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Thirst

A story based on discussions at last night's <a href="http://www.the-open-room.com/journalisms-from-mars-social-medias-from-venus/">Open Room</a>. An analogy of the relationships between storytellers (old and new), their audience and advertisers.
You could say I'm blessed. I've been coming to the same watering-hole for the last 2 years. The lounge lizards still turn and stare at me whenever I walk through the doors, all of them hungry for my attention. I know the game; I offer them fleeting glances from time to time, feeding their hope. Some do get lucky, but mostly out of my whim. It is amusing to watch them scramble about, wondering what it is they did "right" that night. As if my choice were a direct result of their action. The guessing keeps them busy, and I get to maintain the titillation of intrigue.
Many people ask why I keep coming back to this place. Simply put, there is no better bartender in the next 4,000 miles. Oh, and the drinks are free. Or at least they <em>were</em>.
You see, John, the huge bloke sitting in that corner, used to pay for all my drinks. I used to give him the time of the day, but less so these days. To be perfectly honest, I don't know why I'm not as into him as I used to be. It's probably because of all the new guys in town: all interesting in their own cute way, and terribly distracting. Not all of them were good guys, a couple tried to get Bill the bartender to slip pills into my drinks.
It was embarrassing the first time I ordered my usual vodka martini (twist of lemon rind) and was asked to pay up. Didn't Bill know who I am? I was infuriated that he would quibble over so small an item. For god's sake, it's just a bloody drink. Not wanting a scene, Bill finally caved and continued giving me free drinks.
That was 6 months ago. Now Bill says he needs to close down the bar because of financial reasons. Stupid bloke should have seen this coming before he set up shop in this god-forsaken town where I'm his only customer. I only hope I can still hit him up for a few more freebies before he heads out of town.
<strong>Pay</strong> for drinks? Are you friggin' kidding me?!?

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