We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
People smoking and drinking Scotch, and the bow-tied, white-jacketed bartender who knew everybody's choice. A cozy cheerful place on the 6:14 from Grand Central. A smoke-filled decompression chamber between work and home.
The famously alcohol-fueled and adultery-fueled bar car on the branch line from Stamford up to New Canaan and Ridgefield, CT used to have their own web site, but I can't find it now.
Photo below from the NYT photo essay. I never saw a bar car like that one, though. In my time, usually more packed with people (including chic gals and MILFs on their way home from shopping and hair-dos at Kenneth's) and so full of fragrant and wholesome tobacco smoke that you couldn't see from one end to the other.
I must confess, Bird Dog, that in my youth I loved Bar Cars, even though I didn't drink much. But we had, and rode, commuter trains then, between Milwaukee and Chicago, and they usually had bar cars. When one is as innocent as I was then, there was a delicious frisson of wickedness in just settling into a seat in the bar car and ordering a drink. The seats were usually more comfortable than the seats in the other cars, and somehow, the view seemed better and the windows cleaner as we rolled along. On top of that, business women were rarely bold enough to sit alone in the bar car, so that was fun too.
Actually, the booze itself was beside the point. The brashness was the point. Young women didn't regularly go into bars anywhere unescorted in my not-so-flaming youth, so it all seemed, well, risque. And what young person doesn't like to seem like that?
Marianne, you nicely highlight why social conservatism has some life in it yet. When all things are permissible, there is no fun in transgression. The destruction of taboo is also the destruction of fun.