I Drove Drunk and Got Pulled Over by a Cop

I’ve done a lot of stupid things in my life. Don’t let that be confused with regrets. I regret nothing. Everything that I’ve done has brought me to the place that I am today. And I wouldn’t change it for the world.

Without further adieu, some of my more idiotic moves…

Cutting a bald spot on the crown of my head during the formative years.

Spending a long New Year’s weekend in Indiana with 5 stoner couples with 6 movies constantly looping and the smell of weed permeating the cabin.

Smoking my very first cigarette…at the age of 23.

Going on a date with (and continuing to date) a guy (who turned out to be a drug addict) whom I met on Craigslist.

Spraining my ankle doing a drunken happy dance.

Quitting my job because my boss asked for my letter of resignation instead of waiting for her to fire me.

Dating the same guy over and over and over again, for three years expecting different results.

And the number one stupidest thing that I’ve ever done: Driving after drinking. Never. Ever. Ever. Do this. A few years ago, I was really really stupid. Really stupid. After several libations on my own one slow Friday evening at Flaherty’s, I decided that I wanted to go sing some karaoke at another bar.

I got drunk, drove to another bar, and got pulled over by a police officer

I tipped my bartender, who didn’t seem to mind that I was a little intoxicated as I was leaving. In her defense, I looked and behaved just fine. But a small part of me knew that I probably shouldn’t have been behind the wheel. But I was bored playing my 207th game of Mah Jong that night, the bar was dead, and I had friends drinking at another bar.

For some reason, unbeknownst to me, I decided to take the main road, instead of the familiar back roads. Driving from one town, through another, to a third town, I noticed a police officer driving behind me. I did a quick check of my surroundings: speed limit (check), seat belt (check), breath (gum? no, but shit, there’s not much I can do about that). There’s no reason that this police officer should need to pull me over. Phew!

I mentally pumped myself up, Just a few more blocks and I would be safely into the next town, out of this cop’s police jurisdiction. The bar was just on the other side of the city line. Come on, just a few more blocks. Don’t fuck up.

The next thing I knew, the all-too-familiar red and blue lights flashed at me from behind. Shit. Shit. Shit. Shit. Shit.

So I re-checked my surroundings. Do not panic. Do. Not. Panic. I looked for my insurance card, which I was infamous for not being able to find. Found one! From last year. Hopefully, it will do.

The police officer walks up to my window and I roll it down.

“Do you know why I pulled you over?”

“No, officer, I’m sorry, but I really don’t.” I genuinely had no clue. To my knowledge, I had done nothing wrong. Well, sort of. Nothing that warranted pulling me over. Plus we all know I’m a terrible liar. PLUS it’s a proven fact that cops can see right through my bullshit when I try to lie.

“Did you know that your license plates expired last month?”

Oh my God, really? “Oh my God, really?” I knew that my shock was evident by the sympathetic look on the officer’s face. I kept babbling, “My dad and I were just talking about this. He had asked me when I needed to renew my plates, but I thought that they weren’t up until April. That’s when I got the plates. I got the car in November of 2006. I haven’t gotten anything in the mail that says I need to renew them. I’m so sorry.”

The police officer looked at me and asked for my license and insurance. I passed him my driver’s license and was holding onto my expired insurance card–waiting to pass it to him. He scanned my license quickly, and never once even took a second look at the insurance card. He handed my license back to me and told me to go get my plates taken care of the next day. He told me it may be a hefty fine for being late, but he would not write me a ticket. He proceeded to wish me a good evening, and to drive safely before he walked away.

This mistake could have cost me everything. Click To Tweet

Not once did he ask me where I had been.

Not once did he ask me where I was going.

Not once did he ask if I had been drinking.

I took that as a sign from God that I should never. Ever. Ever. Drive drunk again. My one free pass, I called it. I was a mere two blocks from the bar that I was heading towards. I panicked and called my best friend, Mark, who was at the airport on his way to some other country. He told me that I was stupid, and I shouldn’t be driving. He told me to calm down and leave my car at the bar that night. So I got to the bar, and called my flavor of the week. He met me at the bar and took me to his place when it closed. The next morning, he got me to my car, and all was well. But holy shit was I freaked out.

