Tag Archives: Northern Exposure

The Barroom Chronicles… Vol 15 Freaks of a Feather

Sometimes is best to leave an event alone, allow the dust to settle, before gloating about ruffled feathers and sandy vaginas left in its wake. As the proprietor of ‘The Evil Bar’ in our tiny town, and a person who may or may not have been involved with the genesis of such a stunt, I believe the smoke has cleared enough to let the world know of such hijinks. This thought is based on the equation: Comedy = tragedy  + time.  Though there was no tragedy involved, there may have been numerous pairs of soiled underwear and/or attacked hearts, unless you take into consideration those without a sense of humor, their skipped heart beats and dirty drawers could be construed tragic.

On July  19th, 2012 at approximately eleven PM Mountain Daylight Time,  roughly an hour before Aurora, Colorado entered the cultural lexicon,  a couple of cohorts had a nasty idea for a practical joke. Of course, I couldn’t resist.  Those of you who follow this blog know about the ‘old west gunfights,’ we hold during Railroad Days, our little town’s yearly celebration. The night in question, we were walking through the scenarios for the following Saturday.

Krash Montana… Also known as Number 1

“Hey,” Cohort #1 said, “I have an idea.”

I should have known it was a bad deal.

Cohort #’s 2 and 3 said the idea rocked. “Let’s do it.”

I wasn’t at the ‘other bar’ to witness the event. But, I’ve heard the story enough, it goes like this:

Cohort #3 walked into the other bar and said there was a bunch of drama up at ‘The Evil Bar.’  Cohorts 1 and 2 were arguing about money that 2 owed 1. Being that both 1 worked for 2 and as someone said later, 2 owed a few people money, made the premise believable. A few minutes later 1 and 2 appeared in front of the other bar in the midst of a heated argument.

Now, Number 1 is an actor. He has the ability to get into a role and make it work. Outside of Al Pacino, I’ve never seen a better Tony Montana. Being gangster isn’t a stretch.

Number 2 is a loveable giant. Everybody in town adores him and he can possibly be the kindest person alive. Not to mention he can cook up a storm. So imagine the scene when 1 called out 2 in front of a small crowd of people who have drank with 2 since Camden was a prairie. Then he has the audacity to pull out a replica revolver and fires a shot into 2’s chest. Number 2 did his part and fell back against the outside wall. People scattered, the manager came unglued and the bartender, who happened to be walking by, allegedly peed her pants.

Meanwhile, those of us left behind at the ‘Evil Bar,’ were listening for two shots. Like Number 1 demonstrated before leaving, holding the revolver gangsta style while saying: “Pop, Pop.”

We giggled like kids hearing the first shot, imagining the mayhem. “Hey,” someone asked. “Where’s the second shot?”

The simple answer, things never go as planned. After the initial shock and awe, Number 2 had to jump up and proclaim “It’s just a joke!”  The manager, a mellow 50 something gal, instantly turned into a grizzly bear and allegedly read the riot act in numerous languages, leaving the three Cohorts pleading their case why they shouldn’t be eighty-sixed.

“What’s going on?” I asked a regular who had tagged along to witness.

“Oh man, it didn’t go good.”

“What happened? Where was the second shot?” I asked, panicked. I imagined 1 getting the tar beat out of him.

What I thought may have happened.

“Nothing that bad,” the witness said. “1 and 2 are buying rounds to make it good.”

It would be an hour before the three amigos returned. “So?” I asked.

“They called us freaks and told us to go back and drink with the rest of the freaks,” Number 1 reported. The comment confirmed my suspicion that freaks of a feather really do drink together.

The Prank That Keeps On Giving… The Barroom Chronicles Pt. 2

You’re on a road trip, you’re thirsty, and you’re driving along a lonely town’s main street. Just past a funky book store and a pet crematorium,  you catch glimpse of a purple palm tree, and against better judgement you stop. You’re about to step into…

You thought I was about to say: “The Twilight Zone.”

Nah, it’s more like Northern Exposure.

But what’s really trippy, within a few moments the bartender proclaims your outlook on life.  You know, if you’re an optimist or a pessimist.  My God, you’ve  been exposed by a complete stranger,  one behind a Podunk bar no less.

“Oh The Horror!”

The trick involves no magic, no extra-sensory perception, just an acute eye.  It’s really quite simple.  Personally speaking, the skill has its genesis in an elaborate April Fool’s prank – one which had our quaint little town up in arms.  A prank that resulted in petitions, calls to aldermen, and threats from many to never again patronize our fine establishment.

Did I mention there was a lot of  snickering behind the scenes?

