Oregon Tavern Age: And So It Goes

Friday afternoon. A semi strip mall that had seen better days. I sat at a table inside an OTA joint that was part of the strip mall. AC-DC’s “Back in Black” played. It was inconsequential, like all of classic rock is anymore. But not classic soul. That music is more relevant today than during its 70s heyday.

Next door was a sex shop. For a moment I thought about sitting outside and see who patronized a sex shop in strip mall, but a strange OMA (Oregon Meth Age) woman was sitting there holding court and drinking white wine and I just wasn’t in the mood for insanity.

So inside it was. The joint’s interior vibed 1986. A few stray OTAs drank drinks and shot the shit. I was drinking a craft malt liquor and wondering about the sorry state of America. A poster advertising Budweiser arrested my attention. It boasted “Now Brewed with Wind Power.”

Would that mean it now wouldn’t taste like piss?

I caught a drift of conversation from one group of OTAs. They were mocking their dumbshit OTA counterparts in rural Oregon for refusing the vaccine. “Fuck em! Let em die!” one man said.

Hard to argue with that these days. A while back, I did. Not anymore.

A lending library caught my eye. I got up and checked it out. All crap, but at least there were books in the joint. I made a mental note to stash some of my books in the library when I returned. Maybe someone would read one of the titles. Then I wouldn’t be a book writer who writes books that nobody reads.

I looked out the open back door. Wind whipped through the trees. A rainstorm was forecast for that evening. I relished the prospect. I’d make a pea soup during the deluge, drink red wine, listen to Miles Davis and work on another book that nobody was going to read. Or I might get in the car and drive to a homeless encampment I hadn’t seen yet and check the action. The resident there would curse the rain. Or would they? Never assume anything with rain.

An OTA man walked in and ordered a coke. He told his friends he was eight days on the wagon He was asked if it was for good.

“Yes,” he said. “at least until I drink again.”

They then launched into a reminiscence about how they got completely fucked up out of their minds in Vegas recently and that they had intended NOT drinking during their visit. But the Budweiser girls were in Bikinis in all the Casinos and giving away free beer, so what the hell?

To quote Kurt Vonnegut: And so it goes.