You must understand the Drake to embrace it. When I was waiting for two of my boys to get out of the loo last Friday night, I spied an intricate set of circular brushed metal meters, the type you might see on an old-fashioned water boiler. They were set against the wall in a mess of thick steel piping, and were labelled with locations such as “LOUNGE” and “PATIO”.
Every red line in every meter was jammed firmly to the right, past the maximum value inscribed. Except one. Oh, it was maxed out too, but it also pulsated, almost imperceptible in its tight vibrations, to the beat of a subwoofer that reverberated some distance away.
And this was only 10 ‘oclock.
The Drake Hotel is a former flophouse on Queen St. West that has gentrified itself into a “scenester” (as Space Cadet calls it) type of place that has no qualms in charging you $30 for eight slices of spring lamb. Thanks to a few million in angel investment, it’s become a tumble of bohemian and art deco and beautiful bodies, smack dab in one of the poorest neighbourhoods in the city. And mind you, the lamb doesn’t taste like $30, but you are still having an incredible time.
Afterwards, thanks to an inside connection (thanks T!), we went to the front of the line at Devil’s Martini. Lots of sound, lots of liquor, and lots of bodies. It’s a dirty job but someone’s got to do it.
Aside: Everything went swimmingly except for my annoying cab ride home. Cabbie claims he takes credit card, but when we get to my place, we find out his machine has run out of ink. Since I only had a ten, I suggest him driving me to the ATM about two klicks away, as long as he keeps the meter off.
So we drive up to the ATM, I get the cash, I step back into the cab and give him the fare plus tip, and he tells me to get out and walk home because he “can’t afford to drive [me] back for free”. I argued – at least as much as you can argue at 3am after drinking screwdrivers – but to no avail. I walked two kilometres home and only realized when I entered the front door that I left him a tip – a tip that technically would have been enough to cover the trip.