|Written by AnDroid|
|Thursday, 23 July 2009 16:20|
For the last few years I've stood at the bus stop every morning and watched the large wooden letters that once spelled TOMMY'S deteriorate and crumble from the building's facade on SE Powell and 35th while the smell of rank seafood wafted by from the fish market on 34th. The last remnants of the sign didn't make it through the winter and have yet to be replaced. Behind Tommy's shines the neon Cocktails and Dreams sign, although the “Dreams” died long ago, and recently that sign was ripped out completely so that only the border remains. Although the club's hours are still posted on a piece of paper taped to the front door, the place has been closed for the past month.
A few weeks ago a guy claiming to be a former DJ at Cocktails and Dreams posted a comment on the Barfly website saying that the place had closed down due to the owner's irresponsible gambling habits. It was a plausible story, considering the nature of the business, but I still wondered if the place would ever open again. It seemed to have so much potential. With four stages, it was physically the largest strip club on Powell and filled that gap between Safari and DV8 – a gap that Tommy's might be able to fill if they were willing to lower their prices by a couple dollars and get a fucking credit card reader, not to mention a new sign.
Yesterday I spent eight hours developing the list of adult stores for Erotisphere (coming soon!) and, my eyes bloodshot, ass sweaty, prostate swollen, penis permanently half-erect, I decided to step out for a drink. It was almost 9pm and getting dark, and I walked around Cocktails and Dreams to see if anything had changed. The business hours were still taped to the locked door, mocking me. There were lights on inside. The back door was propped open with a chair, and walking by I could see two guys tearing shit apart inside. The rumors were true – the place was being gutted.
Feeling somewhat dejected, I walked into Tommy's. A small and extremely attractive black girl was dancing for the only guy sitting at the rail while a couple of guys hung out near the pool table and watched her over the short wall that divides the room. I approached the bartender (who looked frighteningly similar to my ex-girlfriend), and ordered a beer - $5, cash only. Ouch. That's Crystal Ballroom expensive, and this sure as shit ain't the Crystal Ballroom, but oh well, if Tommy's wanted more business I'm sure they're aware that the one thing all Portlanders love is cheap beer, so maybe they hate getting business for some reason. Who am I to judge?
So I asked the bartender what was going on next door at Cocktails and Dreams. She said they were totally remodeling the place. Remodeling?! Could it be that the random rumor I'd read in the comments section of the on-line Barfly review was false? This warranted further investigation.
I took a seat at the rail. The dancer politely asked my name and introduced herself as Kaila. She had a fantastic body – very fit – and put on a nice show. We chatted a little more. She said she enjoyed working at Tommy's, but she wished business wasn't so slow. Like I said, Tommy's, pick up a few cases of PBR tallboys and put a sign out front that says “PBR $2.” I fucking guarantee you'll get business.
Kaila's set ended, all the other guys in the bar left, and a taller black girl took the stage with curves that made my back stiffen and the hairs on my neck stand on end. She introduced herself as Juicy. She was very friendly and sang along to every song as she danced. Juicy turned me on like a light switch. I asked her if she danced at any other clubs. Nope – just Tommy's, for about a year now. So there's at least one reason to come here. I asked her if she knew anything about what was going on at Cocktails and Dreams. She, too, said they're remodeling, and she can't wait to see it when they're finished. She told me that the DV8 owner had bought it. That got me doubly excited.
One phone call to DV8 this morning confirmed it, and don't forget where you heard it first: The owner of DV8 has purchased Cocktails and Dreams and will be reopening the club on August 1st as Rose City Strip. Thanks for the tip, Juicy! And yes, I will definitely be heading back to Tommy's soon for that private dance.