Drinking with Men: A Memoir by Rosie Schaap
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I've been a lover of bars for many years, so I went into this book suspecting I'd like it. I bought it after hearing Rosie Schaap interviewed on NPR's Morning Edition, where she'd read a segment that hooked me. Something in her tone sounded familiar, and I knew I had to read her memoir.
If you've ever been a regular at a bar -- and in my twenties and thirties I was -- you will recognize yourself in this book. As it turned out, Rosie writes about a couple of places I frequented in New York, so that I found myself scanning my memory, wondering if I'd ever met her. I was a regular at Puffy's Tavern, a TriBeCa bar that figures prominently in the book, where my fellow teachers and I wound down each Friday during "F Slot," as we called it. (The final period of our school day was E Slot back then.) This was in the mid-to-late 1990's, precisely when she drank there. I recognized her descriptions of certain regulars, and half-expected her to describe the rowdy group of high school teachers from the alternative high school a few blocks away on Chambers Street.
She never did make that mention, but I wonder. Surely we must have crossed paths -- if not at Puffy's, then perhaps at Milano's? Or Tom and Jerry's? Whether we ever did meet or not, after reading her book, I felt like we had.
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