In sum, I've consumed seventeen and a half cold beers by the time I fall through the doors of the Wazee Supper Club (1600 15th Street) just after midnight. The first eight went down between 9 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., while I was watching college football. The half a beer was sipped, spilled and then finished through hysterical tears of laughter while I was eating a cheesesteak sandwich and fries in the middle of a 1.7-mile stumble home from downtown. And the last nine slid down between the time I woke up from the ultimate afternoon pass-out/nap and now. All in all, I feel like a tattered two-dollar bill at the bottom of a dirty laundry basket. I feel like a shit stain on shag carpeting.
I feel like a shot.
Fifteen minutes after shooting chilled Hornitos and slamming a pint of Smithwick's, I start to catch a third wind and shake the bilious hue no doubt seeping from my face. First on the list of conversations incoherent enough to warrant being cut off is a hilariously inaccurate tour of all the bar's historical oddities for my buddy Chuck, an out-of-towner and Waz first-timer. I show him the electrical dumbwaiter connecting the kitchen to the lofted upstairs seating area; the vintage pull-bar cigarette machine with the credit-card reader attached to it; the wooden benches with red padding that "came from an old church" (not true: They're from the downtown Denver Elks Club); and the antique telegraph clock behind the bar that...uh...
Wazee Supper Club
"Does that thing show real time?" I ask the bartendress.
"Actually," she responds, "thing's a few minutes slow."
"This is a great bar," Chuck slurs.
By now it's 1 a.m. Or 12:30 a.m. Or some other time between 12 a.m. and 2 a.m. Whatever. The point is that the Wazee perpetually smells like pizza, which is just a red herring for my real point, which is that we don't have a lot of time left to drink, which is to say we're more or less not feeling feelings any more, even though we're panicked about the lack of time remaining to do so. We order more pints, and I excuse myself to the bathroom for two minutes or ten. When I return, I've got an answer for the "Get Your Flu Shots Here" banner that may or may not have been confusing us before I staggered away.
"Shot and a Beer," I say to Chuck when I get back to my stool. "I saw a flier in the bathroom...there's an event here sometime this month later, um, where they give you a free beer if you get a flu shot. But it's like thirty or fifty bucks or something, which is pretty...expensive for a beer." At which time I launch into a diatribe about flu shots being like cervical-cancer shots for teenage girls being like bullshit scams for pharmaceutical companies to scare people into paying for placebos. During which Chuck, I'm pretty sure, is not listening. So I decide to punish him with another shot. This time? Goldschläger.
"Think these are placebos?" Chuck probably says while lifting his glass to his lips.
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"I hope not," I likely respond.
"Yeah. I'm not going to remember taking these in the morning."