My girlfriend and I had gone to an excellent pizza shop with Paddy and his wife for some pizza and a pitcher of Yuengling. We were particularly impressed with their heavy glass beer pitchers and their cooler's awe-inspiring selection of large beer cans (that last bit will figure into an upcoming joint post with me and MC Paddy, keep an eye out for that.) Afterward, we were considering either checking out a roadhouse up the highway to hear a blues band and continue drinking, or just hanging out at Paddy's pad; but then my phone rang. It was Dicks. He was down at the bar we used to hang out at (see his post for details) and he was wondering if we wanted to check out what had become of it since being sold. The four of us agreed we were curious, but we'd all been putting it off and figured now was as good a time as any; so we hit the road.
By the time we got there, Richard was already reeking of beer and- not three sheets to the wind, but maybe one-and-a-half. The music was a bit too loud for casual conversation, but the booze was cheap and a thorough cleaning had done the building well. I'd be lying if I said I was having fun, mainly because of the lack of conversation, but Richard seemed to be having a good time. We stayed for a couple rounds, but then the karaoke began. Richard invited us all over to his home bar, which is better stocked than most commercial bars. So we all caravanned up to his place, and commenced to serious boozing.
Richard's bar can be a bit overwhelming sometimes. There are so many possibilities that people tend to just stand and stare when asked to pick their poison. Once you get rolling, though, it's quite an experience going through cocktails most bartenders haven't heard of and most bars aren't equipped to serve. Shots of Ouzo, Jim Beam yellow, Jager and root beer, Sailor and Cokes, gin and tonics. Richard had been away on work for awhile, and during that period his wife had developed a taste for whisky. In fact, she had drank him out of Jameson's, and asked him to make her a Bushmill's and Coke. No high school quarterback watching his son grow up to win the Superbowl could ever look as proud as Richard did at that moment. As for Paddy, Richard, and myself... our alcoholic consumption was all over the place, spanning the full range of what Richard's bar had to offer.
Jager and Root Beer - In Central Pennsylvania, Paddy was introduced to a shooter called a "Jim Morrison". It's roughly 50/50 Jägermeister and root beer schnapps. Few I've spoken to have have heard of it, and no one knows why it bears the true name of the Lizard King. Anyway, a few years ago, Paddy thought; if Jager and root beer schnapps makes a good shooter, Jager and root beer would probably be a good cocktail. And so it is!
Sailor and Coke - Bacardi sucks. There, I said it. Even mixed with something as bold as Coca Cola, I prefer better tasting rum. My girlfriend always specifies "Captain and Coke" when drinking out, just to ensure her beverage isn't made with Bacardi, or worse. But if you really want to get the job done, I highly recommend replacing your Captain Morgan with Sailor Jerry. No, it's not a cheap nautical ripoff; it's named for a tattoo artist, as each bottle's booklet explains. It's about the same price, it's much higher proof, and tastes just about the same. And I challenge anyone to find something wrong with that.
Ouzo - A clear liqueur, popular in Greece, flavored heavily with annise (licorice). Think Sambuca and you're not far off. Shots were poured, but at the last secon Richard plopped an ice cube in each. Because of the anise, it then louched like Absinthe and turned a milky white.
Early in the night, Richard came to the realization that he could drink as much as he wanted because he didn't have to drive (we're always careful about that.) Now, I didn't notice Richard drinking any more than Paddy or myself. Maybe the cocktails he was drinking were a bit stronger, or maybe he was doing shots when no one was looking. Whatever the reason, Richard just seemed to get drunker quicker. Soon, his eyes were half closed, and he was shuffling his feet to keep from falling down. At some point in the evening, his terrified guinea pig made an appearance. At first his wife just reminded him that he's allergic to the guinea pig and shouldn't be letting it crawl all over him, but Richard was too drunk to care. Eventually Richard started breaking out in hives, and his wife just had to order him to put the piggy back.
Paddy and I had to drive home, so we were watching our intake and by the time 2AM rolled around, not only was I under the legal limit to drive home, I was downright sober. But Richard, well...
He made one more rum and coke to take with him, stumbling up the steps to say goodbye to Paddy and his wife. When he came down 2 minutes later, the rum and coke was half empty. My girlfriend commented that Richard will probably be sleeping in the bathtub, which he is wont to do in these situations. "Nooo!!!" Richard vehemently denied, drunkenly waggling his head. But upon further consideration, he admitted "Well... maybe." The weary look in his wife's eyes confirmed that it would be a long night.
And so it was.