Monday, June 1, 2009

A Night at Galaxy Hut

As a steady stream of well dressed twenty-somethings stroll down Wilson street to get to Whitlows, Clarendon Ballroom, or any of the other seemingly endless, copy-cat bars in the Clarendon-Courthouse area, I often catch them eyeing the possibilities of a different type of night.

I sit in the booths at the Galaxy Hut and watch them squint, trying to see past the bright half-sun in the window. I love seeing this, as it reminds me that I too once lived unaware of the joys lying beyond the cardboard-cutout letters.

These joys I'm coveting, even hoarding, are simple. A good (but not perfect) jukebox. A huge selection of new-to-you beer. Strange art hanging on the walls. Video game tables in the corner. A red silo (compliments of Dreamo's) parked at the end of the alleyway patio. Simple, yet oddly elegant at the right time of night.

The name of my blog (Control the Jukebox) is a statement of fact I coined after several nights at this fine establishment. The full phrase goes something like "Control the Jukebox, control the night." Trademarks, copyrights, and full ownership belongs to yours truly, suckers. It'll be an album title one day.

The best nights in the Hut are ones spent controlling the jukebox. We play all the songs we'd be singing off key if we didn't have the real thing to guide us home. We argue each other's choices as if we could ever come to any understanding. We toast to shared memories and mourn lost chances to make new ones.

If we didn't, we'd be at the beck and call of someone else's dreams, their feelings of loss, of hope springing anew...

and that's what the Galaxy Hut means to me: making it whatever you want. A strange new place. A pillow you lay your head on at the bottom of a bottle. A fluke. A masterpiece.

My favorite hole-in-the-wall.

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