Twenty years younger

I felt 20 years younger last night.

No, that’s not quite right.

I felt like I was reliving one of my early thirties nights …. while battling a 51-year-old single, working mum’s weariness.

Not a wild one, just a garden variety weeknight. Back in my early thirties – pre-kids with a high disposable income – I’d touch base with my ex at night to see how he was travelling with work. If our exit times dovetailed, we’d convene at our favourite little Italian restaurant in Surry Hills for gnocchi gorgonzola.

My Monday nights don’t follow that pattern these days. I’m either at home eating leftovers or climbing imaginary hills on the treadmill at the gym.

But DD was unexpectedly driving past me at around 6.30pm, so we headed to a local Italian place for a glass of wine and pizza.

It felt oddly naughty and decadent to be eating out together on a Monday night.

He’s also knackered, but we both rallied enough to discuss potential blog names and business plans. We may have nailed the name thing … will advise …

My digital journalism background will come in handy for setting the whole thing up. Though I’m a bit daunted by the potential workload, as I spend every day in the booze news trenches.

A friend told me there’s a new term for battery hen journalists like me: churnalists.

They didn’t accuse me of being one, but as soon as i heard the term I appropriated it.

I’m a one-person operation, so the only way I can get all the booze news published in a day is if I churn it.

That means I’ll often only have time to take the ra-ra flowery stuff out of the press releases and publish them at a cracking pace.

Luckily, there are moments when I get to be more than a churnalist. If I have a few spare minutes, I’ll look at alcohol trends and see what interesting things I can discover.

For example, I wrote an article last week that was the most-clicked story on Drinks Trade: “The new RTD threat to beer sales”.

I’d noticed there was a new type of drink selling like hotcakes in the US: hard seltzer. That basically means alcoholic water.

The category is predicted to hit 1 billion in sales this year. Millennials can’t get enough of it.

So why isn’t it on sale here? Australia has a tricky tax system when it comes to alcohol, so seltzers are potentially too expensive to be viable. But the drinks industry is keeping a close eye on them, hence the interest in my story.

Though I’d imagine if you’re not in the drinks trade it’s about as exciting as watching paint dry.

I don’t actually mind being a churnalist. I figure it’s best to get the stories published  on the site, so people know they can go to Drinks Trade and get a comprehensive rundown of the latest news and releases. Yesterday ran the gamut of lockout law changes to wine show wins and a management restructure at Coca-Cola Amatil.

I love how well-versed I’m becoming about the industry I report on. I can have fairly intelligent conversations around what the big suppliers are doing and where the industry is heading.

I’m accumulating facts about wine, beer and spirits – and the people behind the brands – in the same way I used to know all the latest goss on Brad Pitt.

These days I have no idea what the latest goss is on Brad Pitt – I wonder if the weekly mags are still hoping he’ll get back together with Jennifer Aniston?

Dammit, now I’m curious about who he’s dating … excuse me while I consult with Google …

Google has nothing since the Charlize Theron reports in January. How mysterious of Mr Pitt!

Anyways, I’m no longer keeping up with celebrity salaciousness and I seem to be surviving just fine without it. The world hasn’t ended. Life is going on.

Whether I’ll survive Bartenders’ Week next week is a totally different matter … Yes, that’s actually a thing … I’m kicking it off at an event that includes 16 Monkey Shoulder ambassadors from across the globe helping to launch the giant Monkey Cocktail Mixer truck, plus the Sailor Jerry Airstream with live tattoos, the Hendrick’s Airstream, the Glenfiddich double decker whisky bus and more …


Song of the day: Crowded House “How will you go?”

PS The main pic is me in my 30s … well, probably my late 20s … partying up a storm.

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