Local restaurant shows its support

By Thomas M. Jasper

The idea was born out of chaotic celebration. As Big Blue fans took to the streets to celebrate the Cats’ victory over the University of North Carolina Tar Heels this past Sunday, couches, recliners, televisions and many other household objects became casualties of the party.

These living room sacrifices led Shane Miller, the “thermodynamic engineer” of this idea, to believe that if the Cats are victorious this Saturday night over the University of Connecticut Huskies, much larger objects, such as cars would be a means for fires.

Miller turned to Kevin Heathcoat, co-owner of Bourbon n’ Toulouse, and said that maybe it would be a good idea to offer up one of their cars as promotion for the restaurant. While they shortly entertained this notion, the idea eventually evolved into a more realistic plan.

“So many students have burned their couches the past couple days celebrating UK’s wins in the tournament that we figured none of them would have a place to sit for the upcoming Final Four, so Shane’s idea eventually became this couch,” Heathcoat said.

The employees of Bourbon n’ Toulouse decided that instead of offering up an item for destruction, they would raffle off a couch to one lucky student to give him or her a place to sit during the game, in place of torched furniture.

The couch, which screams 1960s with its white pleather cushions, now sits inside the restaurant adorned with signatures of Bourbon n’ Toulouse customers wishing the Cats onto victory this Saturday.

However, as the multitude of signatures grew, so did Bourbon n’ Toulouse’s affections for the couch.

“We opened at 11 today (Wednesday), and in almost seven hours, we just counted 493 signatures,” Heathcoat said. “We even got Lavon Williams’ signature, number 52 on the 1978 championship Kentucky team.”

As their emotional attachment continued to grow toward the couch, they thought of a new plan since they knew the fate the couch would face in the streets if the Cats win.

They decided the couch would be offered to Coach Cal to place in the new Wildcat Lodge as the first donation of furniture. However, if Coach Cal decides to decline the donation, the couch will be taken to Tin Roof, on the corner of South Limestone and East Maxwell, where Miller, Heathcoat and all the Bourbon n’ Toulouse employees will watch the game.

After the game, Bourbon n’ Toulouse said they would like to donate the couch to Tin Roof as a new part of their interior decorations but still can’t guarantee its safety after a win.

“I’m going to hate to see it go, but we can’t help what happens to it when we win,” co-owner of Bourbon n’ Toulouse, Will Pieratt, said.

Students and fans wishing to sign the couch are encouraged to visit Bourbon n’ Toulouse by Saturday, when the couch will be taken to its new home.