25 things you never knew about Michael Reilly, bartender at the Matchbox
Micheal Reilly, bartender at the Matchbox.
As Westword's Ask the Bartender columnist, I've talked with many bartenders for Cafe Society's "Behind the Bar" series, posing numerous questions to Denver's top bartenders...and often receiving the same answers: "I love chartreuse," or "I'm really into smoked cocktails/barrel aging/bottled cocktails."
Some time ago, a Facebook friend posted 25 things about himself that most people weren't aware of -- and then he tagged me in the post, at which point I was supposed to do the same: rattle off 25 little-known facts about myself and ask someone else to follow suit. Instead, I'm asking Denver's bartenders to get up and close with Westword readers and share 25 lesser known tidbits about themselves -- and then name the next bartender that I should interview.
Come March, the Matchbox, which I think is RiNo's best bar, will celebrate its third anniversary. On any given night, you'll find an eclectic crew of local musicians, bike messengers, hipsters and bar flies ordering drinks from bartender Michael Reilly, who works the crowd with ease. And in this edition of "25 Things," Reilly reveals that he has a naked picture of himself hanging in his home, warns you to leave him alone during the day and shares his dream of being a water park critic.
1. I once came home to a confused Chali 2na from Jurassic 5 staring at a large naked photo of myself that I had hanging in my living room. We discussed the importance of "legacy" photos, and he said he needed to have one of his own.
2. I got suspended a lot in middle school and elementary school for fighting. I hate fighting now, so that's good.
3. My dog, Ichabod, is seriously awesome. He eats lying down and is 76 percent otter, 25 percent black bear, and 101 percent awesome.
4. I always sing the national anthem at last call because I love my country and all the people who have sacrificed themselves for this land. That doesn't mean I agree with our country's politics, however.
5. Math is one of my favorite things. I can take any four numbers, one through nine, and put them into an equation to equal 24 -- and I can do it all in my head.
6. I really like to dance, but only the right setting... which is everywhere, all the time.
7. I have a soft spot for movies like Drum Line. It's so predictable yet so rewarding, and who doesn't like a good training montage?
8. I've been creating a fantasy world for years now to step away from reality. However, that world is starting to suck and I just don't know if I can start another one.
9. I think the world should have more interesting competitions, you know, like International BattleBots! Japan, USA and Sweden would probably be the best.
10. Even though I'm an extrovert while bartending, I'm definitely introverted during my free time. So leave me alone during the day, please.
11. I read a lot of fantasy and science fiction. I've always preferred to step into a world that doesn't exist for a while, and I think everyone should read a good fantasy every now and then.
12. No matter what you look like, who you are, what you wear, or where you come from, I bet we can get along. Unless you just don't like me, in which case, that's just unfortunate.
13. I like to play video games online. It's been an escape since I was a little kid; it's like therapy.
14. I'm very conscientious about my personal hygiene. It really stinks when people are surprised by how good I smell.
15. I totaled my car when I was eighteen while trying to kill a moth that flew out of the dashboard. There, I said it.
16. I caught frogs when I was younger and tried to keep them in the garage. I always thought they'd run away at night. Turns out that the majority of them just got stuck under things and died. My dad made me clean it all up when we moved. I was only like six.
17. In middle school, my parents had a black box (hacked all access cable), so I recorded a bunch of porn on the Spice channel and sold the tapes for $20 a pop out of my locker at school. I felt like a hero at the time, but now I realize the simple truth: I was a seedy, bootlegging porn dealer.
18. I try to be as chivalrous as possible. I have an ex who straightened me up real proper. Do you know the appropriate side to walk on while you're walking alongside a lady? Those horse-drawn carriages can get out of control, I tell ya!
19. I really like playing dice, whether it's craps in a casino or c-lo on the street. Sometimes I get a little loud and annoy people, though. Looking at you, every roommate I've ever had.
20. I hated being clothed as a toddler. I mean, I hate it now, too, but I seriously would take everything, including my diaper, off at any occasion.
21. I fell out of a two-story window when I first learned to walk. I didn't break anything and was fine.
22. My dream job would probably be a water park critic. That's a thing, right?
23. I really enjoy going to the ballet. My friend is in it, and I think it's incredible.
24. I used go commando. Come to think of it, I still do.
25. If you see me out, I'll probably tell you a popsicle stick joke.
Missed one of my interviews with a Denver bartender? Read the rest of them below.
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