Paul has proposed a new “Dark Supers” campaign, for which we did some groundwork last Sunday night. Unless I misunderstood him, the characters don’t have powers going into the first session. So the result is the most ordinary, boring character concept I’ve ever come up with. Strangely, though, it isn’t any shorter than my others. Meet Dave Overmyer.
About me? The way it’s supposed to work, pal, is that the patron spills his life story to the bartender, not the other way around. No, you’re right, it is a pretty dead evening, and you have been coming in here for over a year. There’s no secret; it’s just not very interesting, ya know?
You’re right, I am kinda young to be running a bar by myself. That’s because I inherited it from my Dad — he’s the “Dave” in “Dave’s Place;” I’m Dave Overmyer Junior. I guess this is the part where I’m supposed to say how Dad was the most important person in my life when I was a kid, and I always wanted to follow in his footsteps. Either that, or I tell you about how I hated him and never wanted to be anything like him. That’d make a better story, but neither one’s true. Yeah, Dad was important to me — he’s my Dad. But he never pushed me to be a star athlete or anything. I did play junior league hockey, sure — it’s Minneapolis; who doesn’t? That’s where some of these photos behind the bar came from. But I was never going to be a superstar; didn’t even make the varsity team in high school, and Dad was OK with that.
He wasn’t around much at night or on the weekends, but he owned a bar — what was he gonna do? He provided for the family, and that was the important thing. Mom helped with the homework, that kind of stuff. We always used to come over here on Saturdays to watch football with him, me and my brothers — Mike and Chris, they’re twins, five years younger than me. And, of course, when I got old enough, I worked here part-time. What are kids for, if not cheap labor, huh?
The one thing Dad always wanted was that we have more opportunities than he did. He was in the service, y’know…that’s where the medals in that case came from. After he got out, he tended bar down at Sullivan’s, you know, over in Longfellow? He was there for a few years, but he scouted locations, took out a loan, and bought this place here. He wouldn’t have minded if one of us wanted to take over the bar, but he wanted to make sure we could all go to college, and make our own choices.
Which is pretty much what I did. University of Minnesota, class of 2000, that’s me. Go Gophers, right? Problem was, I wasn’t thinking too clearly when I chose the old major, so I have a degree in Sociology. I know, what do you do with that, right? I thought I could “make a difference,” you know, “help people.” But I didn’t give too much thought to exactly how to do that. I figured it would work itself out; I was busy being in college. Maybe Mom and Dad could have set me straight sooner, but they never went to college, so they didn’t really know how it works. I came home after graduation, they thought I’d have job interviews, and instead, I’m asking if I can work in the bar while I apply to masters programs. That wasn’t a fun couple of days.
Another? Sure thing. So yeah, saving the money took a bit longer than I had hoped. Then — this is 2002 now — Dad had his stoke. Right here in the bar, yeah. People fall over in here sometimes, but they’re usually on your side of the bar, right? It’s OK — humor as defense mechanism, you know? Well, the doctors said it was a pretty bad one, but that he might pull through. But he didn’t. He stayed in a coma for about two years, and then he finally passed on. Mom visited him every day, and she says he could hear us, but I’m not so sure.
And, well, somebody had to run the bar while Dad was gone, so here I am. And those medical bills don’t pay themselves, you know? So the masters thing is kind of on permanent hold. The twins, they were going to quit school and help out, but Mom and I said no. Dad wouldn’t have wanted it that way, no sir. They were on scholarship, both of ’em — they always did real well in school, even with all the stuff with Dad screwing up their freshman year. They both always wanted to be doctors, and now they really do, you know? So they’ll both be starting med school next year, Chris in Philly, and Mike in San Francisco.
Girlfriend? Yeah, I had one…Terri. Thought things were going pretty well there too, but when I had to spend so much time at the hospital, and then here, well, she just couldn’t handle it. Can’t blame her, really; we were starting to think about a life together, and suddenly it became really different from what she’d figured. Haven’t really dated much since then. I keep trying, but “Ladies Night” isn’t catching on so well with guys like you around. And I don’t meet all that many women down at the recreational hockey league, for some reason. Yeah, you’re right, I do get to the gym regularly. You can tell, huh? I guess it’s working, then. After all, Dad’s lifestyle wasn’t the healthiest, and look where that got him. Plus, with two wannabe doctors for brothers, I get more free advice than I know what to do with.
So…I’m here, because somebody’s got to look after Mom, and this place, and you guys here. Plus, how many bartenders you know with a sociology degree, eh? That’s quality service we got here at Dave’s Place. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to go work on the books a bit. Your tab is paid up, right pal?