Friday, August 27, 2010

Typical Day In SF

So this day was crazy as hell, and way drunker than I thought it would be. Mr. Carl Morse and I head out to the game against the hated Dodgers. I’ve got a sign that says 11,435 miles, 30 stadiums, 1 place called home!!! We start out at Java house right behind the ballpark for PBR’s and hotdogs at 11in the morning. It’s $8 for that special. Not the greatest but its some substance and cheap beers. If you ever get there early go to Delancey Street, cheap and good food. We pound back a couple beers and I still have some vodka left over from Chicago and my flask is filled with Makers. Not a great combo but its Giants/Dodgers!!! We buy the cheapest tickets which are to damn expensive but this premium pricing makes all good games cost a shit ton. We are gonna sit in the bleachers anyway. We sit down and keep getting moved from seat to seat. For some reason the usher keeps seeing us move but doesn’t seem to care. We buy some soda to help with the shitty vodka and Makers. The damn soda is almost as expensive as the beers here. We start pounding back booze by the 2nd inning. Grabbing $8 beers and mixing it with booze is working for the buzz but not for the Smurfs (Dodger or Dodger fans) around us. I was figuring there would be a lot more but Giants fans are holding it down today. We start getting our ass kicked and Carl and I would rather walk around the stadium smoking and yelling at Smurfs. We post up in the Arcade and I hold my sign up. Every Smurf who passes us by, adult, elderly, kid or child in a stroller I roll up my sign and BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. Most took it well. They know they are in our stadium and them winning wasn’t helping my case. But we get some help from people walking by and they stand with us. A couple Smurfs end up taking it well and stand next to us to boo us. But being as fucked up as we are and booing kids in strollers, them talking doesn’t really mean much now does it? The game ends we lose like 8 – 1 or something, I stopped caring after the flask was gone. We head to the bathroom and run into this big fucking dodger fan. Not like he likes them a whole lot, which I’m sure he did but this guy is probably about 6’6 400 and we start yelling at him in the bathroom. Nice friendly banter. We tell everyone in there he is buying drinks at Momo’s, he didn’t like that to much or follow through with it. LOL I run into Kyle the hostess from works bf, and he is about as drunk and happy as we are. I know a guy at Momo’s so we decide to meet there, cause we haven’t had enough to kill the pain of the sweep. I didn’t think that my bad luck watching the Giants would go against us today. I thought I had statistics and my home winning percentage on my side. But my bad luck prevails. I have now seen them lose 5 times in 4 cities. Let’s go drown our sorrows. We head over to Momo’s and I see the guy I know. Beers and shots of Fernet. Blah!!!! Fucking Fernet. The worst liquor ever. What is the fascination?? It’s never made my stomach feel better after drinking it. We stick around a little and have more shots and beer and one more shot and beers. The day has to be over right?? NO!!! My sorrows are still around. To Tres Agave it is. We meet Amanda and Kyle there. Clarissa, Carl’s fiancĂ© arrives and pitchers of tequila and shots of margarita’s flow. Well that’s how it felt. I stopped remembering most of this place as soon as we got our first pitcher of Margarita’s I was filled in by Amanda a couple days later about, shots?, breaking glass?, some girl I was talking to, who was a bitch? And wearing a Panda hat. After the refresher course it all started to come back. Pictures didn’t hurt either. Well they did cause WOW!!! They were some ugly pictures. It’s looked like they were taken out of a bad drunken movie. These are ridiculous. Apparently after the pitcher or glass or whatever broke we left. But finished?? I think not. We jump on reliable MUNI to get closer to home. It breaks down somewhere downtown and I have the great idea to go with my thoughts on the rest of the trip…”We were supposed to get off here and go to Gitane.” Of course, why not go to a really nice restaurant dressed in Giants gear, liquored up from 10 hours of drinking. I had to ask the owner a week later if we were ok. Apparently we were, ok. Not bad but not good, he could tell it had been a long day. We at least had the presence of mind to eat a little, since all we had had all day was chips from Tres. A beer later and we get the fuck out of there and head home!!! I show up at the parents house and it’s like being in high school. I can’t talk and I need food bad. My mom cooks me up something, I truly can’t remember. Thank God for good parents. I think I hit my pillow at like 12. Crazy ass day and night. But this is mostly a typical drinking day in SF with my friends and I. Damn I missed it. I love SF more than anything. Nobody can ever tell me there is a better city than this, at least not in this country. We have it all, and most of it is good. I have my qualms with the politics and some of the people here but everyone has their dislikes in their town. But I live in the best city in the world and I beg you to try and convince me otherwise. I have one more stop, and that is to go back to Detroit to go see the game I was rained out of, on my way to Canton to go see Jerry Rice get enshrined into the Football Hall of Fame.

