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Wednesday, August 7, 2013
Splash Bar To Close After 22-Years On Sunday.
The end of Splash bar happens this Sunday.
When I heard
Chelsea’s Splash bar would be turning off their smoke machine as of this Sunday;
I felt sick to my stomach (just how I felt watching the second season of “Girls”)
and though I live right down the street from Splash; I never go anymore, but
fondly remember how it was. Years ago, long before online hook-up sites and gay
bars that had clean bathrooms; Splash was the shit.
the place where I met many of my boyfriends, friends and enemies. It’s also the
place where I had my last fist fight. When Splash opened in 1991, being gay was
scary in many ways. AIDS was still robbing our community of famous and everyday
people. Splash celebrated beauty, health and what we all needed at the time,
good old fashioned fun. With its surf boards as counters and buff (often
straight) muscular men showering as you gulped down your two-for-one drinks.
Splash was a great place to go, to be gay, and let the stress of your work day fade
away. Often on weeknights, my friend John and I would go and have a drink after
work; followed by laughs; drinks and more laughs.
monthago, my buddy Frank and I went to Splash on a Sunday night. At the door
they we’re charging $10 dollars to get in; and I really couldn’t see the point
of paying and told Frank we should go somewhere else; a manager type guy walked
over, and looked us up and down and said to the cashier, “these two can get in
for free.” Feeling cuter than a set of twins with pigtails, we strutted in
knowing this would be the night we would meet our future husbands; because we
we’re “working it.” And as hot as hell.
some of the same bartenders we’re working; the smoke machine was pumping and
go-go boys we’re letting fools grab their junk for a buck. But this wasn’t the
Splash bar of my youth; now the bar was filled with “Bridge & Tunnel” types
who we’re sweaty and wasted. There wasn’t one looker in the joint! And for a
huge bar with two floors-maybe there was 35-40 customers; not good. Now I see
why they let us in for free; compared to that crowd of beef shank; we were two medium rare Fliet
Mignons ready for the plate. Frank and I get our share of looks, but if we're the hottest at a gay
bar; that's never a good thing.
So like my
Abercrombie & Fitch printed T-shirts I gave up when I got into my 30’s,
Splash will be a fond memory of my youth.