No TV and no beer make Homer something something...

                            
~ H. Simpson

Unless you never touch the stuff (or drink it straight from the tap), you're probably familiar with the lovely beer coaster - a compact piece of commercial art found on the bars and tabletops of pubs, taverns, roadhouses, holes-in-the-wall, and other boozy venues. Besides their obvious graphical charms, they're not a bad way to keep track of what you drank, where you drank it, and how much of it you spilled. Here are a few I've picked up in beer-blessed wanderings in places like Amsterdam, Berkeley, Boston, Prague, and San Francisco:

Paulaner, Mackeson, Tankard, The Grasshopper

Leffe, McMennamins, Tomase

Union Street, Old Globe, Boonville, John Harvard

Hoegaarden, TWA, Fuller's ESB

Biercartoon, Jupiter, Lucky Labrador

Humpback, Fuller's London Pride, Genesee





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The habit of hoarding beer coasters (or beer mats, as they're called outside the US) is known as tegestology, which occupies its own tidy corner within the larger public house of Breweriana, in whose other corners can be found collectors of the things that go on the coasters (bottles, cans, glasses, steins and the like), and the things with which some of those things are labeled (namely, labels). Other collectors seek out the choicest bottle caps (
Bert of Sesame Street being the most famous of these), and still others just cut to the chase and collect beer itself in all its heady glory - something Bert might move on to upon reaching 21 or getting a fake ID.

You would be hard-pressed to find a more thirst-provoking set of pastimes, except perhaps for endurance sauna-sitting or Death Valley fun runs. 

Days of Beer and Coasters
"To Breweriana."
"Yes. And frogs."
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