I had a panic attack on Saturday.
I was riding back to Woodley Park on the Circulator. I was coming from Target, after meeting my folks downtown for lunch to celebrate Father’s Day a day early. They were now watching Midnight in Paris (my thoughts on the film can be found here), and I was looking out the window at where the liquor store on Calvert now appeared to no longer be. And I needed some Bass Ale.
I was having some friends over in a few hours to watch DC CAB, a wonderfully horrid movie about a kid named Albert (Adam Baldwin) who moves to DC to work for his dad’s Vietnam war buddy Harold (Max Gail) who runs a pretty decrepit cab company staffed by misfits, misogynists, morons, assholes, idealists, and crazy people: Mr. T, Gary Busey, Bill Maher, Charlie Barnett, Marsha Warfield, Otis Day, Paul Rodriguez, and – wait for it – The Barbarian Brothers. No, really, that’s their name. I guess they were big in the 80s. The movie’s got just about everything you can imagine, and is probably more offensive than you could probably conceive of any film being. It was directed (and at least co-written) by Joel Schumacher and features nudity, hilarious scenes involving Mr. T and his neon pants and odd belt choice, a kidnapping featuring the Harry Potter & Hermoine look-alike children of a diplomat, and a ticker tape parade down the National Mall. Also, Bruce Lee, a car chase, the Mission: Impossible theme, and an opening which fondly pays tribute to that first Star Destroyer shot in Star Wars.
Fortunately, the liquor shop didn’t really close. It moved to a different space on the same block, and I knew I would be able to score some Bass Ale!
Except, alas, they sold out. Sold out? Of Bass? “I know, I know,” the clerk said. “We never sell out of Bass.” Beat. “I mean, y’know. Until we do.”
Truer words probably never spoken. Seeing, however, as I don’t actually track the frequency of Bass Ale sales in the Washington, DC area, I just decided that I had rotten luck, and the few Bass bottles in my fridge, plus all the Yuengling – I have a hard time resisting when Giant Food has 12-packs on sale for $8.99 so I buy a couple – would have to tide me over.
But on a whim I asked, “Hey, you guys wouldn’t start carrying Natty Boh by chance, would you?”
The guy brightened. “Actually, we do currently!” and he led me back to the walk-in behind the beer cases, where he showed me several 12 packs of Natty Boh. “We just don’t display them,” he elaborated. “But you can usually find them here.”
Natty Boh is my favorite guilty beer. I’m not saying it’s a high quality drink because it isn’t, but it reminds me of Baltimore and I like that. Also, I like the logo. Also, sometimes I just like drinking beer out of a can. Also, I really enjoy being able to say I don’t drink Budweiser or Miller. My crap domestic brew has hipster creds, thankyouverymuch! (It’s like the Pabst Blue Ribbon for the guys who don’t actually like taking their cues from, y’know, hipsters).
And then I went to the register. Want to know how much I paid for twelve cans of National Bohemian?
When I moved to DC you could go to any liquor store in the Baltimore region and buy a 12-pack of Natty Boh for under $5. A few weeks ago, with access to a car, the cheapest I could find it in the Route 40 corridor was $7.50. A coworker of mine sometimes does Boh runs for me near his apartment in Laurel and can find them for $6 a 12-pack. DC wants $9.80.
Jesus Christ, DC.
But, it was Boh, and I wanted to be home, so I paid and went home and put my way overpriced Boh in the fridge. There’s a price to pay for my hipster beer cred (and that price is approximately .82 cents a can).
My post made it into today’s (June 21st) Washington Post Express! Much thanks to @vtHokies98 for taking the pic & letting me know!