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Much Ado About Nothing – North V South

Much Ado About Nothing September 5, 2018

Much Ado by Jean Ciampi

If you listen to the Flat Earth people, you believe, if you go far enough, you can eventually get to the edge of the Earth. At that point you fall off into the Abyss to be eaten by sea monsters. While I’m relatively confident this is not factual, I do know that if you go north any further than about Oklahoma City, things are no longer as they should be.  I believe once you’re out of range of a Whataburger, a Buc-cee’s bathroom, and some way of picking up an Astros’ broadcast, you have left civilization and should turn around immediately. No one should be expected to spend any extended time in a location without a Chick-fil-A. Yet, here I am.

If the absence of sweet tea wasn’t enough of an indication that I had sadly left the South, then realizing that practically every grocery store, daycare, and dentist office sells a complete selection of hard liquor cleared up any doubts. You can spend 20 minutes browsing brands of single malt scotch at the corner gas station. There are more types of tequilas than candy bars! What happened to that “Don’t Drink and Drive” message?

Liquor stores are called Party Stores. I suppose when every store is a liquor store, you have to find a way to set yourself apart. At the party store, along with all the makings for a Long Island Ice Tea and bottles of wine that are more than my monthly mortgage payment, you can also pick up the “Cheese of the Month” which might just happen to be the 2017 Supreme Champion at the World Cheese Awards. We’re not talking Velveeta here. Not at the party store. No, sir. Go back to the Shell station for that.

Party stores have gift ideas like personalized specialty glasses for your favorite Moscow Mule drinker. Every place else just has a local jackass with a red Solo cup. Party stores offer a full deli stocked with imported prosciutto. Other spots have packages of peppered beef jerky. If you ask me, it’s all just a bit of semantics.

Maybe there needs to be a little less focus on alcohol and more attention paid to negotiating a Ninfa’s or Pappasito’s here in the frozen tundra. Michigan may not be the edge of the Earth, but I think you can see it from here.

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