STQ: Cryptids, Ghosts and More

Team Search Truth Quest will answer your paranormal questions.

P.U.B.B. (Poets United for a Better Barroom)

A cultural parasite festers within the taverns and barrooms of America. Machinery grinds at our souls and sucks at our wallets. When the internet jukebox first hit the scene, we were lured by the unlimited access to songs and the improved sound quality.

Of course there would be inherent costs to these cutting edge  ‘improvements’.  We knew up front that we’d be paying more for each selection and still more for the dubious super-search option. And just consider how often these jukeboxes falter to the whims of the internet gods…but don’t worry, it never fails to take your money.

The time has arrived for all citizens, patrons, bar owners, and staff to stand up and demand that this mechanistic monster of malaise be barred for life! I’m calling for a return to the old school jukeboxes. Bring back the CDs, or the Happy Days 45s, or why not give the short-lived 8-track jukebox another whirl? I’m ready to grab some bottles and cans and start clapping my hands. I’m Rick James, bitch.

The bars and taverns are at the heart of our democracy. It is here within the American barroom where constitutional principles first arose. In times of national and international crises, we return to the bars to reestablish the roots of American greatness. Belch. Not only does a Barroom Bill of Rights facilitate justice, it also fosters respect and dignity amongst the clientele and staff. Fart.

All persons, including patrons, owners, employees, and drunks have un-ale-ianable rights to life, festivity and the pursuit of lapdance chicks (what were talking about?). These rights may only be infringed upon if the person’s actions violate the barroom rules that apply to all. It is the behavior, not the person that is to be targeted by bouncers. Therefore it is not appropriate for a person to be expelled from the bar because he is deemed ‘weird’ or ‘a jerk’ or because theperson is simply intoxicated. It is appropriate to ask a person to leave for hitting, inappropriate touch, harassment, profanity, dress code violations, property damage or the over Abbafication of your jukebox selections. Specific behaviors that led to the expulsion must be provided (preferably in song, or, better yet, epic poetry).  Thus, a written explanation will be presented to the ejectee and a copy sent to a mediator (I’ll take a crack at it) to rule on its barroom constitutionality.

The bartender and staff always reserve the right to refuse service of alcohol for any or no reason, unless this refusal of service is based on racial, religious, or sexual discrimination.

All advertised pints must be at least 16 ounces. A pint should always be cheaper per once, than a mug. A pitcher should always be cheaper than a pint. And hear ye, hear ye, from this day forth all jukeboxes, young or old, are required to display the number of unplayed songs that have been selected, or else the bartender must give the customer his money back.

There you have it. And back to the music for a moment. I’m frankly tired of plugging five dollars into the jukebox at midnight to later find it shutoff at 2AM with no ‘Mr. Roboto.’ Secret, secret, I’ve got a secret…

  • Article 1:Lose the ‘play now’ option? Just because some guy’s got money to burn, doesn’t give him the right to burn me!  The problem’s plain to see: too much technology Machines to save our lives. Machines dehumanize.
  • Article 2:The right to bare women
  • Article 3:Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto, domo…domo.

Losing Pub Friends in the Starbuckarama (Rebuttal)

Dave Atsals

I am worried about my friend, Mick. Unlike all the other Discordians, Mick believes he needs to better himself.  Mick strives for lofty misguided goals in order to overcome his many inadequacies. He used to have a distinct, although often overbearing, personality and sense of humor.  But, at least you knew what you were getting with Mick, trouble.   Now he is only a shell of his old self.  I refer to this shell as ‘m’.

The Mick I knew was witty, in an insulting type of way.  He was misguided, but authentic; often drunk, but functional; unshaven, yet neat; suffering from erectile dysfunction, yet STD ridden. (Just kidding about the last one; partly).  Mick could be the life of the party, although more often the death of it.

We used to hang out in BARS with live entertainment, a large menu of exotics, and cheap double shots.  Sometimes we even did the cheap double shots with the exotics. “Hey Dave can I borrow some singles?” Now, ‘m’ hangs out in coffee shops where the entertainment is often a guy playing music without lyrics.  The exotics are made of various tree roots; the menu consists of finger sandwiches made of grilled ahi tuna and liverwurst, and the double shots are espresso roasts.  THIS IS NOT OUR MICK.  This is not change we can believe in.

In these upscale coffee shops, pool cues and dartboards have been replaced with laptops and notepads.  Neon lights have been replaced by ugly paintings of ugly things priced over 500.00 dollars.  Bar stools are now sofas, the tables have lamps on them, and the dance floors are covered with coat racks and large stand up plants (sometimes ferns!).  And let’s not forget to mention the urinal-less restroom decorated by some Martha Stewart wanna be. Please don’t forget to knock, lift the seat, and, heaven help you, aim, because it’s bi-sexual (like ‘m’).

Inside this group home like setting, ‘m’ has digressed to typing endless pages of rhetoric that will be read by no one.  When he wearies of this, he downs a few more double shots—espressos, that is—and bounces over to the other patrons saying “let the caffeine-induced political psycho-babbling commence!”  These three socialites then spend hours debating the last press conference held by Senator Frabish, heard only by those same three and the six other XM radio POTUS listeners.  THIS IS NOT OUR MICK.  This is not change we can believe in.

