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On the Beer

mark wood

by Mark Wood

May 24th Special Report

Gentleman, start your engines and head for the parks!

Nowhere else in the world do the natives thrash in the woods with such wild abandon as they do here in Newfoundland on May 24th weekend. They settle in cabins, provincial parks and gravel pits in the worst kind of weather for three days and nights of debauchery.

The ordeal is a mandatory passage of manhood, an unspoken part of our heritage, and what beer is all about.

Consider the contents of a typical car heading out the highway on Fryday afternoon, May 24th. Each person has a package of hot dogs, a tin of beans, a loaf of bread and about six dozen beer. The ancient joke, "Where are you going with all that bread?" rings true.

We know that two beer a day is of medicinal benefit. However, while camping you are expected to take your medicine every hour, on the hour.

As a veteran of such expeditions, I do have some advice that may preserve and change your life. First, refrain from any activity requiring coordination and/or machinery. As a matter of fact, don't get up from that picnic table, and refrain from all activity. Second, carry a roll of duct tape for first-aid and repairs.

You may have also noticed that the majority of the female population are not in the woods, but back in Town on May 24th. I should know - I met my wife on a May 24th weekend, ten years ago, in Town. So carry the torch, boys, for I will roam the woods no more!

And Happy Anniversary, hon!

Mark is also a regular columnist with The Independent (.ca) newspaper.