Getting a Drink in Winston-Salem

Getting a Drink in Winston-Salem

Things I could find in Winston-Salem, North Carolina:

Chuck E. Cheese

Scrub Wagon (a place to buy discount medical scrubs, of course)

Things I could not find in Winston-Salem:

Liquor stores

I did a stand-up show in Winston-Salem this week, and it was fun. People were nice, and the people I worked with were cool. All I needed to complete the nice, 2 night trip was a bottle of rum. Didn’t need to be big…just needed to exist. Somewhere.

I stopped at a Rite-Aid, as pharmacies sometimes have liquor, maybe? They had beer, no liquor. I asked the guy at the counter where the nearest liquor store might be.

Guy: I don’t know. Sorry.

Me: Okay. How about, any liquor store. Farthest away, I don’t care.

Guy: I don’t know sir.

Me: Have you ever been to a liquor store?

Guy: Yes.

Me: Where was it?

A Shrug.

Me: I’m not a cop.

Still nothing. So, maybe this guy hates me. Or, he just can’t remember locations. Possible, though if so, I’m doubly impressed that he managed to locate his workplace, not to mention his work uniform.

I figure he’s just not giving me 100%, so fine, I’ll go find liquor on my own. I’m by myself in Winston-Salem for two nights – not having liquor is really not an option I’m ready to deal with.

I stop at the grocery store. It was even dubbed as “Your Friendly Local Grocery Store.” Nice! Friendly? Sounds like this place knows how to get a buzz on. I see a whole wall of beer…good sign!

The aisle next to it…an aisle full of wine! Okay, now we’re getting somewhere! And the last quarter of the aisle is actually labeled mixers! So the grocery store is aware that “mixers” are called that because they are “mixed” with something to make them even happier, and I can only presume that we’ll find the other ingredients around the corner. I happily turn the corner to find…

Frozen dinners. Ice cream. No liquor.

It’s almost as if liquor was abolished yesterday, and they just haven’t gotten around to getting rid of the Margarita mix, bloody Mary mix, and large amounts of tonic water in the now useless mixer aisle. Maybe:

Rum : Winston-Salem :: Will Smith : NYC (in I Am Legend)

My last stab, a Google texting of “Liquor Store Winston-Salem” turned up a nearby store called “Total Wine,” and, then in smaller, sneaky print off to the side, “& More!”

I really thought I had something with the “& More!” The fact that it was vague, in that it wasn’t saying what else was involved, and the fact that it was kind of apart from the main title, made me think, “Okay…maybe this store is going to help me pull one over on Winston-Salem. Maybe they know the town is down on liquor, and so this is their little wink to people who want to buzz, but don’t like having to open more than one bottle to do so.

Turns out, in Winston Salem, “& More!” really means, “& bendy straws.” Fun, but a different kind of fun.

Nonetheless, the locals were lovely, and turns out, in bars, the ones I talked to bought nothing but Jagerbombs. At least that was the case at the Wild Wing Cafe, and Tee Time. They bought me enough so that, at 3 a.m., on the third floor of the La Quinta Inn, I thought it would be a good idea to take the one meximelt that I didn’t finish from Taco Bell earlier, and throw it out my window, while lying on my bed.

God bless the folks at Tee Time.