It's one sentence on the stone tablets we never have trouble remembering: Thou shalt not steal. It's common sense, of course, but it's also so easy to break. Ever pirated movies? Pilfered some candy as a kid? Or perhaps just wasted somebody's time with a really boring story that went nowhere? We've all definitely stolen something.
That doesn't mean you have to sneak a six-pack under your sweatshirt to drink cheaply in San Diego. No matter how prevalent craft beer culture is in this town, you can't walk two blocks without tripping over a two- or three-dollar Pabst Blue Ribbon. Dive bar culture still exists in San Diego, and with it the bargain basement prices on drafts and wells. A lot of that comes in the form of competitively priced happy hours. At U31 in North Park (3112 University Ave.) draft beers are $2 on its Taco Tuesday (5-7:30 p.m.), and as luck would have it, tacos are the same price. Suppose you need to drink something a bit more potent, and earlier in the week: $2 gets you a well drink on Monday.
You don't have to time your booze binge for Happy Hour to save a little cash, however. Whether you're there for a live show or trivia, The Hideout (3519 El Cajon Blvd.) in City Heights serves domestic beer-and-a-shot pairings priced at $6 every day, and mules for $5 before 9 p.m. Across town in Bankers Hill at The Cherry Bomb (2237 First Ave.), once the place for crusty DIY punk shows, $5 cocktails get you closer to buzzed much faster, thanks to a minimum on mixers. Need something stiffer? At the Live Wire (2103 El Cajon Blvd.) in North Park, a cocktail will cost you a couple dollars more but comes in a pint glass.
There's an even better kept inexpensive drink secret in San Diego, in a pretty classy joint at that: Alexander's (3391 30th St.) in North Park has a pizza special on Monday nights that's a good enough deal on its own. Better yet: Raid the ice bucket full of beers and drop a dollar in the tip jar. I dare say that's a steal.