I’d like to tell you I never drove drunk again, but that would be a lie. And there would be fewer stories to share with you. For the record, I don’t condone drunk driving nor do I do it anymore. Ever. At all.

Have you ever done something incredibly stupid and gotten caught? Any run-ins with the law that you escaped by the skin of your teeth? Drunk driving stories? Tell me your tales!

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

10 Things That Made My Childhood Different Because My Parents Owned a Bar

I’m pretty sure childhood in the late 80’s was vastly different than it is today. There are so many things that were okay in school, social circles of parents, and overall society that just aren’t the same. I also have this very unique view on alcohol and bars and children. Not because my parents were alcoholics, because they weren’t. Instead, it was because they owned a bar. My childhood memories often involve the deep-fried, kiddie-cocktail, quarters-for-pinball experiences that are often reserved for comedy movies with a quick jab about kids in country bars.

Flaherty's Bar

You have a baby! In a bar!

Except that I was a baby in a bar. And it wasn’t a bad thing. It gave me some insight into the world that most kids don’t get.

10 things my 80’s childhood wouldn’t have been complete without

1. Bottle caps were a thing

On Day 100, all the kids in the younger grades were charged with bringing in 100…somethings. some kids brought buttons or toothpicks or pennies. I brought in beer bottle caps. (I mean they were washed and shit! No biggie.) This was in the late 80’s, and no one seemed to mind as much back then.

2. My parents knew my teachers…and what they liked to drink

This started in kindergarten and didn’t end until my teachers were professors in Peoria at Bradley. I’ll never forget St. Patrick’s Day my junior year of high school. I was bussing tables and washing dishes to earn my keep, when I looked up and saw my chemistry teacher, his Bud Light and a caramel-colored liquid in a shot glass.  across the bar, a mere two feet from my face. We made eye contact and it was all awkward from there. “Hi Mr. Johnson.” Long pause “Hi Chrissy.” The following day at school was no less weird. It’s not like he didn’t know my parents owned the bar…he just wasn’t expecting to see me behind it.

3. St. Patrick’s Day was like Christmas

We woke up on St. Patrick’s Day morning, and there were often little green presents on the dining room table for us. Little trinkets and fun beer-logoed freebies from the bar so we could blink, sparkle and shine at work. Back then, no one cared in there was a beer advertised on my blinking buttons. By the time I was in high school, everyone and their mother cared. Times, they did a change.

4. We played Bartender instead of House and dreamed of the day we could be waitresses

My best friends and I used to play bartender at the home bar we had in our living room. And we’d practice our mad skills with trays full of drinks while on roller skates for the day we would become Flaherty’s waitresses and roller skates would become a thing. We were mini marketing geniuses. Tell me you wouldn’t want to hang out in a bar with roller skating waitresses. Just try.

5. Quarters were king. And they came for free

There’s something about an adorable gaggle of kids trouncing around a bar that makes grown ups want to give them money. We cashed in on this as much as we could. Sometimes, it was our parents. Sometimes, it was one of the many “aunts” or “uncles.”  And other times, it was a random stranger with a few quarters to spare. They’d play a game of pinball as we watched with awe and admiration…and then they’d leave the remaining credits in the machine, telling us to each take a turn.

6. Few things in life were more exciting than a stolen shopping cart

When you’re a kid at a bar, you can convince patrons to do almost anything your little mind could dream up. We managed to get shopping carts from the grocery store across the street on a somewhat regular basis. We’d race each other around the back alley or the empty part of the parking lot with a freedom that a lot of kids don’t get these days.

7. I learned to hustle grown ups at pool

When I was about 9, my brother and I received our very own pool cues. We’d bet quarters and dollars with some of the local patrons and then pull out our special cues. We’d surprise the hell out of them and kick their butts. I’m pretty sure my pool skills peaked at age 11.

8. I created my own drink and named it. After myself. Obviously.

By the time I was tall enough to reach the pop gun, I was behind the bar mixing my own kiddie cocktails. My favorite concotion was the Chrissy Cocktail:

  • 1 part grenadine
  • 1 part Squirt
  • 2 parts 7up
  • 2parts pineapple juice
    *Add ice and 5 straws; then stir

(Yes, that was a lot of grenadine. I was a kid in control of the cherry juice. Duh.)

