Quote of the Day:
“Do not cease to drink beer, to eat, to intoxicate thyself, to make love, to celebrate the good days.” Egyptian Proverb
For some reason today TB got to thinkin’ back to my law school days, specifically the days passed in company with TDW at the old Holiday Inn Bar in Oxford, Mississippi. It doesn’t sound like a very happenin’ joint does it? Well, it wasn’t. But the place was run by an old black dude, well, old by my standards back then anyway, named Clyde. Clyde managed, tended bar, set out the complimentary hors d’oeurves, dispensed fresh darts, and wiped down the tables. At the Holiday Inn Bar in Oxford, it only took one dude to do all that you see. But the best thing ol’ Clyde did was disappear for long stretches.
I have no damn idea–check that–I have a couple of ideas but no actual evidence of what he did during those absences. Other than turning the place over to TB and TDW that is. Don’t get me wrong. If the place was hoppin’ on a given day, say the recently fired assistant football coaches had a table or an illicit romance was being conducted in the dark corner, you know, if three or more people were around, Clyde would do his thing on the scene. But so often, it was just TB and TDW and maybe a special guest drinker sometimes and when that was the case, Clyde would leave us in charge and go do whatever in the hell it was Clyde went to do.
Free darts, free snacks, the cheapest and cheesiest jukebox you ever saw–TDW still pats himself on the back for establishing the playlist/soundtrack of our law school years as “Me and Bobby McGee”, “Ain’t No Sunshine” and “I Touch Myself”–and unlimited access to the kegs–for TB and TDW, it was like a home away from home. But better than home what with the free food and unlimited beer. And we never even really talked much to Clyde other than to say hello and so long. He was just a shrewd judge of character, and he decided after it became obvious TB and TDW were gonna keep showing up that he liked us. How do I know? On about about the fourth or fifth trip Clyde disappeared on us for the first time. Becoming thirsty, we naturally helped ourselves to pitcher after pitcher of cold, refreshing, less filling beer. When it was time for us to stumble on our way Clyde was back in place behind the bar. “Ten Bucks!” he said as we gave him the “let’s settle up” sign. Well TB and TDW were then, as now, more or less honorable types. “Nah, while you were gone we had several pitchers. Several. Like, we quit counting after three.” We were not, after all, so honorable as to say “eleven, plus we each took a turn drinking straight from the tap.”
“You sure?” This was too good to be true. We gave him twenty and he passed back ten.
“Thanks Clyde, you are the man. We are coming back here forever.”
And so we did. And it was always ten bucks. I don’t know why he liked us. The only thing I can come up with is he really liked TDW’s taste in music.
Man, oh, man, did this bring back some memories. (I have to note that I played “I Touch Myself” more as a joke than because of a genuine affinity for the song.)
On rare occasions, college kids would play us for a beer and, inevitably, they’d lose. Of course, we had no pressure on us because we knew we could pony up as many beers as we had to and still only pay our routine $10 plus a $10 tip.
Damn, those were good times. Thanks for writing this post. I needed a good stroll down memory lane.
what were your theories on Clyde’s activities while absent from his post?
No theories really, that was all just hyperbole. Clyde was just a super relaxed, happy dude, that’s all.