->''"Shared pain is lessened; shared joy, increased; thus do we refute entropy."''
--> -- Callahan's Law

A series of short stories and novels by author Creator/SpiderRobinson, which has inspired a video game, a roleplaying adaptation and even a long-standing online roleplaying newsgroup. The title saloon can only be found if you need to be there. Most of the regulars are ordinary people scarred by tragedies and hardships, finding comfort and joy in their shared company and pun competitions.

The bar also has its share of unusual regulars and visitors, including an android built by aliens bent on world domination, time travelers, a vampire that refuses to prey on humans, talking animals, and a teleporting cat.

[[folder:Books in this series]]
* ''Callahan's Crosstime Saloon'' (1977)
* ''Time Travelers Strictly Cash'' (1981)
* ''Callahan's Secret'' (1986)
* ''Callahan's Lady'' (1989)
* ''Lady Slings the Booze'' (1992)
* ''The Callahan Touch'' (1993)
* ''Callahan's Legacy'' (1996)
* ''Callahan's Key'' (2000)
* ''Callahan's Con'' (2003)
[[/folder]]

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!!Provides examples of:

* AuthorAvatar: The narrator, Jake Stonebender, is revealed to be an alternate dimension version of Robinson.
* AuthorFilibuster: Quite rare, but Spider lets one or two slip by as the series carries on. For example, ''Lady Slings the Booze'' has one such digression where [[TheBartender Mike Callahan]] talks at length why rapists, instead of imprisonment, [[RapeIsASpecialKindOfEvil should just be raped in turn...]] by someone like Mike; and a later discussion about how killing anarchists should only be a misdemeanor[[note]]The reasoning is a bit more fleshed out than that, but that's the ultimate gist[[/note]]. To be fair, [[TrueCompanions considering the company]], having the Callahans stop and chat about these sorts of things doesn't feel ''as'' out of place as it might in another story.
* BananaRepublic: Tom Hauptman was imprisoned by one for ten years.
* BandOfBrothels: Lady Sally's
* TheBartender: Mike Callahan, and then Jake Stonebender. Tom Hauptman sometimes fills in when they need a break.
* BeethovenWasAnAlienSpy: Hitler was an alien spy trying to get humans to kill each other off so his species could [[ImAHumanitarian eat them.]]
* BiggerOnTheInside: Inverted, Squish's saucer is smaller on the inside because they haven't mastered the technology yet. One wonders why they bother installing it.
* BlessedWithSuck: The precog in "Fivesight" can only foresee unpleasant events -- and he can't prevent them from happening, only mitigate the effects somewhat. Fittingly enough, his name is [[TheCassandra Cass Anders]].
* BornLucky: The Lucky Duck, although in his case it's not good luck or bad luck--just ''weird'' luck.
* CentipedesDilemma: Dink Fogerty is defeated using this technique in the story titled "The Centipede's Dilemma".
* CityOfWeirdos: Callahan tells the story of waking up after an epic week-long bender naked in Central Park, fleeing on a stolen police horse. He gets all the way to Brooklyn by wrapping himself in a plaid horse blanket and yelling "Attack of the Literature/{{Horseclans}}! Coming soon from United Artists" as necessary.
* CoolAndUnusualPunishment: After being arrested, if Al Phee tries to make another unauthorized time jump he'll be stricken with permanent BO.
* CombinatorialExplosion: Averted in the game. Nearly everything has a unique description.
* DepartmentOfRedundancyDepartment: Bureau of Unnecessary Repetition and Pointless Redundancy.
* DoNotGoGentle: All of the patrons give an epic one to Tom Hauptmann at the end of "The Time Traveller", persuading him that life is worth living.
* DontAskJustRun: {{Lampshaded}} in ''Callahan's Secret'', where a rookie to the New York City bomb squad specifically thinks "If he's running, I need to get the hell out of here!" when he sees his superior, Sergeant Noah Gonzalez, take off running in the middle of a defusing operation.
* DumbMuscle: Tony Donuts, in "Callahan's Lady," a thug of enormous physical prowess who is so dumb that he's almost impossible to con.
* EveryCarIsAPinto: Lampshaded by Noah in the game when he notes how often people are injured by others trying to drag them out of a wrecked car before the "inevitable" explosion.
* FamousAncestor: Josie Bauer might be the daughter of science fiction author PhilipJoseFarmer.
* {{Feghoot}}: Tall Tales Night.
* FingerInABarrel: Done in one of the books, but in this case the character in question was ImmuneToBullets.
* FishOutOfTemporalWater: How Tom Hauptman feels after ten years in prison with no contact with the outside world in "The Time Traveller".
* FunWithPalindromes: In ''The Callahan Touch'', every chapter title is a palindrome. Notably, the chapter in which UsefulNotes/NikolaTesla visits the bar glories in the title, "I, Madam, I Made Radio. So I Dared. Am I Mad? Am I?"
* GadgetWatches: The watch that can stop time in ''Lady Slings the Booze''.
* GoodGuyBar
* HordeOfAlienLocusts: The Cockroaches.
* HurricaneOfPuns: Punday at Callahan's.
-->''Folks who come into the place for the first time on a Tuesday evening have been known to flee screaming into the night, leaving full pitchers of beer behind in their haste to be elsewhere.''