(Yes, in college I added 6 parts vodka and the original drink became the Virgin Chrissy Cocktail.)

9. I mastered the jukebox like a boss

Not only was I a pinball wizard and a pool hustler…I was a jukebox hero. We were often given dollars for the jukebox too. We rocked out to Bon Jovi, Guns n’ Roses, Aerosmith, Ugly Kid Joe, Nirvana and more. There were patrons we need would get up and be foolish during certain songs and we owned the shit out of it. We were mini DJs on the dance floor.

10. I learned not to become an alcoholic.

This is the serious part of the list, but I feel it’s important to be said. Because I was able to witness so many different people over the years, I learned the difference between social drinking and alcoholism. I’ve been to more wakes/funerals and known more people who died from alcohol-related diseases than many typical 29(okay fine…31) year olds. My old boss (the one with no filter) once told me “you sure go to a lot of funerals” after a particularly depressing few months of deaths.

I enjoy cocktailing, but I try to avoid drinking to excess.

Now don’t get me wrong. I was never in the bar past 10pm (and that was ONLY on non-school nights after one of my dad’s softball games). My parents didn’t get drunk and drive us home. Usually, Mom was working behind the bar or waiting tables and Dad was holding court (this is what bar owners and their children do when they hang out in their bar. It’s a thing) or vice versa. When things started getting rowdy, we were hustled out of the bar and didn’t witness anything too inappropriate for our young eyes. Nothing your parents and their friends wouldn’t have done at home with a few cocktails, really.

What was your childhood like? Do you think parents were more lax in the 80’s and 90’s than they are now?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

I was an Irish Princess

For the first 25 years of my life, my parents owned a bar. Not just any bar. To us, it was THE bar. All of our important coming of age shit was celebrated in the bar. First communions, graduations, birthdays, even some holidays…and most especially, St. Patrick’s Day.

You learn a lot when your parents own a bar. You learn how to mix drinks, of course, non alcoholic drinks…like the Chrissy Cocktail I invented when I was 9–seven up, squirt, grenadine, pineapple juice and orange juice (when I grew up, I added vodka). You tell your kindergarten teacher that you want to be a bartender when you grow up. You play waitress in your best friends’ basement (but you add roller skates, because when you own the bar, everyone is going to wear roller skates). You go to a lot of wakes and funerals because you know a lot of people (and a lot of alcoholic). You decide that you DON’T want to be an alcoholic, because you spent your impressionable years watching them. But you drink like a fucking fish in your twenties, anyway.

And then, one day, the bar is gone. And all you have are these AMAZING memories. And that’s okay. It brought you to where you are. It shaped your existence. It gave you all those AMAZING memories.

You try for a few years to go out to other Irish bars on St. Patrick’s Day. You run around town like the Eurotrash of the suburban town where you once held court. Fallen royalty without a kingdom. And then you realize that a bottle of Jamo, a bottle of Bailey’s, and a 6-pack of Guinness are way cheaper than a few shots and a couple of warm green beers at an overcrowded pub. And your dad taught you to make the best corned beef and cabbage on the planet anyway.

But you still deck yourself out like a motherfucking leprechaun and roll into work. Because that’s just what you do. And you wear a green jacket with the name of the bar and the year of your birth like a boss. And you live every day. With your memories and your plans for the future.

Because THAT is what makes life happen.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

When Hate Happens (I Probably Shouldn’t Write About This)

I try really hard to be a mostly positive person. Sure, I bitch about shit. Life’s life, guys. Shit happens. Bitching happens. And Hate. Hate unfortunately happens. Not my hate, though…someone else’s hate was spewed on me. Just like that one time I got hate mail from MySpace. And so my dear friends I am offering you a piece of my past.

I Used to be a Waitress Server

I grew up in a bar, so it wasn’t unusual that I found myself working in restaurants and bars whenever I wasn’t working a full-time job. For about 6 months, I worked as a waitress an Irish pub (you know, the dark wood, make the servers wear kilts and knee highs kinda place).

