New Years Eve Failure or Not

New Year’s Eve Failure or Not?

Last night, 12/31/14 Bum & I went to a local bar for a New Year’s Eve Celebration that failed but was yet a great time.

Our daughter Megan and her husband Marc invited us (Bum & I) to join them at Classics Bar & Grill in Advance NC, right down the road from where I live. Normally we do not go out on New Year’s Eve, but thought this would be fun to do, so we agreed.

We got there at 7 pm and there were less than 20 people in the bar. The table area was nearly completely empty.

After ordering a round the waitress told us that the restaurant was going to close at 8 pm. We all laughed at what we thought was a joke, but, Nope, she was serious.

On New Year’s Eve, the only local bar, positioned in a community that is poised to explode over the next few years and they are closing early on New Year’s Eve.

This seems to be a New Years Eve Failure

While we laughed at what we considered a business failure here is what else happened:

Repeatedly one lady in the bar kept playing music on the digital jukebox. Each time she swiped her card in the credit card slot she appeared to be twerking with the jukebox.

Yeah, yeah, I know people dance in front of jukeboxes all the time. This was way different.  She appeared to be twerking on the jukebox. We were laughing so hard more than one of us snorted at the table. Later we discovered it was one of the bar owners.

When ordering another round of beer we thought about ordering a beer tower. The price was not too bad and Courtney would put our favorite beer in it. However, since the bar was closing in less than 1 hour she suggested that we not order a beer tower. We agreed. 10 minutes later the table behind us ordered one and had it delivered. We laughed thinking there was no way 4 people could drink 12 beers in less than 30 minutes. We were wrong.

An older guy walked up to our table and wished us a Happy New Year. While talking he said he had two wives and had owned two expensive homes, neither of which he still had or lived in, yet his ex-wives were very happy in “them thar homes.” He said he now lives in a hotel room.

I wished him better success in 2015. He came back later and in the chat, I told him Bum and I were still married after 37 years. He was so excited, cajoled us into standing up and hugging him. Later on, we saw him dancing with an older woman up near the jukebox. Our barmaid told us it was his mother.

At around 8:30 pm, 30 minutes past closing time I wanted another beer. Our barmaid came over to the table to check on us. I told her I wanted another beer, but I would not order one if she wanted us to leave. She looked like she wanted us to leave, but agreed that because she had work to do in the back room I could have another beer. Megan wanted another margarita too.

We joked with the barmaid about a local bar wanting to close at 8 pm on New Year’s Eve. When I asked her what she was going to do after work she said she was going to go home and cook Bang Bang Shrimp. I asked if we could come over and she said yes. I’m a smart man. Bum was there and I knew the barmaid only wanted a bigger tip. She left laughing to get my beer. She came back with my beer but forgot Megan’s drink.

We finished up laughing and cutting up with the barmaid by about 8:45 pm. We were nearly the last people out of the bar. On the way out of the bar, we saw the sign on the doors. Handwritten on yellow ledger paper, “Closing at 8 pm New Year’s Eve.”

We didn’t get a chance to close down the year in this local bar, but we closed down the local bar on New Year’s Eve.

Normally if we were told to exit a local bar at 8 pm on New Year’s Eve we would consider it a New Years’ Eve Failure. However, everything else that happened that night made it somewhat successful, ie – funny.

Dang the Internet

I traveled a lot in my previous career.  Most of it was for business reasons. Because I was Dad for 4 daughters I didn’t get to run off with the boys more than a few times a year. However  I have a very tolerant wife who let me play when I asked.

A friend of mine knows people who used to own a place in Edwards Colorado outside of Vail. Back in the early 2000’s there was an open invitation to use this place whenever he wanted.  This story happened during one of our boys trips to Vail


We went to Colorado for 4 reasons:

  1. Skiing. Regardless of the fact that I did not ski – I tried on each trip to Vail
  2. Snowmobiling @ 13,000 ft.  We love to snowmobile, fast!
  3. Denver Broncos football games.  We loved to go to games at Mile High Stadium. 
  4. To enjoy all that Colorado had to offer.

Technology caught up with me on my first boys weekend out trip to Colorado.

On this trip I decided to use my American Express Card for personal use. Normally I only used this card for business use.

I used the card at all of the typical places.  Ski School, Mile High Stadium, a few restaurants and gift shops.  I used it to pay for the snowmobile adventure and even for beers at a few Bar & Grills.

However, it was not until one morning after a long hard night of fun & games that I realized the power of this thing that we referred to as the Internet.

I called my wife early that morning to say hello and ask how she and the kids were doing. Everyone was fine.

The next question from her hit me like a ton of bricks, “What is The George?”

“Why?” I asked her, not really sure what she was asking, or how I should respond.

“You were there last night at 4AM and I’m just wondering where you were at such an early hour,” she said.

How in the world did that happen?  In less than 4 hours she had figured out where I had been.

“How did you know I was at The George last night?” I asked

“It’s on the American Express transactions online,” she said, “I use Internet Explorer to view the American Express bill now.”

Online Transaction list! – I quickly developed a serious disdain, if not hatred for that phrase.  I did not need an Online Transaction list telling my wife what I was doing.

This Internet thing had disclosed my activities to my wife, hours after I done it.

Now, for those of you who think I have anything to hide, NOPE!

The George is by far the best Bar in Vail Village. We went there for dinner and ended up staying there all night long.  My two buddies, who by the way were single at the time, had a great time.  I played the Matriarch and chaperone, really I did.  This was also the night that I learned a very important skill.  Beer/Water/Beer & a little coffee.  I sat in the most comfortable leather chair I have ever sat in (at a bar) and I watched these two play their singles game all night long.

And, again for those who do not know me – I told my wife this and her reply was simple, “Oh, OK.”


However, I still had a problem.  Even though I had nothing to hide, I did not want her to know what I was doing, or where I was moments after I did it.  Who knows what she might learn.

So this was the end of me using my American Express card for personal use. The internet forced me to change my purchasing habits immediately.

If online transactions were going to disclose my activity, I needed to make sure that I was the only one getting this info.

As soon as I got home I setup a bank account with a local credit union and from that day forward I have used what I now call my “Freedom Card” for all confidential, private, no one needs to know transactions.

Little did I know then that my wife would find other ways of keeping track of me.  However, it was not going to be with the help of American Express.

Restroom cheering

I went to lunch with my brother and wife today. We went to a sports bar on opening day of Professional Football. Big Shotz in Winston-Salem NC is a good restaurant that Becky and I frequent often.

The Carolina Panthers were playing the New York Giants, and in a NC town, this was an exciting game with equally excited patrons in the bar. The bar was loud and they had the TV cranked up all around us. We could see the game thru the patio windows and here the play by play over the bar speakers.

After a good hamburger and a few drinks, I had to go inside and visit my porcelain buddy in the restroom.

I walked into the men’s room and even with a full bar, this room was empty.

I walked over to the urinal and prepared to relieve myself. For those of you who do not understand the plumbing issues of a 50+ yr. old man, you do not start doing your business right away. Some days, it may take 5-10 seconds to get your body working properly as you hover over a urinal.

With the football game playing over the bar speakers, I heard what I thought was the sportscaster speaking about me, “Hey folks, this is getting exciting now. Who knows how it may turn out. This guy can win this game.”

Exactly at the instance that I started to do my business, the crowd in the bar and on the TV started to cheer as the sportscaster began saying, “Look at this guy go! He is dang good! I think he’ll end up in the Hall of Fame”

I finished my business in the restroom and walked back out to the Patio with my chest pumped up and just a little more attitude in my step.

Thanks to Fred for providing me with this story. I hope you enjoyed it.