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Bar None. - Blather. Rants. Repeat.
A Møøse once bit my sister ...
captainsblog
captainsblog
Bar None.
I don't know why this resonates with me after so many years and so many miles, but it does. I saw online articles in a couple of places today about the NYC area MTA finally ending "bar car" service on the last of its commuter rail lines.

The pieces I saw referenced, in word or pictures, the end of the Mad Men era on these trains:



That's one from the Don Draper years. And this, from this week's northern suburb finale:



I never frequented these cars- the ones shown were on the Westchester/Connecticut lines later consolidated into "Metro North," but I have some distinct memories of some trips on their equivalents on the Long Island Rail Rot, which apparently also persisted into this century.  One of my few father-son bonding memories was of a St. Patrick's Day trip into Manhattan to see the parade. It must've been a year when the event was on a weekend, or some odd school holiday. All I remember of the return LIRR trip to Hempstead was seeing real-life proof of an aphorism that John Belushi and company would make famous only a few years later:

Fat, drunk and stupid is no way to go through life, son.

The average age in that (possibly unofficial) bar car was probably just south of 20. The average BAC, probably close to .20. It did as much to dissuade me from strong drink as the horrid taste of Rheingold and similar beers did when parents and family encouraged me to "gwon, try it, it won't kill you."

Now it's 40 years later, and it hasn't. Has killed a sister and a father-in-law, and damaged a bro-in-lo, tho.  So I don't mourn the passing of the bar cars as much as I want to see them only in retrospect. Because there's a meaning to the "Mad" in Mad Men that's not just a reference to an Avenue.
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bill_sheehan From: bill_sheehan Date: May 11th, 2014 02:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
It amazes me that the bar car went out of service only last month.

It's been almost 31 years since my last drink, so I'm scarcely the best qualified reporter, but when was the last three-martini lunch? Nowadays, someone *might* have a drink (emphasis on the singular) at an office lunch if we're dining out, but that's it. There's certainly no alcohol in the office. There's no "one for the road," and it would be criminally negligent to serve one.

We're a more sober society, and that's not necessarily a bad thing.
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