My first experience of “pint night” at Carnegie’s is one I hope to never forget (I would say that I will never forget it but there is always the possibilty of senility or brain damage). My friends had spoken of the wonders of pint night for some time. I always wanted to go, but it occurs on Wednesday nights and my friends were usually busy. Finally, some time in the fall a couple of years ago, my friend Scott gave me a call and we journeyed together to Carnegie’s.
The pub was crowded. The line for beer ended at the front door and there were no tables open when we entered. We waited in line, figuring that by the time we got our beer, a spot would open up for us.
Pint night, in my opinion, is a very good idea. It goes like this: To enter into pint night you first buy a pint glass tattooed with the decal of a brewery of your choice (that is, if the brewery of your choice is on tap and they have not run out of glasses from said brewery). The cost of the pint glass is six dollars which includes your first pint. Each pint after this is only two dollars so if you drink four pints you will only be paying three dollars per pint and you have a glass to keep. Carnegie’s only has about a half dozen beers on tap but they are good beer and you can change your preference each time you fill up so I deem pint night to be a good, economic choice for midweek beer enjoyment.
While we stood in line we didn’t speak much. As I said before, the pub was crowded and I don’t like having conversations publicly. Usually I try to move away from everyone if I am even to answer my cell phone. I wanted to wait until we were seated, just another part of the crowd. Waiting in line always makes me feel as if I am on stage, as if everyone is watching me, waiting to see if I will remain patient or become exasperated. Overhearing conversations while in line or in close proximity to a line is not a deviation from the norm by being nosy or “listening in” on another’s conversation; it is a right of the bored.
The line moved slowly. Not many people filed in behind us and by the time we had halved the distance to the bar there were only four people trailing us, first two women, and then two young men. As we neared the bar I noticed that the four middle aged customers sitting directly at the bar were not partaking in pint night but were imbibing wine. I scowled internally as they flaunted their excess by circumventing the excellent deal of bargain beer. I filed them away as philistine lushes due to the caliber of wine they were drinking as well as the slurred timber and public volume of their conversation.
As we edged ever closer to the front of the queue, one of the men at the bar turned around and attempted to focus with the particular effort forced by inebriation on the words printed on the sweatshirt of the young man behind us in line.
“You ever been there,” the older man said.
“What? You mean here?” the younger man replied, pointing at the words on his sweatshirt that advertised some casino in Ferndale, California. “Yea, that’s where I bought the sweatshirt.”
“Oh,” said the old man, seeming to deflate for a moment before expanding with joyous confession, “I fucked a sheep there once!”
I turned away from the man and looked at Scott with wide eyes in an attempt to ask “Is this really happening?” without uttering a word.
“Yea, me and four of my buddies went down there and fucked a sheep, but I went first; no sloppy seconds for me!”
“Uh, okay” the young man replied. How do you respond to such an oddly exuberant confession of bestiality?
I attempted to contain my shocked laughter. The older man turned around, paid his bill, and left with his friends before we got our first beer.
“Did he just say that he ‘fucked a sheep there once’?” I asked without attempting to hide the incredulity in my voice.
“I think so” the young man spouted in the midst of his own unbelieving laughter.
“Who does that?” I asked Scott as we stepped up to begin pint night.
As he took out his wallet to show is ID to the barkeep he clapped me on the shoulder and said without reserve or need to contain the laughter in his voice, “Welcome to Redding, man.”