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I Discover Beer.
Both sides of my family were heavy drinkers. Except dad and mom. For some strange reason neither drank. I don't know how that happened.

Gramps used to make home brew beer. They say in his younger days he also made whiskey. I remember him bottling up his latest batch of beer one day. He stored the bottled beer in the basement on a row of shelves. Something must have went wrong because later we would hear bottles exploding. Every time one went off gramps would yell 'dammit'. I started my drinking career at about the age of 4 years. Gramps opened a frosty bottle of beer, set it on the table and was busy tuning the kitchen Philco to his favorite news station. That kitchen corner was gramp's spot. An old table radio sat on a small table, gramp's rocker right beside it. We had a parlor radio too. Guess we were rich. While gramps was busy with the radio I grabbed the bottle and chugged down a few swallows. I don't know what it was about that cold, bitter, bubbly liquid but I took to it like most kids do to soda pop.

Dad and mom tried to discourage me but I always found beer when I wanted it. Gramps quit making home brew but hid store beer in his room. Later I learned to look in Ike's car or truck. There was usually a few bottles rolling around. In desperation I even drained the remains out of whatever empty bottles I could find. Brother Daryl got a late start on boozing. He waited until his teens. Once, when he was still married to his first wife, they were living in a rented house half a block from my house. A neighbor called to tell me Daryl was drunk and beating on Amy. I ran over and sure enough. He smacked her aside her head just as I entered. He turned and swung at me and that's the last thing he remembered.

I hate mean drunks. During my working career, I bossed crews from time to time. After work we drank. When some of them had a few drinks, they would say things to me they wouldn't dare say sober. Things like 'Your a nice guy when your drinking. Sober, your an a*****e'. The last time I had to see a doc they pried into my private life on a lot of fronts. Doc started on drinking. When you started, how much, how often, yadayada. Do you use any drugs? 'Do you own any guns and how many'? 'I'm not here 'cause I shot myself'. 'I know but we have to ask'. 'No'. He knew that was a lie so he wrote 'no' with a question mark behind it. Next to lawyers, I hate docs. I guess I'm not adapting too well to this modern 'enlightened' age. Every day I thank God I got to live in better days.

Submitted By: Hoppy from IA on 2009-11-10

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