In Excess

So it was the mid-80’s. I was a professional bartender. Yup. That was my job. My life. (Special treat in here for those that read through this trip down memory lane.) I worked AND lived in the French Quarter for four years. I was what was referred to as a “Quarter Rat”. I tended bar at THE destination stop in The Quarter and had a balcony apartment a few blocks away. I had a 9-5 job just like everyone else, right? Well mine was 9 at night till 5 in the morning. 8 hours spent entertaining locals as well as tourists. A couple coworkers and I would go out after work just like everyone else, only our “out” started at 5am. Yes, there are places to go at that time in “The Quarter”.

First place we’d usually go was very near where I worked. It is called Johnny White’s, and it doesn’t close.


We were VERY frequent patrons of this place. I recall, one night, getting off early and heading over there. The place was packed and the bartender JD was “in the weeds” as we called it. The band Ratt was in town, and they were hanging out there. Another bartender and myself jumped behind the bar and decided to help. Apparently we did a VERY good job. JD erased our tab once things returned to normal. Well normal for Whites.

Our next stop on the way home to  my apartment usually consisted of hanging out at The Dungeon for a few hours. There’s a great YouTube video there in that link. I remember the manager Art very well. One time he threatened to duct tape me to the bar stool. It’s because of that night I no longer drink tequila.

About The Dungeon
Originally opened in 1969 by Howard Clark. This was and still is today the rock and roll scene of New Orleans. Only known by word of mouth. This dark intriguing bar down the eerie ally was built on classic rock and roll. Everyone from Kiss, Queen, ZZ Top, 38 Special, Bad Company, and so many more would come here to hang out.

Here’s the entrance to the long alleyway to connects to the bar.

dungeon door

THE DUNGEON NEW ORLEANS_6.jpg    dungeon 2

After leaving The Dungeon, usually about 8 am, we would step out of The Dungeon and step in right next door to hang out at Molly’s.

I do not think people can truly understand the degree of excess that we not only experienced, but also created. It was a time of hedonistic exploration where the money was great, but the saving wasn’t. I think I averaged about $50k a year cash the last two years. Do NOT ask where it all went. People tell me I had a great time and will die with no regrets. What a nice epitaph.

And for those that stayed through this and read though it all…oh brother I hope I don’t regret this….feel free to pile on. 🙂

Here is a picture of ME, the elusive Brandewulf, as seen in his natural habitat of the late 80’s. This was taken Halloween night behind the bar while I was working. Yes it is me, with full on 80’s “stache” and Alice Cooper eye makeup.  Wish I still had hair…and was that thin.




    1. Thank you…and actually it is a vest over a one of a kind shirt. The shirt was made from scraps left by an impressionist painter in bangladesh. I kept that shirt for so many years until Katrina finally did it in for good. There was unique clothing store in the quarter called Bongos where I shopped regularly for some of my more unique fashions. 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  1. Funny. After catching up on reading today, I was planning on writing a post about the way back called, “When We Were Cool.” I was thinking about it while driving my son to school. Maybe I still will. I’m surprised that Paul has not chimed in on this displaying pictures of himself on Halloween dressed as Alice Cooper. He made a rather pretty Alice.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The 80’s were a blast and you were clearly having a blast and working the awesome 80’s fashion. I am a tad younger than you, but my husband was a bartender in London during this time and he also has some great stories!

    Liked by 1 person

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