Bar Review

Do you remember those commercials from about 20 years ago, warning people not to drink and drive? I remember badgering my father one night because he was drinking a soda or some other beverage as we drove to our friends’ house. Alcohol didn’t play a big part in my formative years (I honestly think my first taste of alcohol was via Jello shots at my childhood BFF’s high school graduation party) and so my young mind interpreted the warnings about drunk driving to be about consuming beverages in general while driving.

My home township is dry. Like Prohibition-era dry. There was a speakeasy near my cousins’ house, but it was raided so many times they finally just ripped off the roof effectively ending the one alcohol outlet in our small farming community.

The next township south isn’t afflicted by the same antiquated laws and it has TWO! alcohol-filled establishments. I saddled up to the bar at the nicer depot a time or two and I drove past the other but never had reason, or the inclination, to stop in. Let’s just say it’s less Denim and more bar from Sweet Home Alabama without the nice glasses and bright lighting.

After a rousing high school graduation party hosted at my parents’ the other weekend, my youngest sister, her boyfriend and I were faced with a Saturday night and no plans. Light bulb! She’s 21 now, let’s go ghetto for the night.

We pull up and quickly find a spot among the other five cars in the lot. The welcoming committee is there to greet us: two women, one with bleached-blonde hair and chipped teeth, the other a 40-something wearing a bright orange tank top proclaiming BITCH.

After climbing a set of concrete stairs with a gaping hole big enough to swallow a small child between two steps, we pause to let our eyes adjust to the movie-theater level lighting and our ears adjust to the sounds of goats in pain. Karaoke night… awesome.

We began this adventure under the assumption that we’d find cheap beer and a few good laughs at the people “clubbing” in the Trails. We failed on the cheap beer; bottles are $3; mozzarella sticks $6 for 5, steaks start at $25. They don’t have no draught. The air condition was either never installed or was broken because my legs quickly stuck to the vinyl bar stool. We could have sat at a table, but the white resin lawn chairs were farther away from the prompt service offered by the bartender who puffed away on cigarettes between passing out poker chips from men buying drinks for the ladies who already had two lined up. I forget what smoke-filled bars are like, and such things make me eternally grateful for Philly’s smoking ban. The crowd started getting bigger, the smoke started getting thicker and the music started getting more unbearable. So we took our party to the other bar in town, about 10 minutes away, where the air worked, beer was on tap and cheaper and I won a free lottery ticket.

Suffice it to say we were the only patrons at bar number one that had all of our teeth.



  1. Quirky Said:

    Ouch! I hope the night was entertaining, at least!
    Our friends got married just outside a tiny farming town in Illinois… the bachelor party was at a BYOB strip club… high class all the way 🙂

  2. Yikes, sounds just like my hubby’s hometown. That’s hilarious!

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