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Sunday, February 13, 2005

SFist Reprint

Staggering Through Fog

A weekly tirade against all things sober by your humble barrespondent, Drew.

A comedian once said, "There's a big difference between peeing in the pool and peeing 'into' the pool." Very true. The same concept can be roughly applied to bars that allow dogs inside. There's a big difference between letting dogs 'in' the bar and letting dogs 'on' the bar. Now I love dogs as much as anyone, but after awhile of some mangy mutt alternating between sticking his nose in the bowl of peanuts and giving himself a little 'how's yer father', anyone can grow a little tired of 'mans best friend'.

Just about all of the laid back dives in this city have a very open policy when it comes to our four-legged friends, and I would never dream of suggesting they tighten up their stance. I would, however, beg some places to take into consideration that some people just aren't that comfortable having their drink glasses cleaned by an animal that says hello by sticking his face in your butt.

The Toronado in Lower Haight has a lot of things going for it. It's open during the day, usually has some pretty interesting and talkative people at the bar and truly has one of the most mind boggling selections of beer anywhere in the city. Unfortunately, it's hard to enjoy their incredible tap variety because the place is one more dog away from becoming an animal shelter.

Even when we first walked in the place, we were immediately taken aback by the overwhelming odor and 'crack-den' ambience that the Toronado posesses. That combined with the front door always being open and letting in too much light gives the place a disgusting 'Tijuana free-clinic' feel. As much as we tried to not let the overall dingy-ness of the place spoil what was otherwise a terrifically poured Cask beer, in the end we were just overwhelmed by the wafting scent of wet fur and piercing light from Haight Street.

Perhaps we can strike a deal. We won't drag a pool table and a keg into the dog park and maybe bars like the Toronado can keep people's dogs out of my pretzels.

Liver... Out!!



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