Sunday, September 13, 2009

Joan Jett look-a-like contest

Do you look like you’ve entered a Joan Jett look-a-like contest? Good. You’re ready to go out on the town in Prague.

When in doubt, add something with rhinestones to your outfit, and if it doesn’t hug your body from head to toe, you might want to go home and change.

One woman in my workshop went in search of the perfect Prague outfit and this is what she found: A white T-shirt with a pink graffiti-style design, a black bubble skirt, a tailored cropped blazer, and a dark men’s almost-fedora-style hat tipped to one side. It was punk meets pink, 80s meets now, the Jetsons meet grunge.

I couldn’t help it that I’d tossed my fluorescent leggings back in 1992. I had to work with what I had. My first night out on the town in Prague, I wore black and tried to blend without much luck. It’s hard to blend when your conversation abilities stop at hello.

Also, my default expression is usually a smile and this look is the equivalent of donning a “Prague Drinking Team” T-shirt and running through Old Town Square shouting English expletives. Smiling is not the default expression in Prague. Still, it’s hard to unlearn thirty years of habit, so while I tried to look grim and defiant, I probably ended up looking like I had a mouth twitch.

After dinner, we took a bus past Náměstí Republiky to the edge of the Vltava in search of Cloud 9. I’d read a review of this bar and it claimed to break the mold of hotel bars and have a 360 degree view of Prague to boot. If breaking the mold means flashing neon lights and bad music, then yes, this place achieved the goal. I felt like I’d stepped into a Joan Jett music video only with bad techno and creepy old Czech men dancing with much younger women by the bar.

We stayed long enough to snap a picture in front of the hideous gold and red wall decorations...

...and advise the DJ to play some more up-to-date tunes, and then we sped back to the lobby and called the AAA cab service and a spike-haired woman cab driver shuttled us back to Prague 6 where the Hotel Pyramida greeted me with Suzanne Vega playing “Luka” at 1 a.m.

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