Why I Hate the Bar. Why I Still Go.


When I was still the age of pacifiers and hall passes, I spent enormous amounts of time wondering why adults had faces that looked like prunes. During their transit to work, on the bus, I would watch their eyes play games of hide and seek, constantly running away from one another. I did not understand why these old people would never seize the opportunity to break out in spontaneous dance. After all, most looked like they were on their way to slave work, and what better way to begin your day with a quick slow wind on the bus with a stranger whom you may never see again?

Except for the next morning.

I am no longer a hall pass. I am now a couple of parking tickets and bottles of vodka years old. On occasion, I visit a local bar to pour myself out, along with others who are trying to avoid becoming prunes faster than necessary.

On a good night, my feet are like banana peels and I glide across the dance floor sweeping away wall flowers. I eventually forget how ripe I’ve become and feel less resistant to time.

On a not so good night, there is usually an extremely drunk person huddling over my arm, talking to me in car crash.

On a good night, the waiter does not kick me out for sneaking to make a meal out of the martini olives. I find a smile at the bottom of a shot glass.

On a not so groovy eve, I fight with mens’ gym-membershipped chests for the bartenders’ attention.

On a good night, there are no pee drippings on the toilet seat. I still squat. Moms didn’t raise a C average.

On a not so cordial night, there are women sinking into toilets, bursting through doors without knocking, and talking really loud about things that are less interesting than conversations I have with toddlers who drool complete sentences.

On a good night, the majority of my friends are people I’ve met less than five minutes ago. They are swaying and I see all of their teeth.

On a not so good night, my friends are prunes on buses who would rather not seize the opportunity to dance.

Fortunately, last night was a good one. We swept the floor and left it more unkempt than we found it. We smiled often, dripped obscenities and made plenty of eye contact with perfect strangers, most of which we may never see again.

Until tomorrow.


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