So Long, and Thanks for all the Fish

Saturday was a lazy day.  A long walk in Venice, and the “mental disturbance” tour of Venice Beach, with lunch and some gratuitous nudity and dog abuse for a floor show.  Regrouping in L.A., Lurleen and I then went hunting for a decent Hollywood dive bar. We strolled over to the Tinhorn to meet the bartender from for the beer special and dinner. Also Lenny Venito.  

lenny venito
That guy from that thing

Duane the bartender had that all too easy smile, like he was selling something (and not just blatantly whoring for tips).

Lenny was rushed but unfailingly polite and patient, even with starry-eyed tourists like us.

But the Tinhorn?  Six Sierra Nevadas for $15 was a decent bar price.  On the other hand, it felt like a mall bar with an identity crisis. The decor said “cowboy,” MMA on the TV said “ooo, sweaty men grappling” and the soundtrack said “pass the Molly, EDM fiends”   Was it a western bar, a tourist trap gimmick or one of the village people?  The overbreaded appetizers said “anything but #3.” The greeter said “not so fast ruling out the third one.” Whatever it was, it wasn’t a Hollywood dive bar.

With some shitty advice to take the subway to 7th ST in L.A. at night from Duane, and a request to come back if we still had money, we headed out for something more authentic, or at least less obviously cynical.

About 412 steps down Highland Avenue was Powerhouse (no not this kind) cocktail lounge.  Ignoring the double entendre and the cave like atmosphere, we landed at the bar for PBR on tap.

Pro tip:  Next time, order something good instead.

Predictably, things got weird.

L.A. dive bar takes last plunge

Venerable Hollywood dive bar takes last plunge. Powerhouse bar in Hollywood. Jabin Botsford / Los Angeles Times. Customers nurse drinks at the Powerhouse bar in Hollywood, which is preparing to close. Customers nurse drinks at the Powerhouse bar in …
Powerhouse Graf

Yes, weirder than this

  • Mark – drunk as fuck.  Overly impressed with his music selection on the jukebox.  His dancing made me glad he wasn’t air banding.
  • Diane – stoned as fuck.  She looked a bit like an extra from the Omega Man.  Took some pictures of me that I want back, but was unable to send them to email or text due to so many buttons and I’m so wasted.
  • Hispanic dude.  Drunk as fuck.  Channeling Glenn Beck all night long
“I thought you were a White guy!”
  • Elizabeth – If Rosie the riveter were a hot lesbian.  Kept leaving her wallet out.  Knew everybody. The one person not fucked up out of their gourd (or headed that way).  She said people weren’t usually so aggro or wasted, but the bar was about to be “improved”[ed.: R.I.P. Power House, Hollywood Dive Bar | LA Weekly.] into a tourist trap with umbrella drinks.
Umbrella drink
Be Somebody
  • Party girls. It’s not a true dive without overdressed party girls mackin’ it.
party girls
this, in a couple of moments
  • Lurleen’s future husband. “Baby i love you! Come Live with me! I’m homeless! Let’s do shots of Jager!  You pay!” Lurleen talked him out of fighting me after I *whispered* that he was trying to get laid.

Pro tip:  PBR kills your whisper voice.

After a few hours of sheer madness, and about $20 worth of drinks, we headed out and down the boulevard. Approaching the Vogue theater from either direction were girls in all white, super short skirts.

Audience:  How short were they?
Gene Rayburn:  We could see if there was stubble.

Evidently it was “white out or get out” night, with music by dj ever.  It was not, as I said (evidently) within PBR earshot of several strutting/queued at the velvet rope, way too young party girls, “teen slut tryout night at the goatfucker strip club.”

Party girl (with stubble): Hey! I’m not a teen!
Same girl: I’m not a slut!
Same girl: Come back so I can fight you!
Me (thankfully out of PBR earshot): Wonder where she hides the knife…

And then Hollywood dive bar night got really twisted.

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