Friday, July 25, 2008

The end of TT's

In the middle of the few blocks that make up Old Town Fairfax, there sits a little tavern called TT Reynolds. This place has been in business since the beginning of time, and for the past few decades has been a pretty hot little local music scene. Back in 2001-2002 when we lived right in Fairfax, I always said I was going to hit up TT's some night and see a band. This, of course, never happened cause I had zero life outside of going to work and whatever was going on at home. I was sad about this, but got on with my life and moved out to Winchester.

After 3 long years out west, we came back to NOVA, and after about six months I decided that I should get a life and go out - and that's what I did. I rekindled an old friendship, and I went out with the couple of friends that I did have. All of this led me to make new friends and the ball just rolled from there. Round about now I'm sure you're wondering what this could possibly have to do with TT's. Alot actually. On my second "outing" with friends I went to Shamrockfest where I made a point to see a band that I'd heard about over and over again - Welbilt. I heard about them on the radio alot, and I wanted to see them live, so we headed on over to the DC101 stage and watched their set. Ya, so they rocked my socks. Loved them from the first chord. Shannon even beboped over to their table and picked up their CD - we were hooked.
A couple weeks later I saw that Welbilt was going to be playing at none other than TT Reynolds and I called Shannon up and suggested we take in a show. She came over and we got ready and headed out the door - entirely too early. I think we got there around 8:30pm and the place was virtually dead. We sidled up to the bar and ordered some dinner and drinks. I had the BEST cheese steak ever. They don't put that crappy steakum crap in their cheese steak. No, they take a steak, and they slice it up real nice, and they put some cheese and peppers and onions on it and slide it in to a toasted baguette and voila - one hell of a cheese steak. Some older fellow thought we were cute and bought us drinks, and I met Matty. If you go back about a year and a half in my Myspace blog you will read an entire blog about Matty. So the first band played and they were alright, and I don't actually recall who they were. All I remember is Welbilt, and I remember that they rocked. TT's is a small place. I like to call it the "College Lunch of GMU." If you're fortunate enough to know the College Lunch then you'll understand that, and if you don't have a clue what I'm talking about well, you've just missed out.

From that night on I spent ALOT of time at TT's. Every time Welbilt played there I showed up (and at that time it was probably about once a month, maybe even twice). I followed Welbilt to other spots that are also favorites of mine now, but nothing on earth is like seeing your favorite band at TT's. TT's was more than a little bar with a good cheese steak - it was where I became who I wanted to be. To have friends, and a life, and let go for just a little while. There's alot of personal significance in that little building. I shared really good times with really good friends there, and things always seemed to be better once I walked in the door.

A little over a month ago I found myself with a day where there wasn't anything to do. Shannon was over and Brad took the day off from work, and Josh was already out of school, so we went over there for lunch. We had to wait for them to open the doors because we were so early, but I didn't mind that we were the only ones there. I wanted to sit and take it all in. I had my cheese steak, and I stood in the bathroom and read the graffiti on the walls. Not one bit of it said "for a good time call 555-45275." The walls of the bathroom at TT's say things like "EBP ROCKS!", "I heart NATE!", and "I saw the best band in the world here tonight!" Just these snippets are significant proof that it's not just me who was profoundly affected by my experiences here. There are alot of us out there.

TT's is having it's final farewell weekend starting tonight. The City of Fairfax sold the building to a new owner who doesn't care about the history, or significance of this establishment. The new guy simply wants to open up a Vietnamese restaurant in that spot (cause that's what Fairfax needs, another ethnic food joint). Tonight and tomorrow there will be bands, just like every Friday and Saturday. The place will undoubtedly be packed, just like every Friday and Saturday. Sunday, that'll be the kicker... On Sunday they'll be having a farewell party, and I'm wondering if I'll even be able to get in the door if I don't camp out, but I'll have to take my chances. There have been a few big events at TT's that I've had to miss over the years because of odd and assorted reasons, but this is one event that just can't be missed. It's sure to be a very bitter-sweet experience, but I'll just add it to my memory book of all the good times I had at TT's.

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