Friday, March 28, 2008

Bar-Hopping 101: Tipping

In the world of over-priced drinkage, tipping is a dastardly gray area. It's a double edged-sword wherein you're damned if you do and damned if you don't.

There are indeed varying degrees of opinion on this matter, a la the famous Reservoir Dogs clip in which Mr. Pink explains his adamant philosophical opposition to tipping:

But don't let that fool you! No tip = no hooch!

The game is a rotten one:
Tip too little and you don't get any service from the snooty bartender hocking the overpriced, over-iced swill. But tip too much and you can't make rent your night ends early!

Here are a few tricks we've learned to institute an effective tipping method that will
a.) get you noticed so you get drinks faster and
b.) ensure the barkeep is satisfied with your contribution:

1. Tip Early
Don't wait until you're a couple of drinks in to lay down the scratch. Not tipping right away is the bar-going equivalent of shooting yourself in the foot and not having and alcoholic god-send to relieve the pain.

2. Tip Big
Don't bother with the dollar game. Play a face card right away to ensure prompt and consistent service: $10 minimum on your very first drink. Gamble on $20 if you know you'll be there for a while.

3. Publicize It
This one's important kids: be sure your bar steward sees you lay down that Benjamin!

Do not simply leave it on the bar in place of your smiling Chevy Chase. You need to make it obvious who is leaving the prize if you want to reap the benefits.

After all, leaving a tip is expected, intrisically un-special and is only noticed when it is excessive or when it is omitted.

Be of the former and you'll be big-pimpin at the bar all night. Be of the latter and you'll not only get the mental blacklist of the bartender but, if you're obnoxious enough, you could land in the negative favor of your city's entire service staff.

Believe us, these people talk.

Leave a tip. If it can't be huge, at least be consistent.


Stiff the bartender, ya jerk!
But don't go broke over-tipping either. After all, the profit on that vodka-soda is easily 75% more than the cost!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Schadenfreude: To the Guy Who Puked All Over the Sidewalk Last night

This just in from Shadenfreude, contributing editor and mild-mannered correspondent:

To the Guy Who Puked All Over the Sidewalk Last night:

I was headed out at about 10:30. Even though your puke was fresh, you have to admit that's pretty early to call it a night.

You didn't just puke once. There were at least four separate and distinct puddles, each about fifteen to twenty feet apart. I decided to play puke detective, and I traced your place of origin to either waterhouse or the Paulina el stop. If you came from waterhouse, I hope none of the puke got on your striped shirt.

What blew my mind is that even though the sidewalk is bordered with grass, you chose to deposit your filth right in the center of the sidewalk. Was this an intentional "%^$# you" to all the Lakeview residents who walk down Roscoe? I saw a mother rolling her baby's stroller through your dinner this morning while I walked to the El for work.

You must be proud. Let us know when you plan to return so we can put a tarp down, you *#%*@ing slob.

*Photo courtesy of

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Apartment Living 101: Know your buzzer

Had enough of people buzzing the hell out of your apartment at 4:30 a.m., screaming obscenities and insisting on being let in??

Sorry. We won't come over anymore...

When you live in an apartment building with a buzzer-type / intercom entry, the most imperative part of inviting your rowdy friends over is
having enough booze
ensuring that they know the correct unit number or name on the intercom so they don't buzz the hell out of your neighbors!

Of course, some apartment buildings do NOT make this easy. Case in point:

Photo courtesy of Miss Heather,

Anecdote from Miss Heather herself:
A few years ago a local prostitute/drug sealer took to loitering around my building. As a result, miscreants of all stripes would hit our buzzer at all hours of the morning and night.

One night I had enough. I went to our living room window (which is conveniently located above the front door of our building) and poured out a pitcher full of water. I can't say it stopped the annoying behavior altogether, but it did reduce it considerably.

Aside from varying degrees of Ladies Of The Night, the guidelines are quite simple on this one:

Know your intercom / buzzer!
The tricky part is that, most often, the problem lies not with your guests but with you not knowing your own buzzer button so's you can give the proper guidance!

Simply give your friends your address, if that does not lead them fully to your door.

Giving an apartment number doesn't mean a thing if your building has a resident directory that needs to be accessed by your name, or worse, by last name!