Joke Land

There is a reason I don’t go across the bay all that often. Cause it is horrible. But at least I’m a short drive away from home and I don’t have to stay in this God awful town. I call up Steve and plan on getting over there and having some drinks and then tailgating before the game. We drive up and try to give the guy some money for parking, he says hell no man it’s free parking Tuesday. Well awesome!!! At least something is going well in Oakland so far. We park in all of our Giants gear for the A’s, Reds game. And as we get out the first thing we hear is “Hey did you guys make a wrong turn??” HAHA so hilarious. We crack open some beers and listen to the Giants games at full blast as A’s fans pass us by. We have some degenerate crack-head asshole come up and sell us tickets we pay $15 for 2 tickets. We get in their and walk around trying to pick out perfect $7.50 tickets. We have some Coors Light in our pockets and are ready for a shitty ass A’s game. We sit around booing the A’s as much as we can. I think they can hear us on the field since there are about 22 people in the stadium. We take a walk around and find a place upstairs that has $5 beers. We get a round and at this point we’ve spent more money on the 12 pack than we have at and for the game. People don’t much like us but fuck them they are Oakland fans. They of course ruin my home field win percentage. And all in all a wasted day as I knew it was going to be. This is almost as bad as Detroit but I didn’t have to stay in Detroit this long. We head back to the house and then back home. Was pretty fun doing a little tailgating and hanging out drink but I hate Oakland. This is probably the shortest blog I’ve written.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Sleepless in Seattle (Well Close)

What a great little big city they have here. It wasn’t anything amazingly fun packed like the rest of the trip but a good part of the trip nonetheless. Pops and I flew in on a Friday and we stayed outside of the city near the airport in a podunk ass town pretty much like South City here. The flight up was quite cool. The pilot got the OK to take the scenic tour out of town. We went all around the bay being able to see The City with a birds eye view. Would have gotten some better pics but the windows were disgusting. I did get some decent ones though. They also gave us a complimentary beer on the flight to our transfer in Portland. I thought that only happened on your way to Europe. We got up to Seattle and jumped right back into trip mode. Going to the hotel bar and grabbing a quick bite and drink, before we go get ready and go head out to see the town and get some good food. The city was about 15 min out but not too bad of a drive in. A little traffic and apparently getting worse by the year from what the locals say. We went to a steak house in downtown Seattle named Metropolitan. The Lakers – Celtics game 7 was on so it was pretty well packed. Apparently Bostonians aren’t only in SF they are in Seattle also. Why don’t they just stay in Boston??!! We of course had some good steak and drinks. The bartender was helpful, telling us which places I had picked out were good to go to. So we headed around town. Unfortunately it is quite hard to get my dad’s walker around in this town. There are a lot of steps and no elevator and not much room in these places to put his gear. So I had a chauffer for the night. We first headed to a place called Zig-Zag CafĂ©. They had some really cool drinks in there and it was more like a restaurant than a speakeasy where you would expect to find really nice drinks. The only problem with that is that more people are around and more people want drinks, which means that 10 min cocktail turns into a 20 min cocktail. This wasn’t as bad as that, but I kinda get scared walking into places like that, but just assume you are gonna have to wait a while for a drink. I had a few drinks, mixing it up between Bourbon and Tequila. The bartender bought me the drinks cause he is coming into SF soon and was hoping for some places to go. I dropped a 20 which is cheaper than 2 drinks and a tip. I’m gonna take this time to instruct people… If a bartender buys you a drink it’s not cuase he doesn’t want a tip. Well for the ladies he might want to give you a tip, but as a good rule whatever the drink would have cost you drop him half maybe 40%. $10 drink means $4 or $5. I jumped in the car feeling very good. We headed to the Bathtub Gin and Co. This is a 2 level spot but still only holds like 40 people. Nice little place very good drinks but not a huge drink list. I go with whatever the bartender wants to make in situations I find I don’t really like the drinks on the list. At this point I’m sloshed, hammered, fucked up. I have to get out of here. Jump in the car and pops drives us back to the hotel. I’m barely able to move. Its nice having someone there with you, you can kinda relax even more.
The next day is a rough one. I need water, water, water!!!! We head to the ballpark to get tickets and we see people already sitting in front of the stadium for a 7:05 game. We find out its Ken Griffey Jr. and Ichiro bobble head day, so the game is almost sold out. The Pyramid Brewery which is right across the street from the stadium with parking looks like a good stop for lunch and to wait for the game to start. I need Pepsi and can’t think about having a beer just yet. Sugar seems to help in this situation. I’m chugging water and soda. Finally I get the courage to have a beer and things start to get normal. Pretty decent food and the beer is the same as it is everywhere else I’ve had it. The smell of brewery isn’t the best for someone very hung over. About 5 hours before the game the line is getting very long and I figure I’m this close I might as well stand in line and get the bobble head. But I find out I didn’t need to. With my dad have his little walker we go straight to the front of the line. But then it’s 3 hours of sitting in the stadium with not much to do and still not feeling that much better. The game looks to be a good one. We get to see Cliff Lee in one of his last starts as a Mariner. And it was a doosey. He pitched very well, a complete game shutout. Very cool to see. It takes us a while to get out of the stadium, and we get to the car and we got a ticket for not paying enough for the parking spot. But we paid what was marked and apparently at some point they changed the sign to $40 instead of $10. Small problem so we get moving and go check out the Space Needle, take a couple pics and then head to the Knee High Stocking Co. It is a really cool spot that you wouldn’t know it was anymore than a broken down house. But you ring the bell and they take your name and number. They don’t allow people to stand at the bar, so they give us a call when they are ready for us. We walk in and it’s a 20 seat place with 6 at the bar. A huge dink menu and a small food menu. The drinks are off the chart, the food on the other hand needs a lot of help. More Mac and Cheese, that needs a lot of help to be even close to below avg. They also have a cheese platter that has cheddar and blue on it and just not well put together at all and not very tasty. Very hard to do with a cheese platter. But it’s about booze there not food. We find out the reason why the place is called Knee High. Apparently the owners went to Asia and one of the bars that they went to was run by people who were knee high (midgets), and I think that place was also called Knee High. They liked it so much they called it that in homage. We finish up close to 2 and head to bed. We head home in the morning. I’ve never ran into the same guy working at the airport before but the bartender coming in was the same as going out. Very small airport in Portland.
