On Creating Stuff

I like making stuff.

I've always enjoyed making stuff. When I was in middle school, I was convinced I would be an author when I grew up (after I discovered I was not good enough at sciencing to be a marine biologist). I wrote a lot of crappy fan fiction. Most of it was about vampires. In my defense, the vampires were Anne Rice vampires, and not Stephenie Meyer vampires.

Which is not much better.

In high school, I wrote a lot of not-good original fiction. For my senior project in honors English, I wrote a crappy children's novel about a girl who goes to a fantastical summer camp for the children of storybook princesses and princes to learn how to be a damsel in distress but concludes that instead, damsels in distress are lame, and she wants to be the hero. It was a decent idea, but I read it again about ten years ago and OH LORD, IT WAS NOT GOOD. Lucky for me, my teacher was sympathetic and gave me an A.

Actually, everyone who spent a considerable amount of time on their senior honors English project got an A, I think. But really - it wasn't very good.

In college, I taught myself to knit because I wanted an accurate Gryffindor scarf. I've never really gotten any better at it (sadly, no - I definitely can't make you a Norwegian sweater... I had someone ask once), but I am really good at making Hogwarts house scarves. I have gotten faster, and I have made many, many house scarves. If you are my friend and a Harry Potter fan who knows your house, I've probably made you a house scarf.

Post-college, I started learning how to cook. This is probably the most useful "making stuff" skill I've (very very slowly) learned. One of my favorite parts of the week is, even though it's really inconvenient, getting off work at 8:00 pm on Monday, pulling up John Oliver on HBOGo, and making food for the rest of the work week's lunches. Cooking has been kind of hit and miss, but theoretically I'm getting better than the so-garlicky-I-was-really-uncomfortable pasta I made when I first attempted to make my own pasta sauce.

Also, is it even possible to cook meatless food without onions/garlic/tons of salt? Maybe I need to retrain my taste.

During grad school, I connected with a group of people who made old-school audio dramas in podcast form. I recorded lines and played a ditzy princess and a teenage superhero, and together we made something amazing that hadn't existed until we did it.

Lately, I've been making candles. Which is the cringe-iest thing ever, and puts me in mind of Candles by Jan.

I swear I'm not Jan.

It's just that for whatever reason, making candles is really satisfying.

It is also, because of Candles by Jan, really embarrassing.

Therefore, I have decided that I need to, independently, channel my need to create something into learning to make beer.

Because we have all the equipment to make beer. I am married to a person who knows how to make beer, just hasn't in forever. And I just have only the vaguest idea how to... put all the things... where the things go... to.. make beer.

So that's my new creation endeavor, I declare. Beer.

Because, frankly, creating stuff is fun. And I've tried to create things that have just not worked out, at all. Or have been super terrible. So beer it is. I figure within the sphere of beer, there are so many different things you can do, that it'll satisfy my need to make stuff, lots of stuff, lots of different stuff. Lots of different tasty, tasty stuff. And probably lots of stuff that isn't so tasty because I haven't really learned how to make beer yet.

So, uh. How do you make beer?