Beer and Cigar Review Wednesday 12/14/16

So here we are, our weekly installment of beer and cigar reviews. This is where I share my thoughts of any notable (and some not-so-notable) beer I’ve drunk or cigars I’ve smoked over the past week.

Lakewood Thread Spinner

I think it should go without saying that Lakewood Brewing in Garland, Texas is one of my favorite breweries. They always bring flavorful brews all the way from their session lager all the way to their high-brow brews. This is definitely on the high-brow spectrum; Thread Spinner is an American Barleywine aged in bourbon barrels and weighing in at a whopping 13.5% ABV, 90 IBU and 1.105 OG (about 24.5 Plato) and oh baby it is all there.

Poured on draft from my local artisan pizzeria into a half pint. Hazy red-orange color with a thin ring of head. Strong aromas of floral and citrus hops, some alcoholic burn and a big sweet malty and slightly fruity aroma. Big, complex flavors in this beer: sweet caramel and molasses start things off and provide a backbone for a blast of floral, piney and citrusy hops and some dark fruity tones. A hint of pineapple and the slightest tinge of vanilla come through as the beer warms. A bit of a bourbon burn as the beer goes down. Very thick body with medium carbonation. Don’t dare try to quaff this one – sip on it slowly and gently in front of the fireplace.

A truly amazing beer in every respect. It’s big, bold, malty and hoppy but in that package is an incredibly smooth and complex flavor that will appeal to beer drinkers with all palate preferences and experience levels. Rating: 5/5.

Lakewood Saint Dymphna 

Yes, yet another Lakewood product, this time a Belgian Style Trippel. Though nowhere near as heavy as the previous beer, this one is no slouch weighing in at 8.6% ABV, 34 IBU, 1.085 OG (20.5 Plato) and is a solid Trippel.

Pours a hazy, unfiltered bright orange color with a substantial head that recedes to a thin ring and laces the glass like crazy. Typical aromas of a Belgian – fruity, slightly spicy and a touch of alcohol astringency. Flavors of banana, vanilla, and a bit of a lemon bite too. Subtle floral hops round out the package along with a slight alcohol burn down the throat. Medium in body with a soft carbonation. An easily drinkable, but not quaffable beer.

Yet another solid product from Lakewood. I will say I’ve had better Trippels but I would not turn my nose up at this one. It was a tasty beer and I would gladly drink it again. Rating: 4/5.

Unibroue Don de Dieu

From Unibroue in Chambly, Quebec, Canada comes this self-described Triple wheat ale. It weighs in at 9% ABV and a paltry 10.5 IBU, but don’t let that number fool you. This is a great wheat beer.

Pours a hazy golden color with visible sediment and a fluffy head that quickly recedes to almost nothing. Citrus aroma up front with undertones of vanilla and sweet pale wheat malt. The palate is greeted with a blast of tart lemon goodness with a sweet backbone of wheat malt and honey, a touch of vanilla and a wine-like finish that I wasn’t able to positively identify until I hopped on and checked the stats and the brewer mentions “sake” and I can see that. Fairly big alcohol burn on the way down. Surprisingly thick in body with high carbonation. Not quite quaffable but goes down very smoothly.

Yet another unique yet tasty beer from Unibroue. They’re known for making off-the-wall powerhouses of beers and this one is no exception. Give it a try, you will be pleased. Rating: 4.5/5.

And now for this week’s cigar picks:

Crowned Heads Luminosa Toro

This cigar is a 6.5′ x 52 ring gauge Toro sized cigar featuring Ecuadorian Connecticut shade wrapper and undisclosed long filler. This is marketed as a milder cigar that is meant to be paired with your morning coffee and after smoking this one I have to say the blender succeeded in his goals.

First light features a perfect draw with plentiful mild/medium bodied smoke with flavors of plain unsweetened cream on the draw and a touch of unsalted butter and a slight zing on the retrohale. Smoke thickens in texture about an inch down, still mild-medium body leaving the cream on the draw but dropping the zing and bringing in a smooth leather on the retrohale. The draw flavors remained consistent all the way down but with the leather morphing into a soft wood around the halfway point. Just over an hour of burn time and no detectable nicotine strength.

Performance was great all the way down – a razor sharp burn requiring no touch-ups and the ash holding for roughly a third of the cigar at a time. Though not my favorite cigar in the world, it was a very pleasant smoke and went beautifully with coffee, therefore I am giving it a rating of 4/5 as it was definitely successful in its intention.

