Bar Slaves in the News: Kick the Bucket, Get Buried in a Can

Not that Pabst Blue Ribbon is one of my first picks when it comes to alcoholic-beveragy goodness, but this.. well, the article says it all.

South Chicago Heights man plans to be

buried in Pabst Blue Ribbon coffin

South Chicago Heights In the meantime, Pabst Blue Ribbon coffin serves as beverage cooler

May 4, 2008

When he dies, a wooden coffin just won’t do. It doesn’t match Bill Bramanti’s big personality. He wants something people will remember him by.

So the Glenwood village administrator ordered a specially made coffin that bears the design of something he knows well: a Pabst Blue Ribbon beer can.

“I actually fit, because I got in here,” said Bramanti – 5 feet 9 inches tall and about 280 pounds – leaning on the silver casket with a can of PBR in his hand.

Bramanti isn’t dying. He just wants to be prepared.

With “100 years” until he meets his maker, the South Chicago Heights man threw a party Saturday for his future burial home and showed family and friends how he plans to use the coffin until he dies. He scheduled the entertainment for 3 to 8 p.m., the hours of a typical wake.

“I’m going to use it as a cooler until I really need it,” said Bramanti, 67. “You see, I’m going to get my money’s worth. Hopefully I get to use it many times.”

The silver coffin is laminated with the design of a red, white and blue PBR beer can. The inside contains a black liner to prevent seepage so Bramanti can store cold brews in it until he winds up inside. On Saturday, it was filled with ice and PBR. Bramanti thinks it can fit about 15 cases of beer and 150 pounds of ice.

“I wouldn’t expect anything less for my dad,” said Bramanti’s daughter Cathy, who was one of about 25 people munching on roast beef sandwiches and sipping PBR inside a 2,000-square-foot barn Bramanti built in South Chicago Heights for parties. “He’s a man that loves to entertain. He likes it when people are happy. This is what he does. There’s all kinds of things in here.”

Cathy Bramanti, 42, pointed to the happy birthday, happy graduation and political signs that line the walls inside the barn, which was shaped like a box, felt like a warehouse and had not a barrel of hay in sight.

“Why put such a great novelty piece up on a shelf in storage when you could use it only the way Bill Bramanti would use it?” Cathy Bramanti said of the coffin.

“My dad used to come out here when he was in college, so for my whole life, I’ve heard the stories of crazy Uncle Bill,” said Bramanti’s nephew Joe Bramanti, 20. “This tops most of them.”

My hat is tipped to you sir in your dedication to what you love. Consider yourself an honorary member to the Bar Slaves Way of Life ™.


~ by Old Iron on May 5, 2008.

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