Internal Monologue: At the Expat Club

Published 2007-03-19

I can’t believe this Kilkenny costs 50 kuai. I am gonna nurse the hell out of this beer.

Why is every bar band in Xiamen Philipino? Everyone says this one is the best in town. They’re OK I guess but they are really hard to distinguish. They all have a tiny “lead singer” in a tiny miniskirt who is in actuality the backup for a big guy with an actual voice. And all they ever play is covers of top 40 hits and oldies from the late 60s.

They drew the Kilkenny all wrong. All I taste is nitrogen. The head looks like memory foam.

Someone just informed me they charge 300 kuai just to sit at a table. Holy cow the dude who owns this place is a genius.

...she’s like the Davy Jones of this Philipino bar band...

50 kuai...that’s like seven bucks. That’s what beer costs at clubs in New York. I bet clubs in New York have better bands than this. Let’s see, at the corner store half-liter bottles of Qingdao are 3.5 kuai. So this is like the equivalent of 7 liters of local beer. In Bizarro world.

This Beatles medly is surprisingly danceable. Although when the club owner takes the stage to “help out” the danceability quotient drops pretty rapidly.

If I were a single guy, I would never ever trust a Chinese girl I meet at an expat bar. They are visibly selling. Alternatively, if I were a Chinese girl, I would hope to do better than the 50 year old balding (and likely married) Aussies you pick up at expat bars. If I were a Chinese girl looking for a laowai boyfriend, I’d join an expat-favored fitness club.

Holy shit they’re playing “Misirlou.” This is so far outside this band’s ability...I must say I’m impressed. It sounds exactly like Dick Dale. Luckily the only dance I know is the Twist. Wait a minute...they’re singing. Singing words. There aren’t any stinking words in Misirlou. What the hell is this? I bet there’s some lame Puff Daddy “I’ll be Missing You” bullshit song in the top 40 that ripped the hell out of “Misirlou.” [That would be the Black Eyed Peas’ “Pump It” — Ed.] That’s like saying, “you know what’s the problem with the Mona Lisa? Not enough glitter paint.”

And now that I think about it, there’s only one guitarist on stage, and yet I hear at least three guitars. He’s barely even moving his fingers. You can’t play “Misirlou” exactly like Dick Dale without moving your fingers so fast up the fretboard you make tiny sonic booms. This band is doing fracking karaoke. The band everyone calls the best bar band in Xiamen is a damned karaoke act.

The hell of it is, it’s a karaoke act for the guy who owns the bar. I am so not wasting my time in this place ever again.

I can’t believe that beer cost 50 kuai.