Crack Open A Cold Powerglide Road Soda, Buddy!

Illustration for article titled Crack Open A Cold Powerglide Road Soda, Buddy!

Back when I was young and broke and living with a houseful of other young, broke slackers, we figured out that it was possible to make our own beer; once the beermaking hardware had been purchased and enough non-twist-off bottles had been obtained, the opaque, yeasty homebrew we bootlegged up in the garage cost about $5 per case to produce and usually tasted tolerably good. Well, tolerable, anyway. Thing was, guests at our parties were afraid to drink beer out of ominous-looking unlabeled bottles, so I quickly set to work with the old ransom-note cut-and-paste layout technique...

Illustration for article titled Crack Open A Cold Powerglide Road Soda, Buddy!

Some Xeroxing, cutting, and glue-stick work followed, and we had our own somewhat non-poisonous-looking brands. I made some Infected Weasel Bladder Porter, which lacked marketing appeal but featured a really cool weasel logo, followed by Shame Beer and Spiro Agnew Stout. My favorite, however, was good ol' Powerglide Road Soda Genuine Draft (the "Road Soda" part came from the cop who taught at a traffic school I'd attended in penance for a speeding ticket; he referred to drunk drivers as having "had a few too many road sodas" and the phrase hardwired itself into my brain). The inspiration for the beer's name came from the Powerglide that sat on the floor of our "brewery" in a slowly spreading puddle of Dexron; I had swapped a TH350 into my Impala and was trying to find someone who would give me money for a perfectly good Slip-N-Slide (eventually I got a Quadrajet and an OD-1 distortion pedal for it). I'd thought all the PRS bottles were long gone, but look what showed up in a long-forgotten box!

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Brian, The Life of

I went to a small-ish graduate school that did not feature traditional social clubs (frats). To compensate they sponsored various student organizations - the majority of which featured some sort of academic pursuit in their charter.

A few close friends and I started the Homebrewer's Club as an alternative to this boring nonsense. Each semester all the clubs gathered in the student commons for sign-up day (all clubs had to be open to all students). We always had HUGE sign up numbers, far surpassing all others as you can imagine. This is, of course, a double-edged sword. More sign-ups meant more $$$ for the club coming from the school. More members also meant less brew per member.

Being the "founding fathers" of the club meant that we got to assign the work needing to be done among the members. Newbs were ALWAYS required to do the cleaning/sterilization associated with brewing (necessary but very unglamorous work). We were able to "loose" more excess members that way :) They'd seldom show up for the next brewing session and we would end up with much more beer - all funded by our school. What a delicious scam that was.