Monday, January 28, 2008

The Gay Bar

I went out to The Gay Bar with my friend Traci last night. It's called the gay bar because it's certainly the only gay bar in Southern Illinois, and quite possibly the only one outside of a hundred mile radius from St. Louis. This was my second trip to the bar with Traci, which also makes it my second trip to any bar since Lori and I were first dating and we were looking for a nice gay-friendly place to socialize and make out.

The Carbondale gay bar is as bad as any gay bar I've ever been in: it's dark, warehouse-y, and crammed full of barely-post-adolescents dancing to ear-shattering techno music. The beer is bad, the bathrooms are gross, and it looks like everything was assembled out of sheets of particle board so the if the owners have to make a run for it, the won't have to agonize about the loss of their furniture. The place really has no redeeming value whatsoever except for two things...it's a great place for people-watching, and it's a ton of fun to watch Traci flirt with every femmey girl in the place. And she's not the kind of flirt that leaves you wondering later, "Was she hitting on me?" She's the kind of flirt that'll start groping any girl who shows the slightest interest in her. I know it sounds like she'd be an obnoxious asshole, but in fact she's such a cute and charming lech that femme girls love her. Maybe if she'd actually take one home and sleep with her she could get over The Worst Girlfriend Ever. You know The Worst Girlfriend Ever, don't you? She's the one who invented sex for you and used it to break your heart? The one that you go back to 100 more times after she dumps you? That Worst Girlfriend Ever.

So my friend is on the market as part of her rehab from her addiction to The Worst Girlfriend Ever. If any of you happen to be interested in a cheap house in Cairo AND a relationship with my cute and charming pal, let me know and I'll hook you up. :-)

During the part of the night when I wasn't amused and appalled by Traci's gleefully slutty behavior, I was amused and appalled by the barely-post-adolescents on the dance floor. In every pair there was one who was dancing with reckless drunken abandon, and one who danced with the anxious expression of someone who alternately worried about looking like a rhythmless moron and about their butt looking big in those pants. I kept wondering why the reckless abandon people didn't dance with each other and leave those other poor people in a booth somewhere to talk about their exes, which of their professors might be gay, and which veterinary schools they plan to apply to.

And so I wondered again why there can't be a nice quiet bar next door to the techno bar, where all the socially inept gay people could quietly drink beer, talk to each other, and not dance. What would be so wrong with a gay bar where people could hear each other? Is there some agreed-upon common knowledge that gay people are boring, and the only way any of them are going to end up in bed together is by drowning out any potential conversations with a techno beat/strobe light combination?

And if there was such a place, would I be sitting alone in it, drunkenly telling the bartender about my cats, my exes, and which of my coworkers might be gay?

Maybe that's why there's no place like that.

14 comments:

Kwach said...

And that is why I say "no thanks" when invited to join in the drunken people-watching revelry. I'm trying to find something appealing in the roster of activities, but so far it has completely eluded me.

CEDARFLAME said...

I would sit next to you. I wouldn't listen to you, but I'd sit next to you.

AND why is the Worst and not the BEST Girlfriend ever had?

Anonymous said...

I thought your description of that bar was generic for any kind of bar ever anywhere. Are there bars that aren't ear-shatteringly loud, dark and grungy? The ones here (in Champaign-Urbana) are at least no longer smoky, since a smoking ban was passed last year, but they're still no place to try to have a conversation.

Jessie

Kwach said...

Cedar, one would hope that if one were having the BEST girlfriend one would be home having her ... or something ... and not at the bar bitching about her. The bitching at the bar thing is pretty much reserved for bad girlfriends, no?

Carrie said...

There is a nice quiet bar next door to The Gay Bar. It's called Fusion, and it's owned by the the same Gay Guys who own The Gay Bar. And it happens to be filled with Middle Aged Gays. Hannah, Dustin, and I go there when The Gay Bar is too noisy. :)

Jazz said...

Hell, it sounds like pretty much every straight bar I've ever been to.

Probably why I rarely set foot in bars now...

Linda said...

um... maybe THAT's how you make your millions in Cairo! You guys could open a gay bar! A quiet one that promotes conversation, and getting to know people... ah, but then you'd attract everyone...

A Happy Downtowner said...

You should come to Toronto, the gay community is quite active and is even starting to create more communities in different areas of the city. Not sure how their bars are but I'm sure there are a few quiet ones.

Ev said...

I appreciate the offer, but I'd rather cut my eye out with a spoon than go to a big city like Toronto. Really, I feel overwhelmed in Carbondale, IL and a day in St Louis requires a week of monastic silence to heal. I honestly don't know how people can live in big cities.

But thanks for the invite. :-)

(I think that qualified as a rant. Sorry...I get a little carried away. :-)

XUP said...

In defense of poor HD and her invite to Toronto... there are many gorgeous, funky, gay-friendly communties within the big city itself and/or within most cities in this country. Take Ottawa, for example - you'd never be home for all the charming, quiet gay-friendly places to hang out.

Ev said...

Whoops...sorry, Canadians. I hope neither of you took offense. It's not Toronto I'm opposed to...well, except for the cold part. I'm not a cold weather person.

I lived in Chicago when I was younger and also in Tucson for years, and I never got used to all those people. No matter what you're doing, a hundred other people got there first. It's virtually impossible to be alone outside the house.

We joke all the time about what we would do if we ever had local friends who would actually expect us to go out occasionally. EEK!

tawny said...

are you people crazy? not thankful for this ONE place for us to go. iv been going to this bar for almost 20 yrs. iv been aroung here when they were closed for extended periods going through owner after owner. name change after name change. when they put the burgandy bar next door it was nice...but the dance bar was the norm...i supported that place when there were only 10 people in there on a regular basis...that is what we do when we are supportive of our ONLY GAY BAR IN TOWN...OK to serious..but i am being serious.

Stephanie said...

I'm too scared to go the bar.
But I want to.
Maybe one day.

Ev said...

You should at least poke your head in there, Stephanie. It may look like a place you'd be interested in, and then you can poke more than your head in.

Either way, you'd be able to check it off your bucket list.