Randy Mac’s Livin’ It Up: This home brew was a root beer bust

Randy Mac

Randy Mac

When Robbie and I returned from our trip to Arkansas and walked into our apartment, I noticed immediately (since it was just inside the front door by the television) that the balloon on top of my five-gallon bottle filled with my root beer concoction was at a 90-degree angle to the floor. This let me know for sure that the fermenting process had indeed begun.

I grabbed the bottle around the neck and gave it a good shake. The balloon inflated quickly. I was both impressed and excited.

After we had gotten all of our luggage, etc., into the apartment, I decided to take a sip of my root beer. It would be too much of a hassle to lift the bottle and try to pour one small glassful, so I dug around in one of the kitchen drawers and found a straw. I removed the rubber band that was securing the balloon to the bottle, then removed the balloon. I squatted down, sank the end of the straw into the liquid and took a sip.

YIKES! The only alcohol I had ever tasted was Nyquil™, but I recognized that burn as it went down. I quickly surmised that my root beer wasn’t done yet.  I put the balloon back on the bottle.

A few days later some friends came over for supper. Freddy noticed the big, blue bottle and asked about it.   told him it was root beer in the making. I asked him if he’d like to try it. He said, “Yes.” (This was good. Now I didn’t have to taste the stuff to see if was getting’ any better.)\

I went to the kitchen and found another straw. I removed the balloon. Freddy squatted down, sank the end of the straw into the liquid and took a sip.

His facial expression and the loud groan that accompanied it, let me know the experience for him was less than favorable. Once again I decided the root beer just needed more time. I replaced the balloon.

Some days later another friend stopped by. You guessed it. He asked. I removed the balloon and handed him a straw. I think he squawked louder than Freddy. This was not good.

I finally accepted the fact that my first (and last) try at making root beer was not successful. I took the bottle into the kitchen, heaved it up to the counter and proceeded to pour it down the sink — all except one Gatorade™ bottleful. I decided to hold back just a little that I could take to work for my friends to try.

I remember as I’d crack the seal on the bottle to pour some, a “belch” of gas would blow out. Of all the folks who tried my root beer, only one was able to drink a full, 6 oz. cup of the stuff — over ice. He even said, “That’s not too bad.” (I think the nerves in Pete’s mouth and throat were numb or somethin’.)

I still like root beer. I still just buy it already made.

Life’s an adventure. I’m livin’ it up!

Randy McLelland, known as “Randy Mac,” is pastor of Cornerstone Christian Fellowship and an entertainer. He can be reached at randymac@randymac.com.

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