A fun bar in and of itself, the liquor stops flowing at two, followed by steaming pots of piping hot joe. The diner-style vinyl booths are inviting to both the lonely drunk, as well as the post-clubbing make-out session. This towering glass of crustaceans comes jam-packed with what seems to be two pounds of baby boiled shrimp, lovingly drowned in sweet marinara, and refreshingly garnished with a lemon slice and lettuce leaf.
A dangerous dining choice at 3 am? No worries, these shrimp taste fresh as two pounds of daisies at least to our liquor-saturated palates , and we made it home without throwing up once. But sometimes, sometimes, you're simply too drunk and inexperienced to hop a train. Even one that's almost at a full stop.
The best place to realize that is on the west side of the Steel Bridge, which the train crosses at a snail's pace. Instead of meeting an untimely death in pieces under the train, you'll probably give up and quickly walk away, where you'll trip over a curb and gash the holy hell out of your knee. You might have forgotten about the whole thing by morning, but that bloody, bruised leg will be a pleasant reminder of your mortality.
There's girl-on-girl action, guys surrounding girl-on-girl action, and the always-exciting hetero wife-swap action. There's also some happening dancefloor action, peepshow action, glory hole action, all-you-can eat buffet action, and naked hot tub action. And worry not; even if you just want to look around, the Ace is worth mustering up your courage.
The members are extremely friendly, they always respect your right to say no, and everyone talks about sex with refreshing candor. Plus, after you tell your friends you braved the Ace of Hearts, you'll be the chairman of the gossip circle for weeks.
It's also a great place to disrupt the delicate ecosystem by trying to catch handfuls of the little fish swimming around in its murky, shallow water. Your odds of catching anything are exactly zero, and your odds of being yelled at by a security guard are percent—but you'll have fun in the process and learn a thing or two about the environment.
Also, make sure you scrub the shit out of any body part that touches the water—there's no telling what microbes are lurking in there. That last whiskey shot spiked your testosterone, you weaved your way up I-5, and now look: You're plowed and spending the rent money beside your two best buddies. Well, while you're here, it's time to give those big balls of yours some exercise.
The new rules are: It's well regarded that Tommy not his real name throws the most wicked sick teenage booze parties in Portland. No making out on the parents' bed, and no lame-o's allowed! Well, brave seeker of awesome things, get thee to WinCo, a hour grocery store which stocks all sorts of Awesome brand bags. Garbage bags, freezer safe, Ziploc style, you name it. Other wonderful WinCo finds include industrial-size bottles of ketchup, inspirational books, and cheap candles scented like melon.
It's not gourmet food or anything, but the Fir Burger and a milkshake are way above the stomach-opening sludge served in most drive-thrus. And, the Fir reopens at 7 am for breakfast, giving the food in your gut three hours to absorb excess alcohol before you start anew with a nice, fresh Bloody Mary.
Those are sad nights. Get those delicious doughnuts NOW! I mean, sure, Smoker Friendly is a great place to buy discount smokes, soft drinks, twine, and gloves, but we expected a welcoming oasis of nicotine and carbon dioxide, where we could get a moment's respite from those anti-cigarette ZEALOTS. It did look like fun, and we totally would've joined them The steam room is closed from 11 pm-4 am, but with a sideways glance, let's call him George headed for the hot tub.
He was still there later when I was done swimming, smiling with his eyes closed as he made emphatic hot-tub waves in time to the music with both arms. Which, in its way, was very nice — just not my way, that's all. But at night—well, it's still teeming with layabouts and people waiting around for god knows what kind of unholy deliveries Lots and lots of rats. As numerous as the stars, if stars were fast and furry and disease-ridden.
We spent a good 20 minutes trying to grab one, because our blood-hantavirus levels were apparently a little low. Or because we're stupid. Or because we were really hungry, and those little fuckers are as plump as they are quick. If you ever find yourself homeless and hungry, get your hands on a BB gun and head down to the waterfront. It's like a goddamn rat smorgasbord. One thing, though, that you'll never, ever forget: And she's expecting me to sell her a couple of forties at 2: So I tell her, 'Sorry, ma'am.
