About Richard McDonald

A gathering of information

Something Wicked Brews This Way

So I have officially begun my foray into the world of Homebrewing!


This particular batch is a Belgian Trippel. Now, first off I should say that this one was done at a homebrew store called Bev-Art which offers classes for beginners. They are located in Chicago’s south side, and for a beginner who’s not sure whether brewing is something they’d be interested in it’s a great start! While you’re there you can also pick up a kit to start your brewing at home as well as the ingredient kits so that you can make a tasty brew without having to figure out which ingredients go well together.


I go back for bottling at the end of the month, and from there it’s a week or two of conditioning in the bottles before the beer is ready for consumption. I’m looking forward to adding yet another fantastic hobby to my repertoire. As with most of my many interests this just wouldn’t be possible without the support, and encouragement from my amazing partner! She’s the best!

Something else I will mention about the Bev-Art brewing course for beer is that while you’re there you get to drink some already brewed samples which makes the beer making process all the more fun! In fact, I think it’s actually brewers code to enjoy a beer while making beer. It’s nice, that.

Prost! — Sláinte! — Cheers!




Well, summer is just wrapping up with the first day of autumn quick on it’s heels. I just got back from where I’m still at, and man was that an awesome week!

One great thing I’ll say about living in Chicago is that you aren’t left wanting when it comes to entertainment. I went to jazz fests, Greek fests, aquariums, historic museums, movies in the park, and more!

Also, I got a chance to hit all my favorite micro breweries, and some new ones as well. My fridge is was full of growlers! In fact it’s rekindled my interest in home brewing again, and I think I might just take my first plunge. One other thing I’ve come to love about craft beers, other than the amazing taste, is the artwork that goes into the packaging. One brewer of note is the Flying Dog Brewery. They’ve actually partnered with renowned British cartoonist Ralph Steadman who’s widely known for his artwork he did for legendary author, Hunter S. Thompson.

I think I just might have found a new calling.

Get to the gone

Since picking up the itch to read more I’ve gone through three books this past month. Man, I am just ready to get my bugout bag, and just hit it. I finished Dharma Bums, blazed through One Hundred Years Of Solitude, and just finished On The Road. Obviously that’s enough to get someone jazzed to get to the gone.

I have to admit I sure feel like I was born in the wrong generation sometimes. My wife has said before she feels that she would have done well in the early 1900’s. I’ve always kicked around the idea that I’d have done well in the late 50’s through the 60’s or perhaps hitting the high seas in the late 1600’s as an infamous pirate. Who knows. Maybe other versions of myself bleeding through their own position in space.

Either way I’m really ready to just get out there, and experience the world, or in the parlance of the beat generation, dig, all those places I’ve only had meta-exposures to through book, internet, and passing travelers.