Last Call: Wednesday, July 05, 2006
Grasshopper, Clubhopper

A famous Zen proverb says: “You are where you are.” In Clubland, a similar adage holds true: “The party is where you are.”

Seriously. With the right attitude, you can have fun with two or 200 people. Here or in Dallas, in a club or at home — it all depends on your state of mind. And here’s a little secret: Sometimes, the more alcohol you drink, the more rosy your outlook on life becomes. (Fascinating, I know.)

However, I’m a little distressed that I had to learn this lesson the hard way. Last week, I hung out on three different planets — Las Vegas, Dallas, and Fort Worth — and I had a lousy time where I shouldn’t have, a worse time where I should, and a great-but-not-legendary time where I should have not remembered a damn thing. If only the mantra of Clubland had revealed itself to me before I took off. (Sigh!)

First stop: Big D for the grand opening of Ghostbar, a lounge atop the new W Hotel Dallas. A couple of friends and I waited in line for two hours, watched supermodel-caliber revelers whoosh back and forth, and never even got close enough to the door guy for him to spit derisively on us. An acquaintance of mine who I later found out was also on the scene told me that she — dressed to the hilt, mind you — took her chances with the stairs. Even after hiking 32 flights in heels, she was as far away to getting in as she was on the ground, but that wily gal did manage a sneak peek inside. The place, she said, wasn’t “anything special. The drinks were free, and there was a great view. Other than that, it was a lot of hoopla over nothing.” Honestly, my expectations were so low that the door guy’s actually spitting on us and the ensuing scuffle would’ve made the trip worthwhile.

Next stop: Cowtown’s Jack’s Off the Wall for the inaugural TCU Young Alumni Happy Hour. I walked in, spied in one corner of the beautiful White Settlement joint about 10 white-bread dudes (not my type), walked in the other direction (toward the bar), planted my butt, and commenced boozing solo. Bartender Aaron’s mixing skills took the shiny shape of several delectable vodka-based concoctions, to my great delight, but my hour or so at Jack’s ended up being, well, just another night at the bar. Since I often complain about conducting “research” alone, I should have at least greeted the TC-Youth. Then maybe I could have had a real sounding board for my screenplay rather than the pushover in my head. In the immortal words of Led Zeppelin: “Nobody’s fault but mine.”

Last stop: Vegas, baby! I was there to check out the third annual Modern Drunkard Convention, essentially three consecutive days of liquor Olympics, drink tastings, cool burlesque shows, and just about every other form of debauchery imaginable, all produced by the Denver-based specialty publication (

Big fun, right? For most folks, absolutely. For me? No such luck. I can recall everything. The elevator rides, the games, the conversations, the cab rides, the bar tabs — it’s all in my head, man, and I have no reason why. I partied. I mean, I par-teeeeed, and I had loads of fun. But I didn’t have Keith Richards-sized fun, y’know? I should be rotting in a Reno jail handcuffed to a cross-dressing Siamese midget hooker from Guam. The fact that I’m not greatly troubles me. If the old Clubland/Zen proverb is true, then I’d better get my shit together. Yes, the party may be in me, but the party is totally lame.

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