You do not actually enter the bar until afternoon. Technically there is no rule, law, or custom violated. The bar itself is in an old converted factory. Other businesses flank it, but it sits nestled quietly between them. Entering, you notice that it has a speakeasy feel to it–all dim red lights and smoke and crooked, hidden doors. There are no other customers in the place; the bar manager, a cocktail waitress, and the bartender hold conference at the other end of the bar. You have a hard time getting their attention. In the meantime, you survey the selection behind the bar. You’re looking for the brown fluid–for whiskey. It is hard to make out the labels, and many of them seem to have smeared or rubbed off or weathered with age into illegibility. The height of the bar seems to rise as you survey the bottles; you must keep climbing the stool, getting your chin above the brass rail. Finally the bartender approaches you, surly and gruff. What do you want? You ask for a neat glass of your first selection but (he explains) that is actually some patron’s private bottle and had been carelessly left above. You request your next choice. You wouldn’t like that? The “Vermont Standard Rye”? Barely three percent alcohol. Not what you think it is. The bartender seems to know your mission and its purpose. You wonder if he is not doing you a favor, but cannot help but feel frustrated.