The nice thing about The Local is that despite my car being stolen, I can still engage in this exercise. So I head out to the Egyptian Room.
I walk in and I can’t figure out what’s on draft. The taps are hidden against a black wall, and when I sit at the bar I feel like I should be in a hurry to figure out what to drink.
The Simpsons is on; auto kudos. But every time I come into the Egyptian Club I feel like I’ve entered Swamp Thing’s Blue World. The lights are tinted so everything feels drenched in blue light and let’s face it, I don’t belong here. More than the sports bars or the vanity projects, this place is not for me. Nothing personal, it says, we just don’t care.
That’s not to say that the Egyptian is a bad or somehow an inferior bar. There’s Session in the bottle, Mirror Pond and Hefe to drink, the wall-o-hol is pretty extensive. It’s big, so you can find a place to hide and talk, or play pool if you like. There’s a maze-like quality here, where I feel I can get lost. Hell, you can watch the Simpsons. I feel like I could end it there and everyone just ought to get it.
The best bars do this. Either through home-replacement or by design or winks-and-nods, they let you shift from one face to another, liquid sex to aloof hipster, gawky reader to punchline master. That chance to bring out a new genie in a shelter is why we leave the house. Or why I leave the house. A chance to have an adventure without the dangers of being lost. A way to have the familiar while smiling at the strange.
Still. The wise man knows when he is out of his element, knows when to tip and move on. It’s time for me to fly.