onyx just wants a ride.

On Saturday, after our day of excitement at the track, Matt and I headed to Triple Rock (after a delicious dinner at a completely-empty Big 10) to see King Khan. Only when we arrived, we spotted a sign on the door reading “SOLD OUT: seriously.” That was surprising. We headed to Palmer’s instead.

The first time I was at Palmer’s, the place was absolutely packed. Wendy and I found a tiny table against the wall, and kept getting bumped-into by passersby. We could smell weed every time the patio door opened. When we ordered shots of Patron, we got juice glasses full of tequila. It was spectacularly disastrous. Therefore, we loved it.

We were surprised that there was a $5 cover at the door, but as it was Art-A-Whirl weekend, it’s safe to say that any number of bands from MCAD will be charging admission at any available venue, regardless of its proximity to northeast. We gladly handed over the cash, and took the last remaining seats at the bar, near the tiny stage.

The first band consisted of a girl in a spangly miniskirt on the keyboard, and a singer that looked like a cross between Kurt Cobain and that guy from Faith No More. As he ‘sang’, he writhed, smashed into people, and generally appeared to be having a seizure. They were more entertaining than annoying, though, which could not be said of the next band. I don’t know who they were or what they thought was music, but they were wrong about it. The entire place cringed throughout the duration of their set, and then we could hear again.

The bartender at Palmer’s is now one of my favorite people in Minneapolis. He’s a giant old guy named Bob, and he was thrilled beyond belief when I ordered a Mahattan with the Jim Beam Black I saw sitting behind the bar. He made a big production about making it the right way, which included taking a barrel of cherries from the fridge and putting in about a teaspoon of juice. He then asked me at least five times if it was good, which it was.

A dude with dreads came up and introduced himself as Onyx. For real, Onyx. He listed off the bands he was producing (I thought maybe one of them was the seizure-band, but I’m not sure; I hadn’t heard of any of them), and asked us where we were going after Palmer’s. We told him probably Hard Times, and he offered to come along and entertain us for a while in exchange for a ride to northeast. Thing is, we don’t really need entertaining. We’re pretty good at it on our own, Onyx.

While Matt was out smoking, Bob came and asked me again about my Manhattan. I told him it was great, and that I liked the Jim Beam Black quite a bit. He looked shocked, because apparently he hadn’t mixed the second one with Jim. I told him it didn’t matter at all, but he started eagerly rushing around the bar, mixing up another one. And by ‘mixing’, I mean he just poured a bunch of bourbon in my glass, followed by a bunch of vermouth. I protested, but really: who can argue with free drinks?

And then the best thing happened… a band took the stage that we did actually want to see: MC/VL, Hell yes! We no longer had any regrets about missing King Khan. They were awesome, and Palmer’s was kind of the perfect venue for them. We hung out and watched them, then headed over to Hard Times for some hippie food, sans Onyx.

My god, are the bathrooms gross there or what?

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