The More You Know (The Spider Show)

The giant tarantula approaches El Cajon, apparently from Lucerne Valley.

Savage and Tipsy

No, it’s not a new TV cop show – although we’ll keep the name.

We could’ve called this edition of High Octane Growler The Spider Show, but we didn’t want to scare away the arachnally-wary. There’s really no way to justify this edition of High Octane Growler. You’ll just have to accept it as is, or wait for next week’s show.

Garett and Kruse: Stopping by Costco after a quick nine at the Newcastle Golf Club.

This is what happens when Growler host Tommy Hough jams Growler newbie Curt Kruse, “Returning Champion” Garett Michaels, and former Stone Brewing Distribution King Philip Smith into the same room, locks the studio door, and ramps up the beer-fueled conversational weirdness.

There are some who may argue the results aren’t pretty. Not everyone will find them funny. We spend a great deal of time debating various means of coping with and disposing of spiders, from toxic warfare to the giant orange Home Depot five-gallon bucket. The more you know.


The wheels come off, and the new Arrested Development episode reviews are in.

The results are savage and terrifying. Tommy’s laugh alone has been known to bring down buildings, frighten wild animals into hiding, and make senior citizens cry with fear.

From Peoria to Cleveland, the spirit and good name of The Duke is defiled, Larry King is humiliated, Tommy’s Scottish heritage menaced by high levels of peat, and wishful thinking forget-me-nows applied to everyone from Angie Dickinson to William Shatner after Garett relays the famous Tarantula Story of Greater El Cajon.

In between, as advertised, we sample of pair of terrific IPAs, as chosen by our pal and actual beer expert Phil. We dissect a great Imperial IPA from the Inland Empire of the Pacific Northwest in the form of No-Li Jet Star IPA, as well as a fresh growler of Reuben’s Brews Imperial Rye IPA from Seattle. In between talking about the nature of rye beers and western growler-fill laws, both beers receive enthusiastic, and overbearing thumbs-up. But they might not want them from this crowd.

Plugs for our friends at Reuben’s Brews and Boar’s Nest Barbecue in Ballard, as well as the Elk Public House in Spokane, with perhaps the greatest web URL ever. Brilliant. All within striking distance.

Venomous Insects Crawling Out of the Woodpile

High Octane Growler will go quietly with Angie Dickinson’s Officer Pepper Anderson.

For some reason, the conversation veered into what Garett likes to call “venomous insects crawling out of the woodpile to kill you.” If the idea of brown recluses, black widows, “orb-web” spiders, wolf spiders and tarantulas make you squeamish, just look over at the Angie Dickinson photo.

Tommy and the gang discuss spider encounters, but Garett wins by miles with yarn-spinning anecdotes about stalking black widow spiders in Alpine, and relaying the famous (and then missing) Tarantula Story of Greater El Cajon.

Kruse also discusses his arachnid pranks on the contractor working on his house, and his penchant for leaving life-size cut-outs of celebrities in unsuspecting places for friends and colleagues. Needless to say, no one tries to sneak candy out of Kruse’s cupboards anymore.

Beers Enjoyed

Shatner: If you see a cardboard cut-out of him in your living room, Kruse has your keys.

No-Li Jet Star Imperial IPA
American Double / Imperial IPA
ABV 8.1%

Reuben’s Brews Imperial Rye IPA
American Double / Imperial IPA
ABV 8.4%

Music Enjoyed

Tommy opted to kick off this edition of High Octane Growler with The Clash and “Jail Guitar Doors,” a song which first appeared as the b-side of “Clash City Rockers” in Great Britain, and later wound up on the U.S. edition of The Clash in 1979.

The more you know: Jail Guitar Doors is also the name for an initiative set up by another one of our favorites, Billy Bragg, which provides musical equipment and gear for prison inmates in Britain.

For the midsection we went to one of the greats, and one of the original, great classic rock double albums, when artists were either in the midst of a major creative seizure, were trying to fulfill a record deal with a live double, or found they had too many long songs and had to fill out a fourth side with leftover tracks. In the case of The Beatles and the almighty White Album (originally titled The Beatles), the case is the former, and our choice from the sprawling set is the underrated Lennon rock and roller “Everybody’s Got Something to Hide Except for Me and My Monkey,” featuring some of the Beatles’ chewiest guitars.

The more you know: While at FM 94/9 Tommy and Garett interviewed Beatles and White Album engineer Ken Scott in 2009 during the re-release of the Beatles’ catalogue, and Tommy posted the interview as a High Octane Growler show in February.

We close with a suggestion from Phil, the almighty and fantastic Taj Mahal and “She Caught the Katy.” The track comes from Taj Mahal’s 1968 debut album The Natch’l Blues, the title being a play on words with “natch,” a slightly lost bit of 60s vernacular for “naturally.” Featuring late guitarist Jesse Ed Davis, who played with Taj Mahal on many of his early albums, Taj was last seen by a friend of High Octane Growler at a hot spring near the Tassajara Zen Mountain Center Buddhist monastery, near Big Sur in the Santa Lucia Mountains.

The more you know: The Katy was the Missouri – Kansas – Texas Railroad, commonly referred to as the K.T., which was its stock exchange symbol. The symbol eventually evolved into “the Katy” nickname for the railroad, which ran out of track for good in 1988.

Thanks to broadcast brother Mike Hansen for the killer High Octane Growler imaging.

Big thanks to Ken Wright and Steve Wagner for their ongoing support (great seeing you in Portland this week Steve, thanks the 10th Anniversary Ruination and Enjoy By 7-4-13 IPA).

Thanks to Phil Smith for helping get the beer-to-radio ball rolling.

Garett, Phil and Kruse waiting on pulled pork sandwiches at Boar’s Nest Barbecue in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood.

John Wayne getting some advice from George Takei on the set of The Green Berets.

The 1976 Charlestown Chiefs were known for their respect for the national anthem, even though few of them were U.S. citizens.


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