But at the same time. After that job, I swore that I would never be a waitress again.

I’m going to give you a little glimpse into the why.

One afternoon, two very unhappy looking ladies entered the bar and sat in my section. They ordered chips, soup and salad. No beer. No booze. And no smiling.

So I tried to be my chipper cheery self.

Unfortunately, they also got to meet my super klutzy self. As I was clearing their plates away (and God forbid they should have attempted to move out of the way just a smidge so that I could easily access the empty plates that they wanted removed…), I accidentally tipped the dressing boat/ramekin and some spilled out. Most of it went to the floor, and a few drops landed on this girl’s winter coat. I rushed to clean the mess, and apologized profusely, but I was met with disdain. Disdain for me being a lowly server. Disdain for my MASSIVE life altering error. Disdain for me as a human being. And I apologized. And this girl glared at me. And I offered to pay for the coat to be cleaned, because God forbid you spill anything on an old-looking, dark colored coat…

She paid the bill, and forgot to leave me a tip. I’m going to assume she forgot. I mean, she must not have realized that servers get paid like $4/hour if they’re lucky.

Seriously guys, I’ve spilled ice cream on bridesmaids that were nicer to me than this girl was. I went home and cried.

A few weeks later, my boss came to me with the following (on which I’ve blacked parts out to protect the guilty.)

Bitchy Waitress

Bitchy Waitress

The dry cleaning cost more than the bill she stiffed me on.

If you’re wondering whether I sent her the check? I did. A few weeks afterwards…I wasn’t making a whole lot of money at said bar…I didn’t think she was that desperate for the $20 based on the fact that she spends $20 to dry-clean one item…

Unfortunately for this girl, the check was returned to me about 3 weeks after I retired from waiting tables. Apparently, she gave me the wrong address.

I didn’t think it was necessary to seek her out.

For the record, guys…ALWAYS be nice to your servers. The Golden Rule ALWAYS applies. Even when it’s lowly, bitchy waitresses. Because one day, she might be almost famous and tell the story about how you were mean that one time.

Were you ever a server? Bartender? Anything in the service industry? Dealing with people sucks, amiright? Tell me your story!

 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Monday Memories: Because That Holiday is TOTALLY Stupid Anyway

So this is the only peep you’re going to hear from me on the subject of that Hallmark holiday couples everywhere waste money on and singletons everywhere cry into their beer. As the theme for this morning’s Monday Memories is LOOOOOOOOVE, I thought I’d tell you about the one time before Brian that I had a “Valentine.”

I was in college and dating the Ethiopian. (We had already broken up and gotten back together once, as I spent 2 weeks in London and he missed me and blah blah blah). So we had been back together for a couple of weeks when the VD rolled into town. Neither of us had really ever done anything for it…so I planned some stupid shmoopy crap and cooked dinner. I won’t tell you about the shmoopy crap (because I’m totally embarrassed for myself that it involved a scavenger hunt…), but I will tell you that dinner involved a bottle of champagne. That I drank. By myself. The Ethiopian enjoyed a bottle of PBR, and I enjoyed a bottle of Korbel.

After dinner, his single buddy called to say he was at the bar. I told the Ethiopian to head over there, I wanted to clean the kitchen first, and I would meet him there.

He left, and I immediately went down to the bedroom for a “nap.” An hour later, I saw that he was calling my cell, but I was groggy (read: drunk on champagne and passed the fuck out) and opted not to answer. I fell back asleep and woke up at 4 AM to discover that he had called me like 5 times, leaving messages as to which bar to find him at each time. And that he was home. Whoops! Guess I slept through the evening’s festivities. And I didn’t really feel all that bad. And neither did he. So I guess when we broke up (again) a few weeks later, it shouldn’t have been that much of a surprise.

Join me and my pals as we write memories to make you laugh. If you’d like to get involved, next week’s theme is FOOD!

Monday Memories

 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Cheers to the Forest Fire

I promise I’m not really an asshole. I have a point.

(Hey Mom, let Dad read this one. Also, don’t cry. It’s awesome to have such great memories.)

