As I get closer to the end of another fantastic year for Stouts and Stilettos, I’ve been getting a little more introspective and sentimental. It feels like just yesterday that I started blogging, yet it’s been over 3 years. A lot has changed, yet one thing still remains the same: I absolutely love doing this.
I read Bryan Roth’s post about what one perceives their role to be in this community, their goals, and why do you blog. It was perfectly timed as the night before I was discussing this same topic with a friend of mine. I like to think of my role, personally, as an educator. Educating others comes naturally to me (I was a certified teacher at one point in my life). I like to think that I’m telling everyone about craft beer, but not shoving it down your throat. I try not to be ‘judgy’ of those who aren’t interested and respectfully gush to those who are. I’m trying to tell you what I know because I want you to know it too. I’m sharing these things with you not to brag but to open dialogue. I don’t know it all and am
hungry thirsty for knowledge right there with you. I read beer news daily, if not multiple times a day, because I want to be the one to tell you about what’s happening. At the same time, I want you to tell me what you know too. It’s a beautiful thing in my eyes.
I don’t know how craft beer became ‘my thing’. Sure, I could say things like, “I love craft beer, I love trying new beers, I love talking about beers,” but that’s just so basic. I can’t put my finger on why I love craft beer, the community, and blogging about it so much. I’m naturally a social butterfly, which could be an understatement honestly. I’m technically a millennial (shhh) and I like to share my life with the world. I geek out and sometimes I’m a total craft beer fan girl. It has become my true passion. The one community that has always felt like home.
There’s one fact about it all that I can’t deny. It’s my heritage. A few years back right after I started the S&S, my dad sent me this email about craft beer being in my blood (beyond my ABV) with an attachment that almost brought me to tears. I’m welling up right now just writing about it. It’s the draft card belonging to Angelo, my great-grand father, the first family member on my father’s side who came to America from Italy. On the draft card I learned a lot: that he was short (which is funny because I’m 5’10), that he had gray eyes, a stiff left hand, and that he worked at Graupner’s Brewery. Graupner’s used to be located at 10th and Market Streets in Harrisburg well before my father was even born. It’s a really cool piece of a family history in a family where details like these are few and far-between. This has helped to mold me into me who I am. I feel like he would be proud to know that I’m starting Harrisburg Beer Week and that this identity, this persona, is who I’ve become.
I can’t wait to see what 2015 and beyond will bring to both myself and to the website. Everyone who knows me personally knows that I’m not the best at planning for the future, but instead I like to live in the moment. I don’t know where we’re headed or where I’m headed for that matter, besides to the next glass of beer.