My mom had come to visit from Germany, and since square dancing is her life, I decided for both our sanities' sake to take her to the local square dance club. We got to the golf course clubhouse where the dance was supposed to be, but could not see anything even vaguely related to country, western, or dancing. What I did, in fact, see was a large guy with fuzzy baby blue and green hair, a black beard and the loudest clothes I had ever seen in combination sitting on the front step, smoking a clove. Turns out HIS mom had dragged him there, too. My kids were really excited, because as it turned out he worked on the radio morning show we listen to. They swarmed over him like little monkeys, chattering and tugging on him. He seemed like a fairly nice guy, and I felt sorry for him. We danced a few times, but mostly he stayed outside, smoking and reading, trying to escape my little monsters. My mom enjoyed the evening, so she decided she wanted to go every week. He was usually there, and being the two youngest people (by about 20 years) we wound up dancing together. In between times, he read and smoked or we talked and tried to fend off the monkeys. We discovered that we liked the same authors and had the same twisted sense of humor. He had dyed his hair back to black and was turning out to be as nice a guy as he had seemed to begin with, a good friend.

Then one week, he said something completely non-sequitur. I gave him a blank look and said "I see, said the blind man.." and he FINISHED it ".. as he picked up his hammer and saw." I felt like someone had whacked me in the head with a sledgehammer. It had been years since someone had gotten that one. That was the first time I really, truly looked at him and saw him. You know how you can be around someone for a long time, and see them and talk to them without ever truly SEEING them? Well, that is what had been going on. That day, I saw him for the first time.

Somehow, when we were dancing, we started holding hands longer than strictly necessary. When we had to swing he held me a little tighter than strictly necessary. Eventually we started hugging more than absolutely required, too. No problem, right? Right. Except for the part where I'm married, and have been for 7 1/2 years, to a guy who has been in Washington State for the past 2 years. Big problem. Not even a little diminished, for me, by the fact that my husband is a serious asshole who has been verbally abusing me since before we were married (ok, I never claimed to be smart..). The fact remains that of my own free will I promised to love him and forsake all others. To some, maybe no problem, for me yes.

Anyway, one evening we were hugging goodnight, and I looked at him and said "This would be great, except for one big problem." He asked "What problem?" I held up my left ring finger with my wedding ring and he said "Ah.. I wondered when that was going to come up." I told him that I wished it wasn't a problem, but that it is, for me. He told me he understood, wished me a good night and drove off. I collected the kids (my mom had flown back to Germany), drove home and cried. That night, I e-mailed him, explaining how I felt and offering a relationship at the level we had reached, but not going any farther. I did not get an answer.

That weekend was Mother's Day, and to celebrate the kids and I went out to the movies to see Spiderman. The kids wanted me to see if he could come along, so I called and left a message on his voicemail, telling him what we were doing and where we were going. We didn't reach him before the movie, so we went ahead and watched it without him. As we were leaving the mall, we ran into him and his brother coming in - turns out they had planned to see Spiderman that evening too! I let the kids talk me into going and seeing it again (it didn't take too much persuading). We sat next to each other in the theater and held hands. When the movie ended and we were watching the credits, we looked at each other. I leaned over and kissed him on the cheek, and he turned towards me and our lips found each other. We walked to the car, put the kids in their car seats and stood in the parking lot, enfolded in each other's arms.

I was happy, scared, sad, excited... very, very confused. I knew I wanted to be with him, but I couldn't let go of the fact that I had promised to "keep myself only unto him". I didn't want to be another stereotypical Army wife who messes around while her poor husband is gone - an immoral slut sponging off a stalwart defender of his country. I sent Tony a list of reasons he should drop me like a hot potato. I got a very sweet and funny e-mail back going over my points one by one and countering all my arguments. Apparently, I was not going to be allowed to talk my way out of this one. Not that I really wanted to... but low self-esteem makes you sure that you'll be a Bad ThingTM for anyone you're with.

Anyway, one thing led to another, with both of us agreeing that we needed to slow down, but completely incapable of doing so. May 25, 2002 is when we consider our actual anniversary date. We found out that we clicked on almost everything - movies, attitudes, books, sense of humor, my children (ok, that one occasioned some disagreements, but we hashed it out ok)...

Then my husband announced that he was coming to visit... August 9, 2002...

