11.07.2011

Fear and Loathing in Los Angeles

I don't know about you, but I thought Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas was overrated. Lauded by Hunter S. Thompson fans and people who get wasted as sport, no one ever actually discusses the film. They just wish to make it known that they saw it; especially in front of devotees of William S. Burroughs, a talented writer who is overshadowed by ridiculous worshippers who admire him for taking drugs. It almost seems like if one person admits that Fear and Loathing was boring and aimless, they'll all fall down.

There is one great thing about that movie though, and it's Bahooka. In East Los Angeles, I used to drive by a strange building that looked a cross between a tiki hut and a stranded ship. The sign read Bahooka. I said to my husband that we had no choice but to to go there. He wondered why I was so adamant, seeing as how I had never been inside and the restaurant sign featured those two dreaded words, "Family Restaurant."

But I just new. Come on, it was named Bahooka! It was pure camp. Upon entering, the place was deafeningly gurgling with fish tanks, and giant fish in psychedelic colors stared you down. It was woody and dark, and stretched across the walls were tangled fish netting and all sorts of paraphernalia from the 60's. Giant Polynesian drinks were carried out, weighed down by maraschino cherries and pineapple slices. Straws were poked out of coconuts, and dark hallways led to faraway cubby holes and nooks for couples. This was the type of place where people would actually use the term "grog."

And the best part? It was not a family restaurant. It was a cavernous dive bar that happened to be a restaurant. Loud parties gather in the maze of rooms and hallways to eat island-inspired dishes, surf and turf specials, and...oh who am I kidding? They're getting drunk!

We ordered a giant, flaming bowl filled with some cocktail of the tropical persuasion, and it went straight to my head. How can you knock a place that serves giant bowls of fire? I even saw the place at Christmas, and it was a jolly, sloppy party of a place. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas shot scenes in this restaurant, and I must admit, they really had something there.

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