So, Saturday was my dad’s 70th birthday.We were chatting about my blog, and he asked how he could read it. I explained it to him, though I’m not sure if he still understands. He’s really cute when he says, “Quirky Chrissy.” One day I’m going to film it and put it up here. But he asked if I ever wrote about the forest fire. I hadn’t, but I knew that I had to.

Mom shamelessly plugs my blog–I can tell she’s really proud that I am able to write about the crazy and make it sound adorable and endearing. I love that she does it though, because it spikes my readership. Moms are good like that… but she forgets to show my dad the tales I write…and he’s the opposite of tech savvy. His last technological achievement was playing Pacman on a table top machine. (Oh and the cell phone I made him get by bribing him with the Notre Dame Fight Song ring tone).  But he’s the best dad ever.

No one can believe that he’s 70. Especially not me. Back in my heavy drinkin’ days… Dad was one of my favorite drinking buddies. My first legal shot was with my parents. I used to hang out with dad at the family bar, doing shots of Jamo, showing off my mad skills that I learned in college (like how to open a beer bottle with my forearm), and reigning as Princess Flaherty, by my dad’s side.

My first legal shot

My first legal shot. Happy 21st birthday to ME. (Less than 2 hours later, I would have no idea which hand I wrote with, which was up, or that my skirt should be below my belly button…not above it.)

One of my earlier memories is of my estranged sister (obviously, before she was douchey and estranged), Deven, telling me that MGD was the best beer ever. I looked her square in the eye and said, “When I grow up, I’m going to drink Bud Light, like my daddy.”

And I did.

Of course, not for a while. My parents were pretty brilliant in the boozin’ world of raising kids. Nothing was ever “off limits” so to say… there was no mystery in alcohol. “Can I try?” was always met with a “sure, one sip.” This would typically be denied after a whiff of the beer, cognac, whiskey, wine, etc. in question.  But occasionally, my brother and I would go in for the kill and take a tiny swig, which we found revolting. Alcohol is definitely an acquired taste.

So we didn’t drink. We made it through high school relatively straight-laced. Friends of our parents called us the “stepford children,” because we weren’t drinking and driving, doing drugs, having sex, getting arrested, or any of the other crazy shit that many of their own children were doing… we were goodie two-shoes’. (I was terrified of my mother’s wrath…rightfully so, obviously. I was also afraid of getting caught and kicked off the cheerleading team. I fear reprimand. In life. Still.)

So, then I went off to college. And my dad bet me that I was going to come home and say, “Hey dad, pass me a fuckin’ beer.” He was always is always putting “fuckin” into my potential quotations. His biggest fear was always me meeting my future mother in law for dinner with this beauty: “Pass the fuckin’ potatoes,” which I would never say in front of Brian’s mom!

Not wanting to lose a bet…I made it a point to dislike beer. And find some nice older student to buy me liquor. As evident from previous posts about my college drinking habits…this was not a problem. For the first week, I called home every night. And every night Mom would ask, “Did you get drunk yet?” And every night I would say, “Nope, not yet.” Until one night on Geisert 8. And all hell broke loose.

So when my parents came out for parents weekend…and took me on a massive stock-up grocery trip at the Super Walmart…I was a little surprised, yet ridiculously excited when we walked down the booze aisle, and Daddy said to me, “What do you want?” I was like a kid in a candy store. It was the greatest thing ever. For a college freshman. I picked up a bottle of Smirnoff Raspberry and a bottle of Malibu. They were pretty much gone before my parents left for home that Sunday. I. Will. Never. Drink. Them. Again. Ever.

I came home that summer and not once did I ask Dad to pass me a beer. I still hated beer. I said, “Pass the fucking vodka.” And he laughed. The following summer, Dad and I shared many Bud Lights over long chats by our pool. One night we were talking about cheers and toasts. My dad looked at me, and said, “Christine, you come from a family that would drink to a forest fire.”

And so every once in a great while, Dad and I will drink to the forest fire. But only the ones that are done on purpose. We’re not monsters.