We recovered from that with our relationship intact, even stronger than before. Our relationship deepened and grew; his mom actually started to like me *yay!* and forgive me for taking her son away... she quasi-adopted my kids as grandkids.

Then, in April, my husband came to visitApril 11, 2003 on his way to Korea - his report date was to be April 20, 2003. He found out about Tony, decided to call Social Services and claim that I was neglecting my kids in order to take them away, transport them to Maryland to his sister and then go to Korea. Fortunately, Social Services decided that that wasn't a good plan, and my kids stayed with me.

Although I was terribly upset and hurt at first, this incident gave me the much-needed boot to the rear to get my divorce going - April 21, 2003...

Anyway, here's to another great year, honey... I love you.

I have returned to Everything2 and, well, life itself as my surgery for Crohn's Disease is over and the recovery has begun. I spent nearly two weeks in the hospital, attached to various tubes and such, and now that I am free I wanted to take a moment to share my experiences at let everyone know how I'm doing. Special thanks to NinjaPenguin who passed along a few well-wishes that people had sent her for me and I was very happy to hear from everyone who took the time to /msg me before I left for the hospital.

Surgery went on as planned and I'm expected to make a full recovery in due time. In the meantime I can't do any heavy lifting, bending, and other such activities that require abdominal muscules. As for the surgery itself, my parents came into town the weekend before the procedure. We make the trip to Tampa, FL (surgery was performed at Tampa General Hospital) the day before where, in a hotel, I did the pre-op prep. That consisted of a phosphosoda drink, 3 sets of antibiotic pills, and a suppository... all quite unpleasant. Then Tuesday morning, 5/13/03, we took the shuttlebus from the hotel to the hospital. I checked in, put on the silly gown, took one last look at my un-cut stomach region, and was wheeled to pre-op.... where I was wheeled right back to the waiting room. It seems my doctor had been called to emergency surgery and I would have to wait my turn. About an hour later my time did come, I said my goodbyes, and was returned to the pre-op staging area. An IV tube was installed in my left arm, they checked my vital signs, and before too long I was wheeled into the actual operating room. I was given an initial injection to relax me, and then the full-on sedation occured. The procedure lasted for three hours. I am told that while I was out they removed both stictures plus a new, unknown one (for a total of three), a large bowel obstruction that I did not know about, two fistulas that had also been missed on all the x-rays, and my appendix since it was basically in the line of surgical fire. I am also told that I spent five hours or so in the recovery ward and that my first coherant words afterwards was a request for a private room (which they were able to get for me before the end of the night). I also found a number of tubes installed in me during this time: a tube up the stomach and out my right nostril to dispose of draining, a catheter to remove trips to the bathroom, and a relocated IV to my right arm. Thankfully they did not have to use any abdominal drains in my procedure.

In the first few days after the surgery itself I was urged from bed to walk around and change gown dressings. I wore a robe and slippers during my times out of bed as I walked/shuffled around the room and hallways. Reglan kept down the nausea and Morphine took care of the pain. I had one of those nice pumps that distributed the drug every six minutes with the push of a button. I was also given routine injections of Pepcin to hold off stomach acid. Zofran was also given as needed for additional nausea aid. I was also allowed to moisten my tongue with a wet sponge.

My parents alternated "shifts" in the hospital to make sure that I was given what I was needed, as I was in no condition to walk up to the nurse desk and ask for things. Lucky they were there, too, as we quickly found that some of the nurse staff could be... let us say, less than helpful. I had a vague memory of calling out for pain medication and answers in the recovery room and being ignored by scurrying staff. One of the ditzy nurses in my ward thought it would be funny to draw a detailed face on my wound dressing for some reason. I still cannot explain that one. Another nurse had an ironclad way of doing things and coldly informed me that I would be doing things her way, right down to how I held the television remote control. The rest of the nursing staff were extremely helpful and caring and were quick to help me with any supplies or medication refills that I needed.

By the end of the first week in the hospital I was up and around for brief periods, walking around the floor and alternating my rest from bed to chair. I watched a lot of television. I had brought CDs and books, but I never got around to them - I had no attention span and slept often. My dad left after a week to attend to some business matters back in Nebraska that needed his attention, but thankfully my mom stayed with me the rest of the time to help out and just be there for support. It was also during this period that my IV was moved back to my left arm. I also began sucking on ice cubes and put the sponge aside. The nose tube and catheter had been removed by this time as well. Slight gas pains gave way to some of the worst nausea ever somewhere around Day 7. This was all normal and to be expected, but it didn't make living through it any more easy. Ever had to vomit with a slash in your abdomen? The recoil pains were every bit as painful as they sound and the night seemed to last forever. I cannot be thankful enough that my mom was there to help cool down my fever with cold towels. Thanks, Mom! Within a day though it seemed my bowels had kicked on again and things passed (no pun intended) with much fanfare and hope. I was on track to be released within a day or two.

