One of my best friends from back in the day was the renowned football player Reggie Garret. Reggie had once played for the Pittsburg Steelers and while with them he was in two Super Bowl Games.
He had two Super Bowl rings to show for his efforts. One with one huge diamond in it and the other one with two. Sometimes when we went out barhopping and catting around, he would wear both massive rings, one on each hand. Needless to say, he was a chick magnet. I always felt lucky to get his overflow.
One night at the Brass Rail we were chatting up a very pretty black chick. After a while, it became pretty obvious she was more into me than into him. He never got over it and whenever the subject came up later, he referred to it as the “baby, baby, baby…” incident. Even years later. We always got a big laugh out of it whenever it came up. Sometimes he would even answer the phone, “Baby, baby, baby,” when he knew it was me on the other line.
On another occasion, we were having a drink at the Frontier Club across the street from the factory where we both worked. It was happy hour. We were drinking with our boss, Jim Smith. Now Jim liked to take his subordinates out to drink and have them pay for it and then we would put it on our expense accounts. That way we all got to drink for free.
Well, this one night at the Frontier Club, we were having drinks up at the bar and a friend of Reggie’s comes over and says, “Is that fat-faced motherfucker your boss?”
Well, Jim’s jaw dropped open, his face got red, and his eyes popped.
Reggie started in to stuttering and I excused myself to the gents. When I got back Reggie’s friend was gone and Reggie was hanging his head in shame. Jim was getting up to leave.
We got a big laugh out of that one too but we never brought it up around Jim again.
We made bottles for the beer industry. Budweiser was just down the road. Whenever we went out, we were expected to drink Budweiser which I couldn’t stand. I preferred Heineken.
“We don’t make bottles for Heineken”, Jim would say, “but Budweiser.”
And I would say, “Fuck that shit! Pabst Blue Ribbon! How can people pour that filthy chemical by-product down their throats and still call it beer?”
That was it! Beer in name only.
Baby, baby, baby. Those were the good old days!