Do you find that words somehow start cropping up all over the place? Words that you never really ever heard before … at least not in the normal way? It seems that suddenly, for whatever reason, a word becomes the flavour of the week/month/year and everywhere you turn it has found its way into conversation, or news reports, or political speeches.
“Dialogue,” is one of those, we think. For a while, nobody had a talk, or a chat, or a conversation … they had a dialogue. I think that the conversation mattered more when it was a dialogue, like somehow words you used actually meant something.
Another is, “mandate”. My Lord, try to get someone to do something, no matter how sensible or practical or necessary, and then find out that “It isn’t part of my mandate”. Well. You might as well pack up your tent and move along, because it’s not going to happen now.
And, “impact”. If I hear about how something is going to impact something else just one more time, it will be one time too many. We aren’t even sure that this is a verb, although that seems to be how it is used all the time.
Finally, though it is one that seems kind of useful, is “engage”. We hear that one all the time, and think it is a bit different. Dialogue and mandate and impact all sound like words that can make the ordinary a bit more than they actually are. But engaged, that seems different.
While there are several definitions and uses for engaged (some of which may have a very direct connection to beer, by the way), the one we like best has to do with gears. When gears become engaged, one gear will make the other one turn. And so on for the next gear, and so on, and so on.
Without being engaged, gears are pretty much useless. And, if a machine needs to do work, even one gear that is not engaged will prevent the desired outcome.
We think that the Yukon would be a better place if there was just a bit more engagement going on.
Look at this paper, as a good example. It helps to engage you with your community by informing you, and that is good, but it goes beyond that. It lets various individuals spout off about what is on their mind, generally tying back into the Yukon, all in an effort to make the gears turn. If you weren’t engaged in what goes on around you, let’s face it … you wouldn’t be reading this article, would you?
Yukon Brewing Company certainly tries to get engaged in our community as a business within it. We get involved in a lot of events, sponsorships and promotions, but what really captures our interest are the opportunities to get engaged. One gear, spinning on its own, will accomplish nothing. But engage those gears with other gears, and you can start to make something happen. And the cool thing about gears is, it doesn’t matter how big or small they are. Big gears will engage with little ones, then back to big ones, no problem. As long as they engage, because it doesn’t matter a lick how big any gear is, if it is not engaged, it does nothing.
We also hope to get people engaged about beer. Just a commodity to some, I suppose, but much more to others. Some want to know where it comes from, what is in it, how should it best be treated, how can it most be damaged and all that jazz. But that is material for another column or three.
For now, just get out there and get engaged. See what is going on around you, see what you can do with your time, your knowledge, your enthusiasm, your money and turn it into a gear. Then, find somebody and/or something to mesh with and see what you can make happen.
Actually, that is maybe the best thing about being in the Yukon. Beer Buzz is coming to you from the road this week, and people in the Yukon sure do seem to be a lot more engaged than those we find out here. Makes the Yukon a pretty cool place to be.
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