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Author Topic: A Stumble Down Bourbon Street: A drunkards tale Chap.1,,very short  (Read 1513 times)

Offline jaydigitek

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                                                  A Stumble Down Bourbon Street

--A short story about a journalists search to uncover his cities best hidden hooch,wich will also serve as a brief history of whiskey,and guide to the great whiskies of the world.Any feedback would be great,I'm currently patching together individual stories that I will later transition into the story,and am also researching for the more serious aspects of the book,meaning the history of whiskey.Thanks for any advice.This will take you about 10 minutes to read.



  "Three fingers of the 'Livet over ice If I may kind Sir.Preferably in a glass un-used by previous patrons of the day,the Heathens if you will."  

   A bit pushy I admit,,but this was to be a glorious day of debauchery and I felt it imperative to be firm with the man from the on-set of this ordeal.He must be made aware of the seriousness of the issue at hand.Not to mention the task that lie in wait for the coming week.

   "Sure thing Mr.Mundi,,you'll be the first to use a rocks glass today,,so the issue of germs will be of no concern."

    As you can probably tell,,he had run this route with me before. He continued, "I've also just received from my distributor a 28 yr.old Macallan single malt if it interests you. A bit heavy on the wallet to be sure,,but even heavier on the pallate,,a bargain if I might say so myself."

    Jonny was always trying to sell me on some new arrival that he had aquired from his "distributor". What Jonny didn't know was that I was well aware of the fact that his "distributor" was actually a crew of lower level tough guys who specialized in high end liqour hijacking,,wich they then fenced off to small bar owners,or collectors looking to score at a discount. And so what. Good for him if he can score on the dark end of the playing field,,cut out the middle man and turn a larger profit for himself. Jonny was a bright kid,and a good guy,,a natural fit for the sometimes shady world of bar ownership. I in turn frequented his establishment on a near nightly basis to indulge in the superior V.I.P discount I received for years of devoted patronage to his establishment. A wonderful thing,,the VIP treatment was,,considering my pattern of consumption. Reckless was a term I had heard some people whisper when my habits became the topic of discussion.

   I have always had a weakness,,or fondness if you will,,for good whiskey and believe myself tobe a qualified and worthy Ambassador of the spirit. Few things in the world soothe my soul in the calming way that a good aged single malt does. From the first euphoric pour,,any and all troubles of the day are instantly washed away,,or shall I say,swallowed down. And given the chance to forge into unknown waters of the whiskey world,,I generally accept,with a smile and healthy tip.

   "Well then,let's skip The 'Livet and give your new arrival a real Whiskey Haven welcome.Doubled up,rocks,and because I am such a fine man,get yourself a taste of that evil elixir you so cherish,my treat."

   Jonny was a tequila man. High end,exotic,expensive tequila man. If rumor serves as fact,then Jonny was the god damm Messiah of all things concerning the Agave plant,and the spirits that are produced from it. But that's a story to be told later.

   "Thanks Simon,,but it's a bit early for me to start in with the heavy.In fact,it's not even noon yet.Now what's on your agenda that has you knockin 'em back at such an early hour?"

   It was Sunday,the day of rest,,but there is no rest for the wicked I thought as I layed out my plan for him.  "Jonny,,I have spent the better part of three years stumbling my way around the bars of this great city.Each one unique in its design,clientele,atmosphere,and stock. During these stumbles I have come to notice that almost every bar has had at least one bottle of bourbon or scotch that no other has had. Some have been devine,,and some rather wretched,but none the less,unique to its location."

   Jonny feigned interest despite having heard my senseless dribble time and time again on drunken evenings and sleepless nights.

   " The editor has given me one week to work on a passion piece,provided I promise not to spend to much of the magazines money,and keep the lawlessness to a minimum. Now given my passion for whiskey,,I have decided to chronicle my search for the cities best "hidden hooch" and who knows,,perhaps you're place will win top billing."  Jonny simply smiled and replied," Well happy hunting to you then."

   Christ help me,the thought of spending the entire week bouncing from bar to bar,partaking in some of the cities best swill on the companies account made me giddy with excitement.The thought of getting paid to do so,and having the ensuing article published as the center story in next months copy of The Gentelman Drinker,was enough to drive me insane with joy.

   It then occured to me that to cover this ordeal righteoussly and be able to cope with whatever madness was sure to ensue,,I may need to enlist the assistance of a top notch social confidante. One who was capable of not only keeping me focused on the project at hand, but also someone who can go for days,on overdrive,without collapsing like some shithead frat boy after to many keg stands. At the very minimum I would need someone to make sure I remembered to square up all the outrageous tabs I would be running up.

   There was only one man to call in this situation; The General of Fallen Stars. Odd monicker I know,but nothing about Patrick was ever really normal. He was equal parts nomad,philosopher,activist,lost boy,and asshole. A narcissistic sociopath in the truest sense,he was the one man I could surely rely on in situations as serious as this,,especially when there would be long sessions of drink involved. The fact that he was also a grade A conversationalist didn't hurt either. Patrick was the kind of guy who could walk into a bar,and within 5 minutes,be 4 minutes into a studied argument with two or three of the bars patrons,complete strangers. Not loud,agressive,get in your face arguments between drunks,but rather controlled discussions between people of diff-minded opinions. I take zero pride in admitting that he was the victor of 99% of all debates he found himself in.The other 1% being lost only on technacality or forfeiture due to the fact that the other person was to drunk or stupid to even deal with. Patrick was always right,in his mind,and was not hesitant in letting you know.