Nording 50th Anniversary by Rocky Patel

I picked this cigar up from the blowout bin at my local tobacconist. It is a non-boxed press Toro sized stick measuring 6.5″ x 54 ring gauge. It features an Ecuadorian Habano shade wrapper and Nicaraguan long filler. I had somewhat mixed expectations of this one. One it seems to be a lower-end cigar than the standard RP line but it does have the RP pedigree so I felt it could go either way, and quite frankly mixed results are what I experienced.

The first light featured a perfect draw with just a bit of resistance, and a medium-bodied smoke consisting of sweet spice on the draw (almost an eggnog flavor) with earthy/peppery retrohale. Getting deeper into the first third it the pepper died down to just a subtle note but retaining the smooth earth retrohale.  Second third transitions to a slightly sweet coffee with a toasty tobacco on the retrohale. Final third drops everything but the toasty tobacco which comes in more on the draw. Ended at one hour not due to the smoke getting hot but due to the plain tobacco not really being interesting.

The burn was sightly wonky and required a couple of touchups along the way. I have mixed feelings about this one; I loved the first third, the second third was pleasant but the last third just didn’t do it for me. Not something I’d smoke again unless I could get one on the cheap and only smoke about half of it (would work for a quick smoke). Rating: 3/5.

Nub Maduro 460 by Oliva

At the recommendation of a coworker, I decided to check out the Nub line. I’d known of them but always passed over them thinking they were a novelty of sorts in that they are short cigars of a large ring gauge (hence their name – this 460 is 4″ x 60 ring gauge). When I did my research and found out they were made by Oliva I decided to try one thinking I might find a new quick lunchtime cigar. I did some more research and decided this maduro version featuring Nicaraguan long filler and Brazilian wrapper would best suit my palate. I have to say it was a pleasant surprise.

First light featured a perfect draw with just a touch of resistance and full bodied flavors consisting of a big blast of black and red pepper on both draw and retrohale with a rich dark chocolate on the draw. Getting into the cigar the body toned down slightly to medium/full dialing the pepper/spice back a bit which allowed a coffee to join the dark chocolate on the draw and also introduced a smooth earth and leather on the retrohale. Flavor profile remained consistent through to the final third where the chocolate and pepper/spice dropped and was replaced by a pleasant nutty flavor. First hot/acrid draw came in at exactly one hour right at the band.

Performance and burn was above average considering the large ring gauge and maduro wrapper, only requiring a couple of small touchups along the way (to be expected). Ash holds on about half the cigar at a time. Overall a surprisingly complex taste without any harshness and a longer than expected burn time. Medium nicotine strength. Surprisingly I absolutely loved this cigar and will definitely buying more. Rating: 4.5/5.

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Song Lyric Sunday 12/11/16 – Personal Jesus

This week’s Song Lyric Sunday theme is maybe the most difficult for me yet. As a total introvert and a very independent person the notion of needing someone is somewhat foreign to me so I thought for several hours and came up with absolutely bupkis. Then this song came on my stream and I’m like “perfect!”

So the song I’m choosing for this theme is “Personal Jesus” by Depeche Mode. I’ve always loved this song even though I’m not in the least bit religious. The bottom line is that we all need our own Personal Jesus sometimes to hear our prayers, someone who cares, someone who’s there for us. It could be a family member, a best friend or even a phone psychic really. As such, this is probably a very twisted take on the prompt and maybe not at all what you had in mind Helen (sorry!) but in the workings of my crazy mind it fits.

Without further ado:

Reach out and touch faith

Your own personal Jesus
Someone to hear your prayers
Someone who cares
Your own personal Jesus
Someone to hear your prayers
Someone who’s there

Feeling unknown
And you’re all alone
Flesh and bone
By the telephone
Lift up the receiver
I’ll make you a believer

Take second best
Put me to the test
Things on your chest
You need to confess
I will deliver
You know I’m a forgiver

Reach out and touch faith
Reach out and touch faith

Your own personal Jesus
Someone to hear your prayers
Someone who cares
Your own personal Jesus
Someone to hear your prayers
Someone who’s there

Feeling unknown
And you’re all alone
Flesh and bone
By the telephone
Lift up the receiver
I’ll make you a believer
I will deliver
You know I’m a forgiver

Reach out and touch faith

Your own personal Jesus

Reach out and touch faith
Source: http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/depechemode/personaljesus.html

As an added bonus I’m also including a couple of covers of this song, both of which I enjoy. The first is probably the widest known cover of the song, namely Marilyn Manson’s version.

