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Collateral Damage 

Cocktailing with The Blacksmith's Columbine Quillen.

There are few ways that you can attempt not to pay for your drinks. While the bartender has your attention, you can break your neighbor's highball so that she has to clean up ice cubes, slivers of glass, and spilled whiskey and seven. And while her head is turned, you can play Houdini and disappear. Or you can give her a bunk credit card to open a tab. Or you can wad up your money up so tight that it takes so much time to unfold it that when she is aware she has been shorted, you have gone awol. But if that she is me, I will find you and make you pay, Nothing makes me madder than someone trying to pull the wool over my eyes. I have pursued unpaid bar tabs to other bars, I have filed charges against people with stolen or fraudulent credit cards, and I have even hunted down two grown men to find them huddled blocks away in their tiny barren apartment to make them pay me for two Irish Car Bombs.

Delusion doesn't count as a defense. This past Friday a gentleman's debit card didn't run, so I held his wallet while he went scouring for cash. Returning with no money, he claimed that while he was at the bank someone there had told him that his charge had already gone through, so he would just take his things and be on his merry way. I am still not sure if he talked to his reflection in the ATM machine or screamed through the glass to the poor janitor vacuuming at 2 a.m. But let's just say, a lot of places have gone 24 hours - but excluding the ATM the bank has not. Needless to say, he left some collateral.

Collateral Damage

2 ounces of Seagram's 7

4 ounces of 7-up

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