April 5 2006, 6:04 PM
I think most of us have that one friend who we love dearly, but who tends to get us into trouble of one sort or the other on a regular basis. I happen to have several of these friends, but last night's shenanigans were accompanied by one of my favorites. Let's call her Shelly. Shelly and I were planning to meet for "just one drink" at the 3 Kings Tavern last night, because she had yet to see the stylin' makeover the new owners slapped onto the old hipster dive bar. We did only stay for one drink, which would be shocking except that we thought the place was a little too dead on Tuesday nights (Mondays are great for the Needles & Pins retro/glam/soul/Britpop DJ night) and so we rolled across the street to the Sputnik Lounge. DJ John Hill hosts his Hi-Fi Listening Party on Tuesdays when he's not off doing something more important with his band Dressy Bessy. His record collection is random, upbeat, retro, danceable, and infinitely cooler than mine. And the crowd reflected the sound; hipsters in various funked-up thrifty-mod ensembles propped themselves up all along the honeycombed cement bar. But though the look and sound were all about being indie, undie, and drunkenly cerebral, the crowd was top notch and very, very friendly. I met at least six interesting people who chatted me up at the bar for hours, and Shelly met a cute boy who doesn't dress like a dork (very high up in her potential-boyfriend priority list). Sputnik scored huge points last night as well for the always-kind attitudes of Andy and Allison behind the bar. Of course, since our bar crawl had thus far been successful, we got greedy, and scooted down the street to Cafe Cero, a place that I normally love. Bad move. Last night the band was iffy at best and the crowd consisted of a bunch of obnoxious, drunk, greasy jam-band noodlers. Nothing against a good jam band, but I think I lost at least 20 IQ points through osmosis by hanging around the idiots at the bar. Needless to say, we split rather quickly. And next time we're out for "just one drink" on a Tuesday? We may order up a second round, but we'll make it "just one bar" and we'll stick to the Sputnik.