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Einsteins of the Bar Scene

Photos by K. Wilkins Photography Story by Kip Tabb

In vino veritas—or sometimes in

cerevisia veritas (that’s Latin for in beer there is truth—although the truth may be more in the eyes and ears of the bartenders than the patrons).

Let’s face it, we may think we’re budding Einsteins after three or four drinks; but the “veritas” may be a bit harsher. And for evidence, we turned to some of the folks who have been behind the bar for a number of years to see what tales they could tell.

“Do you

serve mixed drinks?”

This one gets on the list because of where it was asked. When Dennis Day at Ocean Boulevard told us this story, he was standing in front of a wall of liquor. I asked him if the customer could see the wall. “Yeah,” he answered. “He was sitting just about where you are.”

“Do you have schools here?”



FALL 2013

“Where’s the beach?”

“If that’s the Atlantic, is that (indicating the Albemarle Sound) the Pacific?”

This question directed at Will Holman at the Outer Banks Brewing Station may be the capper. We can only hope the person asking this was well beyond three or four drinks. Even so... well, maybe they need a refresher course in geography at our Dare County Schools (see above).

“What’s the difference between a pound of shrimp and a half pound of shrimp?”

When Sonya Barnhart at Bonzer Shack told us this, I wasn’t sure if I heard her correctly. I asked her to repeat it. She did—word for word. “Sixteen ounces or eight ounces,” she told the customer. I think she did that with a straight face, showing more willpower than I would have.

“Can I have your phone number?”

I’ll admit that Isaac Gottenborg at Mama Kwan’s is better looking than me and no doubt has more personality, which is probably why a young lady asked him for his phone number. “I don’t think that would be a good idea,” he told her. She continued her quest. He told her he had a girlfriend whom he really liked and wouldn’t feel comfortable handing out his phone number. Refusing to take no for an answer, she proceeded to reenact the restaurant scene from When Harry Met Sally... complete with sound effects.

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