The Bar Chronicles: #5, ‘Seniors Say The Darndest Things*’

*thank you, Art Linkletter!

Bar Night 2

The heat and humidity has been off the charts this summer in western New York. Lawns are brown, plants are wilting, farmers are worried and throats are parched. Sounds like the perfect time for another ‘bar night’.

So, tonight we found ourselves gathered around a back room table at Johnny’s Irish Pub in Rochester.  Four seniors, friends from our neighborhood, here to enjoy some beer, brotherhood and ‘man talk’, the simple art of filling time with random thoughts, guffaws and past recollections.

Four old guys, we seem to be a bit of an odd attraction to the regular patrons, a generally younger, blue collar type. Then again, everyone is generally younger nowadays.  And the collars?  Well, we’re retired, collars are a low priority.

This is our fifth ‘bar night’, we exhude confidence, experience and maturity as our beer is served.  “Run a tab, we’ll be back for more”, one of us bravely barks out, earning a few approving nods from customers standing at the bar.  There was a time, once, when we could stand at the bar,  but now, sitting is preferred.

The beer was cold and the brotherhood about to begin. With a clinking of our mugs, a “here, here” to each other and our hands cupped behind our ears to catch every word, we leaned in and began our evening in earnest.

The cacocphany of background chatter  interfered with our own table talk, as we huddled closer, like a football team calling a play.  The interval between our yawns grew shorter. Our energy level was was being tested when the call came for a second round. We endured, ordered refills, closed out our tab, and began the ‘second half’ with unexpected profundity.  ‘Who was your favorite teacher and why?’, I asked.

“Simple, it was Miss Sullivan**”, one of us enthusiastically blurted out, “she had the biggest bosom.” The answer grabbed our attention and would have been enough, but he continued.  “And, she dressed provocatively. My 10th grade friends and I never missed a class…”.  I bet they didn’t.

While not the insight I expected, nevertheless, it was honest. More importantly, to the four of us, it was funny, a classic way to end our ‘bar night’; good timing, excellent delivery and a willing audience eager to kick back a chair, slap the table and ‘guffaw’.

The bar quieted as we filed out to a humid night. Neon signs from other establishments gave a colorful tint to the neighborhood and tall street lights lit our path to the car with another good time behind us.

As we drove home along tree lined streets through old neighborhoods, the car was quiet. Two beers may have made us sleepy, but I imagine the real reason was that three of us were silently wishing that we had been in Miss Sullivan’s** 10th grade class, too…

**name changed for obvious reasons.

Dedicated to Steve, Tom & Jim

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Retired in 2013 after 5 years as an elementary school teacher and 40 years as a sales representative to begin anew as a school crossing guard. SMy essays/stories are a way to communicate through the telling of personal experiences. One reader said about my blog stories, "...these are like a cold sip during a marathon run, simple, real life events". Another offered about my blog, “it brings some sense of normalcy not easily found in the modern world.”

7 thoughts on “The Bar Chronicles: #5, ‘Seniors Say The Darndest Things*’”

  1. Lol you got me at “Seniors say the darnedest things” They do.

    Fun story- going to share it with my 85year old father who meets his brothers and friends every Thursday for breakfast. Thanks for the insight. It’s kind of like being a fly on the wall 🙃

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The senior who made the teacher comment is the oldest in our group at 84 and as fit as a fiddle and sharp as a needle. Thanks for your wonderful comment. Give your dad my best. (Steve)


    1. Well, Ida Beth, there is an age requirement. And, you are a girl. Oh, heck, we can always make an exception…it certainly would be the basis for a story, ‘another glass ceiling’ crashing to the floor.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh, wonderful. Yes, you just taught me a great lesson. And, you reinforced that saying, ‘words have meanings’. Enjoy the weekend. I’ll be ‘labor ing’ to finish a new story. 😎

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Just getting around to reading this at 4:15 this Friday morning.   My usual routine a good many mornings lately.  Will read a little then catch a few more winks before the day really begins.  Of all my teachers at Woodland St. Grammar School I remember Miss Kennedy, 3rd Grade, Miss O’Grady, 4th grade and Miss Sullivan, but I can’t remember what grade she taught, but the memories of those teachers are not for the reason you and your friends discussed.  Make it a good day😴😴

    Sent via the Samsung Galaxy S® 6, an AT&T 4G LTE smartphone

    Liked by 1 person

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