Cristal Bar

May 28, 2002

Back when I used to work at a nearby office, I came here fairly regularly with a friend and we'd play pinball. Half the times we came the pinball game wasn't working well, or was completely out of order. This is the first time I have been here in a few months, and now there is no pinball game at all. The man and woman who work here are the same, though, a dark-haired mischievous-looking man with a sense of humor, and a younger, attractive woman with red hands, as if they have been burned.

Oldies are playing on the radio, such as "Yesterday", the original "Just A Gigolo," and Jacques Brel's "Ne Me Quittez Pas."

When I sat down (my table is roughly where the pinball game used to be), someone standing at the bar alerted the patron that I was here, and I ordered an espresso. Then the customer served it to me. The same customer served the man who sat down near me a few minutes later.

Right now "Bridge Over Troubled Water" is playing. My table and the one nearest me are along the windows, up on a raised step. Near the corner of the step is a square column with rectangular mirrors on the side facing me. The ceiling is dripping onto the step. The clay-colored tile is missing on that part of the step, and the water has stained the dark stone a bit darker. My table is round with a marbled top and brass edge. The chairs are black metal with mottled brown seat cushions. The espresso came with two sugar cubes. The ashtray is black plastic with the word "Authentic" written on it several times. It's another ashtray that looks like a Marlborough ashtray without ever saying Marlborough on it. It's somewhat upsetting that Marlborough can have such a recognizeable style that they no longer feel the need to display their name on the items they produce. That thought was brought to you by Chuck Berry's "Johnny Be Good."

There is a large mirror behind the bar and a pinkish-white neon half cloud-shaped outline above the bar that, with the mirror's help, forms a whole cloud. Outside is all cloud, one big giant cloud from horizon to horizon with no edges and no end in sight. It's also quite cold (the cold seeps in at me through the window), but the last thing I want to do is start wearing my coat again. It's nearly June!

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Cristal Bar
Metro: Louis Blanc

Price of an expresso: 1.40 euros
Sugar: packet of 2 sugar cubes

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Copyright © 2003 David Sadegh.
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