Wednesday, June 22, 2011

As if Millions of Taxidermy Specimens Suddenly Cried Out in Terror and Were Suddenly Silenced

Unfortunate news from Capitol Hill today as fire strikes the masthead favorite Tune Inn. I know of at least one occasion on which the entire blogroll was present at a convivial gathering there, except for JCF who was no doubt down the street at Phase One. Given the reputation of the kitchen I am surprised that the entire block was not consumed by a greasy fireball.

CRH and I used to share an apartment across Seward Square from the Tune, and we were kown to make an occasional visit to the watering hole in the company of JJV and such. I do not claim to be a long-time regular, but not only do I remember a time before its relatively recent sprucing up - the fire will actually lend some character back to the place - but I Was There to not only dance at the Tune Inn, but to see someone else in our group get kicked out for dancing at the Tune Inn. (I had been against the whole concept and therefore did not draw the ire of the establishment.) In those vastly more irresponsible days it was comforting to know you could be served merely by uttering "glass" or "pitcher" in a time when only one brand of beer was served.

My most recent Tune experience took place during last year's National Police Week, when my stay there was prolonged by being trapped in the back of the place while a bagpipe band played to an appreciative and eventually deafened capacity crowd. (Honest, honey!)

I will take exception to the linked article's characterization of both the Tune and the Hawk-n-Dove as "dank." Neither place was particularly humid; for that kind of atmosphere you headed up the street to Duddington's Underground, whose basement brick walls literally sweated in the summertime and whose attraction was pitched to me initially as "You'll love it, the place smells like a foot."

On a final, tangentially related note, the post title, while I think appropriate, provides further unnecessary proof that George Lucas cannot write his way out of a tauntaun carcass.


EMM said...

"the mix up is understandable." Really? The author is wrong/or has not spent enough time on the Hill. Even in a stupor, I'm sure we'd all be able to tell the difference.

Only once did I dance at the Tune...I was told to stop, but was not kicked out.

Excellent post. Excellent memories.

J. said...

An excellent post. Even though you only allowed me to accompany you there once (or possibly twice), I feel like I know the place -- and the stories. Glad the Tune Inn will rise up from the ashes.

Dancing at the Lesbian Blog? (Shaking head sadly.)

Dave S. said...

@J, I will be the first to admit that my memories of the Tune Inn are not 100% complete. However, I am pretty sure that I never took you there, for which I do apologize, as it was/is quite the place.

As for the tag in question, it was a reach but I'm a big Jonathon Richman fan.

jwe said...

I do remember my first visit to the Tune in August of 1987-- getting yelled at by the old waitress (not for dancing). A right of passage.

jjv said...

I first entered the Tune Inn in the Summer of 1984 here on Hamilton's Semester in Washington looking for housing. From the time I moved to D.C. in 1986 for law school- except for a brief hiatus in NJ for a year-I never lived more than 12 blocks from the Tune Inn. The waitresses name was Bertha, JWE. I briefly had my picture ID on the wall there. I was interviewed by Katie Couric there on Iran/Contra.

Rick Lazio asked me to write speeches for him in his race against Hillary after meeting me there (introduced by a friend who worked for him.

This year saw the defeat of a blue dog Democrat from Mississippi who was there much of the 90's when not living on his houseboat on the Anacostia. Gene Taylor. Great guy and Tune Inn man.

When the great snow of 1996 hit the Tune stayed open and I was able to eat even though I could not get groceries.

Eventually, even the Tune ran out of Gravy Fries (but not beer) before the plows got through.

When I studied for the Bar I had a pitcher there every night after a full day taking those damnable tests from Kaplan.

In fact, in that year I recieved not one but two telephone calls at the Tune from people looking for me.

I remember when the ancient owner who shot the heads would still hang out there and I remember the last head to go up-a boar shot by some boys out of Virginia and given a place on the wall with the 50 year old bear and dear.

It was where we went when finals were over.

When it finally took credit cards I was the second person-after the inimitable Kelly (big Santa Clause looking man) to use one there and break in the new fangled machines in mid 1990's!

God I hope they don't ruin it when the "rebuild."