How to bag the bar badger

Finally, it’s the hap-happiest season of all. Football season. And you thought I was going to start singing Jingle Bells off-key. Indeed, the start of the football season shares many similarities with the festive, joyful

Finally, it’s the hap-happiest season of all. Football season. And you thought I was going to start singing Jingle Bells off-key.

Indeed, the start of the football season shares many similarities with the festive, joyful pre-Christmas period. The air is getting cooler, people are consistently drunker, and every corner is decked with green and white. Citizens of the city of Philadelphia band together in an otherwise less-than-predominant camaraderie. The football season even has its own carol. Kindergarteners can spell E-A-G-L-E-S before they learn to write their names.

And, as a rule, the self-proclaimed “die-hard Eagles fans,” shed their Phillies’ caps for McNabb jerseys and flock to the Link, to their buddies’ houses, and to the hole-in-the-wall corner bars prepped for hoagies, cold beer and the promise of a three-years-in-coming Superbowl title.

Alas, I too joined the herd Sunday night and found myself drinking Blue Moon with my best friend in front of a Center City plasma screen. It was a pretty good time.

So, you’re wondering, when do we get to the sex part? Sports are good and all, but there’s a whole other section for that. I agree. The true fiasco began post-victory. Without the tackling, rough-housing and repeat pummeling to defer their attention, the bar-goers turned their attention on each other. In our case, we were targeted by a group of guys that were as determined to buy us a drink as they were intoxicated. Apparently, pick-up lines aren’t in style anymore. Instead, my would-be Prince Charming opens up with “What are you drinking?” and without waiting for the answer, “Get this girl a Coors Light…are they the ones on special?”

Dealing with a drunken man on a mission is kind of like trying to explain to a toddler why he can’t have another cookie – logic, reason and plain courtesy aren’t on the roster. So, after trying “No thank you, I have a drink already,” and “that’s really nice, but I’m not interested,” I realize I’m going to have to utilize different tactics.

“You don’t want another drink? Bartender! Forget that Coors Light, she wants some nachos. Everybody loves nachos.”

At this point I’m wondering how other people deal with this situation, and simultaneously cursing my best friend for having dragged me out in the first place.

So, I have decided to save the world yet again from the depths of drunken despair by preparing a list of creative ways to escape from bar badgerers. I don’t want to pigeonhole. We’ve all seen the overconfident, underdressed lady barflies whose soul purpose at night is to run up your tab by getting you to buy them drinks. I tried to keep this unisex, so adjust according to your situation.

1.) Carry ointment for something embarrassing in your purse/back pocket and make sure to have it appear at the appropriate time. This could include anything from Benadryl (follow up with “I’m trying to get rid of this pesky rash all over my thighs”) to wart crème to Herpacin. If you’re uncomfortable having something with that much humiliation potential on your person, you could also try nasal spray, tampons, Q-tips or dental floss. These are easy to dispose of and do the trick almost as well. No one wants to see your earwax close up or to have you flossing in their face.

2.) There are now chewing gums and candies in unappealing garlic, farts and fish flavors. They are easy to find on any practical joke Web site or at special items stores in the mall like Spencer Gifts and Hot Topic. While obviously meant for playing tricks on your friends (and enemies), you could easily use them to your advantage. Just make sure you’ve got a good supply of mints and normal chewing gum as a remedy.

3.) Talk incessantly in a valley girl voice without letting him get a word in edgewise. Make sure your topics are as meaningless as possible (garb about your best friend and her dating woes or how you can’t keep track of how many guys you’re dating). If you’re male, drone on about how devastated you are about an old girlfriend and how she won’t call you back even though you call at least eight times a day leaving messages on her machine. Sexist remarks about how things didn’t work out with your ex because she wouldn’t cook you dinner and clean the house as well as your mom did are never popular, either. Generally, talking non-stop about an ex ruins the dating environment.

4.) Tell her you’re allergic to alcohol. Then list off about 800 other things you’re allergic to (cheese, nuts, eggs, corn syrup, etc.).

5.) Pick your nose without letting it interrupt your discussion. The more you dig, the better. This goes for your ears and scratching yourself as well.

6.) Chew with your mouth wide open and slurp and smack obnoxiously.

7.) Tell her she looks just like your sister except way fatter.

8.) Tell him he reminds you of your dad except without the gun.

9.) Feign narcolepsy.

10.) Develop a loud, chirping hyena laugh and use it as much as possible. Add snorts and hocking as necessary.

11.) Carry a list of the kids you don’t have in your wallet. Make sure there are at least three, and that they could pass as your offspring. Ask if he/she wants to see them. End with “Yeah, she’s almost three, so I guess it’s about time I look for a new husband/wife. I miss changing diapers.”

If all else fails, at least order something expensive.

Nadia Stadnycki can be reached at

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