Expectations shape attitudes, especially in the capricious world of Midtown's swinging nightlife. If buzzing nightflies go into a place looking for thump and find six lonely souls on the dance floor, chances are they're going to pull a 180 and head straight for the door. So it was with Seven Lounge on Bagby, despite the chill implications of its moniker."The large dance floor was turning people away. We'd be near capacity but no one was dancing, so people would leave," says Nelson Cormack, one of the owners of Seven.
"It became a dance club, and we never intended it to be that," chimes in Chuck Russell, another owner. "I'm 37 years old. I don't want to go to a dance club. I want to go somewhere where I can hang out and talk to women without having to yell."
So these entrepreneurial cats have remodeled their night spot and split it into two venues. The front has become Level 1 Lounge, which Cormack describes as "a high-intensity lounge, a place where you won't fall asleep." And just in case the progressive house tracks aren't enough to keep you from going gentle into that good night, you can get amped up at U Bar around the corner. Named for its wrap-around shape, U Bar specializes in alcoholic coffee drinks. In Russell's words, "You can get buzzed and wired at the same time, and it's legal." We have no idea what else he could be referring to. The clubs open on Thursday, November 6. 2000 Bagby (at Pierce). For information, call 713-523-9088. Free. -- Keith Plocek
STIRRED AND SHAKEN
ROCKFISH'S KIDDIE COCKTAIL
(A.K.A. SHIRLEY TEMPLE)
It had been a long time since a date of mine had gotten carded. Okay, maybe the young lady I was out with did look like she could be my daughter -- but it wasn't like I'd picked up a high school cheerleader! As soon as we sat down on the stools at Rockfish (5500 FM 1960 West, 281-587-2900), the bartender asked for her ID. At the same moment, I remembered that her purse was buried under the cushions of my sofa. She looked at him apologetically and whispered, "That's okay, I'll just have a kiddie cocktail," squeezing my thigh as she tripped over the last word. A frog appeared in my throat. "Just give me a double Jack Daniel's on the rocks," I mumbled. Sometime after the second round, I had visions of my date returning from the ladies' room in pigtails, playfully jumping on my lap and calling me daddy. My paranoia escalated, and as I looked around the room, I felt everyone staring at us. We sucked back the rest of our oysters, paid the tab and headed for a less conspicuous locale.
2 ounces Rose's Grenadine
4 ounces Sprite
3 maraschino cherries
In a tall soda glass, pour two fingers of grenadine over ice. Top off with Sprite and garnish with cherries. Not recommended for public consumption. -- J.W. Crooker
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So you just bought the newest cable sweater from DKNY, and you're sweating for the opportunity to wear it. Bundle up and head out to Snowfest, where more than 100 tons of artificial snow will give you the chance to roll down your sleeves and chill out with some snow bunnies. And, if skiing and snowboarding are too passé for your hip self, you can have a go at snow skating, the newest trend among the Aspen crowd. 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, November 8, and Sunday, November 9. George R. Brown Convention Center, 1001 Avenida de las Americas. For information, call 713-858-8000 or visit www.texassnowfest.com. $5 to $8. -- Keith Plocek
How Emo Can You Go?
When the world's feeling heavy, sometimes it's nice to put on some black-framed glasses and brood with a crowd. Enter the band Thursday, a quintet that walks the line between new punk and ambient rock. The music often sounds like Robert Smith backed up by Pennywise or NOFX; in other words, Thursday fits right into the genre often described as "you know, kind of like Radiohead." This show is the perfect opportunity to practice your heartfelt apathy. You even might meet someone who sighs as much as you. 8 p.m. Friday, November 7. Numbers, 300 Westheimer. For information, call 713-526-6551 or visit www.numbersnightclub.com. $16.50 to $19. -- Keith Plocek