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Archive for the 'personal' Category

Another Good Man will be Laid Low Today

Wednesday, April 17th, 2019

An old friend will be cremated this afternoon, on what would have been his 50th birthday, laid low to lung cancer in what should have been his prime. Scott Riley will be sadly missed.

We met in the hard yards back in the day. Say no more. Scott was the stereotypical cheeky bogan larrikin who grew up hanging around the streets getting into mischief. I met Scott through the father of the girl who had Scott’s earlier children; she died young from asthma. So it was good to see that Scott met Linda and found a good path through life, when he could have easily chosen something else (a reference there to Train Spotting). Fundamentally, my old friend Scott was a very good man. Linda might not have made him that good man, but she certainly polished the edges and gave him the ambition to succeed.

Scott Riley was one of the few I chose to associate with after my release. And, to some regret, one of the many I had to cut loose to get a decent life for myself without being dragged by the minions of the local underworld back into prison. I did it by severing all my associations and relationships, especially after my family disowned me following the death of my father. I headed back to school for a decade of higher education, got two degrees and ended up with a good life for myself. Scott got out of that life by finding solid work and making new friends.

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Town Lore, Memory & the Bullshit of Time

Thursday, March 14th, 2019

I come from a small town in Northern Tasmania where I seem to have become a part of town lore over the last forty years. Particularly for some people with nothing better to do than gossip or pretend they are somebody important to those events. Sadly, if another person tells me they heard about “what happened at the caravan park” (one of many miss told tales of my invented biography) I’ll probably eat their face and wash it down with a pint of stout.

So I offer some corrections. Because on the Internet I can offer those corrections.

There was no incident at the caravan park. This story of town lore is based around several incidents in my youth that had no presence in any caravan park. Why is the lead in about a caravan park? To be honest, I have no idea.

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My Biggest Beer Brewing Lessons from 2018

Wednesday, January 9th, 2019

For about a decade I’ve been brewing various concoctions from mead to cider and fruit wine (and, yes, beer extract and wort kits). About a year ago, I received a grain mill for Christmas from my generous and loving partner and I almost immediately bought a BIAB (Brew in a Bag) set up for my move into all grain brewing. This year I have learned that making consistently good beer has it’s challenges.

Some 2018 Beer Lessons Worth Heeding

Beyond the rudimentary truth of obsessive cleaning and sanitisation of all brewing equipment the biggest tip I’d give anybody starting out is to ramp up the temperature of the brewing beer right at the end of secondary fermentation. Just when that airlock appears to be slowing right down to nothing. Why? Well, the yeast is struggling. Simple. It’s been making some heat of it’s own during fermentation and as it gets sleepier it therefore gets a little colder. And you need it not to go to sleep before it finishes the job of cleaning up all the bad stuff.

To that end, I have an electric blanket that helps just ramp the beer up a little right at the end. Makes a lot of difference to the final product. If you’ve got money for temperature control I’d highly recommend going down that road.

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About the Author

Steven Clark Steven Clark - the stand up guy on this site

My name is Steven Clark (aka nortypig) and I live in Southern Tasmania. I have an MBA (Specialisation) and a Bachelor of Computing from the University of Tasmania. I'm a photographer making pictures with film. A web developer for money. A business consultant for fun. A journalist on paper. Dreams of owning the World. Idea champion. Paradox. Life partner to Megan.

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