Saturday, August 22, 2009


TRUE-ISH STORY: The time, 1:42am (March 18th, 1991). The place, Genes Bar – Panama City, Florida. My friend and I were down for Spring Break. Interesting fact, 2 days before we actually got caught in a blizzard in Atlanta on the drive down. They even called out the National Guard to help get the snow covered cars off the highway. We were trapped for 2 hours. But I digress; my friend and I are 3 or 86 sheets to the wind at this point. Now, it’s just us, at the bar. Our other friends were at some club. Anyway, we get to talking and one thing leads to another, and a trivial disagreement occurs. Not sure what it was about – a movie line, a sports stat, who knows. Now if a fact discrepancy breaks out today, the solution is simple. Get out the iPhone, surf google, done! Of course in our case, neither were invented yet. So we had the next best thing (in those days), the bartender. We locked in our personal bets, then asked him. Turns out, I was right. The prize – I got to treat my friend to the worst shot on the planet. So I asked the bartender for one Prairie Fire (tequila and tabasco sauce). The bartender smiled, and kindly corrected me as to what truly is the worst shot on the planet.

“THE WANGO TANGO!” he said.

He went on to explain that this shot is simply taking the sopping, wet bar rag (at the end of the night) and emptying it into a shot glass. No money usually exchanges hands for this drink. It’s on the house. So I looked back at my friend, (who pretty much was semi-passed out) and instead of giving him a much deserved water and aspirin, I ordered one up. The bartender went for the rag and proceeded to ring it out in a glass. At this point my friend was face down on the bar, so he was clueless to the event that was transpiring in front of my eyes. Though just as the bartender pushes the glass to his lifeless head, my buddy surprisingly screams,

“It’s not an official shot if it costs nothin’!”

Not caring how he saw any of it, I handed the bartender a fiver, which he gave right back to me. That seemed to quell my friend’s protests, ‘cause he lifted his head and downed the glass.

“Salty. “ he said.

Then he was out for the count. At least ‘til I woke him up after I finished my potato skins while watching American Gladiators on the tube.

Now, some will argue that the bartender was wrong. The infamous drink was in fact a PIECE OF SH—T or a DIRTY RAG. But to me, (on that cold night) she’ll always be a Wango Tango.

FYI…he threw up as soon as we got back to the room. Twice.

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