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See the world - one beer at a time
Film. Writing. Travel. Beer. That's me in four words. Especially the beer part.
Almost everyone on Couchsurfing who has encountered me knows me as a "beersurfer." Most of my travel is inextricably connected to beer.
I love beer. I drink beer. But sometimes it seems like beer drinks me.
^I was hoping that would sound zen, but actually now that I look at it, it sounds kind of disgusting. So forgive that. But really: beer = good. If you don't think you like beer, you probably haven't tried the right beer yet. There's much more to beer than Budweiser/Coors/Heineken/Carlsberg/Miller/etc. Go out and embrace the beer! It's the world's third most popular beverage (behind water and tea).
I love getting to know fellow couchsurfers and then having stories to tell afterwards. For me, couchsurfing is all about getting to know people - NOT getting a free place to stay for a night.
I'm currently working my way through graduate school in Austin, Texas, and may attempt a phD in the future. Once I have a phD, I want to teach (while continuing to write ) at a university in a different country per year, so I can work my way around the world. I feel like the best way to really get a feel for a city is to live and work there for at least six months. And to drink beer with the locals.
I review/write notes about every new beer I drink, and have had over 3000 now. I brew my own beer as well. I have this daydream fantasy of someday opening a brewpub where everything on the menu is based on beer: beer bread, beer battered chips (fries for you fellow Americans), beer basted steak, and so forth. I always make sure to try to drink and review a local beer whenever I visit a city.
I go out of my way to avoid doing touristy things when traveling, preferring just to meet and talk with local people (which is where couchsurfing comes in), and to drink local beer. Then afterwards maybe I can write about it.
I value authenticity.
I love to consume the culture of others (literature, music, films, dance, beer, etc.), so naturally I feel like I have to contribute something of my own back. Everytime I hear a new album from a band I like or read a great book from an author I admire, I feel like it's selfish for me to not put something out there for other people.
Sometimes people just need to stop stressing, sit down, relax and have a glass of...
^No. Just kidding about the wine. Drink beer.
Why I’m on Couchsurfing
HOW I PARTICIPATE IN COUCHSURFING
I embark on couchsurfing trips to Europe as often as I can afford to (usually for beer), and try to host as much as possible. CSers really are amazing people.
I've couchsurfed Canada, Ireland, the USA, Belgium, Holland, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, France, Switzerland, Italy, and on and on. During a 2 month backpacking trip throughout Europe, I spent maybe 12 days in hostels and the rest with hosts. It was incredible.
I love to host and surf alike; couchsurfing is all about the people and the connections you make. And often the beer you drink together.
I feel like every couchsurfer is a friend because they're all so cool. And so many of them like beer. Or put up with how much I like beer. Which is cool.
Did I mention I like beer?
A friend and I began our couchsurfing experience surfing in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, and I've been addicted ever since. There's no better way to travel. I offered a couch for a school year while in film school in Orange County, California. Then I got into meeting other hosts in Los Angeles when I went to film school there.
Now I host in Austin, Texas.
I'm pioneering the "beersurfing" approach to couchsurfing, wherein one picks destinations and even hosts based on the beer available there. I also like to bring special bottles of beer to hosts when I'm able to.
I love cinema and writing. (And beer).
I can usually find at least a couple musical groups per musical genre that I enjoy. I play alto fiddle (my preferred term for my viola) and I mess around on bass guitar.
I can cook: a pretty amazing duck, pasta, spinach and artichoke dip (a fatty American delicacy), chips (e.g. fries), tortilla crisps, and fudge.
Do you know what the food I cook pairs well with? Hint: it starts with a "b" and is a fermented beverage.
...Okay, it's beer.
Music, Movies, and Books
If you ever need to lose five hours from your life, just start talking to me about movies. I can talk about movies as much or more than I can talk about beer.
Ikiru, 2 Days in New York, M, Requiem For a Dream, Irreversible, Before Sunrise, Before Sunset, Before Midnight, The Shawshank Redemption, Odishon, The Last Samurai, Fight Club, L.A. Confidential, Once, Leaving Las Vegas, The Green Mile, Pulp Fiction, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, True Romance, Dazed and Confused, Blood Diamond, Rules of Attraction, Killing Zoe, Cleo from 5 to 7, La Vita E Bella, The Departed, Good Will Hunting, Clerks., Clerks 2, Mallrats, Chasing Amy, From Dusk Til Dawn, Michael Clayton, Solaris, U-571, Do The Right Thing, Big Fish, House of Flying Daggers, Hero, Grindhouse, Reservoir Dogs, Waking Life, The Fountain, Heaven's Gate (Yes, I'm deadly serious), Deer Hunter, Rififi, Man on Fire, Dazed and Confused, The Matrix (Yes, all three of them), Lord of the Rings... just ask me when you meet me.
I love Irish traditional music (I attempted to pick up the uilleann bagpipes back in secondary school, but alas, me talent is nary as limited as me patience) and American grunge music. I used to host a grunge show on 101.3 FlirtFM in Galway, Ireland.
All types of music have at least something valuable to offer, except perhaps polka. My favourite band is The Pixies, though Rage Against the Machine and the Sick Puppies are close seconds. The Offspring's "Smash" is the greatest album ever released, even if you allow greatest hits albums to qualify as candidates for that distinction. Check out Eddie Vedder's solo version of "Last Kiss" off his album "Walks On His Own."
I love James Joyce, and Finnegan's Wake is my favourite book. I love all the Beat writing (Kerouac, Ginsberg, Burroughs, etc.)I've read, which is quite a bit, but I can't decide whether I prefer the Beat writers or Hunter S. Thompson. Then there are the more commonly referenced writers I enjoy, like Hemingway and Steinback. I find contemporary writing to be lacking in comparison to the aforementioned, but then maybe I haven't given it the chance it deserves.
Hermann, one of previous hosts in Ghent, Belgium, got me started on reading books while drinking a beer. Beer goes well with books.
One Amazing Thing I’ve Done
I saw Eddie Izzard perform live in Los Angeles. It was fantastic.
In one night in Stockholm with my couchsurfing host, I drank a Narke Kaggen! Stormaktsporter, a Westvleren 12, a Cantillon Blabaer Lambic, a Narke Cognac Stormaktsporter, a Westvleren 6 (The 6, not the blonde), and a couple Akkurat-exclusive Cantillon beers. Then we watched Tarkovsky's Solaris until 5:30 in the morning. It was divine.
Teach, Learn, Share
I can teach you how to fold a towel into a monkey or a swan. I also know a fair amount about beer and movies.
Countries I’ve Visited
Austria, Bahamas, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, England, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Northern Ireland, Poland, Puerto Rico, Romania, Scotland, Serbia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States, Vatican City State, Virgin Islands, U.S., Wales
Countries I’ve Lived In
Finland, Ireland, United States