Eau de Nicotine

I wonder what will happen to the true dive bars when DC goes smoke-free in 2007. And will we start talking about nightlife in terms of B.B. and A.B. – before the ban and after the ban?

Seriously, I’m not out to start a resurgence of the whole smokers v. nonsmokers war again. It’s just that I was at Townhouse Tavern for a few hours Saturday night, relaxing with friends, and that bar is a living breathing ash organism. I honestly can’t remember whether anyone was smoking or not – it doesn’t matter, even my pores had a nicotine high.

What will happen to places like Townhouse, with no ventilation system to speak of other than strategically placed fans, the ash of ages clinging desperately to every conceivable surface, a bar so permeated with smoke residue that your very soul is suffused with nicotine upon leaving?

This post appeared in its original form at DC Metblogs
Obviously, nothing much. Townhouse has outside patio seating so smokers can still inhale there after the ban. But I wonder how long it will actually take for the smoky interior to cleanse its carcinogenic fumes, if ever.

Now, I’ve nothing against Townhouse; it’s one of the friendliest bars in town with a kicking jukebox to boot. It just made me think, in the coming era of nonsmoking bars, will dives that still reek become nostalgic? Will the scent mellow into something tolerable, interesting, even (gasp) daringly marketable?

“Mmm… did you smell her perfume? So 2006, B.B.”

This post appeared in its original form at DC Metblogs

As one of the founding editors of We Love DC, Jenn’s passions are theater and cocktails. After two decades in the city, she’s loved every quirky, mundane, elegant, rude minute of her DC life. A proud advocate for DC’s talented drinks scene, she’s judged the Corcoran Gallery of Art’s ARTINI contest, the DC Rickey Month contest, the Jefferson Hotel’s Quill Cocktail competition, and is a founding member of LUPEC DC. A graduate of Catholic University’s drama program, she toured the country as a member of National Players, and has been both an actor and a costume designer before jumping the aisle to theater criticism. Writing for We Love DC restored her happiness after a life-threatening illness, and she’s grateful to you, dear readers. Send your suggestions to jenn (at) welovedc (dot) com and follow her on Twitter.

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