* ICannotSelfTerminate: Michael Finn is actually a cyborg sent to evaluate how dangerous the Earth is so that an alien race can decide whether or not to invade it. After an evening at Callahan's, he decides he wants to save them, and asks the patrons to destroy him so he can't automatically report in, since he can't destroy himself. They settle for giving him a Mickey Finn (as hinted at by the name he gives), which leaves him in no condition to make his report.
* ImmuneToBullets: The good guys, for a change. All of the bar's patrons who have been protected by Mickey Finn are immune to gunfire, nukes, and [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking getting wet when it rains]].
** [[BlessedWithSuck OTOH]], the RequiredSecondaryPowers are a bitch. It only neutralizes lethal trauma, so as not to leave one with a case of [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Congenital_insensitivity_to_pain CIP]]. That means that if someone attacks to ''maim'', '''they can do it as long as no single blow is lethal!'''
** Likewise, immunity to nukes is limited to the blast forces and radiation. It's still possible to be trapped in debris and just ''burn''. [[spoiler: As Noah Gonzalez found when the "immunity to nukes" clause was tested.]]
* InnBetweenTheWorlds: Although the bar itself is perfectly normal, it's called a Probability Nexus by a timecop and its patrons come from all over space and time.
* JackassGenie: The cluricaune isn't actually malevolent--just irritating--but deliberately interpreting the line "when I show Ish that" as "I sho' wish that" definitely qualifies as this.
* LamePunReaction: The winner of the 'Punday Night' contests is often celebrated with everyone fleeing, screaming in mock terror, into the night.
* LevitatingLotusPosition: Jake spies Mike Callahan doing this. It is one of the first indications that there is a lot more to Mike Callahan than meets the eye.
* LoveAtFirstNote: For Jake and Zoey, it's love at first jam session.
* MeaningfulName: Many characters' names contain punning hints to their roles in the story.
* AMindIsATerribleThingToRead: Invoked with great force in the first story featuring telepathy, but averted with every subsequent use - primarily due to it being practiced by TrueCompanions who've shared [[InVinoVeritas all their most intimate secrets over several metric $#!+loads of booze]]. That's right. [[ButLiquorIsQuicker Beer]] can turn ThePowerOfFriendship into telepathic communion.
* MinionWithAnFInEvil: In the game Jake has to join a criminal organization to get what he's after. He's so bad at it, though, that the guy he hassles for not paying protection money has to talk him through administering a beating. Even then he can't manage anything worse than third grade bullying techniques.
* MirrorChemistry: One story has a "Mirror Earth" with right-handed proteins in the place of our left-handed ones. The protagonists eventually discover that this inverts the perceived quality of liquor: our swill is their Wonderbooze and vice versa.
* MoralDissonance: Despite empathy and acceptance being the defining principles of Callahan's, a woman in ''Callahan's Legacy'' is treated as a joke because she's ugly and doesn't speak English. While this behavior does incur a hefty punishment, it's a couple books before Jake actually acknowledges that he was at fault. It's implied that this had a lot to do with Jake being in a depressive state at the time.
** It really didn't help that her DisproportionateRetribution involved {{Obstructive Bureaucrat}}s who shut down the bar, engaged in 24/7 SinisterSurveillance to keep them from reopening it, chased the gang ''clear to Florida'' and finally attempted to have the DepartmentOfChildDisservices take away Jake's ChildProdigy for '''inadequate education'''.
* NoCelebritiesWereHarmed: Quite a few guests and even regulars at the bar are homages to various science fiction writers: Al Phee is Creator/AlfredBester, Josie Bauer is implied to the daughter of Creator/PhilipJoseFarmer, Gentleman John Killian is outright stated to be Creator/JohnBrunner, etc.
* OurVampiresAreDifferent: Pyotr the vampire is the bar's designated driver. For his services, the patrons donate him some of their blood each night. Also, Sasha from the game, who demonstrates that it's a traditional greeting among his people to offer your wrist for a small sampling of blood.
* PatchworkStory: Around half the books are collections of previously-published stories.
* PayingInCoins: In "The Callahan Touch", the third of three wishes granted by a magical [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clurichaun clurichaun]] is that he legitimately pay for the enormous amount of alcohol he consumed. [[JackassGenie So he pays in gold coins- LOTS of gold coins, as he had nearly cleaned out every last drop in the bar.]]
** This kind of makes him a "JerkWithAHeartOfGold Genie", as Jake's new bar was operating in the red. Having an alcohol-proof alcoholic with UndisclosedFunds guzzling hundreds(yes, ''hundreds'' - he drains every keg in the bar ''before'' anyone realizes he's there) of liters of booze every day makes the place the single most profitable bar in existence.
* PlayingWithPuppets: A villain in ''Callahan's Lady'' uses a MindControlDevice to make people do disgusting and embarrassing things for her own amusement.
