Tuesday, December 19, 2006


We were in a cigar bar that was buried deep inside another bar, and it was far too fancy for me. After a half hour of choking on cigar smoke and getting pissy, I snapped.

"Hey Stan."

He looked over at me, and I smiled

"Fuck this place."

He gave me a confused look, and with that I poured my beer on the floor, then took the glass and shattered it. The bouncer was incredulous, and three of them began walking towards me.

I looked at the closest one, held my hands up. "Don't worry man, I'm leaving anyway. This place sucks."

With that I made a beeline for the door, and walked out into the main bar. It took me a couple seconds after walking out of this cigar room to realize that the bouncers were probably going to beat the shit out of me, so I took off trying to find my way out, ending up drunk on the street with no cigarettes and angry men after me. With that, I waited. For what I'm not sure, I may or may not have bummed a smoke from someone on the street.

Yes, you can't take this drunken redneck to nice places, and I don't like drinking around people that quite obviously have a lot more money then me (or at least act like they do.) When you mix my hatred of the upper classes with a whole lot of beer and some old fashioned snobbery on the part of the bar, bad things will happen.

This is the reason that I would always rather drink at a dive shithole bar than a nice one like the ones in Hoboken or Morristown- I never feel so out of place as I do when I'm drinking around rich folks. When I was at the American Legion bar last week drinking with an old gray bartender who'd been in Korea and a couple of fucked up Vietnam vets, I felt fine. I drank all night there and nothing happened, and I didn't start any trouble (even if I had, that bartender had seen the Bataan Death March, so what the fuck was some drunk like me going to do to scare him?) If, however, you put me in a nice place with carpets and couches and fifteen juiced up guido bouncers, well, I'll start trouble.

I don't feel like an equal at those fancy joints; even if I'm dressed up, it's clear once I open my mouth that I'm not exactly high class. My mannerisms and actions are working class, and I can get very reactionary if I'm put around people that I think are looking down on me, even if they're not.

I like the dives because of the downtrodden working men that go there, the guys who use chainsaws and hammers during the day and drink because they got nothing else to do at night. There's stories there that flood these bars, hard lessons that the streets have taught them. They have no place at a club where the rich do designer drugs and dance like the goddamn dirty guidos that they are to their thumping techno garbage. The anger wells inside of me as I write this, and if I know that if I was at that Morristown bar again I'd have done the same thing.


Either way, it was fun at the time but now it's not so much, and I'm drinking far too much lately. On my "recovery days" of Monday through Wednesday, I'm taking stock of how much drinking really needs to be done. When you couple the fact that I could have had my teeth kicked in on Saturday night with the whole adventure of having to get Harry's car out of the impound after a DWI (all the while reliving my own), I think I need to take it a little easier... I'm getting the feeling that it's only a matter of time before me and the cops meet again in some fashion, and I'm not digging that at all.

It is, of course, only Tuesday. Who knows what Friday will bring.


Buzz said...

Two points:

1. Even when I got the teaching gig (pseudo-white collar, have to wear a tie now and again anyway) I still go to "Fannies" where the guys leaning on the bar either have dry wall mud caked into their armhair or lie and concrete ground into their boots. Best dude's to drink with. The cigar bar set has too much money yet still no class. They talk about stupid shit from the office and haven't a clue about a real work-day.

2. During the summer of 2000 I was on a deployment cycle in Guam. As time drew near for us to come back to the states we took our partying to a whole 'nother level, pushing our drinking limits, our additudes with the locals, and scraping just to stay a half step ahead of the law. When I talk to my bro's about that summer nowadays, we all concluded that it was good that we left when we did becuase one of us was bound to end up in jail or dead based on the pace we were living.

In short, it's ok to throttle back on the partying, to settle in, to realize that you don't have to scrape and claw your way through life and that it's allright to go with the flow.

It's a tell-tale sign you're growing up a little Irish, when thoughts like what you posted start to creep into frame of mind.

Anonymous said...

Amen brutha....fuck them yuppie bars.

Jenn said...

And you wonder why there is worry.

Anonymous said...

I dunno, Irish. In a way I can see your point of not wanting to spend your free time in a bar with the snobbish elite... but at the same time, most of those people who you are convinced are looking down on you are probably not thinking much of you or your working class ways. It can be really easy to create those conflicts in your mind which might not exist in reality.

But are some of those people like that? Staring snootily down their noses while they babble incoherently about their place in the Hamptons and the elegant bouquet of their $80 a glass cognac? Absolutely. But most people are too immersed in whatever is going on in their own life to notice what the hell anyone else around them is up to anyway (and that's a whole different problem unto itself).