Monday Update: Happy New Year! Week 7 on Stands (?), King’s Court/Crocodile Bar Review Right Here!

January 2, 2007

Hello 2007!!,

     While my new year got off to a tremendously rocky start, I think this is going to be a good one.  I didn’t get the opportunity to pick up this week’s issue of Night Life and for all I know it could be delayed a day because of the holiday, but this week we’re rolling out my serious Big Words column about the New Year (‘Auld Lang Syne’) along with my review of The Hidden Shamrock with Michael Bly (‘Bridge Over Drunken Waters’), so make sure to pick that up.  I’m still recovering from the massive party at the Buffalo Marriott with Kiss 98.5, so I will post more prolifically later.  I’m enclosing last week’s review on The dual King’s Court/Crocodile Bar Christmas parties.  Enjoy and I’ll write more later,

Tom Waters

My Kind Of Town: King’s Court and Crocodile Bar’s Christmas Extravaganzas

If you ask anyone under the age of 40, Thursday is the official shotgun start to the weekend. I can’t believe it, but it’s been a year since Lindsay and I have been to King’s Court for their Christmas party. I feel like a hypocrite coming out here the same week that I published a column about how I rarely attend Chippewa bars, but there you have it. I love King’s Court, though, along with owner Sam Gigas. I’ve met some real scumbags in my time, and Sam is a genuinely decent person and a stellar businessman. I’ve been coming to King’s Court’s X-mas parties for going on 6 years and I wouldn’t miss this for the world.

Lindsay and I roll in at 7 and the vultures are circling for the free buffet. By 7:30, a fleet of 80 year old couples cram the stairs to load the buffet plates sky high with mussels, fried chicken and pasta. Lindsay and I wait it out while I guzzle my first pitcher and my first double of Knob Creek. My buddy Ed shows up with his nephew and then Gregg Sansone pops in (with a brown fur coat on loan from John Denver) along with fellow local music sensation Michael Bly. The two of them remind me of Jack Nicholson and Warren Beatty back in the day.

Sam Gigas takes the karaoke mic, says his hellos, and leads into a Sinatra cover of ‘The Summer Wind’, weaving through the crowd and hamming it up with the patrons. After the line of freeloaders thins out, I grab five pounds of fried chicken and manage to balance the plate all the way back to a table near the bar that opened up. Lindsay and I grab a smoke and the chain of karaoke pain begins. Michael Bly cycles through text messages and shovels chicken into his mouth. Gregg is swallowing mussels and pasta sauce without chewing and Ed buys me a fresh vat of bourbon.

The buffet whores clear out and when I grab another smoke, some yenta remarks to her boyfriend that ‘They should have had potatoes instead of the Zit-a!’ Happy Chanukah, lady. Dan ‘The Boozeman’ arrives and he’s strangely without free cigars. Lindsay and I hop, skip and jump down the way to The Crocodile Bar for their Christmas Party. Within five minutes, I befriend a Hispanic man who’s eight beers in and doesn’t speak a lick of English. We’re instant best friends. I follow my immigrant friend to the dart board, where he competes with an older blonde woman who has the wrist action down for a rousing round of cricket. Lindsay and I grab a pitcher of Blue Light, a double of Jamison and a plain iced tea for the DD. The place is packed to the gills and the bartenders are all in various states of hotness. Some strange gay man with blonde hair and black rimmed glasses keeps circulating in the periphery and I’m snapping overhead pictures of the crowd for one of my web sites.

I grab a smoke and take in Chippewa in all of its glory. The traffic, the blondes, the madness. When I go back in, Lindsay has secured a table near the front and we make friends with a Canadian HVAC repairman who looks like a six foot version of Luke Wilson. Within five minutes, I say something inappropriate about Canadian people and then I find out that the guy is Canadian, so I apologize profusely and go on a drunken soapbox about how rich the Canadian sense of humor is. I buy the guy a drink and all is forgiven. By the time I get through two thirds of my second pitcher for the night, we’re ready to call it a night. The holidays are wearing down on me and the solid whiskey at both places is taking its toll. On the way out, Ed and his nephew show up when they told us they’d be over in ‘fifteen minutes’. Ed’s fifteen minutes is like an hour and a half in human time, but this is besides the point. I promise him I’ll go back in but I’m doing nothing of the kind. We walk back in and I shake hands with the owner and as soon as there’s a free moment, Lindsay and I do a rope-a-dope and duck back out the door and into Lindsay’s car. Lindsay drives us home and we grab some Mighty Taco before sacking out for the night. I had a quirky and entertaining time at King’s Court and The Crocodile. I wish you both many more years of continued success and prosperity. Feliz Navidad, my friends.

Powered by chicken and bourbon,

Tom ‘yuletide’ Waters


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