It's Friday! Time for another 'tru-ish' tale about Colfax and the Mile High City. A new 30 MILES OF CRAZY! (#43)! This week: A Question of Priorities... or YES, I DID ANOTHER COMIC STRIP THAT TAKES PLACE AT THE LION'S LAIR.
The World Famous Lion's Lair... No frills space for a beer and a shot. The bar has been there for years (I hear various stories, but can be traced back to the 50's or 20s [as a dancehall] depending who you ask) and to me, best represents what Colfax Avenue is: barebones, down low, dirty place full of stories and awesome characters.
This was also one of the first bars I found myself in when I finally moved to Denver (living only a couple blocks away also helps). Not only had I been hearing about that place for years (even before I started visiting the city), but at that first night there was able to see one of the best, most welcoming (at least to me) events after I'd only been living in the Mile High City for less than a month. If Denver was some sort of communicable disease, I got it that night from the sheer press of the crowd around me. Yes, it was Slim Cessna's Auto Club show in such an intimate setting.
Yes, I used the word 'intimate' which in all ways seems wrong. It kind of brings to mind singer/songwriters strumming on acoustic guitars, singing about their lost cat by candlelight... which is totally not the case if you've ever set foot in the place. The size of the Lair is so small that you can be punched on one side of the bar and still hit the wall of the other, likely hitting a half a dozen band stickers that have been placed there over the years (I can still find the sticker of a local Philly band that I saw many times in the 90's among the collection of band debris scattered over the Lair's walls). That first night, and most other nights I've been there for shows are cramped, beer soaked, rowdy, near riots. People yelling for drinks or at each other; booze being tossed onto the floor, over the patrons, and down their gullets; shoving matches that could be called dancing or drunken stumbles; and music blaring over everything, demanding some attention. Events that have to be experienced to be believed.
Originally from Philadelphia and Boston (where he picked up the annoying habit of using "wicked" as an adjective), Karl Christian is the writer/artist of such comics as 'Angst Boy Comics', 'Sturm und Drang', 'Schadenfreude', as well as 'Byron' for SLG Publishing and other comical tragedies and drunken accounts for Modern Drunkard Magazine. Karl now lives in Denver, CO with a large collection of tiki mugs and a pair of cats that stalk him for food. He also hates writing about himself in the third person. It's creepy.