I like being reductive. It allows me to pare any given situation or personality into a handful of quickly assessable elements. Slashing the fat (trivial details like context and color) creates brevity that’s sometimes useful and often absurd. It’s a terrible way to live, but I feel like it’s also the way the world works now — when your culture’s important conversations are farted out in 140-character bursts, you might as well start treating life as a series of TV Guide loglines.
@BryanBurgertime: In honor of Valentine’s Day, I am starting a heart-healthy diet per my doctor’s recent edict. SIKE! I’M GOING TO @CHILIS!
Recently, a reader told me she prefers the columns in which I get brown-out drunk and become embroiled in a funny/weird/terrible situation to the columns that, in her words, “sound like restaurant reviews.” And I thought about that a lot. I take criticism somewhat seriously (as long as the grammar is on point, because spell check!). Unfortunately, in those drunken travelogues, it’s usually better for me to leave out a lot of details for fear of really pissing someone off, including my editor, who wants me to keep my columns “short and sweet.” Not as short and sweet as a tweet but pretty damn close.
So I’ll blame him –– and, actually, his good sense –– for not being able to discuss the relatively odd experiences I’ve had at bars where I am not wearing the right clothing, looking the right way, or, even in some cases, having the right skin color. Editorial space is at a premium here, after all, and the world is stuffed with the easily offended. I’d also rather not spend my time reducing and relegating the thin-skinned to categories like “whiners,” “arrogant jerks,” and “people who love to be judgmental.”
@BryanBurgertime: Best part about open carry is how it weds the godlike power of justice to the human infant-like power of ruining a night out a restaurant.
I’d rather offer our readers useful information.
So check this out. In a variation on ol’ open-mic nights, Lola’s Saloon (2736 W. 6th St., 817-877-0666) is devoting the first Wednesday of every month to local MCs, pros and poseurs alike. As part of Take the Mic!, aspiring/established rappers can either BYOB (bring your own beats) on a laptop or flash drive or freestyle over the DJ’s instrumentals. Along with appearances by veterans Wild Bill and Sir Kutta Dufrane, the inaugural party this Wednesday also features laff sets by comedians Ryan Perrio and Tokin White Guy. The jam is all-ages. (Cover is $5-10.)
@BryanBurgertime: Dear Jesus, just want to thank you for hitting a guy in the dick w/ a foul ball, then sending it into a lady’s face.
And there’s also this. A place I visited not too long ago and dug (“A Landmark Game,” July 16), Landmark Kitchen & Bar (3008 Bledsoe St., 817-984-1166) is celebrating its official grand opening 7 p.m. Thursday. Festivities include live music, a photo booth, door prizes, and some things called “passed bites,” according to the flier.
@BryanBurgertime: You guys can watch the Academy Awards. I’ll be watching the Puppy Oscars (and switching over to the Fish Oscars now and then).
The best part about writing Last Call is striking the balance between snarky and “screw this place” –– and to do it in the few words this column allows. Does brevity depress you? It does me, but I try not to think about it too much. I just go about my business, reducing everything I experience into single sentences –– I think it’s kind of funny when I’m being willfully awful, and it also makes me feel as if I’m moving episodically through the seasons of a long-running sitcom. Or, more accurately, a tragicomic cartoon. If you think that makes me vain at best and a narcissist at worst, congratulations — there’s no shortage of seats on the flight to Reductylvania, and you don’t have to turn off your devices before takeoff. Better still, all of the seats are in first class, and there’s plenty of room for your carry-on baggage, even though everyone else onboard thinks you should have checked your shit at the gate. –– Steve Steward
Contact Last Call at firstname.lastname@example.org
or follow Steve Steward @BryanBurgertime.