Before I begin I should say that I do not care if anyone is loud in any bar anywhere. It’s what they’re there for. To do things you can’t do in your own home. Like piss on the floor or punch a stranger.
But if your plan is to go out to ‘watch the game’ then that takes precedent over telling Cindy Lou how shitty your job is at Megadeath decibels. It’s especially in poor taste, in this taste makers opinion, if you’re doing it while wearing paraphernalia from said sports franchise.
I’m not saying there aren’t women who are big sports fans. Hell, in the dive bar near work there’s one women I hope there’s a seat next to so I can enjoy the game with her. She knows her shit, is smart, funny and knows when to let the action play out sans non-sports related conversation. It doesn’t hurt that I usually agree with her (so far our only disagreement was over the brilliance of televised curling. I’m hoping one day she’ll evolve). But it’s mainly because she’s there to watch the fucking game.
A few weeks ago my girlfriend and I were going out to watch a rather important game. It was game six of the World Series (spoiler alert: the Boston Red Sox won) so I wanted to go to a place that’s a good place to watch the game. We know the bartender, the wings are awesome and I had to figure it wasn’t going to be too crowded by game time. And it wasn’t. My girlfriend was to my left, some guy was to my immediate right, the woman he was with to his then further down the bar a couple of guys.
This could work.
Pre-game she was a little loud. But she was telling tales of her family having season tickets since the day they started construction on Fenway Park. Good, I think, she’ll want to pay attention to the game. My girlfriend, bless her heart, can sometimes be, how do you say? Chatty. But I’m an expert at letting it wash over me like a lithium shower. The words just bounce off me and fall to the ground never to have found purchase in my ear hole.
It didn’t take me long to realize how foolish I’d been. Almost from the moment the first pitch hit the catchers mitt the woman to my right started talking. LOUDLY. My sound block at her tone must still be in beta because every single word she said pierced my brain like little needles of annoyance.
But it was the topic of conversation that most distressed me. She started by telling the guy (and me) that she never tells anyone the things she’s going to tell him (and me). After a while I could see why she didn’t like to tell people these things: they made her sound like a totally self-involved brat.
She kept piling these things on to the guy (and me) who only wanted to watch the game. He (and I) didn’t want to be filled in on her life of getting whatever it is she wants and more. But that wasn’t going to stop her. I swear she never took a breath and I don’t know how she did it, but while continuously talking she also finished her beer.
On my left was my girlfriend. Also talking. Let me try to explain that sensation. Get one device that plays music. Plug one ear bud into the proper ear. Now borrow a friends music device and stick an entirely different ear bud in the remaining ear. In one ear play ‘Nuttin’ But A ‘G Thang’ by Dr. Dre. In the other ‘One Week’ by Barenaked Ladies.
Then try to sing both those songs correctly.
While trying to follow to a very important World Series game.
At this moment I would have welcomed listening to that unbalanced chucklehead Tim McCarver.
I caught a look at the guy seated next to me in the mirror and laughed. We were both staring ahead blankly. Like two monkeys who could hear no baseball. I’m sure if one of us suggested a suicide pact it would have been done.
I waited until the end of the inning to suggest to my girlfriend we move along. She balked for a moment but there was little more she could do when I plunked money down and grabbed my jacket. We say good bye to the bartender, I wish the guy I’m abandoning a speedy deafness and we exit.
I wanted to go to a place near the house. It’s small, nice TV’s, nice people and I knew the bartender wouldn’t let the noise level of non-baseball related conversation get out of hand. But my girlfriend decides, because I chose to leave, she should choose the next establishment we go to. I am against this plan. I want to go to a nice, tight, tiny place. She wants to go to a large, cavernous, hellhole.
Guess who won?
I get out of the car, dread filling my head. I look around the parking lot and it is packed. Bad sign number one, boys and girls. Bad sign number two came to me in a whoosh before I opened the front door.
Sound. Loud incessant words could be heard through two doors and a foyer. I look at my girlfriend, trying to reign in my desire to pour a truck load of cement in the foyer to forever trap these sounds there and say,
“It’ll be fun.” She says passing me as the sound level blew back my hair. And if you’ve seen me I’m sure you know we’re not talking about head hair.
I am assaulted by a river of pink hats. With pink hat wearers all speaking at once. And not one pink hat wearer facing any of the many large screen televisions which were the reasons they choose to come here to ‘watch the game.’
If I ever meet the first guy who said, “Hey, I bet if we put teams logos on a pink hat women will snap ’em right up.” I will rip off his nose and staple it back onto his face upside down so the next time it rains he’ll drown.
We bully our way to the bar. I’m standing four feet from a blow up pool sized TV with the volume blaring yet all I can hear are the full conversations from three tables, two beside me, one in back. And I could see guys at those three tables staring ahead miserably. It reminded me of a shot during a hockey game of a guy sitting there glumly while the girl next to him dug into his ear hole. I laughed watching it knowing he was thinking,
“I spent seventy-five bucks a ticket, dinner cost a hundred, beer is nine buck a cup, and I’m not going to enjoy one minute of it, am I?”
No, son, you are not.
The inning ended just as my beer did. My patience ended at the threshold. I point to the door knowing full well a guy can’t be heard within the frequency of all this pink hat blathering. My girlfriend turns and we exit.
Even she agreed it was overbearing in there. That’s what we need! Support from the other side. Women, if you feel pink hats and their ilk are too noisy, please, tell them bitches to shut the fuck up. You know they’ll never listen to a guy. On behalf of all men, thank you.
We finally get to the last place. There are a few innings left. The Red Sox have a comfortable lead. We get to the parking lot and it’s semi-packed.
“We’ll never get a seat.” My girlfriend says. “It’s so small in there it’ll be packed. We’ll be lucky to get a table. We might not even be able to sit in the bar.”
“Relax.” I say. “It’ll work out just fine.”
I walk to the door and hear something odd.
‘Is that the baseball game?’ I think.
Holy Babe Ruth’s swollen prostate, it is!
What wonderful thing happened next? The bartender sees me, reaches for my beer, and places it on the bar directly in front of a seat directly in front of the most glorious TV I have seen tonight.
Lest you think he was rude let me tell you this bartender is not like that. Right behind me was a choice seat for Terry. From that moment we settled in to view our fine feature presentation.
The loudest sound we heard all night was the roar of the crowd and the clang of the ships bell when it was official: The Boston Red Sox are your 2013 World Series Champions.
And best of all? I got to hear it.