S.G. Browne

Lucky Bastard San Francisco Blog Tour – O’Reilly’s Irish Pub

Unfortunately, I’ve been laid up with the flu since St. Patrick’s Day and haven’t had a chance to take my monkey out to play. Yes, I know how that sounds. Yes, I said it on purpose. You see now why I chose a monkey.

In any case, I’ve been trapped in my apartment for four days and haven’t been able to take my Monkey-Who-Has-Yet-To-Be-Named around San Francisco with me to visit the places that appear in Lucky Bastard. Fortunately, I already took pictures of most of the locations sans monkey, which just means I’ll have to get a little creative.

For this installment of the Lucky Bastard San Francisco Blog Tour, we’re going to O’Reilly’s Irish Pub in North Beach, located right across from the Green Street Mortuary. Just in case you need one-stop shopping. O’Reilly’s is a great place to grab a pint or three of Guinness while grubbing on some fish ‘n chips or corned beef and cabbage.

The centerpiece of O’Reilly’s is a thirty- foot long mahogany bar with a fifteen- foot tall back bar decorated with pillars and antique Celtic stained glass panels. Opposite the bar, the walls and drinking nooks are plastered with old photos and framed pictures of Ireland and Irish celebrities, the shelves above filled with Irish memorabilia. And covering the corner walls at the back of the bar is a hand-painted mural of famous Irish writers, including W. B Yeats, George Bernard Shaw, Oscar Wilde, Samuel Beckett, and James Joyce (not shown).

The scene that occurs here in Lucky Bastard takes place in Chapter 29, when Nick Monday meets Tuesday Knight to discuss…well, I can’t tell you what they’re going to discuss because that would be a spoiler. But I can tell you that they sit in the back of the bar near the mural (by Oscar Wilde, actually). And when Nick orders his drinks, he stands at the bar in front of a small brass plate that reads: THIS SEAT IS RESERVED FOR CHOCOLATE DICK.

Apparently, a regular customer named Dick brings chocolate with him whenever he comes to the bar and shares the chocolate with the bartenders. So he has his own place reserved for him. No, I’m not making this up.

How Nick and Tuesday ended up at O’Reilly’s wasn’t planned out in advance. It’s just the way the story unfolded as I wrote it, where the characters told me they wanted to go, so there wasn’t any devised plan for them to meet there. But I can’t say I didn’t enjoy the research.

By the way, if you didn’t notice my monkey Photoshopped into the mural of famous Irish writers, then you weren’t paying attention.