Cut off is at two,' and she's like, 'Look, bitch I want me some BEER! Then give me two crosswords [lottery tickets]. And while I'm drinking it, I'm gonna think about her, and laugh about the easiest 5 bucks I ever made. We loitered around the front office while a couple asked about room rates. You've got to bring the room key back!
But even more importantly than that, as the manager stressed three times to the couple: That's right—it's the perfect hour to "ghost-ride the whip. First, get your vehicle cruising at just the right speed—slow enough to hop out without busting your ass, but with enough velocity to ghost-ride with style.
Once you've got the car rolling at the perfect clip, it's time to let Casper take the wheel. Pop your car door open and jump out carefully; what you do from here is left to your own discretion. Some people pop 'n' lock, we like to moonwalk next to the car then hop on the hood for a second—but you need to come up with your own routine.
Just make sure your alignment's in shape before trying this. So when the party starts winding down prematurely, you know what to do—let Patrick Swayze do the driving.
And what a walkway it is! Just ask bums—they love it! They party their asses off up there. And at 3 am? Hell, ain't nobody gonna come poking around. Except us, but we brought weapons a yardstick, a phone book, and a gallon jug of water we found in the car. We also discovered that it's probably the best place to read a newspaper at 3 am. There's a copy of everything watch for the ones that're actually "lids" to impromptu toilets , and when there's no partying, it's pretty quiet.
All you need is a penlight and it's like you're sitting in a dark, smelly library. Seriously, where else are you going to find a sleeping homeless couple spooning, a man air-humping a fire hydrant, someone selling "flashlights," a real-life crack deal in which the dealer keeps the stash under his hat, and a sea of people with no direction or hope for the future.
And then, because it's 3 am and you're pretty drunk and kind of an asshole to begin with, you'll probably think it's kind of funny. As a side note, the Greyhound Station is also the best place to be deaf and in need of a security guard. They have one who knows sign language! During our 3 am visit, we spotted overweight indierockers in Joy Division T-shirts and Clark Kent glasses; two year-old kids slouching wordlessly by themselves at a table; Latina chicks with enormous cleavage who never stopped talking on their cell phones; two gay boys with tight T-shirts and impeccable sideburns; and our favorite couple, who rolled up in a black Escalade.
She was decked out in some crazy pink dress from Forever 21, and his hair clicked and clacked because of all the beads in it. While they were waiting for their delicious! She slapped his hand away, and he slapped her back—kinda playfully, kinda not. Then she punched him hard, and he gave her a "dead leg" knee to the thigh that would have dropped a lesser woman. She retreated to the Escalade and laid on the horn until their tacos were ready. Funny thing is, nobody seemed to care or notice. Did we mention Javier's has strawberry nectar?
Specifically, the labyrinth of private viewing booths in back, which are teeming with customers: They even have booths where you can open a little window into the next booth, so you can Part of the reason it's so busy at 3 am is 'cuz some people don't want anyone to see them there puritans! And boy, was he embarrassed! But there really is no feeling like the one you get when you realize something is tugging on your line and you get to yell, "Fish on! No one is around and you can catch and keep all the baby sturgeon you want.
It's pretty much illegal. So if some pesky reporters bother you at 3 am, snooping around and accusing you of violating the law, feign a broken foreign accent and say, "Leave alone, please. He needed a big favor. We told him that was lame. No, we said this place is lame for cutting you off. Look at all the pretty [naked] girls. Dante started slapping down dollar bills for each of us.
Then he threw a wad of cash at the stripper. A server came by to refill Dante's water glass and asked why he was acting so crazy. Dante slumped his head and looked subdued for a couple of minutes. We broke the ice and asked him if he came here a lot.