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The Things They Carried, Tim O'Brien
Whiskey Soda Lounge
“Even then, at nine years old, I wanted to live inside her body. I wanted to melt into her bones—THAT kind of love.”
This collection of short stories roughly based on O'Brien's experience in the Vietnam War is not only a quietly powerful reflection on what it is we ask young men (and women) to do when they go to war, but also, is a fascinatingly meta examination of the liminal area between truth and stories. Reading about all these ruined lives in a bar with food and drink inspired by owner Andy Ricker's travels to southeast Asia (Thailand, primarily, but also Vietnam) is a poignant reminder of how much things can change in the span of a few decades. While you think about all that, drink a lot. The alcohol will help you hold back your tears. Or maybe they'll flow even more freely? Either way, it's mandatory that you get drunk while reading this book.
What to drink: Have a couple of Saigon beers before switching over to the Southside, which is a refreshing blend of gin, mint syrup and lemon juice
115 Columbia Street, Columbia Waterfront District