Simon Rants About The Keg
Shockingly, this article did not come from the hallowed halls of Wikipedia. So let me begin by dispelling some myths. First, all of you who list your current city as Chicago, you're lying! You don't live in Chicago, you live in scenic and sunny Evanston. Congratulations on living within driving distance of a major metropolitan center! Unfortunately, you are not a hip twenty-something who lives with their partner and dog within the city limits. You are a college student. And while this may seem harsh, act your fucking age. I understand that you like drinking alcohol. I like drinking alcohol. I like it when I can drink alcohol around other people and act buffoonish without having to face the actual repercussions of my actions. I like how our culture has a built-in excuse for improper conduct -- it comes in handy for someone of my age. Unfortunately, I, like so many of you, am not 21. I cannot legally be served alcohol and that's shitty. It's a real bummer.
I don't really give a fuck how much you hate the drinking laws in America. There are probably bigger issues to take care of first, and if you want to complain about the government you should probably pick something else. Now, in all fairness and total disclosure, I don't like going out to pay money for booze. I'm the kind of drinker that likes two things: booze, and lots of it. I've been to the Keg maybe five times, and while I can't claim to have had the best time, I'm pretty sure I've had all of the stereotypical experiences.
The thing is, the Keg sucked. And it could be that kind of suck where you like it despite the suck, or because of the suck, but don't pretend that it was anything other than what it was: a bar that made its money by not carding. Which, is you know, great for people who want to go to bars but just aren't 21 yet.
I had a shitty end to my freshmen year because I spent most of it living the "Keg" lifestyle of drinking way too much and hooking up with random strangers. I tried really hard to ascribe significance to what I was doing; I figured that I was being a cool customer by drinking too much and then shoving my tongue into things. I woke up one morning with vomit on my wall and my roommate informed me that he was concerned I was going to die.
This sounds melodramatic, and it is -- kind of. But the thing is, why do we drink?
How many people actively like the taste of alcohol? I like gin, and I like good beer, but I can't say I really want to drink jungle juice unless I'm trying to get drunk. I would never drink shitty beer, which is roughly ninety percent of all beers, unless I was playing beer pong or trying to get drunk. Think about it, really, think about it, have you ever started drinking without trying to get drunk?
Some of you are probably thinking, "Fuck you, you're not my dad and even if you were I wouldn't respect your advice any more than I respect his." Well, fuck you too. If you only go to parties to get drunk and you only go out when you are going to get drunk then maybe you need to reevaluate some shit. I'm not saying your approach is wrong, I enjoy getting drunk and so do most people, but you should really take a minute and think this shit out.
So what does this have to do with the Keg? I can believe that the Keg was a good place for random hookups, cool. And you could get drunk there! But it isn't like you really meet people when you get shitfaced, and I don't need two hands to count the number of friends who have started good relationships via random hookup. So don't claim that the Keg was a great unifying factor for our campus. It was a fun place and some people had some good times.
If you are under 21 and really pissed off that the Keg is closing you should realize that it's your fault. The problem with consciously failing to enforce the law is that at some point someone will suffer for that and then we are all in shit. Have you ever carried someone two miles over you shoulder while they were passed out from drinking too much? It isn't fun.
Again, don't get me wrong, most students can handle their drinking. But you have to realize that breaking the law isn't necessarily the right way to change it. By actively breaking the law, by serving those under the legal age, the Keg was doing themselves in. And far more importantly, by flocking to the Keg and using fake ID's and hopping the fence you only exacerbated the problem and accelerated the eventual.
So I guess what I'm really trying to say is shut the fuck up. Get over it. If you want to drink then you still can, and if you want your tongue to lead an expedition into foreign territory there really isn't a shortage of that on a campus either. The Keg wasn't some shrine or holy space; it was a shit bar in a suburb and that's really all there was to it.
Also, if you are attacking Mayor Tisdahl you are an idiot. You may not think you are an idiot, but you are. I'm sorry, but anyone who scapegoats an elected official for enforcing the law deserves the title of idiot. And that's that.
Simon is also the genius behind the blog “Some Children Left Behind,” a resplendent collection of literature and poetry. He can also play the banjo.