Guido, back in town after 12 days at home in the City of Bodily Harm with Phillies fans, figures we should watch at least one weekend game in the Marlins series at Liquor and Rubber Balls Sports Bar and Paralegal Services, so off we go. This is after attending the Thursday night game, where the Phillies easily wiped out the Fish 4-0.
So there we are Saturday, the day of the rainout. Instead of baseball, we end up talking about Knob Creek Bourbon. In case you haven’t heard, this brand has notified the world that there may be a shortage:
“For the next few months…….Knob Creek Bourbon is in a unique situation — [our] product is so popular that we cannot keep up with customer demand. As a result, our supply will be running low over the next few months, And, in some cases, we may experience temporary stock depletions.
“But, instead of compromising quality to meet demand, we have chosen to let the supply run low. In deference to Booker Noe and his vision for Knob Creek, we will age all our bourbon the full 9 years. The next batch will be ready in November of this year. …
” … Again, with all the success we’ve had, we’ve still come up empty. Thanks for helping make it happen.” — Examiner.com
“What a crock of shit,” says Don Tequila, behind the bar tonight.
What, Don, you don’t think they could make a production mistake?
“What I think,” says Don, “is that this is 100% pure marketing and that some bean counter somewhere figured out they could make more money selling short for a month or two if the advertising campaign was clever enough.”
Which it is because here we are talking about it.
“Bingo,” says Don, heading toward a pair of thirsty patrons. “Who the hell even HEARD about this brand before this? I go through maybe one bottle every 6 months. Cheap fucking gimmick.”
“Sure hope so,” says the patron at my left elbow, a beefy young lady who’s been eyeing up Guido’s tits since we arrived (LRB sports bar’s clientèle is mostly lesbian, and Guido never fails to attract attention among them. I keep encouraging this but so far, nothing noteworthy has come of it. Believe me, I’ll let you know when it does.)
Her name, we learn, is Greta. Bourbon on the rocks is her drink, Knob Creek her favorite, Grand Dad her second. I ask her if she’s ever had Wild Turkey, which is the fuel I favored years ago when I drank bourbon.
“Used to,” she says, wistfully. “A bit more expensive, and it adds up. Especially if you go for the 101 proof. Which I did. Until the night I drank too much and almost got charged with assault.”
Sounds like a story.
“Wish I could tell it,” says Greta. “But I don’t remember. I know it was outside, in the snow — this was in Akron — and that both me and the bitch I was beating spent time in an emergency room getting stitched up.” She shows us a long scar at her hairline: looks like a dozen stitches, a classic bottle-dent. I wonder if it was Wild Turkey 86 or 101. “Cops asked questions, but I faked unconsciousness until they left and ran out.”
You actually blame Wild Turkey for this?
She laughs. “Nah. Not really. I was pretty wild back them. Fact is, bourbon’s all about the same within price levels. I had better, I had worse. And I’ve had fights cold sober, too.” She sizes us up. “You two married?”
“Story of my life. Well, here’s to you.” She raises her glass, drains the contents, and lumbers off in search of love. Or ten rounds.
“Not your type anyway,” observes Guido, correctly.
You’re my type.
“Good answer. That might get your knob creeked,” says Guido.
Well, it made sense at the time. And the game was postponed anyway.