Me, the Bartender, and the Pig

This week was....what I expected. It started with a midterm, which led to lots of coffee and very little sleep. In fact I pulled my 1st graduate school all-nighter before working an 8-hour shift at Bloomingdale's and attending a pancake breakfast in Newark for the middle school students. But no complaints.

By Thursday I finally felt prepared to present my project on publishing fiction novels to the class. Afterwards, a group of girls and myself decided drinks and food were a necessity, and opted to try Shake Shack for their infamous burgers – which by the way, were no let down. We have been meeting almost every week for drinks or homework and have since dubbed ourselves The Pub Club (which infers both our graduate program and after class past time).

Now, several members of The Pub Club had very interesting evenings…

So you know that song “Jump and Jive” from the big band era? It was by a man name Louie Prima, who coincidentally happened to know the Carpenters (Dad's favorite band). But that’s neither here nor there. Just keep this thought in the back of your mind for a moment.

The point is, I walked into a bar named Rudy's with two members of the The Pub Club. One of the girls had friends in town that are part of a band, so we thought we’d meet up with them for some food and drinks. They just happen to be in a band with Louie Prima Jr… who just happened to be at Rudy's. It’s all coming full circle isn’t it?

Then it got crazy. Keep up with me here.

So at this little whole-in-the-wall in Hell's Kitchen, you can order any drink of your preference and get free hotdogs. I know I’ve blogged about this amazing offer before, but it’s a deal worth repeating. Anyways, we all met LP Jr. and his other band mates, which, let me tell you, were quite the cast of characters. Long hair and sunglasses to rat-pack inspired threads...the whole bit. It really made me want to follow around bands and capture their personalities with a pen ("Almost Famous" equals my dream). We also met a strange Austrian man who called himself Barak Obama. But again I digress...

And then it happened.

At first quietly… “Do-do-dodadodo.” Music was building and bellowing from the far end of the cramped one-room saloon. The packed bar knew something magical would happen any moment now because someone (some genius!) had slipped a few quarters in the ol’ juke box.

Then that beat kicked in and the saxophone took over your soul! The slow bounce and bob-your-head dance of the crowd was becoming a full on Swing. Suddenly with great gusto, we heard it:

Baby, baby it looks like it's gonna hail!

Baby, baby it' looks like it's gonna hail!

You better come inside

Let me teach you how to jive and wail…

Some of The Pub Club

Well LP Jr. was going insane. After all, this was his father’s song. But there was a general hype throughout Rudy’s. Everyone was moving, moving, moving right along with the tune, as the bartender danced, whapping the tap beer selections and running up and down the restaurant, hotdogs flying. He even took a picture of our group and told us to text him anytime we were in the neighborhood so he could "have our drinks ready."

I’m not sure that night is repeatable without Louie and the band. Still, I don't doubt we'll return.

Oh and how could I forget! There was this infamous picture of the one of the girls, with the bartender, and a giant pig sculpture that sits outside the restaurant. Not only did we "convince" Louie to give us the rights to his memoirs that night (because we’re going to be publishers, right?) but we also decided to write for our up-and-coming-completely-imaginary-at-the-moment publishing house. Hence the title of The Pub Club’s memoirs: “Me, the Bartender, and the Pig.”

Because that’s where it all really began.