The Bar Belle: Farewell from Froggy Bottom Pub

You know where it is
You know it’s free
You know what to wear
You’ve seen me there on Thursday afternoons in clay-covered sweatpants, getting an early start on happy hour. You’ve seen me straggle in at 2:30 a.m. in a formal dress, having decided that one more pitcher is more important than whatever fancy fiesta I have been attending.

You’ve seen me hobble in there on crutches, carrying a pitcher with my teeth and you’ve seen me bounce in with my school bag, trying to convince myself that I plan on studying, not drinking.

For the past year, my weekend nights have ended at Froggy Bottom Pub, and I feel it’s appropriate my Bar Belle days end up there as well.

It’s the GW bar where everyone knows your name, sitting proudly on the corner of 21st and Pennsylvania. Upstairs is cool for half-price pitchers and pizzas on Mondays, but down those life-threatening steps is where the nighttime action is at.

It’s dark, its dirty, it smells like stale beer and sweat. And it’s the perfect place for friends to gather in the late night hours. It technically closes at 2 a.m. but they’ll keep it open as long as you’re having fun.

As I walk in, I greet Wong and his wife. I sway up and get a pint of Froggy from Chippy at the bar. I play some pool against the bald guy in the cowboy hat. I reflect on the nightly adventures I had before ending up back in Froggy Bottom.

We’ve shared some good times, dear readers. You puked and passed out with me at the Reef on my 21st birthday. You read as I made an idiot out of myself at the Front Page and laughed as my best friend acted the same way at Marshalls. You’ve shared my amazement as I perused the beer selection at Brickskellar and My Brother’s Place, and shared my humiliation when I dislocated my knee on my way back from Paper Moon (all in the line of duty).

I’ve tried to impart some wisdom along the way. It’s not an Irish bar if they won’t serve you a car bomb. It’s worth the loan you’ll need to take out to drink like you’re rich if you’re at an upscale bar. And you’re never too old to party like you still live in Thurston.

A few thank yous to people who made my Bar Belle career such a success. Thanks to the Hatchet staff, who deemed me the resident alcoholic and worthy of the Bar Belle’s demanding job. To Andy Phillips, who always found a way to make me cooler than even I thought I could be. To my friends, who never said no to a night out, and to my parent s, who bankrolled my adventures and pretended they were made up. They weren’t. Thanks for the fun, guys.

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