Saturday, March 10, 2007

Playboy After Dark

An overnight police raid on a Detroit after hours club reminded me of two things: 75 years after Prohibition, there's still a thriving underground network of blind pigs in Detroit and all over the USA and second, like many other American cities, Detroit used to have its own Playboy Club. And how strange does it seem now seeing clips from Playboy After Dark, a cheesy venue not unlike Vegas, Atlantic City, a cruise in the Bahamas, or even Soaring Eagle Casino?

Several years ago I drafted "Designated Driver," a thinly veiled story about soberly driving three very drunk then-friends (from the ex's side of the aisle) that ended at an after hours club in Detroit, one probably very similar to the one where last night's raid took place and within a mile of downtown's Majestic Theatre / Magic Stick.

Back then (in the real experience and in the fictional version), one of the first things that had to be put in order at the time of arrival was an escape plan in case of such a raid -- the guy who took our party there had fled from raids before.

I shopped this story only once, at a Ludington, Michigan, writer's workshop, with poet-writer Jaimy Gordon. She helpfully suggested reworking some of it, drawing out the more sinister aspects. But I decided to shelve it in order to protect the not-so-innocent characters (including, by implication, me). Eight years have gone by since I last stepped into a blind pig, so I can probably write about it straight now, with no chaser and no need for a fictional wash.

But that, dear readers, is for a future post.

Today's Rune: Fertility.


Danny Tagalog said...

Great post. I didn't know what a 'blind pig' was and looked it up in wikipedia to check. Of course we have 'after hours' drinking, but I can't think of any alternative phrases. I like 'blind pig!'

Charles Gramlich said...

Those ladies certainly seemed to wearing business attire.