Strange events warrant recounting.
As you know, the Czar can sometimes be found at the Leaping Peacock, enjoying a sporting event of choice on their 20-inch color television, as well as a beverage or dozen. Sometimes, the Czar travels to foreign ports of call, and must therefore use a different liquor procurement franchise.
Late yesterday, the Czar found himself in a hamlet outside Canton, Ohio. In the evening light, he spotted a fairly clean and tidy spot that sold beverages, in an area fairly populated enough to convey a sense of relative safety.
As the Czar approached the place, he found his way blocked by a nun (full habit and everything; the Czar is unable to distinguish nuns by order except for one or two distinctive attireshe has no idea to which order this nun belonged.) Do not go in there, she admonished us, For it is an evil place that sells alcohol.
Yes, the Czar replied, We know. And this is what we require.
But alcohol is the Devils libation. It produces nothing but evil thoughts, evil words, and evil deeds. The Czar paraphrases here, but that was the gist of her argument.
Well, how do you know? we bellowed. Have you ever had a drink?
She paused. Good heavens, no.
Then you know nothing, Sister Crone! Remove yourself from our way.
She sighed, and put a hand on her neck. You are right. I really have no idea what Im talking about, do I? I mean, maybe there is no harm in one drink, perhaps.
Indeed not, we agreed. In reality, she fretted a lot about this, but this is largely what she concluded. We are skipping a bit here.
She glanced up and down the street, but few people were even glancing in our direction. She leaned forward and said, Would you say its fair that if I had a drink, but hated it, then I would be right in warning people away from it? And if I had the drink and liked it, I would need to stay quiet?
The Czar agreed, and invited her in as his guest. Her eyes bugged wide. I could never risk being seen going in there! Would it be possible for you to bring me a drink?
The Czar shrugged. Sure. Suppose so. What would you like?
She bit her lower lip. Well, I have heard about a gin and tonic. Is that a good drink for a lady?
The Czar bowed. A gin and tonic is a fine and respectable drink. We shall bring one to you at once.
Again, the nun reeled. Heavens, no! If one of the other sisters should see me, she protested. Could you bring it to me in a styrofoam cup? That way, no one would know what it was.
The Czar did a half-shrug. Errr…sure. A gin and tonic in a styrofoam cup.
And so the Czar accepted her nervous thanks and went inside. He pounded his fist on the bar, causing items nearby to bounce sharply. Service! we screamed.
A bartender hurried over. Yes, your dreadful awfulness?
We require a whiskey sour and milk for ourself. And, perhaps an unusual request to be sure, the Czar also requires a gin and tonic over ice, served in a styrofoam cup with a lid.
The bartender shot a glance at the door. Is that goddamned nun out there again?
She was of course gone by the time the Czar hurried back out. And so it seemed worth recounting.