Wars happen, everybody knows it, hardly anybody cares about it. We all just sit happy and oblivious in suburbia while the fat cats in Washington send our boys to topple whichever upjumped drug lord finds themselves with a bit too much power for their own good. We're just kids going to Baskin Robins, finding 31 flavors of oppression to fill our waffle cone with. Except this last time they sent my boy. Like any father I was sad to see him go, and proud to see him serve. I knew the Fermentada cartel was mean, but I knew our boys had the best equipment and training to deal with them. He sent back word of atrocities like trub left to dry, sticky malt residue, and stuck on hop leaves. I was shaken to the core by his stories, but I just kept telling myself, "My boy has got PBW and Starsan over there, what can stand up to that?" He sent me a letter telling me his group was going to hit some real ugly stuff in the next few days. Carboys tossed in the closet for a year without being cleaned. Bottling buckets not rinsed out, that sort of thing. He said he loved me and not to worry.
That was that last I heard from him.
Apparently Operation RDWHAHB was an utter fiasco. Words like infection, and cheap hooch were thrown around. Everyone was pointing their finger at someone else. Nobody could be bothered to look to themselves. I didn't care about the politicos and their BJCP campaigns they desperately tried to salvage. I just cared that my boy didn't come home. I reached out to brewers, zymurgists, and cicerones. Everybody gave their condolences, but nobody would do a damned thing about what happened.
4 years later I received word through the hop bine that the cartel took a lot of prisioners, and that my boy was still out there, stuck in some vile homebrew gathering ever since that night. You hear about them on 60 minutes, heck, you even have movies about them, they just didn't happen for real, or so I thought.
I started pushing again on the powers that be to do something about it, but time and time again HBT mods said that diplomatic tensions tied their hands. I cried myself to sleep night after night knowing my boy was subjected to friendly arguing about dough in temps and being force fed atomic buffalo turds and apfelwein.
Until I stopped crying little girl tears and decided to so something about it.
If the admins weren't going to help me get my boy back, then dammit I'd go do it myself. I hooked up with some old brewbuddies from back in the day. These were hardcore sons of guns that started with Mr Beer, and now had full on HERM systems going. We started making plans to go in for an extract-ion. We knew this was risky as all hell, but what else could be done? I'd do the same for my buddies, malt is thicker than blood.
We're in the final stages of preparation now. I've got a killer team, a brew hauler to get us there, but now we just need the tools when we hit the ground to make those sorry bastards pay. We'll go in with what we have, but we all know a carboy brush just isn't going to cut it. One of my guys mentions some new state of the art tech, a carboy cleaner that hooks into a power drill. A skunkworks reject too pricey for the BJCP panels. He tells me there are working prototypes out there, but how do we get our hands on one? My buddy then says that the seediest of brew forums is organizing a giveaway, and they'll be going to people that truly need them.
So here I am, begging you to not just help me, but help my boy too. His name is Carlton, but I always just called my boy Car for short.