RIP Uncle Joes

I always sneer when I hear someone refer to "my bar."  "Do you own the bar?", I usually ask sarcastically.  Nah, it’s always a case of someone attaching themselves to a scene or a place and a need for an identity.  We all need to fit in, but there is a proprietary air of being a part of a place that I can’t relate to.  And, I can’t help but find that incredibly obnoxious.

I, myself, was guilty of having "my bar."  I guess we always despise what we are guilty of.  "My bar" was a few blocks stumble to my apartment, it had great music, cheap drinks, and an outside yard to spend many unforgettable summer nights with friends.  I found out last night it’s closed.  I wanted to cry.

I knew I wasn’t part of the Uncle Joe’s crowd, and that suited me fine.  I found most of the people who claimed it "theirs" pretentious and in need of a niche.  So, I went when I had friends in town, when I didn’t feel like going into Manhattan, and when I needed to remind myself why I adore my neighborhood.  Sometimes consecutive weeks would pass where I’d spend at least one weekend night there, and sometimes I’d go several months without a visit.   But, it was my favorite bar, hands down, of any city or town I’d visited or lived in.  It always felt like home and I loved it so much, I even sent them a letter requesting they let me create a website.

It was rough around the edges, on a street with warehouses and a remaining long-dead trolley track still in the cobblestones of the adjacent empty streets.  I find that part of the city beautiful and I loved the safe feeling I got at night, when anyone who didn’t know the area was terrified because looked dodgey.  I lamented when they began to condo-ize the area and clean it up.  The neighborhood changes have been both a blessing and a curse, there are now more options to eat, my parents even finally understand why I live here, but in return many of it’s charms were disappearing.  111 First Street, a haven for artists, was closed down over the Winter.

And, so it goes.  It seems they will likely re-open, but it won’t be the same.


what to say about unearthing a bag of letters and artifacts from nearly 10 years ago…

past lives, past loves, a very distant past.

i’d forgotten the fact that i failed parallel parking on my driving exam was documented, even thought i left with a license that day.