TFBTV Mail Room #3: The Mailbag Runneth Over!

Only a few weeks ago, James opened the first piece of TFBTV fan mail, and now – the PO BOX was so full that the USPS had to withhold some of the mail!

In this episode, James discusses what beer he’s drinking tonight (as is tradition now) and opens letters and packages from YOU.

Want to get on the Mailbag program? Send in (almost) anything: packages, letters, goods that you want to promote, etc. This is open to individuals AND businesses that want exposure.

TFBTV Mail Room:
PO BOX 52288
New Orleans, LA 70152

Note that Patreon supporters are eligible to win the things James opens on the program! Become a TFBTV supporter today!

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Many THANKS to:

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James Reeves

• NRA-licensed concealed weapons instructor, 2012-present
Maxim Magazine’s MAXIMum Warrior, 2011
• “Co-Director” [air quotes] of TFBTV
• Former Regional Sales Rep, Interstate Arms Corp., MA
• Champion, Key West Cinco De Mayo Taco Eating Competition
• GLOCK® Certified Pistol Operator, 2017-2022
• Lawyer
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  • Evan

    So I didn’t watch the video because I’m on my phone and not near a computer, but what beer was he drinking?

    • Tassiebush

      https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/502439afdd534e10879de26f6d39ea1e733b53ff82fd3ed68aa127aaf4aac821.jpg
      Your cascade beer is an imposter! Real Cascade beer is cascade lager or cascade draught and if you want fruit go for a mercury cider 😉
      Bluster aside they are rather nice and if I catch anyone drinking anything else I immediately have social licence to accuse them of a multitude of things generally implying that they’re not a local, not to be trusted and likely to be guilty of various forms of degeneracy.

      • Evan

        Don’t know about your Cascade brewery, but then again I’ve never been to Australia. The Cascade I know is a brewery from Oregon that makes outstanding sour beers.

        I like cider, never heard of that brand though. I’m actually in the process of brewing up some pear cider.

        • Tassiebush

          I think most Australians would be familiar with them but I don’t know if either are available internationally. Cascade brewery is the oldest brewery in the country established in 1832. It’s based in South Hobart. I was actually pretty surprised to discover there’s only one brewer in the USA older than it!
          Mercury cider is focussed on apple cider. It has been around since 1911 and it’s a brand owned by cascade. Apples used to be a huge industry here and cider was an obvious offshoot for it.
          Tasmania has another major brand in the north Boags. It’s good too but I won’t always admit that for parochial reasons. We’re really lucky to have two good local brands.
          There’s certainly a thriving micro brewery sector too and distilleries. I have a cider brewer less than 100m away actually.
          I definitely like a good pear cider. The local cider scene is really good at the moment.
          That’s cool that you’re doing one. Good luck with your batch. I tried one a month or two ago but it wasn’t very successful. I suspect I didn’t give it enough extra sugar among other things.

          • Evan

            No need to add any extra sugar to any cider. If you didn’t boil the juice before fermenting it though, you could have a problem with wild yeasts/bacteria that occur naturally on the fruit skin. I don’t know what went wrong with your batch, but it could have been a wild yeast issue, a temperature issue, or something else. I know a lot of people add yeast nutrient to ciders to help keep the yeast healthy.

          • Tassiebush

            I reckon I set it up to fail with inferior ingredients. It didn’t taste so much bad as bland. I should have used a more flavoursome juice and a more appropriate yeast. My brew would be more in place in a prison.

          • Evan

            Blandness can be a problem with pear ciders. I once spent close to $30 on a bottle of some pear cider from Normandy (it was called Christian Drouin or something like that) that ended up tasting like seltzer water. Completely flavorless. Apparently the right strain of yeast makes all the difference. I was told to use cider yeast, which apparently gives the best results.

