Happy Hour In The Heptarchy: Boat Drinks and Fish Sandwiches

by J.R.

It’s five past 5 across Conference III (leave work early, Colorado — you have our permission), time to hit bricks and get that freakin’ weekend started, am I right?

Of course I am.

It’s been a tough week for some of you so loosen your belt, pop a top, grab a spoon and stop being such a sourpuss. III Communication’s got good news for everybody.

The Particulars

2hemingwayWhat We’re Drinking: We’re going to be on the high side of 80 for the second day in a row in Nashville and there’s a vague 40 percent chance of rain all day, which means summer’s here. The arrival of summer means hilarious prognostications about “what kind of summer” we’ll have. While we are all generally happy that our hometown is being recognized for its It-ness, it’s hard to shake our country ways, so even at our city’s now-lauded restaurants and too-cool bars, you’ll catch snippets of conversations that including pronouncements like “Well, there were three days of frost after Ash Wednesday, so we’ll probably have a hot July” and “It may be a cool June because the skeeter-eaters are trying to come through my screen door.” There are kernels of truth in every one of these predictions, so long as they include “The heat between July 15 and August 15 will cause small animals to turn into self-cooking bits of sprinting charcoal.” And the humidity? If it’s true that the number of fogs in August equal the number of winter snows, it’s miraculous Nashville isn’t confused with Winnipeg every year.

Anyway, it’s hot, so it’s time to head down to our favorite floating restaurant and order a boat drink. Nothing about a margarita or a daiquiri or a mojito assaults my masculinity, as Ernest Hemingway was a fan of all three. And lord knows I could learn some things from him — like how to write a sentence of fewer than 75 words.

What We’re Eating: Floating restaurants are fantastic. They are eternal monuments to the era in which they were born, because grouper-sandwiches-oh-1895934-lit’s pretty damn hard to renovate a restaurant that sits on the water. I grew up in a town dominated by a Corps of Engineers lake and there were two most of my life. Creekwood was built in the 1960s and looked the part — it favored a barn that was stuck on the water, never quite able to shake the kitsch of Hendersonville of that era, a time when it was the Home of the Stars. The other was built in the late 1990s and had a reasonable run of popularity among my cohort as we became of legal age. It’s a different kind of nostalgia, in that it’s nostalgia for a time I actually remember. These days, we go to west Nashville’s Blue Moon Grille, in the Rock Harbor Marina, an actual flooded quarry. Fish sandwiches — proper ones on good bread with fresh vegetables — are a weakness of mine and theirs is served on pretzel bread. Can’t beat it.

Reasons to Celebrate

Tractor_003Chicago: Congratulations to Coach Q for joining the epic Jack Adams/Hilarious Facial Hair battle, even while dissing that nice Stalberg fellow. And good on the ‘Hawks for their Game One win in the Great Dha Weles To Detroit. And if you’re ever down in Loraine, ask Randy Wilcox what it’s like to have incredible luck.

Your Weekend Jam:Sit And Sink” by The Graduate, from right there by Loraine in Quincy.

dmvColorado: Your team is really lighting up the World Championships, which we should have seen coming: if there’s one thing Joe Sacco knows, it’s how to get the most from borderline guys in a meaningless competition against subpar opponents. And while it may seem like bad news that the DMV is experiencing delays from computer issues, it also feels a little bit like karma, doesn’t it?

Your Weekend Jam: Flagpole Sitta” by Harvey Danger, for Friend of the III Anthrax Jones.

one_ping_onlyDallas: Your affiliate flamed out in the playoffs and like Colorado, you need a coach. Two bits of good news: Toronto’s collapse means you’re a little closer to grabbing the Bruins first-rounder and (and this is amazing), plans are in the works for an $80 million maritime museum built around the decommissioned USS Dallas from Hunt For Red October (if you have questions about how sonar works, J.R. is uniquely qualified to answer them and rage at how easy the movie makes it look — inquiries to conferencethree[at]gmail[dot]com).

Your Weekend Jam:Little Black Submarines” by The Black Keys, filmed in infamous Nashville dive Springwater.

vincent_kartheiserMinnesota: You aren’t getting a new coach, because even that level of nihilism won’t erase the sads. Josh Harding is a finalist for the Masterton he should every year he straps on skates. And Vincent Kartheiser — Mad Men‘s Pete Campbell — will play Mr. Darcy (making his second III Communication appearance) at the Guthrie Theater.

Your Weekend Jam: “Vincent Van Gogh” by Jonathan Richman & The Modern Lovers

kane-at-raw-house-show-2011pngNashville: Your spanking new convention center is open — and that news could be good or bad. The city may make it pricier to be a parent to a puppy. The good news is that any problems the state of Tennessee — lo, indeed, our nation — will be solved if you send Kane to the Senate.

Your Weekend Jam:Twist of Cain” by Danzig.

bf5f640dce5edf2fb49efbc81a2160942061098187St. Louis: Your legendary Yapps have fallen silent, St. Louis. Ken Hitchcock is back to scoping for good deals on Sansabelt slacks. But Missouri State has chosen to honor your state’s greatest citizen.

Your Weekend Jam: “Orange Blossom Special” by St Louis’ John Hartford & Salem, Mo.’s own The Dillards.

sam-katz-leah-pasutaWinnipeg: Your mayor is engaged in some shenanigans, but there’s no alleged video of your mayor allegedly smoking crack, so good for you! And it looks like the province’s booze laws aren’t going to be so arcane and anachronistic.

Your Weekend Jam: “…Sam Katz” by The Consumer Goods.

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