Very cool city and would go back. It gave me a lot of business ideas for my next bar. And a lot of ideas for drinks now and later. Very clean city as well. I do have to go down to Pikes place and see all the seafood stuff happen next time though.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Rocky Mtn High: Home Sweet Home

I want to get to Denver pretty early since it is a Saturday, and there haven’t been many weekend nights I’ve been able to hang out. I have a place picked out for dinner already. So we are ready to go we just need to pull into town get dressed and head out. The drive is long but goes by pretty quick. Which is shocking since, we had to drive through the desolate land that is Kansas and the eastern part of CO. There is less than nothing here. It’s not as bad as New Mexico, but it’s bad. Grass fields all around. We drive right though, grabbing some convenient store food. We arrive in Denver around 6. Perfect time to get dressed and get dinner. I ask the consider about a place to eat that has some exotic meat, maybe not exotic but more like buffalo, or more gamier meats. He gives us one that is called the Buckhorn, which is one of the oldest places in Denver. It has the 1st liquor license in Denver. But they are so he makes us a reservation for tomorrow. I tell him what I have planned and he tells me different places to go, which is a bad idea. I’ve been going on my own this whole time, I go where I’m kinda pushed to (karma, God whatever). But it works when I choose stuff for myself. This guy tells us that the Capitol Grille is a chain kinda like Morton’s and if you want to go to a place that’s more family owned go to Prime. What he doesn’t tell us is that there are 2 Prime restaurants within a lock and a half of each other. And of course we go into the wrong one. Not really a shit hole but nothing greatly average. And who is behind the bar?? You guessed it. I don’t know what to do with myself here. It really sucks to feel like this. And to see this happen time after time. The fact that I’m not deterred from going in to a place that has to say something, I keep trying and hoping for the best. It’s not much different in the city either. Anyway the food turns out better than I thought just looking at the place. We eat and pops and I part ways. I want to check out downtown and walk around to a bunch of bars and the district we are in is that kind of place. It’s got a piano bar, clubs and Irish pubs. Walking around I find that this isn’t my scene. Not by myself at least. It’s another one of those Jager types of towns. College town type with jager and cover charges. And I don’t go to places with cover charges. There are way too many places to go, that are just as good if not better than the places you spent money to go to. I go into bar after bar, looking for a cool place. There are a lot of places but on a Saturday night everyone is either on a date or out with a bunch of friends. So to strike up convo with people is a little harder. I took in the city and went to the hotel for some much needed sleep. Waking up early and driving long distances can really take it out of you.
Now the only thing I care to do in Denver is see the game and go to the brewery that has mad either beer I’ve been drinking for over a decade now. Jesus!!! A decade?? I wish I could say I’m getting old but I still feel like I’m 18. And once I get back to work and my brain starts to work again, I’ll feel even better. Not many people hope to get back to work. But when you serve booze, food, get to talk to a bunch of people, and get tipped to do it, there’s no better job in the world. Especially when I get to go back to 1300 and make up my own drinks, or maybe steal a couple from this trip and put it on my drink list. We drive to Golden where the brewery is and its majestic LOL. The tour quite boring and uninformative but they give you a sippey cup of Coors leaded or Coors Light half way through your tour. And at the end they give you up to 3 10 oz beers, that’s if you want to stand in the 10 – 15 min line to get a free Coors Light, instead of go to downtown Golden and get one for $1.75. I’ll spend the money. Even though I did stand in line twice. I had to try the Blue Moon, which I didn’t know Coors made and I’ve loved it for a long time. And I needed to try a Coors Light straight from the source. It taste’s the same. I don’t know what I was expecting. We go into Golden for lunch and the trend of niceness, and good food for close to nothing continues. Little bite hear and take the rest to the room cause we are having at least buffalo tonight if not something a little more “exotic”. We head over to it after more relaxing at the pool which is up on the 6 floor and outside. Little windy up there but the 95 degree sun makes that point almost moot. This place is tucked away in a long forgotten part of town. It looked like the only business within at least a 10 block radius. This place is covered in heads body’s of animals. There is even a stuffed seal!! I wasn’t expecting that one at all. They have a special that is elk and buffalo. Awesome 2 things I wanted in one. The elk is really good, but gamey. As it’s supposed to be. A little tough but still delicious. It’s got a peppercorn crust on it that is delightful. The buffalo was so tender and what was on it escapes me but was one of the best pieces of meat I’ve ever eaten. You almost only need a spoon to cut it. I drank a drink that was called the Buffalo Bill. They have been drinking it there for over 100 years. Fucking lairs. It was bourbon and apple juice. Once they finally brought it out he tell me that it used to be apple cider and bourbon not apple juice which makes sense but don’t put on your menu this is what has been drank here for over a 100 years when it has not. The place was a good tourist thing to see, so at least grab a drink in history. We head out to a couple different places. This city isn’t a great cocktail city. We stop at an Irish bar called the Pourhouse. Great name BTW. Meet a couple people. Who tell me a couple different places to go, but most of them are just local places to hang out and have a beer. They are coming to SF next week and since ill be working on June 14th I think I was able to pull a bachelorette party for my one say working. It’ll be an interesting night if they actually show up. We also go to a place called Lola’s that has some decent drinks and a whole bunch on tequila. That’s a nice change up. Everything during the week here shuts down at 10 -11 so not much time after a dinner to get around town. We head back to the hotel bar and relax there for a couple. Tomorrow is the game and I’m stoked for the last game on the road trip.
