Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Set 'em Up Joe

I've confessed on here before that I'm pretty much a beer snob. I'll only drink certain brands and types of beer and never from a can. But despite my affinity for beer I've never been much of a bar goer.

Matter of fact, my history with bars is shaky at best. Until I find a new distraction I'm going to write about my various experiences in bars. I'm not going to follow a chronological order but a rambling one as I see fit though I'll start by saying the first ever bars I entered was as but a young child.

Yes, I wrote as a young child. But it's okay ... because I was with my dad.

For my entire life my dad has been a salesman. Automobiles, hardware, vet supplies on down to hair products. Many other titles could be bestowed upon my father. Hunter, cowboy, alcoholic. To name a few. He was and is a big man. These days he's no taller than my own six foot five but before back surgeries and year of hard living forced a stoop to his spine he stood within a couple of inches of seven foot. Like myself he was never a lean brand of tall. But thick-shouldered, broad-fisted, and all-too-willing to prove his strength if necessary.

He was a man other men feared. And while I never spent a great deal of time with him as child the time I did spend was either in t he field hunting, on the lake fishing, or in some smoke-filled dimly lit room watching him play poker and drink Canadian Whiskey.

Not all of these rooms were technically bars but I think of them as such. Even the backrooms of liquor stores, the shadow filled appliance store long closed for the night. the rural barns out in the boonies. I would eventually drift off to sleep with the sound of various splashes filling my ears. Those of poker chips hitting the table and whiskey tumbling over ice.

The sounds that woke me were never as tranquil. Shouted curses. Fleshy smacks of a fist meeting a nose. Slamming doors.

These memories are not so much plentiful as they are memorable. Three maybe four occurrences but to this day the right combo of smells will bring them to the forefront of my mind. And that combination of smells is most often found in a barroom. 

And that is why I've never been a fan of bars.

But as you'll learn in coming posts that distaste alone wasn't enough to keep me from visiting my share over the years.


Debra She Who Seeks said...

This series is off to a good start!

Annie said...

Great imagery here!

yellowdoggranny said...

my sons had been to so many pool halls with me that when we were in a lawyers office, my one son said he must not make very much money..I said how do you know that?...he said he doesn't have a pool table.

the walking man said...

Bar Stories eh? Yeah i think I will just sit on mine and be glad to read yours Travis.

Charles Gramlich said...

I was the opposite of a beer snob for awhile, but am more so now. This looks to be an interesting series of pieces.

March2theSea said...

more beer is getting in to cans due to the ease of shipping/trasnport and overall cost. I actually seek out favorite beers in cans now. Harpoon Summer went to cans this past year and you couldn't find it as it sold so quickly.

Beer is good..

Ricky Bush said...

Me. I drank Falstaff for 89 cents a six pack all through college. I do discriminate a bit more nowaday. Can't get Falstaff any longer anyways.

Valerie Boersma said...

I have lots of my own bar memories, and I'm looking forward to reading about yours. Back in my college days, the beer of choice was Lone Star-"The beer that likes to party." For me and my friends, that was reason enough.

DrillerAA09 said...

You have indeed led a colorful life, particularly as a child. Looking forward to future installments.