I need to get out more

Dark Star Orchestra

New drinkin’ hole: Went to House of Blues Saturday night to see Dark Star Orchestra. It was my first visit to the venue. I liked it okay, though the drink prices are like you’re at the airport. Before going to HOB, we had a drink at a cute little bar across the street called Reserve. They pour a nice glass of wine and have an extensive whiskey selection. I’ll go back, even though the median age of the clientele seemed to top out at about 25.

Rolling jackass: Between the parking garage, Reserve and the HOB, we encountered a beggar on a bike. He was one of those panhandlers who tries to give you a line of bullshit, and when you don’t respond by handing over your money he becomes aggressive and belligerent. On our second encounter with him, with us again acknowledging him and again not handing over any money, he called us “dumbass motherfuckers.” Oh you smooth talker. I can’t be certain, but I think he may be the guy I encountered a few years ago when I worked at the Alley.

Dark Star Orchestra: This band strictly plays songs written and/or performed by the Grateful Dead. Specifically, they recreate Grateful Dead shows, song by song. The show they played Saturday night was a recreation of a show at Winterland, December 29, 1977. It’s great fun for the Deadheads in the audience (that would be James in my scenario) to try to nail down which year the concert they’re recreating happened, based upon the song list. I like to drink wine while this is happening.

Dead can(‘t) dance: Look, I don’t want to be mean about this. I think it’s great when people feel moved to dance and do so with abandon. I dig it. But here’s the deal. I don’t know if it’s the weed or the booze or the whiteness or the fact that jam band music isn’t really meant to be danced to, but the dancing at a Dead or DSO show is this herky-jerky, twirling, wiggling, spaced out thing without discernible rhythm. It makes it especially hard to work your way through a crowd. You can’t judge the upcoming movements of the dancers because they’re pretty all over the place, jerking this way and that and then suddenly twirling around. At least they’re nice when you run into them. Which you will do.

Funny money: Around midnight or so as the band was in the middle of its second set, I saw a grizzled old dude in a tie-dye tee shirt (that actually describes about 1/5 of the audience) drop a folded bill. I bent down to retrieve it and saw that it was a $100 bill. You might have smelled a rat at this point, but I’ve actually found a $100 bill on the floor of a bar before (granted, it was at Disney World where magical shit like that is supposed to happen). I chased after the dude to return it. He wouldn’t take it. Said, “It’s only money.” Yeah, it’s great to be all hippy and shit, but come on. After insisting he take it back, and after his consistent denial of the bill, I realized it had to be fake. Do you know how much weed and patchouli this guy could have bought with $100?

you can tell it's a fake in the bright light of my house but on the floor of a dark bar toward the end of the evening between the shuffling feet of dancing people and pools of spilled beer, this looked damn real

The paper is a nice weight and the bill was folded in half, so you don’t notice at first that it’s only about 2/3 the length of a regular bill. On the back of the bill it says:

This shit is BUNK!
Your drugs probably are too…
The Bunk Police are here
to solve your illicit mysteries.

According to their website, the Bunk Police go to music festivals and other places where illegal substances are most likely being sold/shared and test the product. I don’t mean “test” it like they smoke it in front of you. I mean with chemicals and shit. And it would seem that the stuff people are smoking/snorting/placing on their tongues isn’t very pure these days. Not my problem until they start diluting wine, but others might find this of interest.

3 thoughts on “I need to get out more

  1. Reserve kicks ass. More whiskey in one bar than I’ve ever seen… anywhere (obviously not having been to the British Isles or done much drinking in NYC) My IATSE compatriots and I find ourselves there after long and exquisitely morale killing corporate A/V gigs at the GRB or the Hilton.

  2. I will be breaking my HoB boycott come Monday. I knew that eventually a band would play there that I couldn’t resist and that band is The Musical Box. I’ve been wanting to see them for about ten years now and this is the first time they’ve ever played Houston. They are dedicated to faithfully (some would say obsessively) reproducing 1970s Genesis tours. The costumes, original instruments, lighting, props, the whole shebang. Genesis’ lighting director has even given them a bunch of stuff he had stored in a warehouse. They are doing The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway tour right now and I’m really excited, well, except for the part where I pay $8 for a Lone Star, but that’s what flasks are for, right?

    1. Dude. That sounds like an awesome show. I wish it weren’t on a Monday night.

      You should check out Reserve before HOB. Their prices are way better and the place is cute.

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