Sunday, December 31, 2006

will be posting again soon

You know the Xmas holiday can sort of throw a wrench into your life, business is bumping and I have been busy and am now illin'. So no posts up lately, and I will likely get back to it soon.

The holidays have been good. I hosted my family's Xmas Eve here at the Royale. Way fun. The first in my generation to host an family Xmas holiday. I got to beat my sis at somethin'. It was nice. First, cocktails downstairs then eats upstiairs. Grandma and the dogs too.

The season has been good. Great season. Great people. I am looking forward to a new year. The new year does look promising. As long as I can get some room to work. There is so much more out there if we are allowed to work.

I do have some good posts. This town is pretty deep. Far deeper than most give credit. But the ones who don't give credit, only know so much. It is also far more cooperative in many ways. Many ways we do not believe it is cooperative.

Yeah, and I didn't give a proper RIP to Gerry Ford. I was busy busy. I am actually a bigger fan of Nixon. Fascinating man.

Posts coming up on Luckett's, the Row, Fertile Ground, Seattle Contrast and more.

Monday, December 25, 2006

RIP James Brown

Soul brother number one. We will miss ya.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Revolution



The shirt is for a band called the Bill McClellan Motherf*ckers. The shirt has a picture of Francis Slay's head superimposed upon JFKs body in the infamous limo that drove Kennedy through the streets of Dallas. And, in the back of the head is the exit wound flying across the Lincoln. And to the left of Slay's head is the word "blight".

The band, the Bill McClellan Motherf*ckers has gotten quite a bit of fame around town. They have stenciled some graf around town.

I hope Francis has a sense of humor. I know it seems disturbing, but he should be flattered. This is a very interesting way to be immortalized. Years back there were pictures of Thomas Crone were put on a dart board for flyers. That was really funny. The image of the Queen was used in the Sex Pistols illustration, and music about her "facist regime". This is all true flattery in the popular culture. A bit severe perhaps, but still flattering.



This also reminds me of many band flyers and ads over the years. Pictures of Jack Ruby shooting Lee Harvey Oswald with a Fender guitar. All sorts of images have proliferated our society like this.

It makes it interesting. For the record, word is the band is full of "Bierdos" or "Beardos". I am not sure how you spell that.

Monday, December 11, 2006

I love parades

And so do those pinkos over in China. This sounds like a really, really funny parade. The reds have begun parading hookers and their johns through the streets in Shenzhen in the tradition of public shamings, a practice that had dropped off since that red book craze a few years back. The only thing dumber the Chinese did before that craze was the great leap forward.

The interesting part of this article is not the parade, or the reaction to it, but is the fact that this conversation is happening inside China. That is very healthy. It is good to see China begin to have a discussion like this publicly and internally. Granted, I am far more concerned about China arming the state sponsor of international terror Sudan and making deals on their oil than I am having some local cops parade hookers and johns down the street. The parade is just strange. And a little funny. I guess shameful too. Cruel? Probably not, but definitely unusual. Never had a problem with the unusual when it is entertaining. And there is public discussion in China whether or not this is appropriate. I would rather see news like this parade than news like our most favored trading partner China is arming a state sponsor of international terror and internal genocide.

I wonder how much open discussion goes on in China about the Great Leap Forward, the Cultural Revolution and Tiananmen Square. That would be really healthy. Maybe when discussions like that happen, they might be able to comprehend what is going on outside of China.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Nullification of the Volstead Act and Societal Contrast


On December 5, 1933, the Volstead Act, the 18th Amendment, was repealed and Americans could again legally tipple for the first time since 1919.

Since this law was abolished in 1933, a traditional bar reemerged on 3132 Kingshighway and has remained a public house ever since. We have been blessed with the mores of many wonderful public houses for over a hundred and eighty years scattered in the beautiful neighborhoods of this beer city.

In celebration of this wonderful holy day of the pub, the Royale will be offering a few notable specials. We will be offering citizens of Saint Louis all day and all night $2.50 draft Schlafly beers and $2.50 classic speakeasy favorites of the New Deal (gin martini), the All Right Cocktail (Michter's whiskey and Cointreau w/ bitters on ice), River Des Peres(dirty martini) and the License Collector(vodka and soda). The License Collector is especially special in honor of the benefits of the bar industry, with the collection of taxes and open regulation that keeps bars from the scourge of villainy, a villainy that is rampant when the industry is criminalized.

God bless America and the well deserved death of the ill conceived noble experiment.

Steven Fitzpatrick Smith
Proprietor
The Royale Food and Spirits

===

I love the News Hour. I love that it is on podcasts.

There was a great comment early in the evening on the state of society in Iraq. Mark Shields had some thoughts on our progress:

we took a brutal, repressive, stable, secular Iraq and turned it into a brutal, unstable, theocratic, and unlivable Iraq.

This is a country that has already experienced untold atrocities over the past 25 years under the tyranny of Saddam Hussein, and it now has people who claim religion can justify hunting down and detaining/killing traders that sell something as simple as wine. Strange evolution of violence.

There was also an interesting report on the fundamentalist movement in Turkey on the News Hour. Understanding Turkey is to gain an interesting perspective in understanding the dangers to the world from this extremism that is taking hold. This is a dangerous direction that Turkey may move toward. Turkey is the only mid east Muslim democracy. It has a long proud tradtion of government as a secular democracy in a country that is nearly entirely Muslim and with a strong conservative component.

What caught my attention was the following phrase from the report:

MARGARET WARNER: Bedri Baykam is a prominent artist and an ardent politically active secularist. He points to steps that the Justice and Development Party, or AKP, has taken at the national and municipal level: rewriting school books to insert Islamic themes; trying to restrict alcohol-serving restaurants to ghettoized red zones outside the cities; campaigning, though not yet succeeding, to lift the ban on headscarves in universities and government buildings.

Ghettoized Red Zones. It makes me think of something I heard once before, but a bit closer to home.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Royale featured on World Wide Webs Commercial

The rest of the story is here.

The kind folks at Woot.com shot at commercial last week at the Royale.






Here it is. It includes some nice interviews of local roustabouts and characters, including my close family member Mister Hercules.

Friday, December 01, 2006

So I had some family in town at the bar



The resemblance is amazing. You can hardly tell us apart. You can see it in that natural fur Smith sweater.

Xmas in Darfur



Plus this week's Royale update.