   Yes indeed,the ideal man to have on the team on a project like this. I phoned The General at his home and was received by his ex-wife,who he still resided with quite amacably. She was a wonderful woman of cuban descent and a great friend. I exchanged pleasantries and informed her of my intentions for the week,and the role that Patrick would be playing in the project. She responded with a resounding "are you fucking serious?" I assured her that I was.

   "let's just call a spade a spade here Simon,you're taking the week off to souse yourself into oblivion.You add Patrick to the mix and the two of you are sure to make complete assesd of yourselves,offend anyone within shouting distance,and may wind up fugitives,,with orders given to law enforcement to shoot on sight."

   For a brief moment I envisioned Patrick and myself running out the side door of the Squire Lounge,full bottle of booze in our arms as police officers opened fire,falling us to the ground,glass shattering as the time slowed to near non-existance.The sound of the Doors "this is the end" booming from somewhere above as if God himself had pressed play on the juke box in the sky to soundtrack our demise. Surely it wouldn't come to that would it.

   "Don't tell me my business woman! You of all people know my commitment to journalistic integrity,and the project is what counts here Regina,the project don't you see!" I felt strong and defiant in telling her how things were.

   "Children,,the both of you", she reminded me.

   "Of course,but you know I love you,,you are an angel of the highest order,and if you'd like to join us at any time for drinks and chatter you are surely welcome."

   This of course being more of a statement than an actual invitation.But I knew she'd be along at some point,for she,like the majority of my friends,never passed on an opportunity to dance with the devil,and I assure you,Regina could fox-trot with the best of 'em. "Here's Pat",was all she replied.

   "Hello."

   "Patrick you swine,tell me why I'm occupying the far end stool at Whiskey Haven all by myself for christ sake."

   "Simple,,you're a drunkard."

   "No excuse.I've had enough of this un-necessary solitude,join me at once."

   "What's the purpose?" he asked,as if he needed an excuse to get out of that shithole he called  home.

   "I've been commissioned to work on a passion piece for the mag,and naturally I'll be needing your assistance,,there'll be plenty of heavy lifting."

   "Well then,I must know befor commiting to anything,,is there risk involved?"

   The General was a man who loved anything involving risk,and anything that was high on adrenaline. He once went skydiving,free fell for 1300 feet longer than is safe to,and after deploying his chute,pulled out a swiss army knife and cut the chords. All to see if there really was a reserve chute,or if that was just said as a confidence booster to first timers.

   "Any risk involved would be self-inflicted. But I can assure you that the possibility of being dragged into an alley and stomped into hamburger for firing insults,and conspiring against packs of rabid drunks,is very real.If we choose to take it that far."

   " I see.Well that sounds promising.What will I need for provisions? Should I bring my swiss army knife?"

   I was hoping there would be no need,but going into the unknown without protection seemed a foolish idea.

   " It may be necessary un-fortunately,if even just to cut us loose from any restraints that may be forced upon us by the jackals of society. Now you must hurry,I'm in jeopardy of being approached by what appears to be a drunk republican from down the bar.He has the look of conversation in his eyes."

   There's not much worse in this world than a drunk political type in a bar,who wishes to engage in what he believes to be meaningful banter.Especially one who is WHISKEY drunk and high on power.

   "Resist him Simon! At all costs.I'll be damned if another one of my brethren becomes brainwashed by the systematic babble of a druken heathen.Remember Charlie,the drummer from that band with the guy that drove that truck? One minute we're having drinks at the Tiki Bar,and next thing you know some republican asshole has persuaded him to sign on as a surveyor for the republican party! I haven't seen him since,but last I heard he was trying to get donations from people on the Blvd,wearing a suit and tie,completely oblivious to the joys of bars and rock music. No way my friend,,you occupy yourself with a scotch and a copy of the Onion and keep your eyes down.Speak to no one.I'll be there in 30 minutes."

   I heard the phone crash onto the receiver and hung up my own.Now all I had to do was avoid the jackass sitting 4 stools down from me until my calvary arrived  and all would be right as rain.But being that I was the only other person in the bar,and Jonny was conveintely checking his inventory,it would be difficult.It would require some strong evasive tactics on my part.

   In general I dont mind a little bar room conversation with a stranger.It can be quite pleasant and insightful when employed properly.But being a "lord of the bar",as I am,,I believe in adhering to the old rule of no religion,no politics. The very mention of these subjects in a bar can make grown men grow thirsty for blood. I've seen men turn into common hoodlums arguing over catholocism and the republican party.

   This scumbag had the look alright.He must be avoided,,for his own safety of course. I quickly gave a shout to Jonny,"Jonny it's the strangest thing.This glass seems to have absorbed all the scotch that it contained."

