Bar

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Baghdad Country Club

It takes Real Balls to Play here

 The Who’s Who of Baghdad’s Green Zone Ate Steak and Drank Fine Wine at a Bar that Billed It’self as “An Oasis of Calm.”

So, many Western visitors to Iraq in the past decade have thrown their heads back after a near-miss with a roadside bomb and thought, I need a drink right now. That was where the Baghdad Country Club came in.

“The management is happy to secure any firearms, grenades, flash bangs or knives in the club armory.”

Saturday night in Baghdad, and Heidi, the barmaid at the Baghdad Country Club, is worried about the beer. On a busy night, she might serve 800 cold ones to the diplomats, security guards, and construction workers who frequent the Country Club, a white cinder-block house with blue trim on a residential street in the Green Zone.

The BCC, as its known, gets its alcohol from suppliers outside the walls, but insurgents are targeting the crossings on either side of the Tigris River. On this Saturday, a truck bomb on a bridge has locked up traffic on the west bank of the Tigris, delaying the delivery of the night’s beer supply. Heidi, a recent college graduate from Florida, wonders whether the war will eventually collapse on the Green Zone, the way it did on the U.S. embassy in Saigon. But she doesn’t let that occupy her for long. Looking down at the empty glass in her hand, she smiles and says, “Let’s do a shot…

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Photo Of The Day

Michael Malloy

The Man Who Wouldn’t Die

The plot to kill Michael Malloy for life-insurance money seemed foolproof—until the conspirators actually tried it

Pictured up top: A young Michael Malloy, and the “Ghoulish Plotters” who failed repeatedly to rob him of his life.
The plot was conceived over a round of drinks. One afternoon in July 1932, Francis Pasqua, Daniel Kriesberg and Tony Marino sat in Marino’s eponymous speakeasy and raised their glasses, sealing their complicity, figuring the job was already half-finished. How difficult could it be to push Michael Malloy to drink himself to death? Every morning the old man showed up at Marino’s place in the Bronx and requested “Another mornin’s morning, if ya don’t mind” in his muddled brogue; hours later he would pass out on the floor. For a while Marino had let Malloy drink on credit, but he no longer paid his tabs. “Business,” the saloonkeeper confided to Pasqua and Kriesberg, “is bad.”

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What on earth is the point of a bar with no booze?

The Poms do come up with some seriously daft ideas at times…muslim immigration, joining the EU…and now booze-less bars.

Abstemious bars have also opened in Liverpool and Nottingham, and are planned for Brighton and Newcastle—two famously high-living towns. Unlike many cafés, they stay open late. They emulate bars in other ways, with live music, comedy acts and films to pull in punters. When the lights go down and the DJ plays at Sobar, which opened in Nottingham in January, it looks like any city bar, hopes Alex Gillmore, the manager. Redemption misses the hefty profits made on alcohol, but temperance brings its own benefits. Business remains steady throughout the week rather than spiking at the weekend, says Catherine Salway, its founder. The absence of drunken, obstreperous patrons means that bouncers are unnecessary.  Read more »

Australia. In a nutshell.

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Australia is still so totally gay

Last month James Delingpole said that Australia was “so totally gay”…and this month they prove they still are so totally gay:

Australian states have been accused of “nannyism” over a range of new laws beginning this year, including a ban on ladies’ nights – where bars offer free drinks to women.

Other new measures include a ban in Victoria on smoking within 50 metres of the beach and guidelines issued to some schools in New South Wales asking parents dropping children off to avoid wearing revealing clothes or racist T-shirts.

The ban on ladies’ nights will commence from January 18 in South Australia and was introduced by the state to try to curb binge drinking. The measures also require bars to offer free water and at least one non-alcoholic beverage that is cheaper than the cheapest alcoholic drink.

PJ O’Briens, a bar in Adelaide, said it would change the name of its weekly ladies’ nights – a Thursday deal offering free vodka drinks to women – and would allow men to access its promotions.

“As long as you offer the special deals to everyone, it is OK,” the manager said.

And the nanny state has extended to the countries beaches as well:

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