Your First Bar Experience: Expectations Vs. Reality

Your First Bar Experience: Expectations Vs. Reality

Bars suck.
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Last Sunday, I turned 21. I'd been dreaming of this coveted day. Gone are the days of texting that one 21-year-old I know for a cheap bottle of Moscato from the gas station down the street. Sunday night was spent with my favorite people; we were drinking mimosas and stuffing our faces. Then, the moment I'd been waiting for arrived: my first bar experience. I flashed my I.D. confidently to the bouncer and walked in with my best ladies right behind me. I was finally here in this land I'd seen in countless movies, where college dreams are made. And then, after an hour or so, I came to the realization: Bars suck. Here is my take on each aspect of the bar experience:

The Bar Itself

Expectation: crystal clear glass shelves lined with the finest alcohol, exposed brick walls and copper accents.

Reality: a bit more like the inside of Paddy's Pub. The dark dance floor pairs nicely with the bright neon beer signs and masks the alcohol glaze on the floor.

The Bartender

Expectation: tricks, style, pizazz. That's what the movies show, and they can't be wrong, right?

Reality: fun, but usually sloppy and most likely drunk themselves. And if it's a female bartender, you are S.O.L. if you happen to have lady parts.

The Drinks

Expectation: glorious colorful drunks in oversized containers that don't resemble cups.

Reality: pretty, grown up drinks are $10 a glass, so you go for the tried and true PBR.

The Crowd

Expectation: a room full of Ryan Goslings to sweep you off of your feet.

Reality: a sea of drunken frat boys donning their best Vineyard Vines sweaters and church khakis telling you that you look "super hawt right noww."

The Dancing

Expectation: not as intense as what you see in Dirty Dancing, but you at least expect everyone to be on their A-game.

Reality: everyone is blackout-drunk and can barely muster a decent robot or shopping cart.

Needless to say, bars defied my expectations. With this being said, I will probably be going back out tonight. After all, if you can't beat 'em, join 'em.

Cover Image Credit: AlquonHotel.com

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it

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Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

Cover Image Credit: wordpress.com

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A Love Letter To My Air Fryer

And why you would love an fryer too...

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In a previous article, I wrote about how love to use Trello.com for organizing things. I'm still loving Trello. I've haven't grown bored of it and stopped using it (like I have with some other organizational systems). This time, I'm going to share another item that I love, and it's for one of my favorite things, food! I finally gave in and bought an air fryer, and after my first use, I literally said that it's wonderful! I bought a small air fryer. It only holds about two quarts, but it's perfect for quick lunches.

I thought I'd love the air fryer if it could dry fry food with little to no oil, and it does just that. I'm also in love with the air fryer, because I could simply put the food in it, set the timer and live my life for a few minutes until the food is done. I don't have to stand over it and watch the food cook. That makes the air fryer a winner! Did I mention that it really does work?! Yes, it does work. Now, you could buy foods that are already breaded and throw them in the air fryer, but if you want to go the healthier route, you can use bread crumbs, flour, and eggs to make your own crispy coatings for your foods. Dipping your food in your own homemade batter cuts out some of the salt and added chemicals in the frozen pre-fried foods.

You can also fry foods that do not even need a homemade batter. Without using the batter, I've made sweet potato French fries and burritos in it. The tortilla for the burrito turned out nicely crispy, but I didn't leave it in the air fryer long enough for it to be crunchy. The sweet potato fries came out nice. I've tried making crispy chickpeas with Italian seasoning, but they weren't to my liking. However, I have loved everything else that I've made in the air fryer. Sometimes I just put a quick meal in it, just to re-heat it, since I don't use a microwave. I just think that using the air fryer is healthier than using microwaves, and I love that I don't need to put my food in a special box or anything for it to be really crispy. If you love fried chicken or fried fish, you'd love this little machine as much as I do!

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