WHAT TO DRINK AT YOUR HAPPY HOUR-EQUIPPED DIVE BAR
This is a fine place to be indeed. At this point, at least two people in your Day Drinking group will be complaining that they spent more money on brunch than they would have at the bottomless option, and yet drank less. The last thing they need is additional sticker-shock at a high-end bar. Buy a bucket of nice, cold domestic beers, and plop it on the wobbly table that needs some coasters shoved under one leg. This will 1) shut everyone complaining about money the hell up, because you just bought them a beer, and 2) begin a cycle of mass drinks-buying that will net you at least two more beers.
You can never expect the full five to come back around, because people will lose track of who bought what (acceptable — they are drinking), and other people will use their entire time plotting to avoid buying a bucket through various means (not having cash, “getting you back later, brah”, simply waiting and waiting until someone else does even if it’s technically their turn), and will succeed. But that’s the way the world works. These people will likely be horrendous company in many other ways as well. With any luck, they had shots at brunch and are about to get Ronnie Lotted.
But for you, sit back, enjoy the relatively daytime emptiness, the random small-conference college sports on the TVs, the downtrodden regulars for whom Day Drinking is a depressing life fact (and not an enjoyable activity you read helpful guides about), and not-quite-ironically playing the Len song “Steal My Sunshine” on the Internet-connected jukebox. Once the rotation, however incomplete, swings back and eyes turn to you to buy another bucket, it’s time to go.