Another day of relaxation ahead. All we need to do is be at the game by 6:40. So a little lunch and go get the tickets. If you are interested though I did find out that there is a micro-brewery tour. Apparently there is a ton of breweries in this town. We went to one of them. Some decent beer. Had a honey agave one, and a pilsner. Pops had a porter which is way too dark for me. Good food to. It was like a Mexican food and American food restaurant. Nice little change. I didn’t have Mexican when I was in SD, and finally had a burrito. It was about as big as my leg. We grabbed our tickets and went right back to the hotel and the pool. After more relaxation we drove over to the game. The stadium is almost downtown. We run in there and are sitting right behind the plate, upstairs. But not even 1 foul ball even close. The stadium is quite large. It has a nice forest in center field. And the only place I know that has stands in centerfield and they are up there. The top of them is almost a mile high. Also cool, the mile high line seats are purple. It’s a very cool looking stadium. There isn’t much to it. It was one of the first new stadiums built in this new era of stadiums. I think this one came after the Baltimore one. We sat down and Pedro Feliz came up to bat and I always boo him but I think a Rockies fan thought I was booing the Rockies, so I got my first ever thing thrown at me. It was just a half a peanut but still, I wasn’t expecting that in Denver. The game is what I expected though. They were playing the Astros so knew who was winning this one. I was hoping for 3 home losses in 3 games but that didn’t come close to happening. The Astros got like 5 hits and the Rockies came out swinging. There were a good amount of fans at this stadium. For a Monday night game against the Astros I was surprised at that many people. They win making the road trip come to a close with a 22 – 6 for home teams. That’s ridiculous. That’s 79% winning percentage and I still have 3 games left. I end up trying to find a cocktail bar after the game but in this town not gonna happen. I do the hotel bar again and need the bed cause it’s a 17 hour drive to SF!!!
We wake up, and get out of town at 9:30; the drive through CO is beautiful. I just kept taking pictures throughout until it got dark. The salt flats, the mountains, and the snow just gorgeous, we end up stopping in Salt Lake City for dinner. This city is weird. I was expecting a very clean cut, city but it was like Reno, Sacramento put together. And then you have yourself Salt Lake City. That’s not a good combo at all. We grabbed a quick one and got the fuck out. We drove fast as we could trying to get as far as we could. We ended up in Winnemucca, NV which is a shit hole. It’s like my toilet and Chernobyl mutants put together. Again not good. We asked for a room at Economy hotel and dude freaks out and starts swearing at my dad tell him to get out of here we don’t have and ADA room. It was weird as fuck. So we took his advice and I drove to right outside of Reno, which means only a 3 hour drive home tomorrow which is today as I write this part. I am crossing the Bay Bridge as I type and can’t wait to be in my city finally. I miss my city!!! No fog this is awesome. I’ve never come back from a vacation and there wasn’t fog waiting for me. It’s 64 and great. On our way to the Double Play on 16th. I’ll be in Seattle in 2 weeks and an A’s game within this time and the Giants vs. Red Sox at AT&T on the 27th. Can’t wait to watch my team win at home. I’ll keep you updated with those games and stadiums as well. So just cause I’m home doesn’t mean this blog is over.

More of MO.

We pull into Kansas City about 7:30 and after some Steak n’ Shake, which is apparently fast food in?? It took like 10 – 12 to get some burgers. Now I don’t know how you have a drive through when it takes that long, but many things have been very confusing on this trip. Between driving and parking signs, laws, and people I wonder about this world, well at least the country sometimes. As we pull into our exit the stadium in on our right and I can count how many people are in the stands. We check in and get ready, to head out. I did more research for cocktails and this city has a ton!!! And KC is also known for their BBQ. I find well thought I found a place with both cocktails and BBQ. Cocktails were defiantly not up to par. Drinks with orange vodka with orange juice, Cosmo’s, and appletini’s are not a proper drink list. That is someone who has no knowledge of cocktails, and puts the most popular things they’ve heard of in list form. The drinks might not have been great but when you walk into a place and you know you’re walking out smelling like smoke you know it will be great. The place is Jack Stacks. It’s a chain of sorts but online it didn’t look like a typical chain. It was but the BBQ was still amazing. They make everything in house. I have fall off the bone baby back ribs and beef rib, and what they call burnt ends. These don’t sound appetizing but they are phenomenal. They are so tender and tasty. If you have the chance, try them. Pops and I are not fans of beef ribs, usually they are to fatty and either taste burnt or tasteless. This came with baked beans and cheesy corn. And cheesy corn is what it is. When they drop it off it looks like Mac and cheese but instead of pasta it is corn. MMMMMM mmmmm tasty. Every bite made me want another quick, but not knowing which I should have the next bite of. My pops had a hickory smoked prime rib. Now I’ve had some awesome prime rib before but never smoked. I can imagine how long this took. Everything about this was great. The smoke all the way through. It’s like they injected the flavor. