Ganjani: My kind of townies

Adam Ganjani

I’m sure you’ve seen them before. They’re noticeably older and usually have grotesque facial hair. They may sport greasy, long hairstyles that would make professional wrestlers proud or trucker hats that are more a factor of function than fashion. Some have accents that can only be described as “country” and others don’t speak English at all. They are the sketchy townies at your favorite Northwestern bar.

Some would argue they have the right to be at The Keg, The Deuce, Hundo or any other establishment frequented by NU students. Although this may be true, no one can argue that avoiding or tolerating such patrons is an easy task. However, with the help of this column, and some old-fashioned common sense, even the most na’ve NU student can prevent an unfortunate encounter with a weird, old (and likely smelly) townie that obviously lives nowhere near campus.

Townies can appear to be honest folk, only looking to have a good time. Exhibit A: last spring, I spotted one at The Keg wearing military fatigues and boots. “Perfect,” I thought, “an opportunity to give back to one of our nation’s brave soldiers.” A friend and I approached him, and he told us that he had just returned from Iraq. I bought him a beer and then took a closer look: at his fatigues. The camouflage had dragons on it. And he was wearing Timberlands and jeans. When he couldn’t tell me where he served in Iraq, his fraudulent claim was exposed. The lesson: Only talk to townies in case of emergency (and maybe not even then). Also, if you’re intent on honoring the troops, ask to see military ID.

When getting a drink from the bar, order, pay, and leave. Sitting at the bar makes you a prime target for townie interaction and should be avoided at all costs. If you absolutely must be at the bar, try to sit near the middle. Townies almost always congregate at the ends. Townies, for identification purposes, will almost never be drinking what you’re drinking. If you’re at The Keg, any male not holding a big-cup should send chills down your spine. Townies sitting at the bar will always be either watching TV or hitting on bar staff. And no college student has ever played an arcade game at a bar.

This doesn’t pertain to townies, but the guy who serves pizza at the Deuce is a creep.

If you’re dancing at The Keg and there is a ring of floor space around a few older guys, they’re townies.

Never play pool. Ever.

Beware of female townies. If you’re going to buy a drink for a lady, you should probably choose a person who is not: middle-aged, sitting alone, and wearing a thick, leather jacket indoors.

Keep in mind that townies at college bars are lame and most likely dim-witted. If you stay on your toes and don’t get too wasted, you will almost certainly be able to avoid them. And hey, if worse comes to worse, there will always be a homeless guy outside to hail a cab for you.