Okay, last Sunday I had a problem. Last Sunday was St. Patrick’s Day and that was the problem. I fucking hate St. Patrick’s Day. I have nothing against the Irish or Ireland, but I hate parades, I hate the color green, I hate crowds, I really hate crowds that are made up of jerkoffs that have been drinking green beer since seven in the morning and they can’t hold their liquor, I hate corned beef and cabbage and I’m not that big of a fan of shillelagh’s. I thought about going to Jerry’s Bar, where I escaped Stupor Bowl Sunday, but my parents are out of town, and it’s no fun without them. And then three words popped into my head: Friendly Valley Tap. I’ve been meaning to stop in there since I started this blog, but they close early a lot of Sunday nights. I made a call and asked if they did anything special on St. Patrick’s day and the woman on the phone said: “Honey, we’re old in here, there won’t be any of that shit going on in here.” Good answer! I think we may have found an annual MBIP St. Patrick’s Day hangout, let’s make like Ironside and roll!
As always, since I'm traveling alone, I'm using Elite Taxi to shuttle me to and from the bar. No D.U.I. for me and Elite Taxi is the best taxi service in Peoria! And I'm not being paid to say that, just a satisfied customer.
I told you they're good, here we are already! It's been about thirty years since I've had a drink in this place. The last time I was in here it was the early '80's and I was high as a kite on acid with some friends and we got chased out of the place for being too nutty in here. I'm hoping no one in here remembers that night in here tonight.
Wow, it hasn't changed a bit from the infamous night we got thrown out of here. It's light outside, but inside the Valley it's permanent midnight. Perfect!
This is a classic Peoria dive bar and it's been here forever. And there's no St. Paddy's Day tomfoolery going on, everyone's just enjoying their drinks. I made the right choice and we will definitely be celebrating St. Pat's day here next year. A new MBIP tradition!
Here's a shot from the end of the bar, as you can see, it's close quarters in here.
The pool table is all wrapped up with pillows on top, maybe someone's spending the night in here.
Scott wanted to show me a couple of pictures hanging on the door of the women's bathroom.
Well now, that's just nuts!
Uh oh, looks like someone's been eating too much fiber!
The new-fangled jukebox feels out of place in here, but the four hour off Budweiser clock kind of makes up for it.
One lone table sits opposite the bar underneath the windows.
Outside the sun is setting. Somewhere in this town, someone painted green is shouting: "Woo hoo," but here in the Valley all is fine and everyone is just quietly enjoying their drinks at the well-worn bar.
"Ma" Wright, one of the owners of this fine establishment posed for a photo on her way out the door.
A long shot of the wooden bar that's served thousands of drinkers well.
They put out a little spread here for St. Paddy's day, let's see what's cooking.
The cheese and cracker plate appears to have been a popular item as there's only a quarter of the plate left.
Oh, Danny Boy, it looks like they've got an Irish stew brewing in here.
I decided to pass on the food and took a seat back at the bar.
Truby's working the register...
And here's Skully and Larry decked out in their St. Pat's gear posing for the MBIP camera. Both of these guys worked at Multi-Ad where my magazine POP was printed. They remembered working on the magazine. Multi-Ad sold the print division a few years ago and sadly their jobs went along with it. Boy do I know that feeling. Happily, these guys scored jobs at other places in town.
Okay, night has fallen and after many beers at the Friendly Valley Tap, it's time to head on home.
On the way home, I realized I forgot to order the double gin and tonic to see if they had swizzle sticks at Friendly Valley! Oh well, it's a good excuse to go back.
Okay, we're home and here's Kirk, the captain of Elite Taxi wishing you all a good night. See you alls tomorrows.