After a surgical procedure such as mine some bowels need only four days to reawaken. Mine required seven, it seemed. What was initially planned to be only a one week stay in the hospital kept growing longer and longer as my bowels refused to cooperate with what the rest of my body wanted to do. I had done so much walking around the floor that the nurses began admiring my stamina. I grew bored and frustrated quickly. Once my intestines did get with the program I was presented with various "clear" liquids: cranberry juice, Jell-O, and italian ice. I don't know how these qualify as clear liquids as my own clear liquid diets consist of only transparent drinks. But I was advised to go ahead with them and things kept looking up for me.

Finally, on Day 11 (5/23/03), I was told that if I could keep down some actual real honest-to-goodness food then I would be released. Breakfast: dry scrambled eggs. Lunch: Soggy glazed ham slice. This was to be the end of things as I was approved for release just before noon. I was unhooked from the IV and was told to wait around another hour or so for a doctor to bring up my prescription for new pain pills. I took off the gown for the last time and put on my normal street clothes. An hour passed. Then another. And another. My mom began to grow impatient at the delays and anytime I asked about the status of this little piece of paper I was told that the doctor would be up "any minute". Sometime after 4pm dinner arrived: sliced prepackaged turkey. It seemed to me that if I could safely digest the hospital's "safe" food, then my own easy-to-digest cooking would be simple to handle.

It wasn't until 5pm that the doctor arrived, gave me the paper, and then said I was free to go. A wheelchair was brought up and I left my little hospital room with the spectacular view of downtown Tampa. I'm left with painful six inch vertical wound in my abdomen, a decreased appetite (as I'm sure my stomach has shrunk to the size of a golf ball from non-use by this point), a prescription for Percocet and Reglan pills, and several weeks of recovery ahead of me. My mom goes home to Nebraska tomorrow and things are looking good for my recovery. I'm back to eating real food already - lunch today was a ham, chicken, & cheese sandwich, for example - and I'm sure I'll be back at work before I know it.

It's been a long, sometimes painful journey to get this far. Was it all worth it? Well, let me say this: ever since the surgery I have had only pains from the incision itself, not from my intestine. That old bowel pain seems to be gone and the alien that threatened to punch his way through my gut seems to be dead. Hopefully he won't be back.

The first time I saw anybody snort anything was at DEMF.

It was summer and I was there with a friend -- or not with him, as the case may be; we had gotten separated and he was nowhere to be found -- and had just finished extricating myself from a great spot near the center of a concrete bowl that would shortly contain George Clinton. (Not as tough as it might have been considering the solidity of the crowd; 95% of them were pressing inward, not outward, and all it took was turning sideways: I floated to the top.)

My car was by the Ren Cen, about 10 minutes by foot, and I passed a couple other stages, a row of portapotties (one look inside precluded doing anything there that would require contact with the "seat"), a hacky-sack circle on the grass, a booth where I could Take the Pepsi ChallengeTM, a woman handing out free nutritional bars (god, ravers are nice; it must be the ecstacy), a 15-year-old male couple, holding hands and wearing glowy things, and assorted other sights I don't remember a year later. (I went to the bathroom in the Ren Cen. There were empty vodka bottles in the stalls there, too, but the seat looked like it wouldn't give me leprosy.)

The note I left on the car (I probably had trouble finding something to write on considering the number of ridiculously overdesigned rave fliers I brought home with me) said something like "I'm at the black sculpture in the middle." The black sculpture was just that -- a 20-foot-tall monument that from above would look something like @ if the tail of the a looped around once more; a wide, wheelchair-accessible spiral staircase to nowhere.

I found a spot near the top and watched the sun go down on the thinner-but-as-yet-Kevin-less crowd. World-class electronica was being played across the surrounding quarter-mile but high frequencies don't carry well; the only speaker-produced sounds I could hear were a simple, relentless bass throb from the closest stage, and, occasionally, George Clinton's shouts ("Dance, children! Dance!") wafting from the bowl I'd inhabited half an hour before.

