Gull Dam Brewing


Rounding out my weekend in the Brainerd area and my day in Nisswa, I stopped by Gull Dam Brewing. The taproom might appear empty, but that’s because it was around 1:00 in the afternoon on a Tuesday (it’s a glamorous life, I know). A warm summer day and live music could quickly fill it up.

I ordered a Hemp Pilsner (5.3% ABV, 40 IBU)—a clean Czech pilsner complimented with Minnesota-grown hemp seeds for a slight nutty finish. My next natural step was to start a rowdy game of Guess Who like the gull dam adult I am.

Doug, a water chemistry expert, offered me advice while taking a break from his kickass job. “You need a reason to get out of bed in the morning. I tried retiring a couple times, and that wasn’t for me. Beer is the reason I get up!”

For Doug, work isn’t just about earning a paycheck. That fact is made obvious solely by his coming out of retirement. The work one chooses to do when work is not required for a livelihood is symbolic: it shows a dedication to something purely for the purpose of the activity itself. Doug, for example, chose beer. I think I’d like to be like Doug.

But, why should choosing purposeful work be limited to working “for fun” or during retirement? Is it possible to receive all the comforts we do at our current jobs, while working for something that gives us a reason to wake up? You tell me.


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