Friday, June 29, 2007
And the mornings come too soon.
Dull brain, heavy eyes.
Thursday, June 28, 2007
Tuesday, June 26, 2007
This should not have happened. Not there, anyway. The post was actually about the differences between Beijing and Shanghai, both in the bar scene and more generally. That topic could, should have provoked quite a lively discussion...... if I had any significant number of locally-based readers. Clearly I do not.
No, instead Denmark-based artist, 'The Earthling', posed a question about smoking in bars here in China. Which prompted The Cowboy - a semi-reformed smoker - to start bemoaning the imminent banning of smoking in bars in DC. Which prompted me - rather because I felt his debating skills were getting a little bit sloppy from recent disuse than because I actually disagreed with him all that much - to get on his case about that. And, well, one thing just led to another.... and another.... and another. And just when the smoking ban issue might just about have run its course, I rashly tossed in another provocation, by taunting the Cowboy (not yet an American citizen but thoroughly assimilated into the culture) about his sympathy for the American fetish with gun ownership. And so the whole thing got a second lease of life.
52 comments (by far the most active thread of any of the posts on either of my two blogs in their first 9 months of life), and more than 12,000 words (at least half of them mine!). It has become a 'blog within the blog' over the last few weeks.
But it has to STOP. It is becoming far too time-consuming.
Perhaps the Cowboy and I will resume our amiable feuding again at some later date (quite probably at some smoke-free, gun-free bar in his manor); but for now, I think we both need to take a rest, and get back to the more pressing business of our lives.
Monday, June 25, 2007
I have commented before (most notably here, on Froogville - but also frequently here on the Barstool) on my weakness for barmaids. It's a common male vice, I know. They're nice to us, they talk to us, they even flirt with us - and they keep us supplied with drink. How can we not love them? Perhaps even the physical barrier between us - the bar acting as a kind of chastity belt - is a strange, perversely alluring provocation. So near and yet so far away......
Yes, I've had it bad for a few barmaids in my time. (I ought to write about The Anchor on Polstead Road sometime.... [done now!])
Luckily, this is one frustration I am spared here in China. Girls are common as waitresses in bars, and sometimes even as spangly-skirted promotional houris plugging some expensive beer or other - but, for some reason, they are just about never seen behind the bar; here, that is a strictly male preserve. (Perhaps it's just that most Chinese girls wouldn't be able to see over the top of a bar?)
No, here the idle infatuations are limited to the waitress, the DJ, that cute girl dancing on her own.....
Sunday, June 24, 2007
Rain, rain, go away.......
Friday, June 22, 2007
Thursday, June 21, 2007
Tuesday, June 19, 2007
Monday, June 18, 2007
Sunday, June 17, 2007
Continuing the experiment, I find that there are only 6 returns thus far for 'Best bars in Beijing'. And 9 for 'Worst Bar in Beijing' - one of which is my post on the execrable Centro (I worry that even bad publicity may profit their wretched business); and another of which is that post plagiarized on an EBizDeal, a compilation of China news used as an advertisement for an IT services company.
My 'visibility', it seems, is improving. What will this mean for the future of this cosy little 'den' that Tulsa has begun referring to as her 'basement'???
We drink to lay the dust
Of old dry thoughts
That sting our eyes
And clog our throats.
But drink soaks down
And fills our minds
Till the drains overflow
And raise from deep
The sullied trash, the debris
Of our earlier lives;
The flotsam and the jetsam,
The sewer stench.
And our eyes are moist again,
Our voices stopped.
Friday, June 15, 2007
Unshackled from earth, soaring -
Open courtyard sky.
Thursday, June 14, 2007
Wednesday, June 13, 2007
A horse goes into a bar and orders a double whisky.
"There you go," says the barman. "But tell me, why the long face?"
And then there's this variation, which I like even better.
A polar bear goes into a bar.
"What'll you have?" says the barman.
"Oh, I'll have...um....er.....(the bear scans the spirit bottles on the optic and the shelves for several seconds before making up his mind)......... oh, can I have a gin & tonic?"
"Of course you can, sir," says the barman. "But tell me, why the big pause?"
Quasimodo goes into a bar.
"God, I've had a terrible day at work," he moans. "Give me a large whisky."
"Of course, sir," says the barman. "Any particular brand?"
The hunchback ponders his options for a moment. "Oh, the Bell's, the Bell's."
And then there are the really silly ones, like this.
Shakespeare goes into bar.
"Get out!" roars the barman. "I've told you: you're Bard."
A terracotta warrior goes into a bar.
"Will you have something to drink?" asks the barman.
"I'm afraid I can't," replies the warrior.
"Why not? Are you on duty?" asks the barman facetiously.
Monday, June 11, 2007
Sunday, June 10, 2007
Saturday, June 09, 2007
Friday, June 08, 2007
By the way, the greatest illustration of esprit d'escalier I can think of occurs in Patrice Leconte's film Ridicule: Et avec le même utensile.