 

 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

The Dating Game

If you’ve ever seen How I Met Your Mother, you know the “Have You Met Ted?” game. I discovered this amusing “game” while watching HIMYM with Mark, who replaced Scrubs with the cast of Barney and his pals. Not going to lie, Barney makes that show. In fact, the BF makes a really great point: Why bother watching the show, when you can watch clips of the funny parts later? Which is what he’ll say right before we look up the video about the Vicky Mendoza Diagonal (which CLEARLY makes perfect sense). Just for added fun:

Anyways, so the Have you met Ted? game translates pretty well in real life. In fact I’ve used it often. One of my most entertaining evenings, was several years ago at a dive bar in Lombard. My pal, Molly, and I were out drinking. While I was in a relationship at the time, Molly was trolling for dudes. Of course, maybe we should have known better than to be trolling for dudes at a dive bar…but we were young.

While I’ve always found a great deal of enjoyment in the chase, Molly is one of those ladies who prefers to be chased. But the shy girl thing doesn’t always work too well without additional help. That’s why girls like Molly have friends like me. To increase the chances of “the chase.” Among other things…

Cue a tall, attractive man sipping on a cheap draft. Molly scopes, then points him out to me. Oh, this should be easy. Without a second thought, I grabbed Molly and dragged her up to the bar. I squeezed in next to the cutie and ordered a drink. As I was waiting for my beverage, I turned on the Chrissy charm.

“Hi!” I grinned at this tall thinner-than-I-would-go-for guy.

He smiled back at me. “Hey, what’s up?”

“Not a whole lot. Have you met Molly?” I asked as I pulled Molly in towards my spot at the bar.

“No, I haven’t. I’m Tom.”

“Hi, I’m Molly” she whispered with the shy girl, I-have-no-idea-what’s-happening smile.

I looked at the two of them, and giggled to myself at the awkward silence that followed their sort of self-introduction. “OK, Tom, this is Molly. Molly, this is Tom. A peanut is neither a pea nor a nut. Discuss.” And with that, I walked away.

Fifteen minutes later, Molly was back at my side as I was chatting with one of my other girls, Becca. “Not so much?”

Molly shook her head. “I didn’t know what else to talk about.” Then she laughed. “I can’t believe you just did that!”

I shrugged, “Just doing my thang…”

She laughed. Just then, Becca’s douchebag boyfriend and his roommate walked up to us. His roommate seemed a little f*ed up, but harmless. He proceeded to shower Molly with compliments and affection. By the end of the night, the were canoodling and kissing. And I barely had to put in any work into that one!

Of course, he wasn’t really boyfriend material. So, even though he continued to call Molly for several weeks thereafter…and pester Becca about Molly…nothing ever came of that night. But hey, Molly had fun. I was entertained. I call that a winning night for a couple of early to mid 20-somethings.

 

 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

My Favorite Piece of Hate Mail

I’ve always been something of a flirt, but for me, it’s often harmless. Occasionally, some guy with a girlfriend would come along and strike a friendship with me based on drinking beer, hanging out at a bar, and laughing hysterically. Some call that flirting. I call that having fun.

Even if I were flirting with someone, in no way would it have meant that I intended to sleep with that person. Or try to break their relationship up. Flirting does not equal desire. (This is not to say that I have never partaken of the Dirty Mistresses Club; it merely means that I was not looking to steal every girl’s boyfriend.)

Yes, I used to dress pretty provocatively. Yes, I wore clothing that accentuated my assets, but I never looked trashy. God provided me with an ample amount of upper body, and though it may have seemed like I was showing the world my goodies–much like an iceberg, I was mostly hidden below.

When I was 24, I spent a lot of time at Flaherty’s. We sing karaoke and had a really great time. Large groups of people would come to hang out, and I always had a blast. One particular group of people would frequent the karaoke shows. I would duet with Matt, and drink with all of his people. He was an incredibly flirtatious guy, so when we would chat, it seemed like we were interested in each other. Not. The. Case. He was a little too much like me for me to ever want to date him.

I prefer guys who bring something different to the table. I don’t want to be in constant competition to be funnier, sassier, or louder. It would be obnoxious. I think that was the case for him as well. His very sweet girlfriend was quiet and reserved. I thought she was a pretty nice girl.