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to eat the regular prime rib again. All the food is top notch. As we are sitting at the bar I look outside and start laughing because there are about 6 older guys outside dressed ridiculously for their age. Between all of them they had woman’s pants and boots, leather pants and jackets, and piercings up and down their heads. I poke pops and he says they have to be in a band. I can’t believe that, they are too old and dumb looking. But it was the guys from Styx, Journey and Kansas. It was only a couple of them but I hate them more now because they just look so damn ridiculous. We finished up dinner and pulled out my list of cocktail bars. And we start driving around. The first stop is called The Foundry. This is a hipster looking bar, with some interesting drinks and a beer menu that’s about 60 long. The drink I order was Buzz Aldrin. This had vodka, Chambord, lime juice, tang and a honey rim of pop rocks. She drops it off and says “the women really love this drink” Awesome LOL. Very cool place, very cool bartender and door guy. But I want to try a couple places, so we head to this place called The Drop. No one in it but it’s got bourbon and anytime there is more than Makers and Beam on the wall I’m pretty happy. I wanted to make sure they were open, I walked in and asked. They were walk back to tell my dad that they were but there were 2 problems. 1. There was no one in there and 2. A women bartender who was cleaning the bar. Only one of those seems to be a problem. Guess. I really am hating that this is a trend. I wish I wasn’t so serious about each of these times but this is getting stupid. We stop in pops asks for Tom Collins, Gin and sweet and sour with some soda water. But she’d rather stand there and tell us a story of why she refused to learn how to make them!!!! Seriously!!! The list that I peeked at online wasn’t as great as I had thought. So I ordered a Sazerac. So I sip mine and it taste a tad weird. I had to ask what kind of absinthe they used. “Ohh we don’t use Absinthe in our Sazerac’s because it’s not the real stuff, we use sambuca”. Not the real stuff?? It’s not?? It tastes like absinthe, has 63% alcohol and wormwood. If it smells like shit and taste like shit and has corn in it, it’s probably shit!!! And Sambuca isn’t absinthe!!! So why not use something close (I guess) to what it’s supposed to be rather than a completely different ingredient??!! You don’t pour someone a vodka tonic with soda instead because it’s how you make it!!! You tell me you make it this way and let me make the decision on if I want it your dumb ass way. Fuck!!! I can’t believe I have to get angry about this shit. The good part is this was the worst thing that happen in this city. We went home after that the day game is tomorrow and Grienke is going up against Weaver. Should be an awesome pitcher’s duel. Oh on the way to the hotel we cross this street not called El Paseo but The Paseo. Had to take a pic of that. Spanglish at its best.
We jump out of bed and head the 2 blocks to the stadium. Awesome looking stadium. From what they told us it was built in the 70’s and revamped in the late 90’s. It looks brand new to me. Probably because when you have less than 500,000 fans a year it’s not gonna get warn very quick. Very kid friendly stadium, beautiful fountains, and a huge video screen in the shape of the Royals emblem. There are only a couple seats in the outfield though. Most of the outfield is fountain and grass rather than stands. They don’t need any more but it looks weird to not have many stands in the outfield. I was really hoping to see Greinke pitch but he disappointed me. He was last year’s CY Young and this year he already has like 7 losses and today will be another. The Angels are smoking the ball. Connecting with everything and hitting it far. Weaver is pitching a gem he ends up going 4 hitter. But the home team record doesn’t fail all the way... They stated getting blown out early but 9th inning they start coming back. Too bad it’s a little late and 5 runs in an inning isn’t very easy. At this point to I was hoping for them to lose fast cause it was like 95 degrees and I am baking. I’m just trying not to keep one part of my body exposed for too long. Last thing I want is a sun burn. They end come up a run short of tying and lose the game. 2 home losses in 3 days. This is unheard of. We head on back to relax before going out for dinner. Looked at this place called the R bar. No relation to the one that smells like Fernet off Polk. BTW I think 2 people on this trip have known what Fernet is. Are we hording it all?? I think we should let other cities have some. We head on over to the R bar and YES!!!!! YES!!!!! This is what I love. This place has booze!!!. Chartreuse, a bunch of bourbon, tons of bitters, and more. The food is looking amazing. Pork rinds, which I’m not a huge fan of but hell let’s try. Way to salty and hard to eat. If I never ate another pork rind I wouldn’t be sad. I had a hanger steak that was cooked perfectly, it was so tender and the sauce that came with it, motto benne. Pops had veal and of course great again. We sat there and ate and drank and talked to Shawn the bartender who was a really nice guy, and knew his booze and food. I got some more ideas for drinks and probably gonna steal a drink from him. You’ll have to wait and see, then come by and try. It’s a great summer drink. We finished up and needed to get to other bars, there is too many in this town to see. My list had a place called Re: verse. This was in the Plaza district and like the Marina District. Very yuppie but the scenery is amazing. I just have a couple bourbons and take in the scenery. Then we go to another one of my new favorite places called Bluestem. Again, the people are nice as hell and really there to help you out. And that’s not just the people who work there but the people who live in this town. Everyone gives you advice on where you can go and just want to lend a helping hand. We grab a bunch of drinks from this place. Another place I stole a menu from. I haven’t stolen 2 menus from 1 city in a very long time, if ever. A place that has Aperol is a friend of mine. We take it in and meet some people who give us some advice on where to go, and invite us to where they work for food and booze tomorrow. After R bar and Blue stem I’m DONE!!! LOL. We need to do nothing tomorrow so I need sleep lol. We are starting way too early in the night drinking.