After awhile, a girl about my age climbed onto the ledge beside me and took off her backpack, kneeling to face the wall (or rather, the side of the cylander). Brown-blonde hair, good-naturedly attractive face, no overt countercultural marks. She produced a small cylendrical wad of paper and taptaptapped it and out fell white powder onto the reflective black notebook; she crunched whatever it was with a credit card's face and pushed it into a line with its edge, then took out a little pink Thingy and inhaled it, hurredly shoved everything back into her bag, and started to walk away.

"Uh, excuse me? I, uh, think your forgot your card." I picked it up.

"Thanks." She took it. I must have looked shocked. "What do you have to do to find someplace to do a line around here?" she asked, flashing a friendly smile, and was gone.

That was a year ago today; I'd been putting off writing about it.

It's been awhile since I've written a daylog. Nothing really preventing me from doing so, I just never really had anything to write about. That's actually been a good summation for the last three months of my life: "nothing to write home about."

For the better part of three months solid I've been living on one, perhaps two meals a day- shopping myself out as a freelance web designer and having very little success. So far I've gotten one client, who's all paid up, but it's been a month and a half since he's sent me any content to actually complete the work. So that job is still in limbo. The rest of my time was spent at Cafe Coco, working at home with 3D Studio Max, sleeping and looking for the occasional cash-paying odd job to put a little food in my tank and gas in my stomach (yes, I said that right). While the web site I was hired to work on hasn't progressed much, I am happy to report that my 3D modeling skills are much improved. I've begun to work away from modeling and started focusing on texturing and lighting- two very important elements in the 3D arena. I'm getting better.

But creating better-than-average 3D starships doesn't pay the rent, y'know? So I broke down and finally resolved to find a job. But what to do? Farm myself as a 3D modeler? Nope. While showing promise, I'm still not yet skilled enough to merit an actual job as a modeler- my portfolio is still too small and specialised and if I tried to pursue a career in the 3D market now, I'd likely get laughed out of every place I applied to. Web design? Uhm... no. I'm getting burnt out on that, to be honest. No more than absolutely necessary, please. Radio DJ? Been there, done that, no more for me- plus, I only have a non-commercial FCC license and don't have the time or money to get a full FCC license that would allow me to work on the normal airwaves. And I sure as hell didn't want to do anymore movie theater crap- I'm done with that for good. And I would rather starve to death before working alongside teenagers again, so that meant that video stores, fastfood joints, resturants, record stores and any other kind of "dead-end job" was out of the question.

So that left my options a little narrowed. What hadn't I done yet? What sort of employment had I not yet explored? Then it hit me: I wanted some new experiences that were utterly unique. I put on the ol' Thinking Cap and finally came up with an answer.

I am now working as a bouncer at a strip club- Deja Vu, to be precise.

I am 5'10", weigh 140 pounds and have a fairly friendly demeanor. I am, by no means, an intimidating person at first sight. That said, woe be unto the idiot that tries to injure my friends or cause general mayhem in my presence- to such individuals I am patently not a "nice guy." Point in fact, I turn into quite a dangerous person under such circumstances. It has been more than a decade since I've really gotten into a fight. I've had 6 years of Tai Chi training (which is, mostly, a "healing" art that can be used in some unfriendly ways, when pressed), but that was also more than a decade ago. Not to put too fine a point on it, but if you knew me, I would be the last person you'd expect to see working as a bouncer in a strip bar. Nevertheless.......

Let me tell you something: this job is not at all what you might think it is. We do not spend all our time sitting back and ogling the naked chicks who're dancing their tails off. We stroll around almost constantly to make sure that the girls are safe, that their dances are counted accurately (for closing time, so that the "house" doesn't get ripped off) and that the customers behave like civilized people- despite the copious amounts of liquor which gets brought into the joint (BYOB, my friends- we don't sell it... but there's a liquor shop just around the block which does). Strip club bouncers are always on the move.

What's more is that we see so much nudity that we don't even really see it anymore. We're too busy trying to figure out if the girl dancing in that booth who has light brown hair with blonde highlights and a rather spectacular tribal tattoo above her derrier is Bunny or Summer or Michelle or whoever. We're also paying attention to the customer, making sure that he's not letting his hands wander in places where they shouldn't be. Not to mention keeping an eye out for any hands with big black X's on them which might be alcoholic beverages- naughty-naughty, no under-age drinking, please. With all of that grabbing our attention who has the time to take in the scenery??? Just the same, however, even after the second night there, it's gotten to the point to where, big or small, flat or round, short or tall, hot or not, it's just another nekkid girl and that's as far as it goes.

