Freddy’s Bar. 5Th Avenue in Brooklyn. Freddy’s is a local,bar, not too raucous, not on fire as I expected arriving at 9:30. I am there to see the local barista play his songs with a band. “Chris Buckridge and the Last Friend.” It s Halloween, so everyone is dressed in all kinds of costumes. Some big guy dressed as Little Orphan Annie walks by me while some young hottie is showing more flesh than I can handle.
I am here with my buddy Bill to see and hear young bands. We both are. Young bands trying out their stuff. I guess I am hoping to see something really different. A new sound. I wonder what it was like in Liverpool when John and Paul were just starting. I want to repeat my experiences at Max’s Kansas City when Patti Smith was reading poetry with an electric guitar in the background. Or David Byrne and his boom box at CBGBs.
I start with a double Grey Goose on the rocks. Self-medicating. So I get a bit buzzed before going into the room where the bands play. I order a second at 18 bucks a hit. And this is Brooklyn. I enter the room where the bands play and bump into something and drop the drink. The sound of breaking glass announces me to the crowd. I say fuck and they all laugh. Little Orphan Annie looks at me like I’m a class A asshole plus I’m older than anyone in the room. So I try to pick up the mess of the broken glass and surer than shit I cut my fingers picking up the broken glass. Now I’m back to the outside bar to get another $18 drink and I better be careful since this is costing me a fortune just to hear this band.
It tell Little Orphan Annie that this time I have made it into the room without dropping the drink. He chuckles and ignores me.
My lifetime buddy Bill who has some music chops. We enter the music part of the bar to listen to the band. The band does their thing. I know the singer/songwriter who plays away. The band, by the way, has a female bass sax player and a female violin player. My buddy Bill is in love.
I’m listening to the band when I notice I am bleeding from my finger from picking up the broken glass of my stupid dropping the drink routine. I lick and such my fingers because I know that saliva has some clotting ability. Blood drips on the floor and all over my Iphone, which I am trying to take a few pictures before finally stopping. It’s funny, blood has little or no taste. So what is with these vampires? I’m tasting my own blood, but no taste. WTF? All the time the band plays on.
I watch the locals enjoy themselves. Young people playing the meeting and mating game. Would you like a drink? Hey, you’re looking cool tonight. Speaking of cool the local hipsters are in the bar too. Pork pie hats, fifties look. what the fuck are these posers doing here? Hipsters do not do Halloween. Hipsters do not hang out in bars like this. Go read Burroughs’s Junkie to get it right. It’s ok to want to be a hipster, but live the life, not some Disney version of it. Get real.
Freddy’s is too nice to be a hipster bar. Any bar that says they are a hipster bar, is not a hipster bar. Anyone who thinks they are cool is not. Anyone who says they are a hipster is a poser. You want to be a hipster, get arrested. Sit in a bar where old guys piss in their pants and pour rot gut into their stomachs. Walk the streets alone at night. Hysterically orate Ginsburg into the dark empty streets. Live at the bottom for a while. Touch the bottom. Smell the bottom. Maybe then, you might be a hipster although you may nevertheless know it. In fact, who really gives a shit?
Four shots of Grey Goose later, I walk home through the streets filled with the left overs of Halloween, 2013. Nothing much changes does it? Same half drunk people, a few kids wilding for one night of fun, Late night drivers hoping not to get in a crash, bars still filled with the lost children of this generation, and me, walking home again. Slowly.