We get out of bed kinda slowly but when you don’t have to go anywhere for any reason then slowly is the best. But we are still in KC so BBQ for lunch it is. We had been told about this place called gates in St. Louis but the people in KC are not a fan anymore, apparently it has gone down in the last couple years so someone tells up about L.C.’s. And thank god. Wow this stuff if great. I had a beef sandwich and pops had a homemade smoked sausage. The beef was so tender. I’ve never bit into a sandwich and it felt like I was eating a cloud. It all fell apart in my mouth. Just dissipating like cotton candy. So amazing. The place is very southern though. Family owned and the owner is sitting at a table with all his business stuff and talking on the phone to an employee, yelling at him about coming to work on time. I don’t usually care about chatter between people at work, most time it’s funny. This time it sucked. There’s a place to do business and it’s not at a table in the dining room. But whatever, food is awesome. The sausage is spicy and smokey. I could eat here every day for a month. Well maybe I would just get it to go. HA. We take a ride to Kansas to grab a glass of wine at this French place this girl from last night works at but we miss it being open by about 30 min. So we just drive around taking it all in. And need to buy socks cause I’m running out quick and I don’t feel like doing anymore laundry. There’s only a couple more days left, and I have everything else clean but socks. We look around KC and head back to the hotel to do some more relaxing and find some more places to eat. This is a vacation. Eating, drinking and relaxing on your own time. Not rushing just going with the flow. Sometimes on this trip it hasn’t been like that. It’s get up and go, kinda like a job. I jump on the yelp again, and look up the power and light district. As I scroll down I see “Makers’ Mark Restaurant” Holy shit!!! Why did I not know about this? This was an easy choice for dinner. Was there even a question where I was going?? We head on out a couple hours later. And the first thing we see in the Power and Light District right outside of Makers’ was 3 trannies. It’s a weird feeling when you’re in another city and you see something weird like that but it doesn’t shock you at all. So we head into Makers’ and right out the back door is Pride Festival, LOL. This I wasn’t expecting in KC. I was expecting cowboy hats and cows walking down the street. This city is the most surprising of them all. I go outside to check it out and it’s very tame. It’s like a concert pretty much. No one spanking anyone with a heart shaped crop like I’ve seen at Bay to Breakers. There’s not even anyone naked thank God. We sit at the bar and I see a ton of bourbon. I ask for a list and I hear harp’s playing, and a bright majestic light comes from the menu. The selection is amazing and you can buy flights, which is a half shot but the way these guys pour it’s a full shot. And its half price. So I get to try twice as many bourbons. Heavenly, hence the harp’s playing and the light...Anyone get that?? Pops isn’t that hungry and really nor am I but a beef skewer in a Makers’ glaze is screaming at me. I try a good 6 different bourbons and I’m ready to head back to Bluestem. I want to try more of their drinks and some of their food, hoping I’ll be hungrier a little late. If I have more booze with no food it can end up ugly. We get there and there are people there from last night including the bartender Van, who remembers both of our names. If it was me and I didn’t think I was ever gonna see 2 people again, the names go right to the garbage. Hell most time when I probably will see you I still forget names. I’ll know what you’re drinking though. The apps list is delicious looking, and decently priced for what we thought we were expecting. Not even close. I have steak tartar. Now I’m expecting a little hand full of steak and a couple pieces of bread. This thing comes out with spinach salad all around it 5-6 crustini’s, and a quail egg on top of it. Huge, beautiful, and delicious. This was more than enough food for me. This place keeps getting better and better. Now the day before the girl sitting next to us offered us some Mac and cheese that looked amazing, so of course we had to grab a one of those. Did not disappoint. So cheesy, and bacony (not a real word so I don’t know how to spell it). I think behind steak, Mac and cheese is 2nd on things I’ve eaten on this trip. And that’s probably why that all the weight I lost working out before I left is now back on, with probably plus a couple. Gonna need to hit the gym hard when I get back. We drink a couple more drinks and am good and toasted, so we head on home. Denver, CO tomorrow. It’s an 8 hour drive.

To Nice To Be True

We start this story out by driving down to St. Louis. And now Iowa is I the way of Minn and St. Louis. Another state that is the south. I don’t know if I’ve said this before but everything under NY and Michigan, and some parts of Illinois is the South. This shit is ridiculous. Confederate flags, no teeth, and incest lol. We stop in BFE Iowa and this is a ding dang do part of the country. We walk into this small ass place off the freeway. Pops and I walk in a the hick at the bar turns and looks and already knows we aren’t from around here. And duh it isn’t to hard. Because of the SF stuff I’m wearing and the fact that everyone knows everyone in this town. I don’t really want to have anyone pay attention to us, again pretty hard to do, but I don’t want to have someone go down their beer list so I see what the other guy is drinking at the bar and order 2 PBR’s. We order our burger and fried pork sandie. Apperently with me and my pops drinking 2 per and this guy next to us drinking PBR, they might run out. Not many people drink this beer often. I say I usually drink it just cause it’s pretty cheap. And the guy sitting next to us says “cheap? This stuff is expensive here” Holy Shit these hicks are funny. I try and get out of this place quite quickly and we head the rest of the way to St. Louis.
Now we pull into St. Louis about 9 and we need food and a drink, but it’s a Monday and it’s hard to find place to eat at 10 on a weekend let alone a Monday and it being Memorial Day. I punch in a couple things in yelp and we start driving fast. And every place we drive by is closed. We make the decision to just go back to the hotel, but on the way we see a place with lights on and people in it. Amazing. I throw my dad out of the car, and tell him to get in there make sure we can get some food. We run in and we make it by 4 min. Already liking this place. Great bar and you can smoke at the bar, but not at the table’s right behind the bar. The rules in some places are ridiculous. But whatever. They are giving us food and drink. They know how to make an old fashion and pour a happy shot. We have some great steaks and caesar salad. Pops is thinking of getting dessert but doesn’t want to bother them since they did let us get food quite late. But as he says that I see food coming out and I point and say, don’t worry about it see they are still doing food. But then I see who they are dropping the food off to. It’s Dusty Baker. The coach of the Cincinnati Reds. They are in town against the Cards this week. It was awesome seeing a celebrity, especially one I’ve hated for 8 years for losing us the World Series. But we buy him a drink anyway. After he’s done eating he gets his drink and raises his glass to us and we tell him we are from SF. He gets up and comes over and starts talking to us. His friends end up getting up and coming over and sit with us. We are sitting at the bar talking to Dusty Baker for about an hour. He turns out to be a nice guy. He buys us drinks and chats about baseball, and SF. He lives outside of Sacramento. It was awesome to have someone who is a celebrity that was really nice. So it was really hard to stay angry with Dusty after all these years. He’s just too damn nice. We finish up a bunch of drinks and close down the bar with the staff, who are ridiculously nice. They are done but need to clean up so they let us have one more, like we need it, lol and we head to the hotel. We are staying at the Millennium Hotel which from out hotel room you can see the Arch. But the hotel is absolutely shit. They windows are dirty as hell, there is nothing to the room, the TV screen is as big as my laptop screen and the shower head is spitting on me, and $10 for internet. For an expensive place it looks like a 15 story Comfort Inn. The paint job was even bad. It looks like when there was a crack in the wall they just painted over it. It was bad. I’ll never stay at one of those again. After looking for some BBQ places for lunch tomorrow I hit the sack.