Apparently, she didn’t think the same of me. I received the following MySpace message from her cousin, Anne:

“Oct 27, 2007
 
Anne says:
 
I have a little problem with the way you are disrespecting Lisa.
Why are you always hitting on Matt and may I add in front of Lisa, you know, Matt’s girlfriend? I thought you liked Lisa. I don’t know if you’ve noticed or not, but Lisa gets a little upset when your around. Matt is a friendly guy, likes everyone, talks with everyone, and maybe (or obviously) he’s a “boob man”. But it’s getting pretty old seeing your boobs hanging out ALL the time. It’s not just me, it’s other people too. You know there are better ways of showing off your assets.
I really wish you would RESPECT Lisa and quit hitting on Matt. I’m not trying to be a bitch, I always thought you were a nice girl and just letting you know there are more appropriate blouses out there to be wearing. I’m not saying you have to be like me and cover up. I know you like to wear flirty outfits and all, I’m just saying they don’t have to come down to just above your nipples.
I really hope you do take all of this into consideration. I don’t want to put you down, I want you to be aware that you can still look classy while dressing flirty. You’re a cute girl and I’m sure you’re fun, you can get a boyfriend of your own, stop hitting on other woman’s boyfriends. Thanks for reading.”

 

Let’s just say I had a hard time not wanting to write back and correct her grammar. I was pissed. This message has stuck with me for almost five years. Not because I was hurt by it. Not because it was true. And definitely not because I learned something from it. But because it rang a bell that I had yet to hear. Some people just don’t get it.

Anne was a cute girl, definitely a little bit on the prude side, but like Lisa, I liked her. She exaggerated a lot to try making her point, but all I really got out of it was jealousy and stupidity. Yep, I said it:

People are stupid.

 

 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

The Rules of Owning a Bar

My home away from home. The white Explorer was my first car, “Melba Toast.” The teal Sunfire was the first car I bought with my own money, “Dawn.”

Sometimes, I call my dad, “Boss.” For most of my life, my parents owned a bar called Flaherty’s. The day after my 21st birthday, I started tending bar. I had gone shopping to buy some nice low-cut bar tops to wear when I was workin’ for tips. Dad was none-too-thrilled. I remember him asking me to wear a different shirt for my first shift. I acquiesced his request, but just that once.

Calling him “Daddy” was out of the question since every time it came out of my mouth, one of the customers would mock me in the whiniest littler girl voice, “Daaaaaaddddyyy.” It was obnoxious and I was over it. So instead of taking on the grown-up, “Dad,” I went with Boss. It worked. Such was the day I became a bartender.

Now, as I was finally 21, I would occasionally indulge in a few cocktails at this fine establishment… but in the beginning, I had all sorts of rules. (Drink for free at 21? Hell yes. Get hammered surrounded by scrutiny? Hell no.)

Some of these rules are interchangeable with your “home bar.” Your Cheers. Where everybody knows your name. Some of these rules are more protection for the young adult daughter of a bar owner.

Rule number one: Don’t get drunk in front of the adults who’ve known you for your entire life. Basically, don’t make an ass of yourself.  A shot and a beer joint, Flats (as we sometimes called it) was home to many regulars who had relationships with my parents. There was absolutely no way that I wanted to let them see drunk Chrissy in whatever behavior suited her for the evening. Besides, they may tell my parents. In fact, almost anything that I did was immediately reported back to my father or my aunt (and by tele-Nudd proxy, my mother). No misbehavior from this girl.

Rule number two: Don’t pull the grass from your own front lawn. IE: Don’t. Date. The Customers. If you break their heart, they’ll never come back. If they break your heart, they’ll never come back. If they’ve seen you naked… do you really want your dad serving them drinks? So I made it my business not to become interested in any of the few Flaherty’s regulars under 30.

Rule number three: Don’t bring your own sand to the beach. Never bring boyfriends or guys that you are interested in to the bar unless you’re really serious. In the home bar scenario, that’s like bringing them home to meet the parents. In my case, it WAS bringing them home to meet the parents. At Flaherty’s, gossip traveled faster than a Sarah Palin joke at a democratic convention. I liked to keep my dating life private. Sort of.

