Unhappy with the service at his present haunt, The Flash is putting out a Request for Proposal to gin-mill owners.
Please respond if your saloon meets the following criteria:
Your dive is so slow, you'd be grateful to have groupings of besotted New Times writers and The Flash make the place their regular rathskeller.
A body can hear himself think in your joint, which features a decent, understated, Hootie-free jukebox but never ear-splitting live bands.
You don't mind big-shot editors lighting up stogies, but machinery installed after 1970 keeps the air breathable.
You laugh uproariously at lame jokes.
Even a hint of Anglophilia will not be tolerated.
There's more on tap than four flavors of Budweiser and Coors.
One, maybe two soundless televisions keep an inconspicuous eye on the sports world. Athletic paraphernalia is limited to a faded Brooklyn Dodgers banner hanging so long no one remembers who put it up.
Snacks are the three P's--popcorn, pretzels, Prozac. No bowls of puppy chow with those fake walnuts. If you do serve hot food, it contains cheese products and must be microwaved.
A back door.
No steps, up or down.
You could grow mushrooms in various places throughout the establishment.
Stabbings and other unpleasantries happen only very rarely.
Your bartender is named Walt and has been pulling drinks since at least the Johnson administration.
You'll sign a waiver saying you understand there's always a chance Mike Lacey might show up.
If you think your watering hole even comes close, contact The Flash at the address, phone number or e-mail address below, and we'll set up an official visit in the near future. Extra points will be awarded for proximity to New Times offices in central Phoenix. Finalists will be listed in a future column. Oh, and one more thing.
The Flash sees a fern, he walks.
Taken to the Wood Shed
About a year ago, Chip (Clear-Cut) Cartwright, the Southwest Regional Forester for the U.S. Forest Service, was on the hot seat in U.S. District Judge Carl Muecke's courtroom. He was threatened with contempt charges for allowing loggers in northern Arizona to cut trees in violation of Muecke's injunction on behalf of spotted owls.
This week, Cartwright's on the endangered list himself. In a memo dated September 28, he wrote, "Today I have been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of an Office of the Inspector General investigation. I have not been shown the charges but have been told an anonymous letter alleging sexual harassment and creating a hostile work environment has been filed with the Department of Agriculture."
Given the Forest Service's two years of stonewalling in the current logging injunctions, it's ironic that his memo should go on to say, "I desire that this investigation be completed quickly and encourage you to cooperate with the investigators."
Nonetheless, since this involves the Cartwrights, you can expect fisticuffs from Little Joe (Michael Landon, nee Eugene Horowitz) and Hoss (Dan Blocker).
Who can forget that in the pilot of Bonanza, the Cartwrights rode across a meadow and actually sang words that would later become the instrumental theme:
We've got a right
To pick a little fight
With any one of us
He's got a fight with me!
Pa must be turnin' over in his grave, bein's the Cartwrights always treat wimminfolk good.
Dance Your Miter Off
Apparently, Pope John Paul II and Bob Dylan really hit it off at the rock legend's September 27 performance for the pontiff in Bologna, Italy.
Though the pope's stated intention of getting in touch with youth "and their music" might have been better achieved with a performance by Prodigy than the 56-year-old Dylan, you can't knock a man for trying.
On the other hand, Dylan's song choices ("Knocking on Heaven's Door," "A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall") seemed a bit too obvious for such a momentous meeting of the minds. After all, the first time you meet the pontiff, you should probably go a bit lighter on the fire and brimstone.
The Flash thinks the following Dylan selections would have given the Catholic leader a bit more to chew on: "Lay Lady Lay," "I'll Be Your Baby Tonight," "Get Your Rocks Off," "Rainy Day Women #12 & 35" ("Everybody must get stoned!"), "Highway 61 Revisited" ("Abe said, 'Where you want this killing done?'/God said, 'Out on Highway 61'"), "Most Likely You Go Your Way and I'll Go Mine," and the guaranteed papal pleaser, "It's Alright Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)."
Maybe Bob was holding out for an encore.
Di, Di, My Darling
Psychologists, upholsterers and other experts acknowledge that society deals with grief and tragedy in strange ways, often by poking fun at it. Gallows humor is healthy, the experts aver. Remember all those Challenger jokes? In a sincere attempt to safeguard the mental health of faithful readers (actually, if you've read much of Flashes, you do need professional help), The Flash presents a compendium of Princess Di jokes. Most were located on the Internet. Others are original. Gather the family 'round and see if you can tell which are which!
What did Princess Di say when the Ritz asked if she wanted a room for the night? "No thanks, I'm gonna crash with my boyfriend."
What would Di be doing if she were alive today? Trying to claw her way out of her coffin.
If Di's heart was in the right place, why was it found in the glove compartment?
What did Dodi Fayed say to Henri Paul before they left the Ritz? "Would you like to chauffeur for me and Di?"
What was the last thing to go through Princess Di's mind? The hood ornament.
What did Princess Anne say when she heard of Di's death? "Does this mean I can get out of going to Arizona?"
What's the Royal Family's new nickname for Paris? Gay Puree.
Why did Hurricane Nora remind Barry Graham of Princess Di? "They were both media whores."
Feed The Flash: voice, 229-8486; fax, 340-8806; online, [email protected]