Beer should be drunk in moderation, quite a lot of the time.Summer is not one of those times.The same may well apply to winter, autumn and spring, for all I know.I do know beer is composed almost entirely of water, so when the warmer weather rolls around my strategy is hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.The scientist in me is swayed by the Czech proverb: a fine beer may be judged with only one sip, but it's better to be thoroughly sure.Beer has managed to get an unfairly bad press - it could have something to do with footballers.Handcuff me and cart me off to the non-PC detention centre, but it's time to set the record straight.For example, my brother has proved conclusively - to me, at least - that it's not beer that causes hangovers, but sleep."When your head hits the pillow you're fine, right?" he argues."And when you wake up you're not."He closes his thesis simply by shrugging his shoulders and spreading his hands.I find his logic flawless, particularly before my head hits the pillow.Beer definitely makes you smarter and funnier, at least in your opinion, so that's got to be good for self-esteem, right?Despite my best efforts, beer consumption has dropped from 75 per cent of all alcohol in Australia to 44 per cent, its lowest level in 60 years.Still, I agree with American humourist Dave Barry's contention that beer is mankind's greatest invention."Oh, I grant you that the wheel was also a fine invention," says Barry, "but the wheel does not go nearly as well with pizza."Many great minds have lauded the amber nectar's finest properties.Plato said that it was a "wise man who invented beer".Abraham Lincoln stated that in any national crisis the great point was to bring the people "the real facts, and beer".Benjamin Franklin believed beer was "proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy".Beer definitely has religion on its side.Ralph Waldo Emerson declared: "God made yeast, as well as dough, and loves fermentation just as dearly as he loves vegetation."Belgian monks, who are terrific at three things - praying, not talking much and making beer - have a saying: "The good Lord has changed water into wine, so how can drinking beer be a sin?"I'll pass on light beer, though.I side with the Capital Brewery in Middleton, Wisconsin, which declares: "People who drink light don't like the taste of beer; they just like to pee a lot."I reckon the Nobel prize for science should have been awarded to a New Zealand student called Kent Hodgson, who invented a liquid CO2 device that can chill a warm can of beer in seconds.My prize for the world's best-named beers goes to two in the US.In Colorado I found "Alimony Ale - bitterest brew in America".And in Utah, home of multi-marrying Mormons, I came across "Polygamy porter", which had the wonderful catch-line: "Why stop at one?"With apologies to St Francis of Assisi, my favourite beer motto is: "Grant me the stubbornness to change what I can, the laziness to accept what I cannot, and enough good beer to sit around and endlessly discuss the difference between the two."I spotted it in the High Country Inn at Whitehorse, in Canada's Yukon territory. You may wonder what I was doing all the way up near the Arctic Circle.The answer should be obvious: looking for a cold beer.