Whatever you do…

Don’t Make Eye Contact, Prologue…

    Ivory moonlight slanted through billowing white lace curtains. On top of a polished oak nightstand, an electric alarm clock blinked on and off: 1:30 a.m. … in eerie red numbers.

    Cassie lay on her bed with her eyes wide open. She sat up stretching her long catlike legs and slid her feet to the carpeted floor. Flipping her long jet black hair over her bare shoulder she walked over to the open window where the curtains puffed out around her like soft clouds.  Suffering a chill from somewhere deep inside, she reached out and slammed the window  closed. Peering out into the night she saw one light casting its sickly yellow glow on the corner, where a crippled dog was limping its way across the street.

    Halfway through its journey it stopped and cocked its head to one side, listening intently. Then it raised its head and howled long and loud at the moon.  As she stared at the dog she heard, in return, another howl. One so deep and guttural she almost wondered if it could even be a dog. Then it changed, slowly rising in pitch until it was screeching like a banshee, and her nerves were vibrating, electric shivers racing up and down her spine. Then it stopped as suddenly as it had begun. The crippled dog turned and limped as fast as it could in the opposite direction, yelping as if all hell were behind it.

    Cassie locked her window and started to return to her bed, then she started wondering, “What woke me up in the first place? I wasn’t dreaming and I know I was damn tired”, she thought to herself as she wrinkled her nose up and scrunched her brows together trying to recall something.  She gave up and decided to grab a glass of water, walking quickly into the kitchen, passing through the dim dining room and by the dark door of the den.

    Her kitchen’s decor of white and yellow had always looked cheerful and sunny, but now as she looked, it turned into a bright, fake sunny-ness,  almost inspiring depression as if it were just trying too hard anymore. She poured a glass of water and grabbed a pickle out of the fridge on impulse. She wasn’t hungry, but she wasn’t ready to go back to bed just yet. She nibbled on the pickle and thought about the long day ahead of her, how tired she was going to be, how emotionally overdrawn after what she needed to do. That thought shocked her back to reality and she wondered why she had even felt that strange fear now that her nerves had calmed down, only to be jerked tight by something worse. But she had, she realized.  One like Cassie had never felt…strong, stubborn, realistic,  logical Cassie.

    Now everything was quiet and she couldn’t see any sense in it. silently scolding herself for her foolishness and  cursing at the time as she padded back down the hall having flipped the light switch in the kitchen on her way back to her room. She slowed only a little to let her eyes adjust to the dark, passed the door to the den, then the door to the basement where she paused and took a step back, suddenly listening intently. Standing there she felt the same heat flush across her face for being silly when she heard  the gentle rustling and, was that scratching?  As if someone was scraping fingernails on cement or slate very softly. It stopped and she continued to stand there staring at the door wondering what in the hell was up with her imagination tonight of all nights.

    She reached out and locked the door even though there were no windows or other entrances into her cellar than from where she stood. Cass continued on into her room where she checked the lock on her window and lowered herself back into bed.

OOOOOOooooowwwwWWWW! Cassie bolted upright and looked at the clock.

2:45 a.m.

Why people think I’m weird because I only like PBR and love imports/craft beers, but hate all other “domestics”


1. A Bit of Randomness to Begin.

I just popped an entire half of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich in my mouth, dropping a little of the blackberry jam on my leg in the process, so I could start my first post on a BigBeer. Tomorrow is Mother’s Day and my son just moved back from Montana and we are headed out early to my mothers. So I know I will be saving this and coming back to finish it later, but I needed to get started and this way it will be loOOoooOoooOming over my head till I get back to it. Heh.     😉

2. No PBR in OK.

Picture me at 18, oh wait, you can’t, you don’t know me. Well, picture a young girl at 18 in Oklahoma who didn’t even use a fake ID to get into clubs, just flashed her real ID and got the royal treatment. (Once I actually dropped my ID, left it there, had to call and they had found it, went to pick it up, back then we had the giant red stripe “Under 21” on our drivers licenses, and was let straight back in the following weekend!)

3. Took a Break, Back to the Story at Hand.

I’m back! Had a hectic Mother’s day, got totally wiped from shooting bows and guns, and playing the awesome Kinect Dance Off game that makes you sweat, for real. Back to the beer!

3. Montana, the Land of Alcohol and Gambling.

Where I lived back then no one had even heard of PBR (Pabst Blue Ribbon) or as some of us call it “the pibber”. Flash forward to the next year when I moved to Great Falls, Montana. (yeah, I totally did, at first it wasn’t so bad until winter hit and I drove a rear-wheel drive Mazda RX-8 sports car. That did NOT go over well. I ended up in ditches several times trying to make it up hills and I was pregnant with my son to boot!) Anyway, then I hated it, and wow, there are like no people there, a lot of bars and pawn shops though.

4. Montana! Where I Found PBR for the First Time!

I was a bartender for awhile at one of these many bars, and people drank the strangest things. One of them was Pabst. Another was ditches. Something people everywhere I’ve lived afterwards had no idea what they were. Basically, if they asked for a whiskey ditch, I gave them whatever well whiskey we had and half water. BV ditch, black velvet and water, etc, water! They cost the exact same as if they’d ordered a JD and soda, but no, they wanted the water. How weird is that???