Another cover version I really love, and it’s a huge departure from the original, is the late Johnny Cash’s take on the song. It takes on a whole different vibe in his version which might be why I find it attractive in its own right.

And that’s a wrap for this week. Hope you enjoyed.

White Coat Syndrome and Autism?

Something I’m curious about with my fellow autism spectrum folks: white coat syndrome.

Friday I took my company mandated yearly physical (luckily paid for by them) and was given a clean bill of health with the exception of my blood pressure. It always, and I mean ALWAYS reads high in a doctor’s office. The highest I remember reading is like 170/100; this time wasn’t so bad with only slightly elevated systolic pressure (136) but still; unless I’ve been exercising or something along those lines my blood pressure reads normal in a non-clinical setting.

I’m posting because I’m curious to see if this is a common phenomenon among us autism spectrum folks. I imagine it might have something to do with it because of anxiety that often comes with visiting the doctor (yes, I will admit it’s stressful for me) but I’m truly curious.

Alas, for me this time was not as bad as it normally is. I wonder if my body art has some effect on that. Having 5 tattoos now I wonder if subconsciously that caused a lessening of anxiety in a clinical setting. I will admit I no longer get really nervous when going in for a new tattoo (whereas my first one I was absolutely petrified) so I really do wonder if that has had an effect.

Anyway, please means chime in with your experiences. I’m truly curious.

Beer/Cigar Review Wednesday 12/7/16

Alright, so I’ve decided from here on out every Wednesday will be beer and cigar review Wednesday where I publish reviews of any noteworthy (or very un-noteworthy) beers I’ve drunk or cigars I’ve smoked over the past 7 days. I have chosen to centralize it to a specific day of the week as I’ve found it can be easy for these entries to be fairly common and somewhat detract from the main central themes of this blog (namely the ones featured in my tagline) so condensing them to a specific day will free up other days to get back to the real purpose of my blog. I think doing so will be a significant improvement over my current blogging style.

So for this week we are featuring the following beers:

Samuel Smith Imperial Stout

Coming to us from Samuel Smith’s Old Brewery in Tadcaster, North Yorkshire, UK is their take on an Imperial Stout. Samuel Smith makes some really tasty brews but I’d never had this one before so I was anxious to try it. It has an unspecified IBU rating but it is a relative lightweight in the Imperial Stout category at a diminutive 7.0% ABV.

The beer comes in a true British pint and pours the typical jet black Imperial Stout color with a thin ring of tan head. Only a faint fruity aroma on the pour. Flavor is primarily prune juice with a hint of roasted malt and bitter espresso on the finish. Medium in body and carbonation drinks slightly rough.

I have to admit it: I just did not enjoy this beer all that much. I’m not a fan of prune juice so naturally I didn’t really care for this beer. Seems to me most of Samuel Smith’s beers have a fruity twang to them (and it works well with some – the Brown Ale has a very pleasant green apple bite to it) but it just misses the mark for me. Rating: 2.5/5.

Deep Ellum Local Legend

Local Legend is a milk stout (a stout with added lactose which does not ferment) brewed by Deep Ellum in Dallas, Texas. As with all Deep Ellum products, it comes in a lined can (which is not bad; arguably they do better at shielding beer from light and you can take cans even places you can’t take glass) and it weighs in at a paltry 5.8% ABV and 23 IBU but don’t let that fool you! This is one full-flavored stout.

Pours a dark brown almost black color with a frothy tan head. Aromas of vanilla, roasted malt and a subtle tart fruitiness. Flavors follow almost exactly from the nose with a sweet vanilla followed immediately by a roasted malt and coffee and finishes with a semi-tart black cherry note. Surprisingly light in body and carbonation both, but this makes for a highly drinkable beer that one could easily kill a six-pack of around the campfire.

I have to say I’ve not had a milk/sweet/cream stout quite like this one but leave it to Deep Ellum to do something different. Nonetheless, I really did enjoy this beer. Rating: 4/5.

