First published in 2012, The World Atlas of Beer by Tim Webb and Stephen Beaumont is a beer book about which many nice things might be said.
It might be said that it’s fairly remarkable in that it is sweeping in scope; taking you on a beer tour with brief stops in literally almost every part of the world; yet somehow manages not to be tiresome or overwrought in its aims. With excellent illustrations and photographs, one might also say that this book, billed as “the essential guide to the beers of the world,” is as interesting to look at in passing as it is to read in depth and that it would make a fitting coffee table book for lovers of beer both professional and novice.
The book touches on the history, the science, and the art of beer and features everything from basic beer definitions, to explanations of the nuances of style, to pairing, pouring, storing and cellaring beer, and so one might easily say that this is a good candidate for the only beer book you might ever need.
Of course, I’m not going to say any of those things.
That’s because this book, newly revised and expanded for a 2016 edition that features updated information and a new ‘Guide to Bad Beer’ seems a very likely item to be included in all manner of the obligatory “holiday gift guides” that bloggers and newspaper editors the world over are about to subject us to.
And so, because there are so many nice things one might say about this book that you are surely about to hear from a lot of people and because those people are sure to focus on the myriad reasons why you might want to read this book, I thought I would offer instead some handy uses for this very nice book that do not involve reading.
Here are five great things to do with The World Atlas of Beer, that do not involve reading it.
Honestly, it’s not a great opener, but if you’re on the couch reading this book and have a beer in hand that you need to open, it might do in a pinch.
2. Use it to avoid eye contact on public transit.
No one likes interacting with other humans if they don’t have to. This book is large enough to handily protect you from nosy busybodies, overly-friendly commuters, and people seeking charitable holiday donations. You could even pick your nose behind it.
If there are any items in your home that are roughly one inch out of your reach, this is the thing you’ve been waiting for.
4. Use it as a tunnel for your choo choos.
If cheeky Thomas wants to go whooshing through a tunnel on his way to Tidmouth Sheds, James wants to keep the rain off his shiny red coat of paint, or even a leaser-known engine like Ryan here wants a rare day of adventure, this book will do the trick nicely. (Full disclosure: I can’t speak to adaptability with those Chuggington freaks).
5. Cover your head with it in inclement weather.
If you’ve got no umbrella and you find yourself in the rain, this book seems to be made of sturdy enough stuff to at least have you covered for a kilometre sprint to the nearest shelter. Much more reliable and fashionable than that free left-wing daily you’ve got jammed in your bag.
If you want to get your hands on this book for any of the above uses or, I guess, read it, it retails for $30.00 and is available on Amazon, here.