Five to nine

Have a drink.

October 29, 2004

Cheers... to the end of all curses.

Wednesday night was a historic moment in Americana. Eighty six years after nineteen eighteen, and eighteen years after nineteen eighty-six, the sun, the earth and moon were in perfect alignment and it would seem that fate was sealed. When it became clear that my beloved National league was simply gonna roll over and make way for history without putting up much of a fuss, I decided to make my peace with this and just find an adequate place to welcome the moment. Mr. Sunshine and I decided to put our heads together and find an appropriate Irish bar. After very little deliberation, we settled on the oldest Irish pub in Los Angeles. We figured it would be a safe bet to house displaced Sox fans in L.A. We weren't trying to jump a bandwagon or anything, just be in a place of good spirits when the time inevitably came. We were right about the Sox thing. Though we arrived early enough to secure two adjacent seats at the bar, the joint was soon full of Bostonians, offspring of Bostonians, and their hangers-on. As we sat there, pitch after pitch, gulp after gulp (black and tan for him, Guinness for me) the feeling of inevitability grew stronger and stronger. As did the feeling of drunkenness. The only complaint I have against this fine bar was their impatience in pouring the slightly delicate Irish brew from a tap. When pouring guinness, it's important to pour half a glass and let it sit till the head rises, you are then to tilt the glass and pour the last of it down the side, so the newer beer is on the bottom therefore minimizing the size of the head, and making sure that it is thick and concentrated on the top. The procedure for making a black and tan is almost identical except the second pour is a light lager. Harp's works well. Our bartender lost his patience and poured the black and tans backwards and the Guinness in one impatient pull. The wait was a little sad, since i kept thinking that this venture out would mark the very end of Baseball for the whole year, and was punctuated only by occasional absences of my comrade to smoke a cigarette outside. During one of his leaves, I noticed a nice-looking bright redhead by the bar looking my way, not getting attention from the bartender. I scooted slightly right implicitly offering her my friends seat to facilitate getting her drink. During the small-talk, I learned this lovely girl, redheaded, fair-skinned and freckled was named Colleen, I believe Gaelic for 'girl'. Believing as I do in stereotypes, and seeing that she could not possibly have fit better into one if she tried, I jokingly asked if she was here to shed a tear for the Cards. "Ha ha, hardly. I'm mostly here to drink pints of Guinness with my friends. If the Sox win too that's awesome." What a woman I could not help thinking! Once Jared returned and she had been served, I thanked her for her company and he thanked her for keeping his seat warm, this Gossamer-Woman disappeared, and we got back to the important business of choosing a proper celebration whiskey for the end of the game. We felt adventurous and decided to try a barkeep-recommended serving of Tyrconnel; to be had from the end of the stretch to the end of the game. When the time came, the bartender served our whiskey and made sure to buy us a round before we left. I should take this moment to remark how much I appreciate a Bar having bartenders that look like they belong there. There were bartenders three, one of them graying and older all very slim, black pants, a white collared shirt and a bartenders apron.
When the inevitable inevitably came, I turned to my silver-tongued friend and asked what the appropriate toast was for this moment, which we would surely remember forever. Without hesitation, he raised his glass and said "to the end of all curses."

UPDATE: You can read an infinitely more verbose account of the night at Jared's.


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