Sunday, March 18, 2007

Wayward Celebrations


Smokey pub filled
With oblivious, green drunks
Mindless intentions

Gadabout Jack went out for a couple of cold ones last night to celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day. The parking lot of the local pub with an Irish name was jammed and loaded to the brim. I was surprised that they were not charging for parking, but I guess they weren’t since the pub is part of a shopping strip and the other merchants most likely would balk at the idea. If they did charge a fee, I would have paid, along with everyone else.

Anyway, a loaded paring lot infers a packed pub, and that inference was supported in truth once I was inside. I immediately noticed lots of green, beads and funny hats. Hats seem to be on the upswing in popularity these days, especially cheap felt hats associated with some sort of theme. I saw a few dudes who had dyed their beards green. Nice touch. The main part of the bar and dinning room was too full when I walked in, and since I was on the search for my buddies I decided to check out the tent area that was set up on the side of the building to support the anticipated large crowd. The tent was a class act in the since that it include a temporary bar, two bartenders who accepted credit cards, chairs for the weary and two out door lavatories that were vented outside.

I ended up with two friends, who met up with two other friends and so we had a nice little group of six drinking beer and shouting at each other over the noise of over fifty drunks in the tent area. Now, let’s have an understanding about Gadabout Jack. For the most part I don’t drink very much in public places because I don’t want to be nailed by the police while driving, and I don’t like being a drunken sloth in public (or private for that matter). Because I don’t get hammered much anymore, I really find drunks repulsive. They knock into you when they walk by, they project spittle in your face when they try and talk to you and they blow cigarette smoke in your eyes. Drunken people bother me, I don’t like being around them, and I was in an Irish Pub on Saint Paddy’s Day. What was I thinking? Making matters even more depressing was that I was missing the MSU vs. UNC basketball game. So, I split and drove home after two beers.

Well, after coming home and watching MSU get the Tar beat out of them, I started to reflect on my pub experience and questioned why the whole thing seemed so empty and hollow. It was all phony. The hats, the green beer the crowd partying over nothing but an idea of celebration for celebration sakes was shallow. The only theme seemed to be alcohol and green. Sure, there were some cheap decorations on the walls with clovers and leprechauns, but that’s about it. No authentic food, beer or clothing, just drunk Americans looking for a venue and excuse to party. Maybe it would have been different in a place like Chicago, Boston or Buffalo where there are parades and some history, but this is Virginia Beach. Hey, Memorial Day is right around the corner.

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