And now for this week’s cigar picks:

Oliva Serie V Maduro Especial 2016

I’m a big fan of Oliva cigars so when I was gifted one of these by a coworker I was super excited. The 2016 version is a 6″ x 60 ring gauge Double Toro vitola. This cigar is a limited release each year, with each year being a different vitola. I normally stay away from really big ring gauges as they usually are a pain in the ass but for whatever reason I just had a feeling this was going to be a winner and boy was I right.

First light revealed a very loose draw (typical of big ring gauges) but a full-bodied blast of spicy/peppery dark chocolate and a subtle earthiness on the retrohale. Spiciness faded leading to a medium/full semi-sweet dark chocolate. The 2nd third brought in a nice creamy coffee which ramped up to the halfway point where the chocolate dropped almost completely. The final third brought the chocolate back in and brought the earthy retrohale more to the forefront. Oh, and did I mention a silky smooth smoke all the way down to the nub?

Performance was surprisingly good taking into account the thick maduro wrapper and the big ring gauge. Very straight burn all the way down and the first chunk of ash held on almost all the way to the band (the 2nd section of ash never dropped off). After the ash dropped the ember must have fallen off the edge of the wrapper as it seemed to go out (though the filler continued burning) so a quick re-light of the wrapper was in order. A long 90 minute burn time before the first hot draw was the icing on the cake.

This is a limited edition cigar so get it while you can. I might just buy my local tobacconist out of stock (it’s also very reasonably priced for what it is and the burn time). Rating: 4.5/5.

Surrogates Tramp Stamp

           

The Tramp Stamp is 5.25″ x 48 ring gauge Robusto with a closed foot featuring Nicaraguan long filler and an Ecuadorian Habano Oscuro wrapper. I picked this cigar up mainly because of the name and because it was in the blowout bin at my local tobacconist. It was a total shot in the dark but it paid off.

First light showed a slightly snug draw and near full-body of mostly a cayenne pepper spice. Draw opens up after a few puffs (as the closed foot burns off) and body flavors mellow slightly to medium/full retaining the cayenne spice on the back of the palate and in the retrohale but adding a sweet vanilla on the draw. Cayenne and vanilla morph together into a hot cinnamon in the 2nd third which also brought in a straight tobacco. Final third drops spice and sweetness and leaves just a straight tobacco taste still at medium-full body. Ended at 50 minutes not because of the smoke going hot/acrid but because of a medium-full nicotine strength coming in.

Performance was normal for a thick, dark wrapper – slightly wavy burn requiring a small touch-up around the 1/2 way point. Surprising burn time from the relatively short length and small ring gauge – I was expecting something more on the order of 40 minutes and could have gone nearly an hour if I had more of a nicotine tolerance. All in all a surprisingly good cigar at a good price point. I’ll be buying more for sure. Rating: 4/5.

 

My Final Thoughts on Ink Master Season 8

First things first, congratulations to Ryan Ashley Malarkey on becoming the 8th Ink Master. There is no denying her ability and she was on fire all season long. Her live tattoo was beyond reproach (my favorite of the three and it earned my Twitter vote) and her 24 hour chest piece, although not her specialty, was absolutely amazing. Hell, I couldn’t argue with any of the tattoos in the final really. Whatever the case I believe she is a deserving winner and I’d absolutely kill for an opportunity to get a tattoo from her. Seriously.

This entire season we saw some strong tattoos, some not-so-strong tattoos and some downright bad tattoos. We also saw a contestant pull a total dick move and leave the competition, thus shortening the season by one episode (if he was going to leave why the hell didn’t he volunteer himself for elimination at the conclusion of an episode instead of walking out in the middle of one?).

Alas, one thing I have to admit really bothered me this season was this “unholy alliance” with the female contestants that crossed even team lines (judges Oliver Peck and Chris Nunez had teams this year so in a way it was a competition between them too) to gang up on and target the guys (even their own teammates). This entire time all I could think was “why?” I’m sorry, but in this competition you have no friends. You have no alliance. At the end of the day there is only one champion. You have to play the game and the girls pulling the vagina card really bothered me. They were going to have to go against each other eventually so what was the point? At the end of the day it should come down to who does the best tattoos. I think either of the two women who made it to the finals could have done so on their artwork alone (yes, they were that good) so it was a bit of a WTF moment for me.

All that said, despite my own personal fondness of Ryan’s work I can’t help but wonder if maybe there was a little political correctness in the final decision for the above reason. With all three judges being male if they’d have given the last male contestant the win (ultimately it was a 2-1 vote with Oliver going Ryan, Chris going Gian and leaving head judge Dave as the swing vote) I can see where some folks would have cried sexism. Again, Ryan was a totally deserving winner in my opinion and she definitely had the best live tattoo but I can’t help but wonder if that was a factor, however insignificant.