          • Tassiebush

            That makes sense. I was testing out the idea of seeing if a cheaply made home brew with very generic components was in any way comparable to a commercial one.
            I just used bakers yeast apple and pear juice (should have tried apple by itself) and a few spoonfuls of extra sugar. You can see the set up in the picture. A pin pricked balloon in the bottle which I wrapped in a shirt to keep it dark. It wasn’t a terrible result but it just wasn’t much better than very diluted juice with alcohol added. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/11ad6b24791b7aa1ea9ffc2c45867cf94ab595e35047e910c4110da77c5d76e7.jpg

          • Evan

            Ah. I see. Yeah, I’m using fresh pressed pear juice that a friend of mine has a source for, sanitizing everything, and then using proper yeast and equipment. More expensive and time consuming, but you get a better product.

          • Tassiebush

            Ordinarily I’d approach it the same way albeit probably with apple. This approach starts with “sterile” juice that is seemingly filtered but that doesn’t make for much flavour. It was a worthwhile experiment to try. Would have been something like $1per litre if it had worked out!

          • Evan

            Yeah using juice you get from the store just isn’t the best option. The key is finding an orchard that will be willing to sell you fresh pressed juice. They usually charge about $2 a gallon, which (and I’m not sure of the exchange rate between the US and Australian dollar) works out to about 50 cents a liter. Not bad, considering I payed close to $30 for a 750ml bottle of pear cider which had no flavor once.

          • Tassiebush

            I’d pay about $8 for a 500ml pear cider here.

          • Evan

            That seems about reasonable. I bought this bottle because it was expensive and the label art looked legit, it made it look like it was made by some cidery that had been around for hundreds of years in the Norman countryside or some such. Not making that mistake again. Now I look up expensive bottles before I buy them.

          • Tassiebush

            That cost would be about $6 in your money unless the exchange rate has changed.
            Yeah anyone can be dudded with stuff like that bottle you got. I think another example would be wines. Price can be quite irrelevant to taste in many cases. You don’t really know till you give it a try though.

          • Evan

            I don’t really drink wine, but I know wine prices can get ridiculous. I’m not about to pay hundreds of dollars for a bottle that I’m gonna drink in one night. The most I’ve ever paid for a beer was about $35, and the beers I’ve had that cost that much were worth it, but yeah, there’s been a few times I way overpaid for bottles that were terrible. I spent $50 on two beers once, Crime and Punishment, both by Stone, which is a pretty good brewery. They were very similar, both brewed with hot peppers, and both utterly undrinkable. It was like taking a beer, dumping a whole bottle of hot sauce in it, and trying to drink that. That $50 very literally went down the drain, as I ended up dumping both bottles.

          • Tassiebush

            That sounds painful on multiple levels. I have no idea what wine prices in the US are like but I find plenty of nice options for around the $10-15 mark. We’re lucky to have some very good producers here.

          • Evan

            I’m aware that wine can be had for that price, but I’m not sure if it’s any good. If I’m gonna drink wine, I usually just buy a box of Franzia, cause it’s like $15 for five liters and I can’t tell the difference between that and the good stuff. Right now I’m drinking Fuller’s London Pride, a good English bitter that I bought for $8 for a 4-pack of 330ml bottles. I don’t know if it’s available in Australia, but if it is it’s worth a try.

      • Dougscamo

        James R would never drink the Mercury Draught Cider….it clearly states “1911” on the label!

        • Tassiebush

          Haha oh man that’s a classic!

        • Yes, I’d be worried the beer wouldn’t reliably extract from the bottle.

  • Karl Vanhooten

    James, James, James . . . skip the fruity, girl beers and just have a manly Imperial Stout or Belgian quad. 9% alcohol isn’t going to kill you. But if you insist on Lite near-beers, well, – your guns have better taste than you do. Love the Blog. Keep up the good work.

    • Evan

      While a good imperial stout and Belgian Quad are excellent styles, they’re both a bit heavy for the summer. I wouldn’t go with Abita though, if I was going for blueberry I’d go with Cascade Blueberry Sour. That’s an excellent beer. In fact, if you’re gonna drink fruited beers, they should generally be sour.

