Friday, April 8, 2011

The Horror of Hops! The Unnameable Barley! -or- How Beer Civilized the Planet

Because it's Friday, and Friday at The Cosmicomicon usually means a bloggish offering or two, and it also means beer.  And this week, while I sip something snooty and foreign, I'll be dreaming of something unknowable and alien, which just so happens to be Black IPA from Cthulhu Brewing Co.

Trivia time:  Did you know that beer was invented by humans before bread?  Tis true, according to my history professor in college, and various suitably scholarly articles such as this one.  11,000 years ago, those enterprising Mesopotamians in the Fertile Crescent of modern day Iraq peered into mystic, shamanistic pools to steal a glimpse of their future away from the gods.  There, on the shimmering surface, they saw the fall of Babylon, the rise of Islam, the creation of "ALF," and the two headed monster of Saddam Hussein and American military occupation.  Looking up from these enchanted waters, they paused... then grunted "Fuck THAT!" and decided to get loaded.

Beer Bong, Middle Stone Age Style
The development of beer meant domestication of grain, which meant agriculture, which meant the end of nomadic foraging in favor of human settlement, which meant the rise of fixed location civilization.

Did beer civilize the world?  A loaf of goddamn bread certainly didn't, so you be the judge.
Controversy still rages, debating whether August Derleth saved or ruined this beer

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