All that said, it was a great season and I wasn’t left scratching my head at who was ultimately chosen the winner. I don’t think I’d have been upset if either of the other finalists won it but I did really like Ryan’s tattoos tonight and all season. We are both the same age (born 1987) so we’ve still got lots of life left so maybe one day I’ll get the opportunity to get a tattoo from her. Though I’m normally a full-color kind of guy I do love B&G too and have come to appreciate it as a style as much as full-color styles.

Song Lyric Sunday 12/4/16 – In a Big Country

This week for Song Lyric Sunday we were tasked with posting a song about change (prompted by Helen moving into her new home; congratulations by the way!). Change is such a broad theme indeed and I struggled slightly choosing a song for this theme but I got it figured out.

My first thought was “Change” by a certain band I’ve featured like 4 songs from so I didn’t opt for that one (not to mention it’s not really about change at all; it’s a very nonsensical song) and then of course “Changes” by David Bowie is just kind of the predictable and obvious choice so I didn’t want to use it either. Then as my iTunes playlist was playing in the background it came up on this song and I was like “that’s the ticket!”

So my pick for this week is “In a Big Country” by Big Country (yeah, I know what you’re thinking here – a self-titled song by the band). That said, I think this song grabs the essence of change beautifully, and the line “I thought that pain and truth were things that really mattered but you can’t stay here with every single hope you had shattered” really sums up my current life situation.

Shock

Come up screaming
Come up screaming
Ha

I’ve never seen you look like this without a reason
Another promise fallen through, another season passes by you

Shock

I never took the smile away from anybody’s face
And that’s a desperate way to look for someone who is still a child

In a big country, dreams stay with you
Like a lover’s voice fires the mountainside
Stay alive

I thought that pain and truth were things that really mattered
But you can’t stay here with every single hope you had shattered

I’m not expecting to grow flowers in a desert
But I can live and breathe and see the sun in wintertime

In a big country, dreams stay with you
Like a lover’s voice fires the mountainside
Stay alive

In a big country, dreams stay with you
Like a lover’s voice fires the mountainside
Stay alive

So take that look out of here, it doesn’t fit you
Because it’s happened doesn’t mean you’ve been discarded
Pull up your head off the floor, come up screaming
Cry out for everything you ever might have wanted
I thought that pain and truth were things that really mattered
But you can’t stay here with every single hope you had shattered

Shock, 1, 2

I’m not expecting to grow flowers in a desert
But I can live and breathe and see the sun in wintertime

In a big country, dreams stay with you
Like a lover’s voice fires the mountainside
Stay alive

In a big country, dreams stay with you
Like a lover’s voice fires the mountainside
Stay alive

In a big country, dreams stay with you
Like a lover’s voice fires the mountainside
Stay alive

Ha

Shock
Source: http://lyrics.wikia.com/wiki/Big_Country:In_A_Big_Country

Well that’s a wrap. Hope you all enjoyed.

Reconsidering Self Employment

There’s no doubt that employment is always a challenge for individuals on the autism spectrum. I read some statistic somewhere that said as many as 4 out of 5 autistic adults do not have full-time employment and those who do are often over-educated and otherwise under-employed. Whether that is due to a lack of education on the condition or people just being willfully ignorant or even in my case discriminatory government regulations it’s a rampant problem.

Of course, for me my issues are twofold: not only am I autistic but I have tattoos (and soon to have piercings) and, as my post from yesterday demonstrated, there are still a very vocal minority (and in some places it’s actually a majority) who are anti-body modification. Between those two things, yeah, it’s difficult to find fulfilling employment and more often than not we wind up stuck in rather unfulfilling jobs such as the one I’m in now.

As such, I’ve considered a number of directions I could go but self-employment always comes back as the best option. It’s just so hard to get started and I still have bankruptcy on my credit history (and will for another about 2 and a half years – I had a near-fatal heart arrhythmia back in 2009 that had to be corrected surgically but was only discovered after I was revived from cardiac arrest) so this is still at the minimum of a few years down the road. It’s a tough road but the most seemingly worthwhile roads are a little rough and curvy.

