Last Call at PA Liquor Stores
Erieites stock as Fine Wine & Good Spirits locations temporarily close
With liquor stores across New York state announcing their closure Sunday, Pennsylvanians were forced to take a good, hard look at ourselves before their doors shut at 9 p.m. on Monday.
What do we want to drink during the #coronapocalypse?
Now, please, do not go into a fear spiral. Perhaps, even, pour yourself a glass of your favorite spirit if your heart rate jumped a little at that one. It's only a meme. Though it's understandable if the joke lands a little too close to home for some.
With the speed in which the situation is surrounding the pandemic, COVID-19, we cannot deny the fact that life is going to change a lot … at least for a while. Grocery stores are running out of supplies (will chicken and toilet paper keep you sustained?) And the CDC is advising that the public stock up on first-aid supplies and prescriptions. In Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Montana and most other states, schools all schools have closed. So have the restaurants and bars in many of these states — and more.
On March 16, the day before St. Patrick's Day, Pennsylvania liquor stores followed suit and locking up at 9 p.m. in adherence with Gov. Wolf's instruction. Nearly every local television news outlet featured a live shot from one of Erie's state-run Fine Wine & Good Spirits stores, featuring massive lines of people.
So, if you were one of those people, what did you reach for at the liquor stores amidst your fellow shoppers before they close? If this weekend's strip of Walmart aisles was any indication, it was busy, forcing you to act fast.
Did you go for the bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon that is two shelves higher than your normal California red? If you plan to spend quarantine filling your pantry with homemade goods, or maybe reading in your favorite chair, then the cab is for you.
Are you just looking for a good time? I mean, there must be a bright side to not working, and maybe you've been dreaming of this for years. Shots it is.
Or maybe, you're still sweating after the word 'apocalypse,' and the paragraph about schools and grocery stores, and you imagine these to be the last days in which you will sit and sip a neat drink.
But two weeks — or more — is a long time. Will your purchases hold you over that long? As of yet, the liquor stores that have announced closures have not included prospective re-opening dates.
This is a time when we must plan thoughtfully and honestly. Maybe you dream of being a quarantine queen who sips fine wine, but it's okay if you're not.
Pick what makes you happiest. Does your go-to cheap Moscato make you smile after a long day of work or is your favorite drink a can of beer? There's nothing wrong with that.
Whatever you do, don't overthink it.
Go with your gut because ABV may be misleading, and unless it's homebrewed, whatever you end up with will probably be decent at the very least.
If you're a stress monster in these uncertain times like me, consider humming R.E.M.'s "End of the World As We Know It" (you won't be alone, as this 33-year-old track recently cracked the top 50 on the iTunes music charts). It helps, I promise.
Hannah McDonald can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org