Sunday, February 25, 2007

The start of something big.

If you go out in Atlanta, you generally want to go the hot spot. The spot where everyone is or wants to be. The place where everybody wants to see and be seen. Where there is a line of folks waiting to be part of the IN crowd.

I generally have been there and am gone long before that.

I did Fridays at the W for Jazz before you couldn't breathe up in the spot.
I did Twist before they started charging.
I did Compound when the original promoters made Friday's hot.

Old School Saturdays? Back when they could have it in a restaurant.
Leopard Lounge? First time I went they had twenty folks.
Verve? They hadn't even finished construction.
Strip? Back when you could move.
Barleys? Before they put the band in on Fridays..
The Mark? Two club names ago...

Don't get me wrong some of my haunts never made it, some stayed on the low, others are still threating to blow up.

Why is that? Why do I get there like the advance scout team? I want to say it's because I'm always on the cutting edge, looking for the next great hangout or spot, ahead of the curve in style and fashion. But...

...that's not true.

I guess I'm just adventurous. I've been to Atlanta's Latin Clubs, Rock Clubs, Swing Clubs (the sex swinging), the Blues Clubs, and I guess I've just gotten lucky. I tend to like a spot before it gets crazy. Or rather before people show up expecting it be crazy, which is a whole different group from the people who come to have a good time and crazy things happen.

It's tough to explain.

Which spot is next? I couldn't tell you.

Barkeep, I'll need the Knob Creek, with just a dash of spite. Don't bruise it.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

A short sermon

Basketball great Dennis Johnson died the other day, and I suddenly miss pro basketball.

There was a time in the mid-eighties when basketball season actually meant something. You had Magic and Kareem running the Showtime Lakers out West, and the in the East the battle for supremacy meant that whoever got the Finals had already run the gauntlet to get there.

Bird, Parrish and the Celtics.
Dr. J and Seventysixers.
Isiah and Pistons.

Those were playoffs you watched like March Madness, roaming the day after a game with oft repeated "Did you sees?" at the physical artistry that was a pro basketball game. The Sky Hook. The Finger Roll. The wild momentum shifts and the last second heroics better than anything on the movie screen.

Then came Jordan.

Some consider Jordan the greatest basketball player of all time. I'm not one of their ranks. Much like the old "Evander Holyfield-Charlie Steiner" commerical from ESPN...I not sure I would put him in the best 50 basketball players. Of all time, you ask? In the Eastern Divison.

To me Jordan, who seems like an affable fellow mind you, represents what went wrong with pro basketball. Before Jordan there were stars, but those stars were attached to teams. After Jordan there were only players.

Players obsessed with shoe contracts.
Prima donnas who swear they're the best thing for basketball.
Ball hogs who don't even remember the fundamentals.
Players with more going on off the court than on.
Players who won't be remembered for their game.

Dennis Johnson was from another era of basketball. Back when you rooted for the team, for pride. When the team meant more than a place for the player to collect his paycheck. Dennis Johnson, who was for a long time THE Ugliest Man in Basketball, played on a real team, not a supporting cast for this year's basketball prodigy. Teams that ran plays, had well coached people contributing off the bench, and in many cases at the final buzzer you couldn't concentrate on keeping it out of one players hands....cause all of them were liable to toss it up.

DJ. We'll miss you.

Barkeep...just some vodka and ice.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Me and the City of Atlanta

Okay, for the last few weeks I've been looking for a house, so that I can "get out of the trap of rent and start earning some equity"...or whatever.

So I find a spot I like, it's roomy, the price is right and it's right on time. I get the appraisal back for more than I'm paying, the inspection only spots minor stuff and the neighborhood has about ten or twelve new houses in the area, so values should be holding steady.

I'm laying out the floorplan, how I'll convert this bedroom into the library/bar, this is the guest room and this other my office, how I'm gonna arrange furniture and picking paints. I've figured out the new route to work and my new grocery store. I'm getting estimates on the minor repairs, appliance shopping and checking out lighting and I'm climbing the walls to get out my spot an into this spot that is just has potential out the ying yang. (By the way...a copy of Metropolitan Home is like Old Man porn).

Then the city of Atlanta smacks in the face. Just goes to town on a brother. *whap whap*

The taxes we got at the beginning weren't the real taxes. The taxes don't double, they almost triple in the week of closing. And I balked.

At one point my mortage broker is yelling at me through the phone, like I'm not about to come out of pocket in a major way for her benefit....but that's a whole other story.

I told the finance person that I had no intention of living in this spot and eating tuna fish five nights a week to make ends meet. I know a few folks that have gone that way and I know they're miserable. For some reason they thought I could afford it, and I'm thinking second and maybe third job to make it work...and then what's the point of having the house?

I was supposed to close on the 8th...I'm out looking at more houses now.

This is some bullshit.

Bartender, some of that boot you keep under the counter. In a dirty glass.