Alas, it’s not totally new territory for me – I was self-employed in a limited capacity for the couple of years before I landed my current job. I did some clock/watch repair and was a wedding/funeral bagpiper but neither one of those fields has anywhere near enough demand to support a full-time business. Alas, I had just written it off as any sort of future, but it’s starting to look like an attractive option again.

Some time ago my ex suggested that we should go into business together and for a little while I was on board with that, but with the immediate aftermath of the election it became very obvious that we are no suitable business partners due to our differences of business philosophy as well as stark differences of political and religious persuasion. Of course, we could not function together as a couple so why she even thought for a second we could function together as business partners blows my mind. Well, I imagine she is still young and naive so maybe she was having another one of her young and delusional moments (we’ve all had them when we were younger after all).

So then I got to thinking one night what I could do. If I had an artistic eye and hand I’d have considered becoming a tattoo and piercing artist but I don’t have an artistic bone in my body so that wasn’t going to be an option. Not only that but I can’t even use chopsticks so I could I possibly handle a tattoo machine or piercing needle? It does seem like it would be fun but not everyone is cut out to be a tattooer or piercer and I most certainly am not.

Then one night as I was sitting on my back porch engaging in my evening ritual of a Scotch and a cigar it just hit me. I thought “I love Scotch, I love cigars, business idea!” So my idea for a business was born.

My business would be part lounge/bar and part retail store. I’d have a large walk-in humidor full of a huge selection of cigars that could be purchased as singles or by the box and stored at the proper temp and humidity as to be ready to smoke as well as room with fine whiskies of all varieties (Scotch, Irish, Canadian, Bourbon, you name it) for sale by the bottle.

In addition to those two main focal points, I’d have some smoking accessories (lighters, cutters and humidors/storage), a selection of pipes and pipe tobacco and a selection of microbrew beer and fine wine. For those who do not drink alcohol, we’d have a selection of coffee and tea to choose from.

The lounge portion would be classy yet modern (almost a speakeasy feel) with a state-of-the-art ventilation system. There will be no TVs or WiFi and maybe just some soft background music. I’d have plenty of comfortable chairs (and maybe couches), a couple of chess/checker tables and maybe a pool table or two but the point would be to slow down and enjoy a great smoke, a stiff drink and light-hearted conversation. The point would be to unplug yourself from social media and the demands of day-to-day life and actually get back to being human again. I want it somewhat classy but not overly so as to attract people from all walks of life and not just well-dressed business people. Everyone of legal age would be welcomed regardless of sex, social status, race, religion, sexual orientation/gender identity, disability, body mods or anything else really (and a statement of inclusivity would be part of the business model).

Now, by default any tobacco or drinks consumed in the lounge would have to come from the retail store portion but the point would still be to get people talking to each other and keeping them around for awhile (instead of just simply getting what they need and getting out) as that often times leads to them buying more anyway.

Now here’s where I’m not 100% sure what I want to do. I don’t know if I’d want to operate as a bar (so those hanging around would purchase by the drink) or if I’d just allow alcohol bought from the stash to be consumed in the lounge. I’m sure it’s one of those things I’ll have to consider with local ordinances and whatever but I do know that in addition to the dry coffee and tea we’d sell I’d want ready-made coffee and hot water for steeping tea (ready-made coffee/tea would be sold by the cup with unlimited refills).

This all sounds fine and good but what about a business name and where would I eventually set up shop? Well I don’t know where I’d open by business but definitely not in Abilene, Texas; such a concept would definitely require a much more progressive, open-minded location. Also, what about an attractive name? That’s even harder, but man oh man I had a bagpiper friend from Canada come up with a great name that both fits the theme of the business and is a play on my initials (L.B.) – Leaf and Barrel. I thought it was absolutely genius and will probably wind up using it.

I dunno, maybe I am dreaming again but at the end of the day that would be the real American dream – have your own business and make money engaging in an activity you love. They say if you love what you do you’ll never work a day in your life. I’m 30 years old and I feel like my work days just keep getting longer and don’t think I can handle another 37 years of this nonsense so it’s almost time for me to transcend my day job. I just hope it’s sooner rather than later. It’d be nice to take my love of these things, marry them into a business venture and not ever have to worry about a boss criticizing me for my autistic shortcomings or worrying about having to cover my tattoos or piercings or even a work dress code. I could do whatever I wanted to (within the confines of the law of course) and just kind of soak it up. If only I could find a way to make it a reality.