      • Giolli Joker

        When I think beer for me it’s St. Bernardus Abt 12, Rocherfort 10, Gulden Draak… but yeah, maybe not the best choices in hot weather. On the “not really a beer” range I enjoyed Crabbie’s alcoholic ginger beer.

        • Evan

          Rochefort 10 and St Bernardus Abt 12 are probably my two favorite beers. Gulden Draak is decent as well. But they’re heavy and strong, and in the summer, I just can’t drink that stuff. Summertime, I like drinking saisons and various sours mostly, some wheat beers as well. Been drinking a lot of home brews lately, I got into that last year, and I’ve found another hobby to waste vast amounts of time and money on in addition to guns. I currently have a Norwegian farmhouse ale, a mead, a smoked porter, and experimental sour, and a pear cider at various stages of completion.

          • Giolli Joker

            If you’ll ever happen to be in Italy, look for Maltus Faber Extra Brune.
            You’ll like it.

          • Klaus Von Schmitto

            When I’m in Italy I go straight to the Grappa.

          • Giolli Joker

            I can’t really argue with that.
            Although I would not drink glasses of it.
            Great to clean the espresso cup at the end of the dinner.

          • Evan

            I’ll look for that. I’ve had one Italian beer worth drinking, I think it was called AMA Brune or something like that, it was an abbey-style dubbel. Honestly though, I wouldn’t go to Italy for the beer. If I’m gonna travel to Europe for the beer, I’m going straight to Belgium.

    • Paul Rain

      As long as it’s not an IPA. May as well drink pureed birth control pills.

      • Evan

        While I wouldn’t go so far as to say pureed birth control pills, hops are flowers from the female plant, and if you drink too much IPA you end up ingesting unhealthy levels of plant estrogen. Good thing that it’s kind of a boring style to begin with.

        • Oregon213

          Where did all the IPA-hate come from? If an IPA is boring, I don’t want to know what you think of Hamms.

          A cold beer is a good beer.

          • Evan

            IPA is an overdone and boring style of beer that has unfortunately overtaken much of the craft beer industry. It also contains a lot of plant estrogen due to the large amounts of hops used.

            I’m not saying that no IPA is good, there are a few that I like fine, but what I am saying is that there are much better styles of beer out there that are basically completely ignored while a style that was mediocre to begin with gets all the attention.

            I’ve never heard of Hamms, and if beer is served too cold it can suppress aromas and flavors.

          • Dougscamo

            Hamms….working from memory here but it was an older beer “brewed in the land of sky blue waters”….unless someone has revived the brand….

          • Evan

            Was it any good?

          • Dougscamo

            Well, let’s put it this way….I was too young to buy it when they advertised it on TV in the early years of the last half of the previous century so I don’t really know….sorry

          • GaryOlson

            No, but it was cheap and available in 24 pack cartons.

          • Paul Rain

            A nice stout on a warm day- that’s where it’s at.

          • I wunder

            It came from non hipsters that like cold refreshing pilsners on a hot day. Don’t be surprised that most of us don’t want to drink stuff some hipsters knocked up in their barn in Ashville, Nc that tastes like soap. Without hipsters to overpay for poor beer (the majority of all craft), the craft market would be a lot smaller. Especially the ipa and goofy fruity canned piss that is so prevalent.

          • Evan

            First, dismissing everyone who likes beer that has flavor as hipsters is ridiculous and wilfully ignorant. Second, Miller Lite isn’t a pilsner by any means. You want a good pilsner, try Victory Prima Pils. Third, Asheville, NC is known for a number of excellent breweries.