* PungeonMaster: Nearly all the regulars, but Doc Webster especially.
* RapidFireComedy: The game.
* ReallySevenHundredYearsOld: Rachel in "A Voice Is Heard In Ramah". No explanation is offered; she just is.
* RealPersonCameo: Gentleman John Kilian is JohnBrunner. Al Phee is based on AlfredBester.
* ThatSatisfyingCrunch: At Callahan's, making a toast and pitching your glass into the fireplace can be one of the most cathartic actions you'll ever undertake.
* SetRightWhatOnceWentWrong: The Meddler in "The Law of Conservation of Pain".
* ShoutOut: Several instances in the game call the player out on having delusions of being ComicBook/PlasticMan if they try to do something like open a door at the other end of a hall without going down the hall first, or trying to squeeze underneath a door. There are also numerous shout outs in the original stories:
** Ralph von Wau Wau is a CanonImmigrant originally created by PhilipJoseFarmer - and Josie Bauer is apparently his daughter.
** Reggie from ''Lady Slings The Booze'' is actually [[JeevesAndWooster Reginald Jeeves]].
* SlippingAMickey: The way things are resolved in ''The Guy with the Eyes''.
** In the game, you have to sedate Al Phee with a concoction made from either pure morphine or the best chocolate in existence, because his out-of-control mindreading is driving him insane.
* TheSlowPath: Tom Hauptman is referred to as a time traveler since he missed ten years while imprisoned and now has culture shock.
* TheSmurfettePrinciple: In "A Voice Is Heard In Ramah," Rachel is the only woman who has ever come to Callahan's, and much is made of the fact. Soon averted, however; by the time of "Fivesight," a few years later, female patrons are unremarkable.
* StableTimeLoop: The true purpose of the Callahans' presence in New York from 1945-1985; [[spoiler:Mike and his family and (it's hinted) other agents are making sure that certain catastrophic events that by all rights ''should'' have happened, but didn't, on the timeline to their far-future {{Utopia}} stay not-having-happened.]]
* TalkingAnimal: Ralph Von Vau Vau is a genius mutant German Shepherd who works in talk radio.
* ThouShaltNotKill: In the first Callahan story, the regulars flatly refuse to kill Mickey Finn even though a) he's asking them to and b) he's going to ''destroy the Earth'' if they don't. (Eventually they come up with a [[TakeAThirdOption third option]], but if they hadn't...) Later stories ease up on this.
* TimeAndRelativeDimensionsInSpace: In ''Callahan's Con'', a distraught Zoey uses a time machine to travel into the future and make sure her daughter is all right. Thing is, this time machine apparently makes you account for ''where Earth will be in its orbit around the sun'', and neglecting to do this, she ends up drifting in space.
** That book says there are three kinds of time travel. One (mentioned above), the earliest invented, doesn't adjust for the Earth's movement. The other types do: the second (used by the TimePolice) still requires machinery; the third and most advanced (called 'Transiting') uses no detectable apparatus. Very few people can do it: only the Callahans, Nikola Tesla, and [[spoiler:in later books, Jake and Zoey's super-mega-genius daughter Erin.]]
* TimePolice: [[spoiler: Josie Bauer]].
* TheUnpronounceable: Mickey Finn's real name apparently sounds like "Txffu Mpwfs."
** Somewhat subverted in that Mary Callahan can pronounce his name perfectly.
* UnproblematicProstitution: Lady Sally's House is one of the nicest places to work in New York: great salary, nice benefits (including three months paid vacation) and a security staff that's very good at throwing out creeps before they can do too much damage. That said, the place is something of a WeirdnessMagnet, so every once in a while, a real threat will find its way through the door and have to be dealt with ... (It ''is'' clearly established that Sally's House is extremely unusual in this regard, and that life isn't like that for other prostitutes.)
* {{Utopia}}: The far-future, far-distant planet of Harmony, [[spoiler: Mike Callahan's]] original home. How far away, and how far in the future? Well, the light from Harmony's star hasn't yet reached Earth, and humanity has advanced so far that "[T]hey don't even have sad people."
-->[[spoiler: '''Mike Callahan''']]: Well, when I come from, nobody's hungry, nobody's angry.
* WeDidntStartTheFuhrer: [[spoiler: He ''walks into the bar'' (under a different name, of course), and becomes "The Guy They Couldn't Help."]]
* WeirdnessMagnet: It initially appears to be a magnificent but otherwise ordinary bar that just happens to draw alien observers, talking animals, and darts masters who cheat with telekinesis.
* WhenAllYouHaveIsAHammer: Mass-telepathy in some of the later works.
** And even lampshaded in ''Callahan's Key'': Jake says something to the effect of 'it's our only trick, so we might as well try it'.
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