Some folks complain all the time about certain girls at strip clubs- how they are bitches or sluts or skamps... I can't speak for the customers, but I gotta say: the girls treat us bouncers like we're gold. As well they should. Without us, they'd have a hard time. Nuff said.

Tonight, my second night on the job, we kicked out a fat drunk. Got in the way of the servers. Got a little too "friendly" with one of the dancers. Became belligerent. Cussed in the head bouncer's face when he was asked politely to move along. Got summarily bounced. Literally. Fat drunk guys bounce when they get thrown out of an establishment. Not "splat." Not "thud." A little bit of both, though, with a slight "boing" to it. Funny and sad at the same time. The damn fool had the temerity to get up and pretty much ask for more of the same once he was outside. After eating a few mouthfuls of gravel, however, he was convinced to leave peacefully.

During all of this I was inside, counting dances and trying to keep the peace inside (gawkers exist on the freeways, but the true rubber-necker is discovered in a strip bar, where he/she will stop looking at nekkid chicks just to see who was the dumbass). I did not participate in the fun. Didn't want to. Tai Chi is fairly useless on drunk fat people who sway more than they lunge. First rule of combat: know your limitations and do not deviate from them. Deviate from your limits and down that path lies an ass-whuppin'.

Yes, indeed. I have found the right job- a job most guys would love to have. I'm gettin' a whole new world of experiences. But there's a cost.

I've had sex all of once in the last three years. Sad, but true. And here I am, working around beautiful, naked women all night long (8PM-5AM weekend, 7PM-3AM weekdays). I can kiss my libido goodbye. Then there's the whole "idolotry is forbidden unto you" rule that us Baha'is have to be mindful of- I work in a frickin' den of idolotry. I am single, unfettered and strictly adhere to my religious beliefs as much as I am able. This job is going to tax the hell out of my conscience, yes indeed-y.

I just hope that these new experiences will prove useful sometime down the road- perhaps in a story or two. Wish me luck, cuz I'll need it.

I was sitting here reading the news and realized, for all the crap we have to deal with here in the US of A, the neo-fascism and hypocrisy, the flag waving in your face to distract you from the fact that the Bill of Rights is being used by Ashcroft as toilet paper, we still have it pretty damn good. I mean, if you have to live in imperial times, it's much better to live in Italy than Gaul, you know what I mean? (And forget about living in Dacia or Germania.)

At least we are headed towards a Huxlerian dystopia instead of an Orwellian one. If I'm going to have to toe the company line, I'd rather it involve rampant consumerism and mindless entertainment instead of cheap gin and coarse overalls. (Of course, if the thought police get you, you're still pretty fucked, but if you mind your business you should be able to enjoy your 42-inch plasma TV in peace.)

Sure, if you express freedom of opinion you'll get stepped on, but that's how it's always been. America was a bold experiment, and isn't gone yet, but if Sam Adams and Paul Revere were around today, they would have been driven out of business by special interests by now if they had the temerity to speak their minds, no matter how good their beer or silverware were. Ben Franklin would have been hounded out of office by sexual scandal, and Washington would have been cashiered the first time he bucked the best and the brightest in Philadelphia.

There are too many people in this country that forget that the President is not the country, the people are, and he only works for us. They seem to think that to call Bush a frat-boy ex-cokehead alcoholic who owes everything he has to connections and influence is unAmerican. I find it funny when a punk who has never done jack for this country tries to lecture me on patriotism, and I was freezing my ass off on the East German border watching the Soviet Army when he was still jerking off to National Geographic pictorials. When I volunteer again to work for the candidate of my choice, will I be called anti-American because I want Dubya out of office?

But at least in the heartland, we have cable TV and 30-minute pizza delivery. Who cares if 50% of the planet has to get by on $2 a day? Does it matter that 90% of the big fish are gone, and will be extinct soon if we don't do something about it? If the coral reefs die off, will anyone cry for the reduction in biodiversity?

Oops, I gotta go, There's a James Bond Marathon on TNN...

About a month ago, on the occasion of a visit by conform, lawnjart, and icicle, we shared the last bottle of spiced porter from my beer magazine. The cupboard was bare.

