Miniatures Lounge (or is Paramount Liquors?), Route 66, Gallup, New Mexico, Saturday night:
The barkeep at the lounge at the Best Western closed early, so she tells us the lounge down the street is still open, but "they'll really sock it to ya." Well, okay. So we walk 100 yards down the highway to what appears to be called Minatures Lounge, whose entry is marked with a stenciled sign reading "LOUNGE ENTRY." It's a little bit David Lynch, a little bit Pee-Wee's Big Adventure inside - turqouise walls, turquoise booths, 10 or so Native Americans (including one tranny), us 3 white man, and a guy that looks like he's hosting a karaoke night that nobody wants to bother with. Turns out he's just a DJ, introing every CD on a mic via some next-song-themed riddle e.g., "Hey Jay, is that a Dallas Cowboys hat you're wearing? Because you're looking like a real sharp-dressed man;" "Juan, is it 5 o'clock yet? No? Well, it's 5 o'clock somewhere." Etc.). He comes over and introduces himself (Rick), writes our names down on his notepad, and announces us to the other bar patrons, and then goes down the bar and introduces them all by name. Juan's the bouncer, and after a while he comes over and tells us about his years fronting metal band JP Rocks down in El Paso. But he mellowed out ("too much partying") and moved home. Then he tells us that in a few minutes, we're gonna sing "I Fought the Law," like it or not, just on the choruses, it's not a big deal. So we do it, and it's not a big deal.