I am not a professional beer writer and this column is a good example of why. Pete Brown achieves a balance in this column that I don't think I could in my writing - but it is a challenging one.... which is why it is a very good read:
...I think this proves that you can perhaps take beer too seriously. Yes, there are times when I want to scream with rage at the way beer is disrespected, commoditised, trivialised and patronized. But I’ll admit there are also times when I want to say, ‘Guys, get a grip – it’s only beer.’ At the top of my beer blog I have the strapline, ‘Treating beer with the respect and irreverence it deserves since 2003’. I believe both are equally important...
Know what he is talking about? Go have a read. What I like is how he takes two forms of respect related to beer and balances each against the other and against balance, too. I like it structurally but his point is also worth considering. So far over 5% of entries in the OCB have received reasonably interesting annotation of some sort - few of which have to do with the grinding of axes. After just a month or so. What if it gets to 17% or 23%? I don't think it means that much except for my original point that the Oxford Companion to Beer and thinking about beer deserves taking on. Because respecting beer includes respecting thinking about beer and facts about beer.
But - like Pete says - not to the point we forget it is fun. And it is fun to think about beer, too.