Eureka and Little Red Lion Show

Eureka, California: the country is broken. It’s always been broken, but as a society we are so very adept at hiding the rotting carnage behind the flag bill of rights the pledge of allegiance and all the other indoctrination to make us think that the crapfest that is america is somehow a positive (USA! USA! USA!) thing. We played at the Little Red Lion, just north on 101 and only a few blocks from downtown, an area of discount liquor and tobacco, rundown tenements and condemned buildings. Warming up in the parking lot before the show as the evening sky slowly darkened, we watched a steady stream of people peering out of allies, furtively crossing 101, all doing their best to stick to the shadows and draw as little attention to themselves as possible. Many looked like they had just crawled out of the rubble from an aerial bombardment- dirty, clothes ragged, clutching what few possessions they could carry, eyes looking but avoiding direct contact lest it trigger another round of bombing. People limping, people clearly strung out on meth or booze or pinned from heroin, people who only moved at night to avoid detection. Meanwhile eureka has gentrified its ‘old town’ and so there are lots of boozhie as fuck shops selling overpriced ‘art’ to people even more boozhie than they are. Old town where cops appear the instant any homeless or indigent looking person even so much as window shops.

But for me, the worst moment was right after our actual show. The Little Red Lion is definitely a dive bar, and when we were there there were some locals who knew each other and who took turns playing pool. At one point a young non broken looking woman came in and walked through the bar to the restroom, used it, and then proceeded to leave. On the way out the front door the bartender rudely asked her what she was doing. ‘Oh, I just came in to use the restroom' she replied politely. As she was going through the door he yelled ‘yeah well the bathroom is for paying customers, you fucking piece of shit’. So this is what it’s come to. A person is a piece of shit for using a bathroom.