Let's play a game. Raise your hand if:
• You're a student buried under essays and exams.
• You have a part-time job (or two).
• You're in denial about the amount of money you're going to owe after these wild years are over.
• You now need a drink because I reminded you of these loans.
Yea, I get it. That was me, too.
So why, my dear booze-hounds, are you spending top dollar on liquid bliss (aka alcohol) that will inevitably be discounted the next night?
Allow me to help your weeping wallets and give you a cheap-ass' guide to penny-pinching drunkenness.
While I know you're leaving Tinder logged on, waiting for another "Super Like" to free up, I'm going to need you to switch over to your app store. There are a couple of free downloads that'll help you find your next cheap drink.
Like Hooked ( hookedapp.com): Here's an app that makes coupon-clipping cool. Ish. Think GroupOn for starving students. The creators get restaurants and bars to post deals and specials each week. Then you log on, find the food or booze that makes your tummy smile and "get hooked." Show that coupon to the cashier and you'll be singing a happy little tune as you gorge yourself on discounted pizza.
Boulder Happy Hours ( boulderhappyhours.com) is a bit more booze-centric. It's going to help you find what bars are whipping out cheap drinks that night. Better yet, GPS settings will make it so the top bars will be those closest to you. When you've had your fill, it even has a page to get you a cab home.
Now, if you'll head over to your web browser, I have two more options for you.
Drink in the Buff ( drinkinthebuff.com) is a site launched specifically to help CU students get responsibly tipsy on the cheap. It'll tell you all the bars offering Happy Hour specials and how to get there.
DrankBank ( drankbank.com) does the same thing but with campuses across the U.S. It may not be as comprehensive, but its maps and information still hold plenty of promise for the alcohol-obsessed.
Let's Be Friends
No, not you and me. Well, OK. Maybe. You seem cool.
But I'm talking about getting connected with your favorite spots in town. Sure, Facebook may be a little uncool these days, but a ton of your favorite bars and restaurants are online, just dying to tell you about their upcoming specials.
Each week, they'll advertise a bar deal alongside previews for upcoming bands or new appetizers. You'll also find photos from last week's shenanigans — your squinty-eyed, smiling faces reminding you of that last tequila shot.
So now you've gone all "Like" crazy, and your social media is flooded with updates from your favorite spots. Which is probably distracting. And/or making you want to drink more.
The trick now is to get your calendar spiced up with all your favorite happy hours. Whether it's on the bar or brewery's personal site, or via their social media, you'll get into a routine of when they have deals.
If you take some time to add in alerts, you'll always have cheap drinks at your fingertips.
A Few Freebies
We've bonded by this point, so I've snagged a few happy hours to get you started.
1911 11th St.
Happy Hours: 4 to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday
On Sundays, get $1.75 well drinks. Ladies drink free until midnight Wednesdays and get $1 well drinks from then until close. Every Thursday, get $2.50 calls all night.
Twisted Pine Brewing
3201 Walnut St.
Happy Hours: all day Monday and Tuesday, 4 to 6 p.m. Wednesday through Friday, 9 to 10 p.m. every night
$1 off full-pour beers, $3 off all pitchers, and food deals on grub like roasted hummus and caprese bites.
1136 Pearl St.
Happy Hours: $4 Kettle One, $4.25 Crown Royal, and $1 off craft beers on Sunday; $2 mystery beer cans and $3 mystery shots on Monday; $4 Stoli Moscow Mules on Tuesday; $4 whiskey drinks on Wednesday; $5 vodka and Red Bulls and $1 Kamikazee shots (if you pay cash) Thursday through Saturday
2880 Wilderness Place
Happy Hours: $15 pitchers of Mojo IPA after 3 p.m. Mondays; $15 pitchers of Hazed Happy Session Ale on Wednesdays; $4 pints and $15 pitchers from 3 to 6:30 p.m. every day
Enjoy the discounts, dear Buffs, and drink responsibly. Use those extra ducats for another night out.