A Boy Walks Out Of A Bar

An antidote to hopelessness.

Brian Brewington
3 min readMar 4, 2022


Photo by QUI NGUYEN on Unsplash

Most of what I write these days isn’t that easy for the people closest to me or who care about me the most to read. This is because folks like your parents don’t want to necessarily read about the lowest points of your life, your greatest failures, or the darkest periods you’ve endured.

But I write about them, not out of choice, but instead a necessity.

I have to write about them like others have to go to meetings, get their hand up, and talk about them. This is how I talk. How I communicate with not only the world at large but my subconscious mind as well.

I sit down and write, I read the results and I live with them. Then I publish them. It is just my process. How I process pain and loss as well as growth.

How I measure each. I collect all three and keep them in a bottle I display prominently on my proverbial mantle.

It's a process I have to trust in because something greater than me trusted me with the ability and willingness to partake in it. It’s a duty, privilege, and honor.

I walked into my first bar around five and almost fought the bouncer out front of the same bar at twenty-five, for a slight I can’t even pretend to remember. I just know he was as wrong as I pretended I never was back then.

The nerve of him to question my age, when nobody did so when I was five.

For him to question if I belonged there when I actually did, yet nobody asked when I sat there at five drinking free sodas, watching my mother work.

It stood within five hundred feet of the apartment I was born and raised in, was thrown out of often as a teen, and my mother was asked to leave shortly thereafter my first shotgun stay at that bar, Dad wasn’t having it.

If my apartment was bigger, it would’ve just been an extension of it or addition to it — and in many ways, it was. It was practically my second kitchen with a half bathroom in it.

But you know what they say, if you can’t stand the heat of the kitchen with the half bathroom and no shower in it because nobody goes there to get clean — get out of dodge while you still can, with something resembling your sanity intact.

I walked out of there and found a better bar. One where the Irish wore their pride a little less proudly and drank a bit more quietly until someone got loud or rowdy.

A decade and a half, nine hundred and ninety-nine thousand bottles of beer on a wall, a bunch of fistfights, and countless deaths later — I walked out of that bar, battered, beaten, and broken.

But I won because I was still alive enough to leave and walk out on my own two, as so many before me refused to, didn’t get to and so many after me won’t, one way or another.

I beat the odds and now me and my demons are even. We've each waved our own versions of white flags and called a truce for the time being, if only just for today, a day at a time.



Brian Brewington

Writing About the Human Condition, via My Thoughts, Observations, Experiences, and Opinions — Founder of Journal of Journeys and BRB INC ©