Bad Influence

The weekend before my birthday, I got together with my girlfriend, Kristi. For ease, and so I understand, she will be henceforth referred to as KB, which is all I ever call her.

She had the idea for us to get together for dinner. She came by my house to pick me up, and so she could see my house. It was her first time visiting. She is a fan of the purple wall.

We were headed to dinner at Mi Familia in Woodbury, a few blocks from my house. Embarrassingly, when we pulled in to the parking lot, the restaurant was out of business. It seemed like I would know that, since I drive by it every single day. Yikes. Then, we used Iphone technology to find the next nearest Mexican restaurant. We ended up driving into St. Paul to Acalpulco. It was packed in there, but we managed to get a crappy table by the door. I ordered something called Olivia’s Flautas, for obvious reasons, not really even knowing what I was ordering. It was good though, I can tell you that. KB ordered her food in Spanish, which always gives me a little thrill when she does that. I sure wish I was fluent in another language.

After dinner, we were chatting and she mentioned that her brother, Kevin Ryan, was in a band, which I did not know. They were playing a gig at a dive bar in St. Paul and we decided to go. She actually did not know the name of the band, which I found hilarious. They were an 80s classic rock cover band. Not too bad, actually. They brought to mind some of the classic hair bands of the 80s. Turns out, the band is called Bad Influence. That seemed just about right, given the number of bands that started with Bad in the 80s. (Bad Company, Bad English, Bad Religion, to name a few).

So, there we sat, in this dive bar, with some seriously strange Americans, listening to songs that everyone knows pounded out by a band full of middle-aged guys who haven’t gotten the news that it is no longer 1987.

It was awesome.

Seriously, can’t recall the last time I had so much fun on a night out. And I wasn’t even drunk!

Actually, funny story about that. I’m a bit of a beer snob. No surprise there. However, when you’re in a place like this, you just try to “fit in”. So, KB said she’d get the first round. I ordered a Coors Light, which is the crappiest beer I can drink, hands down. She ordered a PBR Tallboy, which makes her a better trashy drinker than me.

Fast forward about 20 minutes and we’re sitting front and center at a table with Ryan’s family and friends. One of them was going up for another round and was checking what people were having. He couldn’t see my bottle, and so I turned it to face him. When he saw the label (everyone else was drinking Miller Lite) he said, “ooh, fancy”.

Fancy? Coors Light? Is that a joke?

Nope, he thought I was fancy for drinking that beer. Wow.

And, he went to the bar with a $20 and ordered 3 Miller Lites, 1 Coors Light, and 1 PBR and came back to the table with change. My kind of bar. I could have gotten hammered on a 20 dollar bill.

At any rate, KB eventually told me that this was the final show for Bad Influence. They were breaking up because of personnel issues, whatever that means. But, after talking to Ryan toward the end of the gig, it was floated that they may survive the issue and stay intact.

One of the friends was kind enough to take a picture of us, enjoying the music and beer.

Thanks for a fun night, KB, let’s do it again soon, in honor of YOUR birthday!