Richard Rawlings Is Fast N’ Loud N’ Pouring Light

Thomas Kreutzer’s original post about Discovery’s Fast N’ Loud is one of the most popular articles in TTAC history, for reasons that completely escape me. I’ve never been able to watch more than five minutes of the show. I also have a healthy dose of contempt for the show’s star, Richard Rawlings, and his entirely unsupported claim of a “new Cannonball record” a few years ago. To claim a “Cannonball record” for driving a different route from Brock’s original and then to approach the matter of actual proof with a the-dog-ate-my-homework mindset… well, that’s like telling people that you’re the lead singer in a Justin Bieber cover band but that you can’t actually sing quite like the Biebs and you also forgot to put up any YouTube videos of your performances. What’s the point?
Regardless of the merits of the TV show or the tattoo-commemorated record, however, one thing you cannot deny is that Mr. Rawlings is an extremely sharp businessman and entrepreneur who maximizes his profit from every opportunity. And the latest news from Dallas might be further proof of that.

To capitalize on his fame from “Fast N’ Loud”, Rawlings opened up a bar in 2013. One can only assume that it’s patronized by middle-aged, middle-management men who like a bit of the ol’ leather biker cosplay on the weekends. But if those patrons want Patron, they might want to be careful. According to the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, Rawlings’ operation is playing fast n’ loose with the liquor:
The operation, the first ever of its kind, identified that at least five Dallas-Fort Worth Bars had, on at least on occasion, served counterfeit booze to its customers. At present, the only Dallas bar that has been identified is Gas Monkey Bar N’ Grill.
Not to worry, the bar has an explanation:
“One explanation could be that Patron is served chilled, which can water down the product if testing wasn’t done immediately,” says Mendonsa. “We would never refill bottles with a cheaper alternative or serve a cheaper liquor in place of premium. Not only is that unethical, but also because it puts too much at risk — our liquor permit and our reputation are only two examples. We are too high-profile to take such extreme measures to save a few nickels.”
This explanation, which is more or less taken from a Seinfeld episode featuring George Costanza, did not prevent the TABC from issuing a warning to Gas Monkey. While it’s difficult to muster sympathy for any semi-human being whose idea of a good time is heading over to the ol’ Gas Monkey and ordering up some Patron, there’s a genuine sense of appropriate irony to the whole thing. In a world where “reality TV” is tacitly acknowledged to be unreal, and someone can build a public identity around a street-racing accomplishment of dubious provenance and minimal documentation, why would anybody think that the “top-shelf” liquor they’re getting is authentic? And if you’re the kind of person who prides himself on demanding authenticity in tequila at a bar in Dallas, why haven’t you jumped off the top of a building yet, just for the sake of the rest of humanity?
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