Dividing the Bars
When you are young and void of any significant responsibilities or possessions, breakups are relatively easy. Or at least so they would seem to the outside observer. As my Dad (who has been through a couple of divorces) told my sister when she broke up with her longtime live-in boyfriend “You think this is hard? This ain’t shit. All you have to split up is a bunch of furniture and a cat.” And when no pets or plush recliners are in the picture, one would think that it would be simple to write off a toothbrush and an iron and call it a day, right?
Well, when you live in the same city as your ex, and you unfortunately happen to frequent the same social establishments, there is the extremely important issue of who gets what bars. Seems funny, I know, but at this age your social life is more or less limited to establishments who serve Old Crow and the occasional kickball game. So unfortunately your activities may become severely limited in the wake of a recent breakup. Sure you COULD just go out like you used to and hope to not run into your ex, or maybe, God forbid, act like and adult and see them without any drama. But lets be honest, when alcohol is involved the chances of that are about as good as the chances of some Marines finally finding those oh-so-elusive weapons of Mass Destruction. So what is a recently no-longer-a-couple to do when they want to avoid each other on the social scene?
I have always felt that whoever was going to the bar first should get to keep it. There are a few exceptions, like if maybe I walked into a bar once in 1999 and my ex has been going there every day since the
But what is one to do if an opportunity comes up that may throw you head-long into a confrontational situation with an ex? Like, say, the entire female promotional team for a major beer manufacturer, who happen to be spending a month at the hotel you work at, inviting you to go play beer pong at an establishment so frequented by your ex that she may or may not have named her cat after the bar. Stay home and you miss out on what promises to be, at the very worst, an evening surrounded by attractive women who will be buying you beer all night. Go out and you are immediately “that guy” saying “Hey, look at me, we broke up and now I am surrounded by attractive women buying me beer all night!” More than likely resulting in either A) your ex thinking you are a total douche bag or B) Her going home with someone else right in front of your face. Most likely both. And all this after you came to the decision to avoid all you ex’s frequent watering holes for an as-yet-undetermined period of time so as not to cause any drama. Of course, since when have I been good a that?
I have always been of the out-of-sight, out-of-mind mentality when to comes to ex’s, and I like to keep it that way. But it is difficult to stop going places you like to go because you don’t want to run into her making out with some guy who is richer and better looking than you. Eventually, you both grow up and accept the fact that you are going to have to share your city's drinking establishments, but in meantime it becomes a difficult social probation. Until then, perhaps the party just has to get put on hold.