   Jonny was quick to respond."Well we should probably remedy that now then.How was it?"

   " Devine Jonny,,absolutely devine."
« Last Edit: February 27, 2009, 01:30:07 AM by jaydigitek »
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Offline flights_of_fantasy

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Re: A Stumble Down Bourbon Street: A drunkards tale Chap.1,,very short
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2009, 07:35:22 AM »
Hi, Jay.

I didn't manage to get through it all, but I read about half. I know this might sound incredibly picky, but I kept stopping and starting because the punctuation put me off.

   "Three fingers of the 'Livet over ice If I may, kind Sir._Preferably in a glass un-used by previous patrons of the day,_the Heathens if you will."  

   A bit pushy I admit,,_but this was to be a glorious day of debauchery and I felt it imperative to be firm with the man from the on-set of this ordeal._He must be made aware of the seriousness of the issue at hand._Not to mention the task that lie in wait for the coming week.

   "Sure thing Mr.Mundi,,_you'll be the first to use a rocks glass today,,_so the issue of germs will be of no concern."

Every time you use a standard comma or period, always leave a space after it. It makes your work easier to read. Only one comma is needed.

Having said that, I love the theme of your piece. My DH is a whiskey drinker. It reminds me of the year after we married, and we travelled up to Inverness to visit relatives. On the way, we stopped overnight in a hotel and he asked for whiskey and orange. You mustn't blame him for this. He was young, and didn't know any better. Anyway, the barman looked at him a moment and said, "You'll be wanting the cooking whiskey then?"

To the best of my knowledge, he's drunk his whiskey straight ever since. Foul smelling stuff, it is. Don't know how you can drink antiseptic myself. Smells like TCP. :)
« Last Edit: February 27, 2009, 07:37:31 AM by flights_of_fantasy »
Heather

"A searing indictment of domestic servitude in the eighteenth century, with some hot gypsies thrown in. My magnum opus, Baldrick. Everybody has one novel in them, and this is mine."
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Offline thatollie

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Re: A Stumble Down Bourbon Street: A drunkards tale Chap.1,,very short
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2009, 08:11:36 AM »
Clean it up and tighten it, only then will it be fit to be called a Hunter S Thompson rip off.
Never make a decision standing up.

Offline Hugh

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Re: A Stumble Down Bourbon Street: A drunkards tale Chap.1,,very short
« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2009, 08:49:23 AM »
Like Flights, I couldn’t get through it all, because of all the punctuation and spelling errors, but the general theme is unusual and interesting.

Just one small point: if you are going to talk about The Macallan, Glenlivet, and other examples of Britain’s finest exports, I feel you should spell whisky correctly.  “Whiskey” is the American stuff, like rye and bourbon, which bears no relation to the elixir of the gods distilled in the western highlands and islands of Scotland.

If you are researching whisky, you may be interested in one of the pieces of advice my father, himself a Highland Scot, gave me many years ago:  “When you’re past forty, take water with it.”  On my fortieth birthday, I remembered that advice, added four fingers of water to four fingers of Grouse, and toasted his memory.  But ice?  Perish the thought.

With quite a bit of tidying up, I think your story will make a good read.

Hugh

Offline flights_of_fantasy

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Re: A Stumble Down Bourbon Street: A drunkards tale Chap.1,,very short
« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2009, 08:59:57 AM »
Just one small point: if you are going to talk about The Macallan, Glenlivet, and other examples of Britain’s finest exports, I feel you should spell whisky correctly. 

Damn. Now I'm embarrassed. Should've checked a dictionary.
Heather

"A searing indictment of domestic servitude in the eighteenth century, with some hot gypsies thrown in. My magnum opus, Baldrick. Everybody has one novel in them, and this is mine."
Edmund Blackadder, Blackadder the Third, Ink & Incapability

Wolfe

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Re: A Stumble Down Bourbon Street: A drunkards tale Chap.1,,very short
« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2009, 09:44:40 AM »
Like Flights, I couldn’t get through it all, because of all the punctuation and spelling errors,

This.

And believe me when I say no editors in their right mind are going to
have someone check it out for all necessary editing
for you.

Sorry, but that's not how it works in today's publishing.  You're expected to do this basic step yourself.

Wolfe
« Last Edit: February 27, 2009, 10:31:15 AM by Wolfe »

Offline jaydigitek

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Re: A Stumble Down Bourbon Street: A drunkards tale Chap.1,,very short
« Reply #6 on: February 27, 2009, 10:22:32 AM »
Thank you thank you for all your feedback. I know I have some serious punctuation issues to deal with, and will work accordingly to correct them. I have thought about ditching this story all together, but it's become a sort of obsession, so I will trek on, and work on my clarity and grammar. Thank you all very much!! ;D
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Offline Hugh

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Re: A Stumble Down Bourbon Street: A drunkards tale Chap.1,,very short
« Reply #7 on: February 27, 2009, 11:13:31 AM »
Don't be embarrassed, Flights.  Lassies aren't obliged to be so obsessive about the finer points of subjects like whisky, especially if you'd rather put it on a grazed knee than drink it.

Hugh