Thursday, September 24, 2009
Days of Beer 2: The Tuborg Sanction
I was eighteen before I realized you could actually open a beer and not have to drain it all the way to the spittle-laced dregs. I might never have learned that simple, mind-freeing fact if it weren’t for a single brand, a beer known as Tuborg Gold. I’d seen some great ads for Tuborg. It showed rowdy Vikings swilling the beer from drinking horns. I wanted to be a Viking, (a real one not a Minnesota one), so I decided I must get some Tuborg.
My brother, Paul David, who was also apparently susceptible to the Viking ads, brought some of the “Gold” home first, though. I remember, we were in our old green pickup, headed out to feed the cows, when Paul David unveiled the Tuborg. We clicked bottles and I took a Viking-hearty sip…and nearly spewed the entire contents of my stomach and various pieces of my intestines and bowel onto the dashboard. My first thought, after I managed to fight down the successive waves of nausea, was that: “No wonder the Vikings were such bad asses. How could anyone drink this slop day in and day out without 1) wanting to kill something, and 2) becoming inured to pain.
Four full bottles and two ‘one-sipped-from’ bottles were poured into the dirt that day. Over thirty years later, nothing has yet grown on that spot. Cattle avoid it. Insects mutate if they build burrows in that soil. There have even been...disappearances.
I’ve sometimes wondered whether Tuborg was, in fact, that awful, or whether we just got a bad six-pack, (as happens with every six-pack of Bud). I’ve occasionally thought I should try Tuborg again, but I’m afraid I lost something important that long ago day. I lost some testicular fortitude, and a lot of innocence. I just don’t have the jewels to try another Tuborg. Not while the painful memory of that first taste from 32 years ago is still so fresh.
Next post: The Age of Found Beer