Does your guest know you well enough to find you in an index arranged by last name? Are you only listed in said directory by your roommate's last name??

You really only need to do this once, people. Then it's only a matter of remembering it and clearly communicating to your newly-acquired "best friends" from the pub at 3:30 a.m... which is quite another challenge entirely.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Bar-Hopping 101: Get Drink, Step Away From Bar

...a little Friday posting apropos for days like this when the only thing that may warm you up is a nice libation to wrap up the week.

Bar Hopping 101: Get Drink, Step Away From Bar

Seriously. If the place is packed and it took you forever to get your drink, please - for the love of all things holy and true, get it, pay and move the hell away from the bar already!

No Bogarting the area you just used to order your drink. The fact that it just took you ten long, cotton-mouthed minutes to get your own drink, means that your decision to block the way to the bar is a more than adequate indication of your thoroughly inconsiderate nature.

"But I'm sitting at the bar, dude." Okay. Then @*#^& sit! No need to hover near an empty chair unless you're saving it for your lady-friend. Otherwise you're just taking up prime imbibing real estate. And that's just wrong.

See Rule #68 of Modern Drunkard Magazine's timeless feature: "The 86 Rules of Boozing" by editor, publisher and drunkard god Frank Kelly Rich, whom we would gladly buy a drink (or twelve).

Other superb highlights from the kind of wisdom that can only be found at the bottom of many-a-bottle:

Rule #6
Buying a strange woman a drink is still cool. Buying all her drinks is dumb.

Rule #28
If you can't afford to tip, you can't afford to drink in a bar. Go to the liquor store.

Rule #33
The only thing that tastes better than free liquor is stolen liquor.

Rule #41
Anyone on stage or behind a bar is fifty percent better looking.

Rule #54
Never lie in a bar. You may, however, grossly exaggerate and lean.

Rule #71
The patrons at your local bar are your extended family, your fathers and mothers, your brothers and sisters. Except you get to sleep with these sisters. And if you're really drunk, the mothers.

Rule #72
It's acceptable, traditional in fact, to disappear during a night of hard drinking. You will appear mysterious and your friends will understand. If they even notice.

Check out the full list by clicking HERE.

Get your booze on.

Loiter after scoring your beverage. In fact, explicit effort to move out of the way will earn you not only respect but may even lead to a rare "Brink" sighting (def: "bro-drink" - when a man buys another fellow a drink).


Thursday, March 20, 2008

Left Turn Signal = Do NOT Walk!

= Your turn to walk.

= Your turn to WAIT.

Cross the street when the little green man is displayed.

Cross a busy downtown intersection when the Big Red Hand is displayed without being aware of whether or not the cars around you have a Left-Turn Signal!

Otherwise, the following scenario plays out over and over:

Cars trying to make their rightful left-turn during an intersection's left-turn signal are left to clog the intersection while foolishly unaware pedestrians stride into the street out of turn.

As a result, nearly the entire intersection is screwed - often for an entire light-cycle! All because these pedestrians feel they absolutely need to walk NOW rather than waiting their turn.

The best part is that these selfishistos then even have the nerve to get angry about it!

The moral of the story is that you should do as you were taught while holding mommy or daddy's hand as a child:
Look both ways, wait for the walk signal and cross safely...

Or, y'know...don't.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Wexting = Retarded

What in the hell happened to "survival of the fittest?"

CNN Report:

When it gets to the point that an entire city feels it must pad its lamp posts due to the severe retardation of some of its populace, something must be done!

Shoutouts to Chess Hubbard over at the rockstar UR Chicago Blog for breaking this piece here in Chicago and for the fine folks at Engadget for the same.

According to news reports, portions of London are now testing the effective implementation of padded lamp posts.

...Yes, you read that correctly.

Why? Because apparently a significant sub-sect of Londoners are running into things while attempting to walk and text at the same time.

No, this is not an article from The Onion! What should be a no-brainer is apparently a matter for the British government to tackle.

No such luck here. We'll handle good old American stupidity the Capitalistic way! By blogging about it!

Hell, we say: if some people (not even just some too-busy Brits who can't be asked to gaze ahead of their gait) are ignorant enough to run into things whilst walk-texting (wexting!), then they deserve a chipped tooth or three!