5. Back to the Black Hole Named Tulsa, OK.

Now let’s flash forward some more. I hope I’m not making you too dizzy. We (my now ex-husband and I) moved back to Oklahoma when I was about to pop and right after we got there I did, indeed. We had a boy, or “the boy” as I call him, I’m sure you’ll read more about him later. I actually looked around after I started going out again and they didn’t have Rainier (I didn’t like but it was one of the big beers up in Montana too) or PBR ANYWHERE. Most hadn’t heard of it. Well, a couple of years later we moved back to Montana (don’t ask me why!) and I started drinking PBR and I loved it! I loved the taste, I loved it cold or warm, the only thing I didn’t like was that it made me burp…a lot.

6. NC, Holy Shit, They Have the Pibber. I Fall in Love With It, Other Imports, and Craft Beers.

You’re in a time warp now, we’ve moved to North Carolina, the boy’s dad had gone back into the marine corp and we got a divorce. All of a sudden, I was somewhere new where they had PBR at some (not all) places. Yay for me! I grew to hate the taste of Budweiser, Miller, Busch, anything like that. I hated ladies night and guys trying to bring me Bud Lite. I actually paid for my PBR instead of getting free beers for hours, still do as a matter of fact. I also started dating Armen, a super tall buff Armenian with charisma and humor to die for. For four years, he introduced me to ale’s, lager’s, and such…and I fell in love with imports. Like Red Stripe, Dos Equis Dark, Tecate, Guinness, etc. Back then there weren’t any local breweries around. He taught me a lot about cooking too. I’ll have to make a post in that category though, for another time.

7. San Jose, CA. Best Place I’ve Ever Lived AND they had PBR, too.    😀

Off we go again! After about 8 years in NC, we moved to California. Loved it there, still do, want to go back! Anyhoot, they had great beers at the places I loved to hang out at downtown with my bestie Sergio “panda” and our crew. Nice little dive punk bars like the Cinebar, Caravan, and Blank Club(if you ever go to the Cinebar, tell Havi I said hi and make sure to check out all the cool wall art, and the great music on the JB), and a couple others. Always had PBR, and imports on draft. Ok, I could have left Cali out but you can’t just leave Cali out! Besides, at that time people had begun to ask me why I only drank PBR and imports, etc, and wouldn’t touch any other domestic mass-produced beer. I didn’t really have any other answer than “Because I like it and I hate the others.”  Some info just in case you were wondering:

  • Cinebar – link to yelp, some good reads on the reviews on these

    outside the Cinebar
    Outside the Cinebar

    inside the Cinebar
    Inside Cinebar, me and Pandabear having a bit too much fun, most fave hangout in all Cali
  • Caravan – link to yelp

    outside the Caravan
    outside the ol’ Caravan

    band inside the Caravan
    Inside the Caravan, where we had many a PBR watching bands
  • Blank Club (aww, just saw they are closed now) – link to yelp even though they are closed, they are still loved

    outside the Blank Club
    Outside the Blank Club, where you had to walk through scary dark downtown allies to get to, but we had our PBRs in hand and actually, I did almost get into a fight with a bunch of “macho men” in the street. The only girl in the group, lol. yeah, that’s me.

    inside the Blank Club
    Third favorite, awesome bar where we got to sing Live pre-1985 punk songs on stage with a live band!

8. I’ve Come Full Circle After So Many Years And It’s Worth It, Even if it is Oklahoma.

So now we can jump to the end of my journey for this little story and I’m back where I was born and raised again and wouldn’t you know it? PBR was EVERYWHERE. The same place no one had even heard of it before I left. Yep. We are the armpit of the US here in Tulsa. I actually have a little smile on my lips right now, remembering the wonderful feeling that washed over me when I found out that PBR had become a hipster type beer at first, then a genuinely popular beer and I could find it almost anywhere. Hell, one of my home away from home bars, Yellow Brick Road, had 6 pt on tap.

Follow the Yellow Brick Road aka YBR – yelp (it’s not what it used to be before the owner passed away)

outside YBR
Look how tiny this place looks…well it is. 🙂

inside YBT
Inside Ybr, ya, that’s me in the wings. The Angry Fairie. Online Comic Book Character.

inside YBR
How on earth did we fit so many people in that tiny place?


9. Reflection. Not my Strongest Skill But Acceptance At Long Last.

I still got asked that same question for a long time before they stopped (I think everyone I knew had already asked so no one was left to) and just accepted the fact that I wouldn’t drink anything else and when I walked into any bar where they knew me, automatically pulled out a cold PBR from the cooler and waited for me to find a seat before they set it in front of me, then went to write it on my paper tab without my card or license.

In summary, I still don’t understand the answer to the question they asked me myself, or why on earth it happened that way, but I’m down with the fact that even as I meet new people, less and less are them are asking it. Saves me the trouble of having to repeat the same rote answer or try to think of a new one and really ask myself why again. Also, as soon as I’m done here, I’m headed down to grab a couple of them out of the fridge or maybe a bottle of Pinot Grigio and get a few things done around here. I know this isn’t a beer review, but it’s going in the beer section anyway for now.  Unless our Godfather, Mark, decides to move it another one.   😉

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