Thursday, March 19, 2009

Nurse the Hate: Hate St. Patrick's Day

This year on St Patrick's Day, I covered all the bases on what makes the day so unique in a mere 58 minutes.

I have always had a love/hate relationship with St Patrick's Day. We've all had good times on St Patrick's Day, haven't we? Who amongst us hasn't woken up in a strange apartment covered in green glitter wearing nothing else but a plastic derby festooned with a Miller Lite shamrock blinky button? But then again, who amongst us hasn't also been threatened with violence for no particular reason by the weaving brute in the backwards Notre Dame baseball cap? There you are, minding your own business drinking a watered down green beer in festive plastic cup, when the shitfaced ex-high school QB decides he "doesn't like your attitude". That hassle (or one with slightly different details) is why I normally skip going to places named Sullivan's, Clancy's, or McGillicutty's on St Patrick's Day.

This year I received a call from The Wheelbarrow (aka Bob Lanphier) to meet him at The Garage Bar for a couple beers around 5pm. As the bar is well off the parade route, I felt like I would probably miss getting punched in the face by an overserved 21 year old named something like Derrick or Kevin, but still catch some of the overall vibe of the day.

I walked in wearing my work clothes, which on this day consisted of a shirt/tie combo, suit pants, and dress shoes. The bar was about halfway full with the typical thrift store/indie rock neighborhood types of Ohio City. I was a tad overdressed. I picked my spot to try and get a Guinness at the bar, when a shockingly intoxicated kid in a skully cap and stretched out green t shirt turned to me. "Heyyyyy....Unnnnnn......Ahhhhhhhhhh" He was incapable of speech, but (I believe) was trying to communicate a feeling of brotherhood between us as he raised his shot of Jager to me. I placed my Guinness order, and quickly realized I had $2.00 in cash on me. Oh fuck. I took out my credit card, and started the procedure to open a tab. I was blocked in at all sides by people struggling to get a drink. It was then I noticed that the kid that had done the shot had saliva pouring out of his mouth like he'd sprung a leak. Uh-oh...He had the spits, and that meant that the shot (and God knows what else) was coming back up. And soon. Slowly my beer poured while The Kid weaved in place and spit. I had to get out of there. This was going to be close.

It was then that The Kid had a moment of inspiration. He leaned across the bar, grabbed the tip bucket, and let loose with the contents of his stomach into the metal pail. You might not be surprised to learn that the bar staff was not excited about this development. I scribbled my name down on the tab as women to my immediate left screamed as if someone had gutted a pig and begun to eat the steaming entrails from the carcass. A heavily tattooed bartender emerged from behind the bar to deal with this ugly situation, and I took the opportunity to use him like a blocking back to vacate the general area.

I found Bob and an empty bar stool at the very end of the bar. To his right, a woman about my age was making out with a suburban looking guy in a green jacket. As I brought Bob up to date with "The Situation" that had just unfolded behind us, I thought I may have recognized the woman seated behind him. It was distracting... Who the hell was that? Do I know her? As I spoke to Bob, the woman was directly in my view over his shoulder, but with her head turned I couldn't see her features. As Bob was talking to me, I'm looking over his shoulder thinking "Who is that giving that man a scalp massage?". Then it was "Who is that woman stroking that man's thigh?". Then it was "Who is that woman making out with that guy like it's Prom Night?". Suddenly it hit me like a ton of bricks. It was someone I sort of knew with a guy that sure as hell wasn't her husband.
The real problem happened when the couple got up, and I snuck a peek just to make sure it was who I thought it was. That's when she and I made brief eye contact... Yep. It was her.

The real question in my mind is what will happen the next time we see each other. I see it playing out one of two ways.

1) This never happened. She and I will exchange pleasantries and never mention it. "How about this weather? It sure seemed like rain, but then it cleared right up... Boy those tulips look great!"

2) The uncomfortable explanation. She will seek me out and say " you at The Garage Bar last week? Oh, I thought that might have been you. Yeah, it got pretty crazy that day. Ha ha... I was out with an old friend of mine, and I don't even remember what happened I was just so drunk. Yep. I sure was drunk. Don't remember a thing." Meanwhile, I will be stirring dirt around with my foot while looking around distractedly saying things like "Oh, you were? I don't think I remember seeing you there? Yeah,,,ahhh.... How bout that Tribe?"

After bringing Bob up to speed on what had just happened, it got real festive. Wandering punk rock bagpipers showed up and played a few songs. Quick question: Can you differentiate between any of the songs those guys play? To me it always sounds like the exact same song. I think everyone else has the same problem too, because the applause for the first bagpipe song is about five times as loud as the applause for the fourth bagpipe song. "Yeah! Bagpipes!" becomes "Are those guys done yet?" pretty quick.

Sensing the room had turned, Bob and I split for Great Lakes to have their seasonal stout. It was all business as we knocked it back, and went home. We had really done everything you need to do on St Patricks Day. To review: I saw a guy dressed in green throw up in a bar. Then I saw an alcohol fueled extra marital affair. The bagpipes wore out their welcome. We drank a few stouts. We left. Perfect. Start to finish in 58 minutes. See you next year.

Random Note: I will be giving my poorly informed Tourney selections once this thing settles down after the weekend. The key right now is to find value in the underdogs. Take the points when a really good mid major plays an iffy major conference team. I'll be back with some plays tomorrow after I break down the numbers.


At March 20, 2009 at 7:39:00 PM EDT , Blogger Greg Miller said...

I think I like Siena vs OSU tonight with the points. If you look at it, Ohio State doesn't seem to beat good teams, except for that win over Mich St in the Big 10 tourney. Siena has played a really good schedule, and deserves to be there. I think OSU makes youthful shot selection errors, and loses a close one...I am also going to take Cleveland State +8. This is just a flier, because they could get killed. They could also play D like they usually do, and keep it low scoring and close. I want to root for'em, so I'm on 'em...I'm on Boston College and the over on the Louisville game too.

At March 25, 2009 at 9:33:00 PM EDT , Blogger The Suckmeister said...

Saint Patrick's Day is the new amateur night, overtaking New Year's Eve.

Sounds like you had a more interesting St. Pat's than I ever have.


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