A drinking buddy can be a therapist

Sometimes bars can be a lace for friends to get together, break the ice and celebrate the best of times. However, it can also be a place to have deep conversations with people you hardly know.

This recently happened when I went to the Elk to meet my friend Kara for drinks. I had known Kara for a little over a year. We had classes together, she had written under me for the Eagle Life section and we had come out of difficult relationships, some thing I would learn later in the evening.

What was supposed to be one beer turned into two, which turned into two, which then turned into five beers and dinner. What had started as casual conversation about what had gotten us into journalism and where our futures were heading, turned us making fun of the group of men ordering their first round of Guinness.

As the men grew louder, the conversation shifted to Kara asking about my recent troubles with a lady. After I had spilled my guts – but thankfully not my glass of Mack and Jack’s – she shared her past troubles with relationships and gave me advice. Although Kara was not a therapist and did not charge me by the hour – thank God – it was therapeutic to have someone to talk to about my problems.

While you do not necessarily have to have beer to have a deep conversation with a friend, sharing a six-pack with them can help smoothen the mood and the atmosphere. Beer also has a way of bringing someone’s guard down, which could result in them getting their problem off of their chest.

A bar also may seem like an unusual place for friends to have a deep conversation because of the many people, but if a bar is full of occupants, there is a less of a chance for anyone other than the bartender to hear any conversations happening. Even if other patrons were eavesdropping on a conversation, they may also have suffered through the same hardships and have advice of their own.

This happened when I met Katie, who is the girlfriend of Kara’s brother. After Kara had gone to take a break, Katie asked me about my girl troubles. After singing the same sad song that I had to Kara, Katie gave me some sound advice.

After spending four hours at the Elk, I left my new friends, but not before making them laugh by signing my check “A Lannister always pays his debts.”

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About Al Stover

I graduated from Eastern Washington University with a bachelor's degree in journalism. I currently work as a Staff Reporter for the Cheney Free Press. I have interviewed characters like cage fighters, drag queens and dungeon masters. I like Batman, coffee, MMA and beer.

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