The much anticipated and highly necessary Irregular Zymurgy Return of the Chipotle Ale - batch number 03-1

A kitchen is not truly one's own until one cooks in it. Although I have already done a decent amount of cooking in my new kitchen (in the apartment bindlenix and I moved into in February), I had not yet undertaken the brewing of beer. At the encouragement of misuba, I am revisiting the chipotle ale I made last summer. While that ale was golden, I think that this time 'round, I'd like it to have a darker cast, so I've chosen to use some whole grain malted barley roasted to a chocolate finish. Also, I have increased the overall amount of whole grain malt to contribute a more stable head to the ale.

Mid-last year, I helped a friend brew a batch of ale from whole grain barley malt. This was my introduction to the actual process of mashing, in which the enzymes developed by nearly sprouting the grain are encouraged to convert the starches in the grain to sugar. Some 10 pounds of crushed malt is steeped in water and brought to about 190 degrees Fahrenheit (about the point at which it gets uncomfortable to hold your finger in the water), and held there until nearly all the starch is converted (a simple iodine test). All told, this adds an extra three hours or so to the not insignificant amount of time it takes to brew beer, as well as additional pots and buckets, so I don't do it myself.

Prior to my observation of the mashing process, I had simply steeped the crushed grains as the water came to boil. After this, though, I found a means to mash the much smaller amount of crushed grain. I take a small pot, and create a mash in it, following the progress of the startch-o-lysis by taste.

    For those of you who would like to follow along at home, fill a four gallon stcok pot with about
  • 2 gallons of water and set it to boil.
    In a separate pot, put
  • 3/4 pound crystal 40L malt and
  • 1/4 pound chocolate malt, and cover it with water.
    Bring this smaller pot to about 180 deg F and maintain that temperature while the big pot comes to boil.
    When the big pot is boiling, take the smaller pot and strain off the liquid from the mash. Pour that liquid into the big pot, compost the grain tailings.
    To the big pot, add
  • 6 pounds ultra light malt extract and
  • 1 pound clover honey.
    It is important to stir the pot until the syrups dissolve so that they don't settle at the bottom of the pot and scorch. Let the pot come back to a boil. (My pot was too full at this point, so I boiled it down to a managable 3 gallons, which took an hour. Cursing didn't speed that up.) Once the pot is at a boil, add bittering hops:
  • 1 ounce Northern Brewer and
  • 1 ounce Cascade.
    Some say that you must drink beer to make beer, and I find that that adage helps keep me occupied when I might otherwise obsess over the boiling wort to detrimental excess. So I poured myself a nitrous-infused tin of Boddingtons and read Ovid's Metamorphosis for an hour. I recommend the same. After which I turned off the flame and added flavoring hops and chilis:
  • another ounce Cascade hops,
  • 4 split dry ancho chilis, and
  • 6 split dry chipotle chilis.
    These steeped for about 25 minutes. Then I strained out the spent hops and chilis, and set the wort to cool in a bucket. After a few hours, I decanted it into a carboy and pitched in Wyeast strain #1056 "American ale" as well as another 2 ancho chilis, 4 chipotle chilis, and about an ounce more of Cascade hops. I blessed this ale, as much as it blesses my zythepsary.

According to the daylogs, it was late July when I made the batch that this ale is based upon. So it might seem that I am almost two months ahead of last year's brewing schedule, but as this is the first batch of the year, I know I am actually six behind. I'd better get busy.

UPDATE June 17, 2003
Tonight bindlenix and I have bottled this chipotle ale. About 38 standard bottles (8oz) and 2 champagne bottles (750mL), fewer than usual due to the large amount of sedimentation and the floating hops. Next time, should I intend to dry hop (placing hops in the carboy during fermentation), I will rack the clear brew to a new carboy after a few days of settling, then add the additional hops. I'll try to hold off for three weeks before tasting it.

UPDATE July 21, 2003
Well, it has been almost five weeks since bottling. I felt it the appropriate time to taste this ale. (Actually, misuba came over and insisted he taste it two weeks ago; it was not completely bottle conditioned, and was not at its best.) The color is dark, the aroma of chilis is noticable, the taste of the chilis is slightly greeny. The ale itself is fine, perhaps not quite hoppy enough. The chipolte is present tingling the tongue and the palate after a sip. I think that this will develop further over the next couple of weeks. We'll see how my patience lasts.

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