I was on a bike at the gym and decided to kill two birds with one stone by getting my sexy AND my smart on simultaneously while scrolling through NPR podcasts. I came across an interesting review of the book “America Walks Into A Bar: A Spirited History of Taverns and Saloons, Speakeasies and Grog Shops.”
Author Christine Sismondo paints a rich history of how drinking establishments have shaped our countries personality as a populace and given us a place to exercise expression and find definition as a society. The book examines the evolution of America through Alehouses, Barrooms, Beer Gardens, Pubs, Cocktail Lounges and the like, and pin points major movements that were inspired, conceived, organized and planned in a bar; the assassination of Abe Lincoln being one of them.
Sismondo takes us on a journey and brings an interesting perspective to our modern drinking habits by drawing comparison to our antiquities, “Since its early beginnings as a humble one-room tavern with a simple wood bench for visitors, the bar served as an extension of the town hall – an American innovation and its earliest great contribution to democracy- At times, it was the town hall”…”It may be hard imagining bars as serving the same critical function in this age, when we frequent them to enjoy relatively bourgeois pursuits – sampling haute-cocktail creations at the spate of New York bars like Milk and Honey, Angel’s Share, PDT and Death & Co.. It’s tasty and fun and can’t help but seem a little frivolous compared with the Sons of Liberty meetings, Democratic-Republican insurrections, Anarchist bomb plots, labor movements, feminist sit-ins and the events leading up to Stonewall, the cornerstone for the gay revolution.”
Buy America Walks Into A Bar HERE