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 Oxford's Elusive Speakeasy 

by Nicholas Carr 

I stumbled through the alleys on the square, searching in the dark for a door that supposedly hides a speakeasy.  The locals know - but keep it hush hush.  It's bourgeois, swanky, and I just might spot Morgan Freeman -  unless he was pulling my leg. 

I spotted a line of people in a back alley - usually I avoid people who have gathered in the night, but this is Ox.  My Ox.  I joined this orchestra of well-dressed souls and contributed my own two cents.  I was ready for a stiff drink.  

The door opened; it was my turn to knock on the door and ask for passage... My father would describe the concierge who stood before me as a "yuppie," but this is the Oxford norm - I like it.  The young man complimented my fleur-de-lis print tie as he ushered me to a vacant bar stool.  

The barkeep placed a menu on the bar infront of me, casually offering me a toasted marshmallow. "It's on the house," he beamed. I graciously accepted his offer and ordered a Manhattan.  

$10 cocktail,

$12 grilled cheese,

No Morgan Freeman (yet) 

but for an extravagant sum, they will fly a certain celebrity chef to cook  for me and a few guests.  

How bourgeois would that be?

Morgan freeman at his booth with a sandalwood / patchouli blend wavering through the dimly lit bar.  

Swanky.  Bourgeois.  

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