          • I wunder

            I was referring more so to Czech imports , German pils, or Bavarian helles such as Weihenstephaner. I would still rather drink beer flavored water(Miller lite?) before drinking offensive soap tasting ipa. And I second prima pils! Naturally there are good craft breweries, but there are far more that suck and obsess over unthirst quenching styles like milk stouts and ipas. A large number of craft breweries do survive due to a hipster scene, such as the local to me Sawmill works out of Knoxville, or Yazoo out of Nashville. Neither make anything that is better than average, with somethings being borderline undrinkable, yet they are selling $10 a sixer everyday. The typical person will much prefer a pilsner, helles, or kölsch on a hot day was my main point.

          • Evan

            Ok, I assumed based on the comments about hipsters and categorizing all craft beer as tasting like soap (I just don’t get that one) that by pilsner you meant Miller Lite. If you’re from Tennessee (a wonderful state where I have family), I’d suggest trying Blackberry Farms, an excellent brewery that you have down there specializing in farmhouse styles and sours.

            That being said, you ought to keep an open mind about beer styles. Milk stouts can be amazing, and while I agree that the vast majority of IPAs aren’t worth drinking, there are some excellent ones out there. As far as thirst quenching goes, that’s what water is for. Yeah, on a hot summer day, a pils or a gose or saison is far more refreshing than an imperial stout, but that isn’t to say that imperial stout is a bad style of beer. For instance, if you ever have the opportunity, an oatmeal stout and some smoked salmon is about the best breakfast you’ll ever have (though I wouldn’t recommend beer for breakfast if you have any plans for the day).

    • Black Dots

      All beers are girl beers.

      • Evan

        Defend that statement.

        • Black Dots

          Simple test to determine if the beer you are drinking is a girl beer: Is the beer you are drinking spelled “W-H-I-S-K-E-Y”? If the answer is “no” then I got bad news for you.

          • Evan

            So despite the fact that the overwhelming majority of beer consumers are men, beer is still girly for not being whiskey. Cool.

          • Brick

            Come on. Be real here.

            There’s nothing better when you’re working outside on a blistering 95* day than two fingers of Macallan 18, neat. So refreshing.

          • Evan

            You just made me throw up in my mouth a little.

          • Black Dots

            Damn, dude, I’m just joshin’

          • Evan

            Sorry, it can be hard to detect sarcasm through a computer sometimes.

  • Ark

    James was carrying his Dolla Billz Hi Point in a shoulder holster and y’all couldn’t even tell.

    • Hoova_cripz

      Dats rite. My man gotta hi point bran glock foty wrapoed in dolla benny frank billz ya heard? Tfbtv out hur in da streets all day. Dem boyz in it to take eurythang. God blesa the marks, tricks, and busters that step fore us in new orlans wit da hi point bran glock fotys and fram hushurs. Blip blip blawow ! Hova out da roof in da grove.

      • Machinegunnertim

        Word.

  • Burt Gummer

    Enjoy the decals and well thought letter James. ;^)

    P.S. Wasn’t sure if blue was your favorite color but I rolled with it for the envelope.

  • Dougscamo

    It’s time to discuss the 800 pound gorilla in this post….James R.
    He is clever, handsome, fit, wears tee shirts most of us haven’t been able to get into since Hootie and the Blowfish was a hot group, comfortable enough in his masculinity to joke about it, gets to play with all these really neat toys called guns for free, gets to drink while he is on the job, AND is married to an absolute babe!
    It’s official….we hate you James!
    P.S. Not really….we’re just jealous….despite the pink and blue beers….

  • Brick

    According to a documentary I saw last December, somebody with this much mail on their desk has to be Santa Claus.

    So, Santa, can I have a pallet of .50 BMG this year? I promise to be super good.

  • mazkact

    Meade from the horn of a freshly slaughtered yak.

  • Flounder

    So Patrick is the reason you can’t have nice things…

  • fintroll

    I think James is the lucky girl, not his wife ;_

  • .45

    Eh, forget the beer. Take a shot of vodka with every package! (Letters can be something milder if you like.)