Ghosts of a drinking culture past

Stale DrinkThere is a story in the Salt Lake Trib., about a pair of hikers, at least one of whom was later arrested on drug charges, who reported finding what they thought was a dead body, up Provo Canyon.

Turns out their sunning corpse got up and walked off, when investigated by police. And the men turned out to be high on more than just the marijuana they’d smoked.

But I was taken back to a time – over 3 decades ago – when I found myself sitting with a handful of equally polluted country music musicians, in a Chinese restaurant that used to be on Redwood Road.  And, along with sobering amounts of coffee, going over a menu at 2 in the morning.

So I asked one of the guys, whose name I really shouldn’t mention (may he RIP these many years later), if he thought the Chinese Omelets were any good. He looked over at where I was pointing to on the menu, but soon fell silent – wondering about it himself.

The waitress finally came back over, and I let her know – straight off – how I wouldn’t mind trying one of those Chinese Omelets.  She, of course (I’m sure you’re already way ahead of me on this) said, “There is no Chinese Omelet on that menu.”  To which I confidently abjured – finger pointing to the contested menu item – “Sure there is; see – Chinese … Chineese … Cheese Omelet.”

Well, it just goes to show how some pretty embarrassing mistakes can happen.  And while it’s true – we were just drinking alcohol – everyone at the table was laughingly surprised to learn, they’d all thought it said ‘Chinese Omelet’ too.  Except for the waitress.  But I guess that was always the downside, when it came to putting away large amounts of good Canadian blended whiskey.  We all more or less shared Hartley Barney’s ringing endorsement of “How do they make it so good, and sell it so cheap.

Now, of courseaside from an enlarged liver – it makes me wonder, how we were ever able to make it home in one piece.  But to my credit, I was the guy who wrote Free Cowboy Hats – in black Magic Marker – on a number of those toilet seat-liner dispensers, hanging on the walls, in the bathrooms of some particularly rowdy beer joints we played.

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