It’s loud. Pushing through the waves of people seems like a chore. But there’s a goal. A tangible objective. It’s that machine in the corner!
Some much beloved friends invited me to a bar with an arcade. A “barcade” if you please. And unlike my last bar trip (which you can read here) it was a legitimate establishment.
If you have a craving for some incredibly retro games, this is the place for you. If you wanted a place to meet people with mutual interests outside of drinking, go here. If you just needed a moment to get your bearings and that meant rolling a ball up a ramp and into a hole — you get the point.
Every. Last. Quarter.
I am an indulgent person. Treating myself is one of my hobbies. And really when I discovered all the ways I could do that (oh my goodness – food) I may have went a little overboard.
At this moment I may be eating a pan of lemon bars I made last night.
Video games are potent. Hardly anything compares to the elation of discovering a new city that defies conventional physics or unfolding an intricate plot in a story-driven RPG. It really shakes up my brain.
On the few rare trips my brother and I took to the arcade I’d be obliged to spend every last bit of allowance I had. My poison? Gun games. My brother and I would hit up House of the Dead and Time Crisis machines religiously. We played so many our parents actually bought us an Area 51 game for our Playstation!
We moved away and stopped visiting as frequently. The tiny brush ups that we had with arcade games were limited to a handful of machines at restaurants or stores.
What good times. One of my most favorite accomplishments was a 2nd rank Co-op score my brother and I got at a Time Crisis machine.
After Saturday night not much has changed. Two of us pre-gamed to cut down on our alcohol costs and shared a pool of change to tackle some games with. I spent nearly every quarter I had except $3 worth because – well, I have more responsibilities now! Between the four of us we must’ve spent maybe… $20-$25! On games alone. That’s a lot of quarters.
It went mostly to this machine:
Worth it though, am I right? We even got 1st place!
For Adults Only
This is, of course, a bar. A real bar that serves beer and liquor! To kickstart our night it was the Cinnamon Toast Crunch shot. A crazy mixture of Fireball + ??? + Rumchata. From the kindness of my friend, he asked the bartender to sub it out for something not creamy because I’m a) lactose intolerant and b) I’m vegan. Mine got extra doses of Fireball and did that get my heart pumping.
Later on, I learned that the idea was actually from the sign next to us, and not my friend’s knowledge of drinks.
Another cute idea? Remember winning tickets for prize exchanges? While my favorite games didn’t spit out tickets, we’d still play a couple every now and then. We’d play the Tornado game with our mom and skee-ball.
Apparently… you can earn drinks here too! We actually didn’t test that out but were so tickled by the idea. It beats cheap plastic toys (except that frogs) and candies. It’s so… awesome.
Ah. Sometimes when you walk into a bar, they have a bouncer waiting at the door with a stamp in hand. Just a quick little system. After checking our IDs, we were cleared to go.
I went to the bathroom and just wanted to make sure that the door with Princess Peach was actually the Ladies’ Restroom. As soon as I approached the bouncer to ask, a girl walked in and nonchalantly strolled past him. He, being a good bouncer, stopped her and asked to see her ID.
She said, “My ID is on my phone which I left in here.” Cue some incredulous looks.
“Do you have a stamp?”
“No, I got in when the other guy was at the door.” After admitting she didn’t have a stamp there was even more suspicion. He probably stopped her because I heard her throw a fit: “I’m 26 years old!” It was then I turned on my heel and went for the Princess Peach door. It was better than standing there awkwardly.
Perhaps because I grew up around military bases and went to school on them, I was completely used to the idea of always carrying my ID around. It’s hard not to! Unless you had someone sign you on you weren’t allowed to be on base.
“I Don’t Like to Dance”
Upstairs was another bar owned by the same person. In fact, there’s a way for the bartenders to go between places.
While I am not particularly fond of dancing (it makes me witlessly scared) I have many friends who are. So that my friends may dance without worry, I always offer to babysit all our items. I like listening to music anyway. ; )
Towards the end of our stay, this guy sitting near me tried to start up a conversation. Which would have been fine if we could hear each other and I was interested. Being nice I decided to hear him out which boiled down to asking if I had a drink and wanting to know if I wanted to “sober dance” with him. I politely said, “I don’t like to dance” and stopped looking in his general direction.
It makes me feel awkward. Being asked to dance by people I don’t know who think they are doing me a favor.
I hardly dance with my boyfriend in the comfort of our own home (sorry Sam!).
I feel so vulnerable. While my self-esteem is a lot better, I lack a lot of body confidence. My fear of also being made fun of and making a fool of myself creep up into my head. And sometimes that leads to depression because dancing can be fun. When I sit down and think about it: my fear is preventing me from doing things that I want.
It’s been something that I’ve been working on.
Overall, I really enjoyed the night. Playing games with friends, listening to some all right music and just jovially strolling down town streets is fun. Even being dragged out to the floor wielding bags and jackets galore was mildly fun as my friends tried to get me to dance with them.
Was there ever a time that you stopped yourself from doing something out of fear? How did that make you feel?
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