Joe’s gone. Before he left, Nowell, him, and I enjoyed a fancy civic center dude evening with the Kronos Quartet at the never comfortable Herbst Theater (has it always been hot as hell in there?). After checking in with the wives, we headed down to the bars south of Cesar Chavez, which are slowly becoming my favorite places to drink in the Mission: the courtyard at El Rio is downright charming, the photo booth at The Knockout is second to none, and for good measure there’s even a Taqueria Can-cun in the area. Even the Argus lounge makes up for an overall lack of inspiration with free shots of vodka gimlet and projected Kubrick films.
It was good to have a night out drinking. The moon was high and brilliant. Mission Street felt like a loving old relative with questionable hygiene. The city glowed. Joe is a believer in the well-timed sentiment and so we spilled lots of beer over locked-eye toasts as we made our way through the rounds. Each new drink comes with a small slug of intensity and that’s how drinking with Nowell and Joe is. Later, Joe learned that on this side of the Cascades, ordering a “carne asada” gets you a plate, not a buritto. Nowell successfully ordered a chorizo burrito (every time Nowell gets chorizo, it seems to generate a new inside joke) and I got my secret weapon: cheese quesadilla.
A few days later, I found myself south of Cesar Chavez again, with Adrienne to watch her boyfriend’s band play the Knockout on a Monday night. Spontaneity! Plus a chance to revisit the photo booth! Adrienne remind me of me. Since starting graduate school, she’s been constantly embattled, yet she’s full of plans for displaying our crafts to the world. Thank goodness somebody is.