" Something else about how cool it was you chose that particular store follows you to your car, where you dump your crap and drive the hell home.
...Where you see this mile long piece of paper on the counter. Bored, you read it, only to discover that the fucking machine charged you twice for the bread.
Whoa. This Korbinian is really sweet. This is odd.
So speaking of pints. When you go to a bar, and ask fer, say, a Bud longneck, you typically get the bottle, and maybe a glass or frosted mug on request (unless it's a good bar, in which case you get the frosty bottle next to a frosty mug so you can choose). Now when you order a Guiness, you get a pint glass hand-poured by the barkeep just so, with a big foamy head (again, if it's a good bar) which is how all beer oughta come. Of course, they make Guiness bottles tiny too, but god damn it, a pint is a pint, and that is what beer should be served in.
That is all.
PS: For those of you who drink 40s in a can, you dithguth'd me.
PPS: Gehen Deutsche Bier!