NO MORE BEER!

No More for Me, Thanks. I guess.

I like beer, at least some beers. Weihenstephaner Hefe Weiss is yummy, and Hobgoblin Ale from Witchwood in Oxfordshire is worth a trip. But I’m quits with them both. Because both are full of little tiny bubbles that really enhance the flavo(u)r and drinking experience. My tale follows.

I was a colicky baby. So was my daughter. I got it from my mom and passed it to my daughter. Ain’t I generous, though? What is it? A thing called hiatal hernia, which just means that you’ll get heartburn if you eat anything stronger than air. At a minimum, you’ll get junk from your stomach back where you never want it to go. That’s why colicky babies are colicky; it hurts to have eaten. And it does. Sooner or later, you get to the point where you think you’re having a heart attack because of the hard, sharp pain. It’s a real nuisance, at best. I know this from experience. To top it off, the acid causing the heartburn rises into your sinuses, so you also have, sooner or later, chronic sinusitis. That, not the heartburn (which can be controlled) is why I decided to have my condition corrected.

I might mention that at one point I was prescribed Zantac(tm) as a possible treatment. It didn’t work all that well, and instead I probably ate several pounds of Prilosec ™ over the years. Zantac(tm) did, however, apparently leave me with prostate cancer, which is all taken care of now. I did get into the class action suit. Can’t wait to spend my twenty bucks! But, not to digress . . .

Correction involves somebody reaching into your abdominal cavity (with robotic snake-like arms, in my case) and fixing your stomach so that, not only will you not get heartburn any more, you probably won’t even be able to burp properly ever again, or at least only rarely. If you don’t burp, of course, that CO2 from the beer or whatever doesn’t magically disappear. It has only one way out, the long way. The long way involves 12 meters or so of slimy intestines that hurt when distended by gas. See where I’m going with this? If I drink beer, or Coca-Cola(tm), or seltzer water, I live to regret it. A lot. In fact, having my stomach put into its proper place had several other unanticipated results as well.

My body chemistry changed dramatically. I got the worst case of athlete’s foot I’ve ever had. Ever! I lost 30 pounds, because, frankly, I just can’t eat like a starving wolf any more. I have to chew my food, and not take too much at once. And, this one really gets me, I lost my ability to digest lactose! Know what has lactose in it? Commercial baked goods, including those little pies they sell at Walmart, milk of course, cream, and (gack!) ice cream! No ice cream? Well, it isn’t that bad. One can buy lactase pills. Lactase is what I’m not producing enough of any more, so that works out, if I don’t eat huge amounts of ice cream. An ice-cream Snickers(tm) bar gives me no trouble if I take a pill. And, I can still butter my toast with no worries. Not a lot of lactose in butter, apparently. And they make Lactose free milk, which, to sound just like their commercials, is just milk. They add lactase to the milk, so instead of a complex sugar, the milk contains two simple sugars, glucose and galactose, both of which get absorbed and used. I wish Ben & Jerry’s used lactose free milk for their ice cream, but oh, well.

So, no more beer for me, please! I’m going to be traditional French, I guess, and have some wine with my meals, or whenever.

And no more surgeries! For three more weeks, when I get the next worn out part patched up. (lingual hernia.) Old age: not for the weak or easily frightened!)