Maybe some of these ^&#()&s will even smack themselves hard enough to knock their Chaach Gene loose for good. The mere possibility makes us demand that the U.S. boycott even any mention of implementing any such nonsensical wastes of taxpayer funds here. After all, helping people not hurt themselves is thoroughly un-American!

Text message.

Or try to actively transport yourself by any means whilst texting!

In this case, the Do Not's also include:
-Riding a bike
-Pushing infants in strollers (also known as walking...with a mini-human)
-Skipping rope

* readers hearby have permission to publicly ridicule and deride any citizen foolish and irresponsible enough to TEXT WHILE DRIVING! Can we somehow remove these fools from the gene pool? There are not enough lamp post pads in the world for that level of idiocy!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Giant Bags + Public Transportation = Death

"Giant Bags" = big frickin' backpacks, gigantor purses (the kind that double as baby carriages and shopping carts) and the like.

This is another simple one:
Do not wear giant bags on public transportation.
...On pain of death! Just don't do it, you inconsiderate jerks!

It's not that you cannot have them. Just don't wear them on the bus / train / effing trolley or whatever.

If you need to ask why, then you're probably one of the sumnab___s who walks down the aisles of public transport vehicles with an effinglog hanging off of your back smacking every other rider in the side of the head as you pass.

You're not fooling us: there's no way you can truly say you don't notice that you're hitting other people with that huge physical representation of selfishness you're carrying!

This amounts to effingUrban Terrorism people!

Let us answer the query for those of you who still don't get it: why shouldn't you carry giant purses or large, full backpacks on public transportation?

Because it doubles the space you consume. Giant bags take up so much space that you might as well have another person standing right behind you, spooning you throughout your commute! And nobody wants to see that. No, really.

C'mon - think about it, selfishisto! When you wear your giant freaking backpack with the straps over both shoulders it not only causes you to take out coffee mugs, newspapers, reading glasses and small children simply by turning around, but you also - quite literally - take up twice the amount of space. Dick.

And when you wear a giant effing purse slung over your shoulder you also have the same problems whenever you turn or move...which happens a lot.

And somehow ladies, you tend to feel quite at home jutting your freaking faux-Gucci into people's ribs and then just standing there like you couldn't possibly be asked to notice when, in reality, you just think you couldn't possibly be asked to care.

People: we know you can feel it when your bag is hitting someone or even resting right up against them. Unless the mode of transport is entirely packed full, there is no reason you should not be taking the uber-simple steps to remedy this and make your fellow commuters' trip every bit as comfortable as you've already decided to be:

Bring whatever bags you want onto public transportation. You do need to carry all of that extra crap, after all. Hell, we do.

Insist on wearing your giant bags over your shoulders.

Simple remedies:
While standing, place said bag between your legs on the floor. Simple!
Those with purses should suspend them between your legs or hold them sideways just in front of you to take up as little space as possible. This way, you still retain a full and safe grib on your valuables to guard against theft. if anyone could make off with a 38-pound Prada anyway...

Backpacking across europe
You cannot very well set a huge camping backpack down between your legs and people probably wouldn't want to be too close to your stank anyway, so the barrier is likely welcome.

Parents with children present
You have severely limited choices when looking after junior, so a minor faux pas or three shall be forgiven. Just don't go slinging that ginormous baby bag around excessively.

Beer-dispensing backpacks
Aye, the elusive backpack dispensers! We've heard of these and we must admit: we sure wouldn't mind it so much if we were to get bumped or prodded by something that immediately made up for it with a special treat...

Mullet not included.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

You don't own the effing sidewalk!!

You're NOT the only one walkin' ovah heahh! Make room for other sidewalk pedestrians. Jerk.

The Cashmere Mafia...NOT making room for other pedestrians on the sidewalk.

Walk down the street. It's a free country.

Bogart the entire freaking sidewalk all the way across - even if you're with other people! And if you do, at least have the ^&*#$% decency to move over and make room for others who are also walking either direction!

**Special Requirement Alert**

Successful navigation of sidewalk etiquette requires suspension of the Chaach Gene such that the individual can practice the universal (and apparently difficult) notions of Awareness and Consideration.