Of course, rules were made to be broken, and by the time Flaherty’s closed shortly after my 25th birthday, I had broken all of them. Many. Many. MANY. Times. You’ll see.

What rules do you set for yourself in your home bar? What are your favorite rules to break?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Drunken Laundry at the Laundromat

In the spring of 2008, my parents’ washing machine was on the fritz…and being a grown woman still living at her parents’ house…I needed to do my own laundry. Of course, I waited until I had practically nothing left…(yes, I would occasionally buy underwear and socks, and even go without one or both because I didn’t want to do laundry…) and my wardrobe options were getting pretty scarce.

drunk laundry escapades

So, one night, after a huge Easter feast, a surprise homecoming from my best friend, Mark, and a lazy evening watching Enchanted for the second of three times in a week, I packed up my car and drove to the nearest laundromat (Actually I packed it up twice–once to move out of Mark’s apartment, where I was living/apartment-sitting while he was on a long-ass business trip, and once with laundry).

I cannot claim whether this was truly nearest my house…But it was nearest my 2nd home–Flaherty’s AKA The Bar. I found out that the laundromat was open on Easter (Woot!)…until 9:30 (which I discovered at 8:40-another resounding Woot Woot!). As I was loading up my arms with Tide and Bounce and laundry and money and keys, I banged my head, not once but, twice on the car door. Keep in mind this was in addition to the neck and shoulder bangs from unloading my stuff from Mark’s apartment. The evening was not necessarily going the way I had hoped.

I walked into the laundromat and there was one guy doing his laundry. Keep in mind, this was a big production for me, since I’ve never used a laundromat. The closest experience was in the college dorms, and that was designed to be easy (and more often then not, I took my clothes home to wash them). So I put soap in three of the nearest washers, which weren’t going to fit ANYTHING. Apparently these were commercial washers. Although I’m still not entirely sure what their purpose was…I knew I messed up and wasted money. So I tried stuffing clothes in anyways, and I soon realized…maybe not. I looked around and realized that there were normal-people washers in the back of the ‘mat. Ahhh… that makes sense-put the real stuff in the backRight? Fits more clothes. Less money. Bingo! I finally got everything sorted, in, and spinning.

At this point, I decided I wasn’t going to sit around and watch laundry spin…so I left. Ok, I went to  the bar and ordered a very necessary drink. And a pizza. Mmmm…pizza was one of my lenten offerings that year, and I was thrilled the sacrifice was over. I started chatting with my pal Liz and telling her about my most recent adventures in Chrissy-land, and we were laughing up a storm.

About 20 minutes later, I ran back to the laundromat with Liz to check on my clothes. And it was locked.

Shit. The guy came out of the office and let us in. He told us that he was leaving and we could prop the door open if we need to leave for anything. Oh dear.

I was about to transfer my clothes, and again, I wasn’t quite sure how this worked because there were also two different dryer types–a bigger one and a smaller one. The guy put money into the big one for me(score!) and said it was the better one. So I stuffed all of my clothes in there–all three loads of laundry–and vowed to return in a bit. (That vodka soda and frozen pizza was calling my name).

Liz and I propped the door open with my Bounce box and walked back to our drinks and the pizza. We hung out for a bit and when it was time to grab my clothes, we invited another girl to join us for round three of laundry-mania. We got over to the laundromat and my clothes were still not dry, so I put more money in and planned to come back after another drinky…you can see where this is going.

After our final return, the clothes were dry, folded (poorly) and put into my basket. As we were walking out, we double checked: Money, keys, clothes, Tide, Bounce. Closed the door.

And oh FUCK! Immediately, I knew that I had left some stuff hanging to dry inside!

3 hours of laundry: $6.75

Tip at Bar: $5.00

Juke Box Money: $5.00

Calling your dad the next morning to retrieve your bras from the laundromat:

Priceless.

Never Again.

Blog Friends, have you ever had to ask one of your parents to remedy your flakiness? Tell me one of your embarrassing stories so I don’t feel quite so bad!

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!