We wake up and make our way slowly out of the hotel. I found this place called Pappy’s on Yelp and apparently voted best BBQ in the city many times. And they didn’t disappoint. I’ve been waiting for BBQ since I left Raleigh, NC. We had baby back ribs, pulled pork sandwich, baked beans, potato salad, and sweet potato fries. While I was standing in line there is a picture of Adam Richman, who does Man v. Food. If you haven’t seen this show, watch it, it’s great. The picture says “thanks Pappy; I’ll never be hungry again.” I thought it was cool, but just a line. He wasn’t joking. We finished up and I could barely move. The food was top notch, the people and service were so nice, and the food was cheap to. Everything seems cheaper in St. Louis. All that food plus 2 drinks cost us like $25. The only bad part is we are going to the top of the Millennium to eat at the rotating restaurant for dinner and feeling like I am now, I don’t think I’ll be able to eat tomorrow let alone tonight at 5, before we go to the game. We lift ourselves up from the table and head to the Bud brewery. I’m not to stoked on Bud, this crap beer gives me the worst drunk and hang-over. I can drink 14 Coors Light’s and be great I can drink 13 Coors Light’s and 1 Bud and I’m falling over and waking up with my head pounding. I think it might be the rice they put in their beer. I don’t know, maybe it’s just that it sucks complete ass. The tour takes about 45min, and wasn’t too bad. But didn’t really tell you anything significant. “Here is the horse stables, let’s go, here is the bottling part, let’s go.” Really kinda boring but they do give you 2 free samples on the way out, which I guess is cool, but if you hate their beer then it’s more like torture, LOL. I found on called Beach Bum, which is good and like a wheat beer. They did have Stella but I wanted to try something new. We head back to the hotel to relax and try and let the BBQ settle and digest and hopefully be able to eat something at the top of the hotel. My dad was smart he only had a couple bites of the BBQ, but you put BBQ in front of me I can’t stop till it’s all gone. We take a nap, and kill some time before dinner. 5 comes to fast for my stomach, but we go to the top anyway, cause you have to sacrifice sometimes you know. It is gorgeous up there. We get sat right as it is in front of the stadium. You can see them taking batting practice. Our waitress is a tad bit slow in the head, and on her feet. We continually wait way to long for everything. It rotates around to the Arch, and we are taking pics and there are greasy hand prints all over the window and a leak from the roof onto the window. These are not from today, cause there are 4 other tables sat at the time and it opened when we got there. It’s just not taken care of like it should. If it was just a window that looked out, it would be different but this is your shtick. If you want people to look out your windows onto the city and they are nasty and make me not want to look out the windows, we have a problem. The food is pretty good, I just had some duck tacos, and dad had the duck breast. I ask for a beer and that never comes, and she stops coming around and now it’s getting close to game time and we need to get going and she is gone. It was a bad experience at this place. I’m sure if I went up again it would be different but it rubbed me the wrong way today and had the wrong waitress and then things just started piling up. She was really nice but just not a good waitress. If I was with someone who had never been I’d go again, but other than that not a chance. We head over to the ballpark. The second you walk in you know this park is great. The outside looks amazing, you walk out to see the field and you are in awe. They have the Arch cut into the field, and the real Arch is right behind the stadium. Great view great looking stadium and everything is close to you. I get up to go get beer and of course I had to be the asshole and ask the beer guy if he had any Coors Light. I thought it was funny, LOL. He liked it to but after meeting many people in this city he was probably just being nice and had probably heard that one once or twice before. Last night Dusty wasn’t too happy at me after I told him about my record with home teams. He told me not to come that night, and I told him I was going to be in Seattle in 2 weeks and he wasn’t too happy at that either because apparently I’ll be there when the Reds are in town. LOL he tried to get me to change my plans. Awesome. But even with my killer record, the Reds pull it out. There was like 6 homeruns, 17 runs and a bunch of ties and lead changes. A great game all together and having talked to Dusty last night I was happy to see him win. I had tried to find good cocktail bars in this city and couldn’t so we are gonna go back to Mike Shannon’s the place we were last night. When you find a cool place, go back when you can if you don’t find anything really special, it usually works out very well. And it did. We sat there and the same bartender from the night before was there, very good looking girls, and then Dusty walks in again. And right when he walks in he comes right over and says hi to us, I think before anyone else. Just classy man, just really really classy dude. He gets a drink and chats with us some more. Even though I think he came over to us not only because of the night before but because their where really hot girls sitting next to us. He was just having a closer look. LOL. A couple min later 3 Reds players come in. 2 pitchers I couldn’t tell from a hole in the ground and Johnny Gomes. He’s the leftfielder, and a Petaluma guy. He is a really nice dude also. Chatted up with him for a couple min. We had our drinks and chatted with Dusty throughout the night and Evan and Jen the bartenders. Told us where to go in KC, and chatted cocktails. I had some interesting ones. That was a brain cell killing night though so I don’t remember, buts that’s why I took the cocktail list. That pile is getting bigger. While we are outside waiting for a cab, Dusty comes out and asks what we are doing, and he offers us a ride to our hotel. Are you kidding me!!!! My dad is freaking out. LOL. He can’t believe what is going on. I’m just taking it all in. It’s quite amazing how nice this guy is. He drops us off, and we are both in awe at this point. We are quite drunk so we can’t believe this shit just happen. In 25 other cites, and a month and a half nothing close to this has happened. And probably won’t ever happen again. Thank God I was drunk though cause I was so excited I don’t think I would have been able to get to sleep.
