Friday, August 6, 2010

Elrod's Fine Liquors

We discovered the very last liquor store we can go to before crossing over into dry country on the way home from Paducah a couple months ago.  We knew from the very instant we walked in, that this was a special liquor store.  Our first hint was the man behind the counter.  Long, brown mullet.  A lit, Marlboro Red hanging from the left side of his mouth.  A tattered, old flannel vest hanging open, no shirt underneath leaving his rotund beer belly exposed.  In his hands, a wooden bat.  As Howard and I approached the Bud Light cooler, I whisperered, "Where are we?"  His response?  "Kentucky".

When we got to the counter Howard asked what the bat was for.  The guy, let's call him Elrod, said he had just chased two thieving punks out.  Howard then asked to use the bathroom.  Elrod says, "Sure.  You're in luck, it's not in use right now."  And then points over his shoulder out the window towards a clump of trees and bushes. 

Howard coming back from the "bathroom".

Since then, we've been in a few more times.  Each time we get a little more comfortable.  After looking over his weapon collection behind the bar, Howard asked him where his shotgun was.  Elrod didn't waste any time explaining to us that the police took it when he was arrested back in October and charged with a felony.  His court date is in late August and he has to sell the liquor store before then or it will be taken from him as it is illegal to own and operate a liquor store with a felony on your record.  We haven't asked what he was arrested for yet.  Maybe next time.

He has several signs hanging around the store.  Most are handmade and warn of the dangers of stealing.  This one is my favorite:

He obviously has no dogs on the premises.  And that electric sign?  It says "Y'all Come Back".  Except he doesn't spell come that way.  Let's just say it's a little more explicit.  Needless to say, I'm going to be very sad when this fine establishment closes down or trades ownership.

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