No more Holy Grail


The Holy Grail is closing.

It’s – kinda weird for me. I have been going there for 15 years. Maybe more. I was going back when it was good, when it was half the size and you had to dress up to get in. People packed in, bar staff dancing on the bar. Good times.

It never really recovered from the expansion, you know. The atmosphere was gone. Even so, it coasted along for years with the crowd it had. Believe it or not, it was classy: $5 cover charge on even a regular night, $10 if there was a band.

I remember when Holy Grail Civic was good – Swallow on stage, so many people the whole place was a mosh pit, looking like nothing so much as the thunderstruck video. Then Ian got rid of the live bands and put on a DJ, and the drug users took over the place.

Civic closed, and Kingston has been a dive for a long, long time. Three quarters empty, piped rap and R&B, Ne-Yo, Usher, and Whitney’s “I wanna dance with somebody” on high rotation. So, not a big surprise, really. Ian is an old man, now. Perhaps being shmoozed by chicks who want to hang out with the owner has lost it’s zing.

And now? I dunno. Some of the most important changes in my life had that place as background. Being in a band, my deconversion. Spend a lot of time there. Spent a lot of money, too. I spent my thirties there. And in a few days, it will simply be gone.

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