We told the town we were changing the name to the 1000 Bra Bar.  The idea  was inspired by a regional tourist trap, the 50000 Silver Dollar Bar. It’s a gawdy place designed to part you from your money while showing off 50000 Silver Dollars laminated into the bar top.  Really? Who wants to gloat over 5o grand when we can admire dangling braticiples?

Why would anyone be upset about this? Okay, we also said that the relic road sign would be replaced by a large bra with flashing red lights for nipples.

For months we spread the word, telling the old-timers you can’t stop change. Change is good, we need a breath of fresh air.  We went as far as saying we had investors to purchase neighboring buildings and open Great A.S.S. – that’s the Great Adult Super Store! Mobs were being mobilized.

We advertised a name change party for April 4th – we’re shifty buggers, the date alleviated suspicion of hi-jinx.  Though on April 1st, the day the new sign was to be installed, we informed the public  there was a glitch with the sign’s production and that we would reveal the design at midnight during the grand event.

On said date, the place was packed, many to hang their bras on the ceiling, many to have their last drink before the ultimate sacrilege – the name was officially being ‘changed’ at midnight.

On that magical night, during the first raising, a fond memory was made: In the middle of Jimi Hendrix’s   rendition of the Star-Spangled Banner, as the crowd stood with hands over hearts, a traveling couple walked through the front door.  They stood slack-jawed watching a bunch of yokels saluting bras as they were stapled to the ceiling.  I motioned for them to take off their hats and place them  over their hearts. My glare shouted: “Show some respect and listen to the song!”  Think Hanson brothers in the movie Slapshot.  They complied.

Prior to midnight, a contingent of locals were going to walk out for the last time. “We refuse to drink in the 1000 Bra Bar,” their war cry.  I managed to finagle their leader into staying for the unveiling of the new sign.

At the witching hour, two bra clad gals climbed upon the bar.  Anticipation filled the house.  What could this crazy sign really look like? With the appropriate amount of fanfare, the girls unveiled a banner reading: “April Fool’s from the Sportman’s Bra.

To this day, each bra-raising is accompanied with a salute and the playing of Jimi’s rendition.  A raising is never planned and it’s completely spontaneous. Whenever a lady is so compelled, the ritual is reenacted. The most random occurrence,  an autumn Monday afternoon when a limo full of Seattlites stumbled in for a pit stop.

“That’s all well and good… but what does this story have to do with knowing one’s outlook?”

The answer is simple.  If one doesn’t notice the bras during the first few minutes of their stay, I consider one a pessimist. Why? Take a look at the picture to your right, they’re flippin’ obvious. (Please ignore the Mexican bearing cupcakes.)  If you don’t notice ’em you’re head’s down and one would presume you’re bummed out or too focused on draining your drink.  Experience dictates a rapidly drained glass is always half-empty and a drinker with a half-empty could find a fifty on the floor and complain that it wasn’t a hundred.

Judging by its smile, the drink to our left took a moment to gaze at the ceiling. Despite its impending fate, it can’t help but enjoy the view.

The following April Fools, we managed to outdo ourselves and pissed off more people. That’s a story for another day.

Episode 21 Some Nights

Paul Reubens In 'Pee-Wee's Big Adventure'It was a beautiful Spring evening; the sun flirted with the mountaintops.  We sat on the front deck of Sporty’s when a drunk looking like Pee-Wee Herman without the bowtie rode his bicycle up the sidewalk. In this town, a drunk riding a horse up the sidewalk isn’t uncommon. But there was something different about this guy. He wasn’t a local and he had an attitude – and a prosthetic leg.

Heads turned as he stopped in front of the deck, mumbled to himself, and took a bite out of an apple.  Jaws dropped when his leg fell off. Tears welled in my eyes; my face turned purple suppressing my laugh.

“Need help?” Big Steve asked the man.


My chest heaved as he tried to pick up his leg.  I tried to be good.

The man hopped off his bike, picked up his leg and reattached it.  Two steps later the leg fell off again. I bit my fist 3313663trying not to laugh.  When he threw the leg into the street, I lost it.

I ran inside and howled.  Inside, customers asked what was so funny.  Before that night I never had a clear picture of a one-legged man in an ass kicking contest.

After a good Samaritan retrieved the leg, the one-legged drunk man secured it and laid on the deck in front of the door.

“Hey buddy, you can’t lay there,” I told him.

He ignored  me. I threatened to call the cops, to which Mullet replied to the man, “I don’t know where you’re from, but in this town, you don’t have a leg to stand on.”

Another night in real life Northern Exposure.