I tried as best as I could, but I could only hold my breath for just a few seconds. It seems that Patrick won this round again. I put the giant mug down and took a big gasp of air; I chugged so much, even my air intake tasted like freshly served beer.
“Damnit,” I mumbled under my cold breath. “Looks like I’m paying for our next round of drinks then.”
I glanced over at Patrick, who was laughing his ass off. He took another sip of is half empty mug, leaving a little ring of extra thick foam around his mouth.
“I didn’t know Santa got drunk during his off-season days,” I snickered. “It seems like him and Mrs Claus are going through some marital issues now, huh?”
Stuck between belching and laughing, Patrick punched me in my upper arm and then started to pat me on the back with his heavy hand, “Fuck you, Marcello. Me and my wife are doing just fine. Besides, if I really was Santa, wouldn’t I be getting drunk over in my toy shop with some tiny elves and a polar bear?”
“Are you trying to call me short just because I’m one inch short of being six feet, you giant?”
“No. I’m calling you the bear because you have more white hairs in your hairline than I do in my beard. And I’m the older one!”
Patrick continued his laughing fit and ended up downing the rest of his drink somewhere in the middle of it. Watching him drink is like watching a fish in a giant tank. And amazingly, he was still good to go before he can even consider him “tipsy.” His drinking tolerance almost made me want to challenge him to a battle of shots, but I knew I’d lose after the fifth round or so considering the fact that we already went through two rounds of beer.
I reached into my wallet and pulled out a large bill, a twenty I think it was, and passed it over to the slim, tanned bartender in front of us. Just from his looks, anybody could tell that he was at least twenty-three and was doing this as a way to pass the time.
“Another round of the imported stuff like last time,” I said.
“No lime, right?” he asked.
I shook my head, “No limes. And keep the change on this one for being a nice kid too.”
His face lit up when he gave me a small smile. He took the bill and went towards the registers, breaking the bill and putting the remaining change in his pocket.
Patrick glanced at the bartender, then at me, “Oh-ho-ho. Somebody’s being mighty generous tonight, eh Marcello? That’s the second time you tipped the guy tonight. That booze starting to get to your head, ain’t it?”