<<< Me and the man of the hour.
>>> The Triforce - Rick, Jo, and Carrie. We make Saturday nights in music and kids fun.
<<< Okay, buddy, you're cut off.
>>> The whole crew. (Almost.)
Perhaps more upsetting, though, is the loss of our favorite after hours establishment, Old Mill Stream Inn. Each and every Wednesday night after work we all drive down to Historic Main Street in Old St. Charles for good beer and enlightening (well, sometimes at least) conversation. Todd and Ryan, the Wednesday night bartenders, know our names and our drinks. 492 staff past and present and many other friends of the store know that if they want to go out on a Wednesday night, there will always be a welcoming crowd at Mill Stream. Like Cheers, you never have to be afraid of showing up at Mill Stream by yourself because inevitably someone there will know your name.
This past Thursday night, an electrical fire heavily damaged the upstairs restaurant and downstairs bar. (Read the newspaper account here.) Two of our own, Dan and Kevin, were there to witness it. I was pretty tired Wednesday night but now I'm sorry that I left early. The tributes are flowing on the 492 group on MySpace and the debate over a replacement bar during the rebuilding process has begun. In the meantime, to Troy, Todd, Ryan, and all of the other regulars we've gotten to know, we'll be watching and waiting for the phoenix to rise again.
I think the best quote so far is from John Smith, former 492 bookseller and former Mill Stream barback. "This one's for a place so awesome, it spontaneously combusted."
Condo update: We decided to let my parents have it.