Of course, we all know that they’re constantly drinking liberally at the The Stranger. (I once quipped that I could never work there, because I don’t drink hard liquor.) But there’s also a very nice piece by Cienna Madrid in this week’s paper, revealing to a larger world the sublime pleasures of our weekly gathering of the Seattle chapter of Drinking Liberally.
My only question for Cienna is: how much did Darryl suck up to you to be the only blogger to finagle a link? (Damn! He just got another one. Clever bastard.)
When I first stumbled into politics with my “Tim Eyman is a horse’s ass” initiative, one of my slogans which really seemed to resonate with supporters was my promise to “put the party back into politics.” I can’t tell you have many contributions and petitions came in with a request for an invitation to the election night party.
The truth is, politics can be godawful boring, and progressive politics doubly so… we’re all just so fucking earnest.
And as important as it is, the tedium of the actual process of party politics can bring on horrifying flashbacks of grinding your way through the worst high school teacher you ever had. It’s heard enough to get the average joe to show up at his legislative district meeting… but it’s nearly impossible to get him to come back.
I’ve always been a big believer in making progressive politics more fun and more social, and to be honest, what first attracted me to Drinking Liberally was simply… the name. The first DL I attended was pretty much me, The Him, Nick, and a couple of Nick’s friends. And the crowd didn’t consistently get much bigger than that for the first couple months.
But with word of mouth and some steady promotion on the blogs, DL has grown into a large crowd of regulars (and a few irregulars) that this week took over half the Montlake Ale House. And for those who can’t attend, next week will mark the release of my first weekly podcast from DL… that is, assuming it doesn’t suck.
No doubt Cienna’s piece will help boost attendance, but DL has already reached the kind of critical mass that ensures its continued growth through word of mouth alone. Chapters are already established in Bellingham and Spokane (which I hear kicks ass), and new chapters recently opened in Olympia and Walla Walla. New chapters are scheduled to open next month in Tacoma and Burien… proudly making Washington one of the most liberally drinking states in the union, third only to New York and Pennsylvania.
Cienna warns that “without some new blood, DL could be dismissed as a good-old-boys club stuffed with bloggers and politicos,” and certainly we need to balance out the gender ratio if DL is to achieve its full potential. But this is one “good-old-boys club” that’s open to all comers, and it is that informal, social aspect that makes DL different from all other political organizations.
We meet every Tuesday, 8:00 pm, at the Montlake Alehouse, 2307 24th Avenue E. Hope to see you there soon.
Ooops. Jim at McCranium reminds me that I forgot the recently founded Tri-Cities chapter of DL that meets Wednesday nights, 5:30 pm, at the Tuscany Lounge, 1515 George Washington Way, Richland.