A Charles Bukowski-themed bar, appropriately named Barkowski, is set to open this Friday in the obviously dark and dingy streets of Santa Monica.*
Formerly Bar Pico, Barkowski is the brainchild of Richard Miller and John Moritz, who took over the property to turn it into the kind of dive that a lowlife poet would love.
Except, it's not. Judging from the pictures over at Eater, the place doesn't really look like a bar that Bukowski himself would patronize. Where's the acrid smoke? The divey atmosphere? The lusty and downtrodden barflies? The bar looks hip, high-end and pristine, the kind of watering hole that Bukowski would most likely avoid.
Indeed, Miller tells Eater that Barkowski is, "a 60s dive bar with a little class and without the filth." The filth is so important, though!
There are so many things wrong with this place that can be seen almost immediately. Barkowski looks like a bar for bougie people who claim to have read "Ham on Rye" once and go out of their way to tell everyone that it "changed their life." It's the bar equivalent of buying a Misfits shirt at Urban Outfitters. Also, doesn't King Eddy already exist, and didn't Mr. Bukowskiactually patronize that place?
In the realless bull-shit world, The Pink Elephant was allegedly
Photo by M. Bouffant, & don't you forget it!
a favorite liquor store, 'though perhaps because they delivered. (The Elephant is not alky walking distance from 5124 DeLongpre. Let's face it, one's "favorite" liquor store is the closest. Well, the closest that'll give you credit; maybe it was his fave on that basis.*Santa Monica may not be as inappropriate as you snobs think, per the Weekly:
7. Santa Monica For a man who was famous for spending time on Skid Row, and who later set up shop in Hollywood on De Longpre, Bukowski spends a lot of time pacing (and insulting) the streets of Santa Monica in this new collection of columns. Perhaps the best nugget comes from a heated speech that he delivers to a bunch of fellow jailed drunks: "Bathing is a disease, catching fish is a disease, calendars are a disease, the city of Santa Monica is a disease, bubblegum is a disease."
In More Notes he spends time taking his daughter to Synanon beach, located near the Casa Del Mar Hotel, named for cultish drug-rehab facility Synanon that was there until 1989.