‘m’ needs all of the up-to-date technologically advanced gadgetries, but cannot operate any of them.  He moved on to Tivo although he never learned to record with his VCR.  He now owns a GPS but can’t get it out of Spanish mode.   He has a TV with surround sound and one speaker.

As for food, Mick used to always be up for the late night greasy spoon.  In college, not only was Mick fond of eating the cafeteria food, he was also fond of throwing it—he could fling peanut butter with the best of them.  But not ‘m’—only the finest for hi‘m’.  He has moved on to high society food, and organic peanut butter is just way too expensive for such flingery.  He now only eats Sushi, Japanese foods, or food from other spookily distant cultures (SDC). As a matter of fact, you may see ‘m’ eating anywhere except at an American restaurant. ‘m’ believes this is the proper etiquette of a man of his new found lowercase stature, although in the Orient, McDonalds would be the delicacy of choice. 

The coffee shops around here give last call at ten, which coincides with the new curfew ‘m’ has imposed on himself.  No more after hour parties for Mick… ‘m’ must ‘m’asterbate at ho‘m’e.

Well, at least one thing hasn’t changed.

Losing Pub Friends in the Starbuckarama

Mick Zano

I am worried about my friend, Dave. Unlike most of our fellow Discordians, Dave never made the successful transition from the bar scene to the coffee shops.  Dave never even made the ever important transition from the bars to the pubs either.  In fact, if memory serves, he never made the transition from junior high to high school, but that’s a different story (spelled GED, incidentally).

The problem is this: Dave favors those smoky dive bars to that of the jazzy rifts of brewpubs and coffee shops. Dave fears change.  For example, if he could grow hair it would remain in perpetual-mullet-form (PMF).  He never sported a mullet in his life, mind you, having never had enough hair for one, but the mullet, like his bow-legged swagger, is always implied.

So why am I so worried about my poor misguided friend and his coffee house naiveté?  Well, my liver doesn’t tolerate nearly as much alcohol these days, so gradually I’ve shifted to the hip coffee shop scene.  There, nestled amongst books and chess sets, I sip my deluxe mocha frappe crappas with those terminally artsy-fartsy types.  I have tried to wean Dave onto coffee and often encouraged him to dabble in this new cultural espressorama.  Recently I told him, “hey, let’s meet at the Coffee Tea Room and then hit the pub.”  Notice I said pub rather than saloon or bar.  I’m trying to start small with Dave—to match his vocabulary.  Just before he arrived, I had just conveniently ordered the house special, the Plenty Venti Bucket of Espresso.

His eyes darted about the room as he begrudgingly took a seat.  Through a sheen of social anxietous sweat, he asked: “Where’s the pool table?” and then “where’s the dartboard?” and then to the horror of my female friends, “where’s the stripper poles?”

There are places that do offer coffee and beer, and if we both moved to an area that accommodated such an establishment, perhaps it would help Dave make this difficult transition.  Such milestones are not without precedent.  I am forever grateful to the establishment Sudds and Dudds, which single handedly catapulted Dave’s hygiene problem into the realm of the nearly tolerable.  But in this case, I don’t think he wants to change.   Dave will never move beyond the pipe-dripping, slanted pool table, southern rock spinning joints.

Now if Dave ever chose to pit a Belgian triple or some other well-crafted ale up against my favorite beanage, we’d have a debate, but this is clearly not the case.   Dave will forever haunt establishments that ‘Proudly Serve Blatz!’  Indeed they will actually have coasters in such places with, ‘We Proudly Serve Blatz!’ emblazed upon them—always with the exclamation point—because even the makers of Blatz (not to mention Blatz light) need reinforcing slogans such as: We Proudly Serve Blatz! or Blatz…Nearly As Good As Old Style.  One wonders how else anyone could get through a day at the Blatz factory without such Milwaukeean malt mantras.

But I digress.  Back to Dave.  For years Dave’s favorite beer was a distant cousin to Blatz, Genesee Beer, brewed in upstate New York in the heart of the Geneseo Valley, while no one was looking (or apparently brewing either).  “A cold Gennie was better than sex,” he’d say.  His girlfriends throughout college typically agreed with this statement.

I am through with Blatz, Milwaukee’s Best, Old Style, Old Milwaukee, or anything from new-waukee, for that matter.  I would rather just add a shot of espresso to something dark and daunting.  Sumatra roasts are pure heaven.  Perhaps I can get Dave into Sumatra stouts—the hybrid—and then lure him over to the dark roast side.  Luke, I am your venti.

I know it’s hopeless.  You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it stop drinking.  I go into dive bars for the same reason that Dr. Sterling Hogbein travels to remote villages of the world…to study our distant selves.  I don’t want to go back and do it all over, not for Eddie amount of Money.  Truth be told, I couldn’t spend one solitary night in my old coveted college party house, not one.

I will miss Dave and his mulletless antics.  Perhaps I’ll go see him some day, at Frankie’s Place or Timmo’s Tavern, while he’s talking up the glory days with a bunch of grey haired, fatty-livered miscreants.  For me it’s Seattle’s Best, Starbuck’s finest, and mom and pop java joints from here on out.

All right, fine. I’ll meet you at Timmo’s Place for the game, but then let’s get a cup a joe.  Oh, and it’s time to hit Sudds and Dudds again mildew man.