Tuesday, 16 March 2010

A-Drinkin' We Will Go!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day everyone! While I could do an entry on favorite Irish characters or green stuff or best movies with carbombs, I have chosen instead to do something far classier and more appropriate to honor such a special day for my fellow Irish-Americans. Without further adieu, I give you the ten fictional places at which I would most want to get drunk!

The rules:
1. The place has to be fictional (not a real place that appears in a fictional context).
2. There has to be some precedent of alcohol readily available at it – enough so to get one drunk (so while getting schwasted in Wonderland would be pretty awesome, that’s not an option…and I don’t think Vizzini had enough wine on that mountain top to get all parties past the point of tipsy).
3. These are not in any real order. Not a top ten, just ten.

Sterling Cooper Advertising Agency (from the television series Mad Men)

One hand clasping an old fashioned, with the other one busy slapping a secretary in the rear. A lovely blend of alcohol abuse and sexual harassment, straight from the sixties (it was a simpler time). I feel cooler just from watching Mad Men; I can’t even imagine what a boost (no matter how unjustified) to my ego it would be to knock a few back with Don, Roger, and company. I’d probably be under the table while most of them were still capable enough to make multi-million dollar deals, but as long as no one takes out any piece of John Deere machinery, I think I’d be okay with that.

Rick’s Café American (from the 1942 film Casablanca)

Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, this one looks like one of the best. It has awesome live music, from “Knock on Wood” which always seems to be a crowd pleaser to the duet of the “La Marseillaise” and “Die Wacht am Rhein” to special forbidden songs. There is a delightful cast of characters (even most of the Nazis are a hoot!) with whom to converse. And if you provide enough of a sob story, you can get the owner to turn the roulette wheel in your favor. The only thing that would worry me is that I might stumble into some stray bullets if I have a bit too much “Vichy water.”

Mos Eisley Cantina (from the 1977 film Star Wars: Episode IV: A New Hope)

Grab a Blue Russian (or whatever you make out of the late Beru’s blue milk), brush aside that severed arm, and enter Nerd Heaven. And don’t worry – in this cantina, Han always shoots first.

Moe’s Pet Shop (from the episode “Homer vs. the 18th Amendment” of The Simpsons)

Moe’s Tavern usually seems quite dreary, dirty, and unappealing. It only serves deviled eggs and one draft of American beer that I suspect is not the epitome of gustatory arousal. However, Moe’s Pet Shop is the best damn pet shop in town! Everything is more fun when it’s illegal and, in a perfect world, every bar would be a speakeasy! This establishments provides not only the draw of secretive spirits, but puppies, turtles, and all sorts of mechanical contraptions as well!

Hogwarts (from the, er, movie (?)Wizard People, Dear Reader)

If you haven’t listened to/watched Brad Neely’s brilliant Wizard People, Dear Reader, go out and do that now. Then get back to me. Because his Hogwarts kicks the Cruciatus Curse out of Rowlings’s. Wine-out-nowhere spells, cognac by the fire as you speculate on Valmart’s next move, and swigs of peach schnapps amidst a tense game of Wizard Chess: this place sounds like a lot more fun than that half-decaying castle with a goblet of fire and a few broomsticks. My one caveat: if you’re starting to get beer-glasses, stay away from that wretched Harmony or the hideous Snake. You’d regret it in the morning.

Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory (from the 1971 film Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory)

Candy may be dandy, but liquor is quicker. Aficionados of 70s cinema (or Gene Wilder films) will remember that part of the film with butterscotch and buttergin, which makes this a-okay with Rule #2. I’m just curious to see what this sucrose savant has dreamed up in his marriage of the two best vices known to man: candy and hard liquor. Gin that will make you fly? Vodka that will take you through time to meet Catherine the Great? Bourbon that tastes like a whole weekend in New Orleans? Oh, the possibilities are limitless!

The Walker Dinner Table (from the television series Brothers & Sisters)

Not only would I get to have superb wine in abundance, but I’d be treated to a show like no other. Every Walker dinner party inevitably ends in disaster and I’d love nothing more than to be able to sit in the epicenter of the chaos as it unravels! Who’s been sleeping with whom? Who is whose father? Who isn’t a Walker anymore? Can I grab Justin in middle of the commotion and ferry him off to the pantry? What better way to spent a Sunday night than guzzling down Walker Landing’s pinot as family secrets inevitably come out and this week’s rivalries boil over to a histrionic catastrophe! And don’t forget Sally inevitably breaking down in tears and cursing her late husband! Dinner, drinks, and entertainment! Sign me up.

Jay Gatsby’s Mansion (from F. Scott Fitzgerald's 1925 novel, The Great Gatsby)

This locale is like Moe’s Pet Shop, but with a splash of Ke$ha (“Oooh-oooooh-oh-oh-oh, it’s a party at a rich dude’s house!”). It provides all the fun of drinking illegally but with the extra benefits of hobnobbing with the elites of the fictional 1920s, not having to pay a cent for any of the hooch, and exploring the grounds of an opulent mansion that only a generation both jaded by war and unheeding of economic depression can create! And if you like a twist of symbolism in your martini, there’s always that green flashing light across the water.

Lucille Bluth’s Apartment in Balboa Towers or Señor Tadpoles (from the television series Arrested Development)

I could not decide between these two Bluth-haunts. Señor Tadpoles does seem tempting, especially as there would be quite a lot of people there right now for Spring Break (WOO!) and I could probably get a glimpse of some girls with low self-esteem (and maybe get into a drinking contest or two). However, Lucille’s apartment provides me with a unique opportunity: getting absolutely smashed with Lucille as we trade barbs. She’d probably win in the battle of words and drink me from there to Wee Britain without winking an eye, but the experience would be worth it.

Noonan’s Bar (from the comic book series Hitman)

This place seems like the quintessential Irish pub in a bad part of town (practically the realized platonic form of that concept), which is already a decent enough reason to want to go. Now just make that town Gotham City and add in a demon bartender named Baytor and some awesome assassin patrons (and maybe a visit by Batman or Green Lantern now and then) and I think I may’ve found my dream place to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.

What places did I forget? Where in fantasy land would you love to destroy some brain cells? Where's a prose-portal when you need one?

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