We get up the next day and we are gonna go up to the top of the Arch today. This is something I’ve been looking forward to. I’ve already seen the city from up high but to see it in this monument is so cool. I was expecting a regular elevator you stood in and it just kinda pulled you up sideways. I was expecting the elevator to be as big as the width of the Arch. It’s not LOL. You go into this space pod looking thing. I wasn’t expecting all the room on the side of the elevators. You get up to the top and get to see up and down the Mississippi, and so much of this beautiful city. It was a quick up and down. Once you look out and look down, that’s pretty much it. Then you head down and get out of town. I was looking forward to St. Louis because of the BBQ and got so much more than that. This is one of my favorite cities now. The people are so nice. And yes I’m the asshole who can’t take it. I was getting mad at people for being so nice and continually asking if I needed anything or help with anything. Between the BBQ spots, stadium, restaurants and just people walking down the streets, this place lands top 5 cites I’ve been to and will definitely be back sooner rather than later. I recommend this city to anyone and everyone!!! Go and go now!!! It’s cheap, fun and drunk. These people like to drink, eat and have a good time. I’ve only scratched the surface. *****, 2 thumbs up. I can’t say enough. Now it’s time to drive to the podunck ass town of KC, MO


Picked up my pop at his hotel in Minneapolis, then for a stop off at my cousin John’s place to see all the Minnesotahans. My pops got in last night after missing his flight. He is going to truck it with me the last 4 cites. I can’t believe that is so close to over. Only about a week and a half left. Then back to the real world and I getting more and more anxious. The drive in isn’t great cause my stomach still isn’t in the right place. I don’t feel like puking anymore but I need some ginger ale or something to settle the stomach. It’s only a 5 hour drive but again seems like it’s longer. I pull into Minneapolis at about 2:30 ish and within 15 min of picking up my dad we get lost. I’ve been driving over 8,000 miles and haven’t gotten to a point where I just don’t know where to go, but of course pop jumps in and ohh go left ohh I think you need to take this one. LOL it’s awesome though. Love having pops with me. We always have a good time. We finally get to my cousins and I can’t even really think about eating or drinking anything. I know how to cure a hangover. And gotten very good at putting down the hair of the dog. Before this trip, it was really hard for me to wake up and have more booze to cure the pain but I know it helps me a ton. But with being an upset stomach booze and spicy food is not gonna help. They have sausage, burgers, and a million types of salads it’s a great layout. I do try and have a little food hoping it will help a little, it doesn’t. I have a beer just to keep my rep up with the family lol. We catch up with the family meeting some, re-meeting others. When you have 1,000 cousins you tend to forget some here and there. Especially when you see them maybe every 3 years at our reunions and they change a ton. Kids having kids and kids growing up. We say our hellos and goodbye and head in for the game. We bought tickets before we left for the BBQ and the place was sold out. The only tickets we could get were standing room only. Very cool. The only place I’ve been where tickets were pretty much impossible. But they have bars inside with stools and I’m sure I can find something while my pops checks out the bar. We walk in and it’s better than what people had been saying. Its open, which I’m not a fan of cause it seems like they don’t want to play in October. I mean it’s cold there in April and October. I don’t think any new stadium should be without a retractable roof. It works out for everywhere and then you don’t have a kid driving around the country and it gets rained out…Detroit…..Anyway. It’s got the city behind it and the looks of new and old in one. It’s tall but still small. You are right on top of the field and can see everything from everywhere. The outfield you can stand next to a Captain Morgan Bar and watch the game or just stand there and watch the game. They give you a lot of room to watch from standing room only. After the first couple innings we moved to the bar and watched a couple there and had a little food. Good food, good people. The place is just put together so well. Great view of a little part of downtown. The stadium in 6 or 7 years when the people decide not to pack the place anymore is gonna look really big, casernes and empty. The Twins of course win upping my record again. We head out and I’m hoping my stomach starts to feel better, but even if it doesn’t I’m still gonna drink. We go to this place called the news room. It’s like 3 blocks from the hotel, and it’s really cool looking. We sit down at a bar that looks like a ship. And we are looking at each other wondering why there is a ship in the “News Room”. We had a couple drinks, pretty much just bourbon on the rocks. We had to ask why we were sitting at a ship, and the coolest answer came out. Since it’s called the News Room, each room in the place is decorated like a different part of the newspaper. The bar was the travel section; the dining room I think was entertainment. I went from thinking it’s the dumbest thing I ever, and wondering why the news room had a pirate ship to thinking wow that had a lot of thought and money in it. Very cool. Good food to. They had a little bit of everything. 4 kinds of cheeses, on great bread. The Bourbon is calming my stomach just in time to finish up and hit the hay before a 9 hour drive to St. Louis tomorrow.