Removing a Sticker and Drinking an ISA

Kyle Davis, August 07, 2013

This is a story of great personal sacrifice and profound accomplishment.

I own a house. More specifically, my wife and I own a house together. Even more specifically, there is a bank that owns the house my wife and I live in and we give them money every month in exchange for being able to claim the residence as our own. This house, being part of a small development of like houses, was given the letter “A” upon completion, allowing mail carriers and bill collectors and religious missionaries the ability to distinguish it from the others. How this “A” was displayed to the outside world was in the form of a white and black sticker placed on the front door. This method, my wife informed me, would not stand.

My wife, in her infinite wisdom, decided that a metal letter, placed bellow the already existing metal numbers on the exterior of our house, was preferable to the unsightly sticker on the front door. I could not disagree with her assessment. For I, despite substantial evidence to the contrary, am not a rube.

After many months of idle discussion and planning, a metal letter “A” was finally purchased from the Internet. Soon after, the letter arrived at our home, and the time for letter installation and sticker removal was upon us. The letter went up without much fuss. Holes were drilled, caulk was applied, and the letter was mounted. It wasn’t perfectly level at first blush, but a few suggestive taps with a hammer straightened things out nicely. Then came the time to remove the sticker.

As I started to return our tools and supplies to their proper place in the garage, my wife took it upon herself to start the sticker removal process. The sticker, designed no doubt for exterior surfaces such as mailboxes and the front doors of houses, created from material able to withstand moisture and extreme temperatures, was being a huge pain in the ass. I should mention that I fashion myself as something of a sticker removal expert. When CDs were a thing, I had a complex and impressive system by which I removed their labels without leaving so much as a smudge on the case. I keep a full receptacle of Goof Off under my sink at all times and I take pride in the quality and pace of my process. I happily volunteered to slay the viscous beast that lay before us. I cracked my knuckles and clenched my fists in cocksure anticipation.

It was then that I first noticed my disadvantage. I had clipped my nails the day before. My main instruments for victory had now become a hindrance. I would be unable to apply my craft optimally. No matter, like Michael Jordan with the flu and a hobbled Kirk Gibson before me — like George Washington and his frozen, famished troops crossing the Delaware in darkness on Christmas night, so too, would I have to dig deep within myself to find a resilience heretofore unimagined.

My wife returned to the front door with a cold can of Two Beers Trailhead ISA. I took the courage she was offering and took a large drink, the crisp and refreshing yet assertive hop profile propelling me forward. I scraped against the edges of the sticker, painstakingly working the devilish material into a concentrated body that ever so slowly grew into a perimeter around the lower quadrant. I began to peel, the thin and rubbery substance threatening to dissipate, its fragility requiring a delicate touch and the patience of a monk. The peeled off section grew, gaining strength from its own mass, each millimeter removed offering priceless more leverage. With my head against the door, my finger force and wrist angles aligned, I felt the ground shift not with my feet, but rather with my mind, and I along with it. There was no spoon.

A cat threw up in the guest room.

I took another slug of beer and opened the front door to survey the damage. My wife waved me off, a champion, already present at the scene with cleaning materials and paper towel. I returned to the sticker and pulled, sending to pasture almost three-quarters of the sticky, rubbery material. I held it between my fingers and worked in into a ball, surveying the fruits of my labor, taking stock in my triumph. Nothing but pitiful remnants stayed stuck to the door. I wiped them away with a flick of my thumb and a hearty scrub of Goof Off. A few sprays of Windex and circular cleaning motions later, the journey was complete. I had vanquished the sticker on the front door of my house. Visitors and solicitors alike would forevermore know the entrance of my home to be cool, and not lame.

Two Beers Trailhead ISA

Appearance: 3.5 / Light, yellow-orange with good lacing and substantial foam.

Smell: 4.0 / Fresh, hoppy, grassy, refreshing.

Taste: 3.5 / Crisp and assertive with a citrusy, hop-forward flavor.

Feel: 3.5 / Light and drinkable with medium carbonation. More sessionable than one would expect from the taste and flavor. Dry finish.

Overall: 3.75 / A supremely pleasant and drinkable beer with a refreshing yet apparent hoppiness. Perfect for warm weather or strenuous physical activity.