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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Bouncer Checks out the Versailles-Like Lobby Bar in the Fairmont Hotel

Posted By on Wed, Aug 31, 2011 at 2:12 PM

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From this week's Bouncer column:

You may not know this, but there is a bar besides the Tonga Room in the Fairmont Hotel. It sits at the back of the Laurel Court restaurant, which is off the main lobby. I stumbled into it after hiking up perfectly vertical streets for about five blocks, from Chinatown to Nob Hill. If you are one of the 30 percent of folks in this town who do not go to climbing gyms on your lunch hour, then your hindquarters will feel like mine did -- a feeling akin to soaking your ass in a vat of Icy Hot and then being flogged.

With great relief I sank into a sofa in what I suppose could be called the grand foyer. There are so many kinds of people milling around in the lobby of the Fairmont that unless you are visibly derelict you stand a pretty good chance of blending in. Its website recommends a "smart-casual" dress style for patrons, which, frankly, could mean someone in a Boredoms T-shirt and Converse, because it takes a certain cerebral bent to like a band like that. I was wearing an ELO T-shirt, which I suppose made me below-average-intelligence-casual. I decided that if a staffer asked me which room I was staying in (which is probably how they approach the riffraff so as not to offend someone like Lemmy, on the off chance that said riffraff was in fact a rich rock star) I would say that I was visiting my in-laws, who were staying there and were due to meet me in the lobby any minute, and did they know what time it was, exactly?

But no one cared. Europeans were jetting to and fro, their overhead-bin-size wheeled luggage pulled behind them like dutiful terriers. This is my new pet peeve -- the invention of the pull-out luggage handle, especially when applied to things that are meant to be worn on the body, like a backpack. I find them especially egregious when the people in front of me on an escalator are employing one and take their sweet time yanking it off the mechanical stairway upon disembarkation, putting my life and the lives of everyone behind me in jeopardy. Still worse are those people who walk in front of you with them, then suddenly switch direction, causing you to nearly trip over their wheeled JanSport full of Beanie Babies and Twix bars. "Maybe they have a bad back and can't carry a bag," says nearly everyone that I bitch to about this. "Maybe they damaged their lumbar vertebrae while building houses for Habitat for Humanity." The more I demonize the Pullers (as I call them), the more people seem to want to leap to their rescue. Well fuck you, Pullers...

... continue reading this week's Bouncer column.

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Katy St. Clair

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