Friday, May 12, 2006

More from May 4, 2006

Here is a view of Over-the-Rhine and downtown from Mt. Adams:

(Alternately, check out Over the Rhine, for some super cool music.)

Next, I headed back to the west side and drove past Mother of Mercy, where I went to high school.

I still shiver as I drive past Mercy. This picture was taken shortly after school had ended for the day, and if you look closely, you can still see a few students hanging out on the front steps---I had this urge to tell them to run, run now!

In the meantime, back at Kathy's house, Murphy and Kathy's dogs, Milo and Olive (cuter-than-hell Boston terriers) were hanging out:

That night, Kathy and I hit a number of bars, one drink at each one. She seemed to think there was a bar in East Walnut Hills named the Oar House, which we both thought was hilarious. So we drove around for ages trying to find this place. Eventually, we drove past a bar called the Brew Haus, and I guess her memory was suddenly jogged because she instantly realized that she had totally invented this Oar House place and in fact had all along been thinking of this Brew Haus instead. It was a totally bizarre place. First, let me say that this neighborhood is not one where the likes if Kathy and I would normally be very welcome, and the outside of the bar made me think it might be a strip joint, rather than your average bar. There were no windows anywhere, and the door was conspicuously inconspicuous. We entered with trepidation, not sure what we'd find. However, it was nothing like what we imagined. Against the back wall, were a couple of crusty, old, hardened looking people who were all smoking perhaps their 378th cigarettes of the day. In the middle was a table of kids who had somehow wandered too far from the campus of Xavier University. They were clearly more innocuous than they thought they looked, but they chose good music for the jukebox, and we overheard a few funny bits of dialogue, so we didn't mind them so much. While checking out the other people, we had been sitting at the bar for a good five minutes without anyone coming to take our order. And, no, they weren't busy. There was nobody else up at the bar, but there was also no bartender in sight. Finally, someone unexpectedly stood up from a desk that had been hidden between the end of the bar and a wall, where when someone sits down, they disappear from sight. So this totally non-bartender looking bartender stood up and said to himself, "Oh, people came in."

After we ordered, some other guy--an older man--came over and introduced himself as Tony the Candle Man. Turns out, he sells soy candles. No, he doens't own a shop or anything. He carries a huge suitcase full of a bunch of soy candles, which he carries with him everywhere in case he can make a sale. Evidently, he makes a killing there at the Brew Haus, as the bartender knows him well and does his Christmas shopping from Tony the Candleman. Tony let us smell every single flavor of candle in his case, and I must say, he had some nice candles. I didn't buy any, but Kathy did.

I would be remiss to not mention that one candle was called "Butt Naked." One of the college kids at the Xavier table bought that one, and his friend picked it up, smelled it, and said, "Yeah, that totally smells like butt naked."

Another candle was called "Birthday Cake," which Tony seriously refers to as "Birfday Cake."

After Kathy and I each finished a white russian, we got up to leave. As we walked to the end of the bar, we noticed a semi-alert older woman sitting all hunched over her drink, looking less-than-thrilled with life and totally oblivious to everything around her. She looked up, scowled, and said to the bartender, "Why does it smell like birthday cake in here?"

Oh, and the other odd thing about Brew Haus is that they offer free wireless, courtesy of Rolling Rock beer:

Because everybody brings their laptops to the local Brew Haus to have a few beers and do their online banking...

Here are shots from some other bars that night:

Here we are at a bar in Mt. Adams, where the bartender honestly didn't know how to make a martini. She thinks she knows how to make a cosmo, but trust me, that was not a cosmo.


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