Was Bastille Day too brief a fête for you and the Francophiles in your life? Never fear. Hôtel Gainsbourg at Vermillion is a (mostly) weekly event celebrating French film and music.
Perhaps “celebrating” is too strong a word. Make that, “basking in sublime despair through French film and music.”
Hôtel Gainsbourg happens most Sundays with happy-hour pricing all night. We call it “happy hour,” but really isn’t it just a way to more fully embrace ennui, that “echo in us of time tearing itself apart,” without paying a fortune? Hélas, “as soon as there is language, generality has entered the scene.”
A cornerstone laid in the era of the 69th Paris Commune is the only remnant of a once-great edifice of Hôtel Gainsbourg, once containing under its sagging rafters the varied and sundry souls of fairyfooted barge men, opium slingers, taxi dancers and reclusive poinçonneurs.
In this place, they made a life from the bare fittings only of that which their very bodies could support. The vapors of their ruddy wine and derelict choreography could be felt, if not seen, between the interstices of many a Dominical belfry. The misplaced musical nostalgia of their being drew just as many conclusions as blanks, and the blanks were often better than the alternative.
No brass plaque commemorates the obsequious refrain of bratty 60s yeye protégées in short pants whose 12 inch effigies graced the memoried forgettings of that time. No tract exists to lionize the long-winded nights of Dolls and fuzz-guitar lines imparted on the nearest onlooker. No YouTube channel has compiled videos of bopping, ashen bodies with milkboy haircuts and Restoration Hardware noses, awash in amphetamine pallor. No book catalogues the trials and tribulations of a one too-many Twist session protracted by milkshakes and heavy petting. No elegy supplies names.
They would come to be called: the Totally Exhausted Generation.
PS. It’s a DJ night.
When: July 19 (and most Sundays), 7 PM to close
Where: Vermillion (1508 11th Ave)
Free and open to le public.