The Brick

Samuel Towns

Where you’re more than just another brick in the wall

By going to the same bar every night, you expect to see the same folks every time. These people may not be your friends, but hey, at least everybody knows your name.

The Brick, one of Kansas City’s most infamous bars, is located at 18th and McGee streets in Kansas City.

The small nighttime hotspot boasts a patronage that may just as well have been plucked straight from an episode of “Cheers.” During a visit to the Brick, you’re sure to find Sam Malone’s equivalent pouring drafts with a smile and Norm Peterson’s quipping left and right. Plus, everyone’s favorite mailman, Cliff Clavin, ranting about this and that will be there as Dr. Frasier Crane sits by, psychoanalyzing his every word. These “usuals” become our security blankets. We take comfort in knowing that they’ll always be around and we grow to enjoy their company. They’ve come to form a tight-knit circle at the Brick that comes frighteningly close to resembling a family.

Every day, without fail, night blankets KC. And, as if the sun going down was some sort of Brick-Bat-signal, the whole gang scurries to 18th and McGee Streets. Done with work now and finally at the Brick’s bar, the regulars sit, assessing the day’s damages. Each then calculates an appropriate level of intoxication in reparation and consumes accordingly.

Topics of discussion range vastly throughout a typical night. Revelry ensues. Simultaneously, thought-processes regress and considerable ass- grabbing takes place. PBR puddles sully the already grimy tile floor.

This is where my analogy between the popular TV show “Cheers” and the Crossroads Art District’s infamous Brick flounders.

Bar-life is dirty; TV shows are clean. Bar-life also tends to be expensive. A bar is a terrible place to meet a girl too (a lesson driven home in a hilarious scene from “Superbad”).

Rest assured, though, the good times do roll at the Brick. By hosting events every night of the week, they make sure of it.

Every Monday, karaoke attacks the quaint bar. Some (myself included) go up on the small stage as drunken buffoons, squawking their way clumsily through a personal favorite (what may have once been a respected tune). But the majority of the Monday night crowd at the Brick can actually sing, which makes for an earful of unique and unexpected vocal stylings.

If you’re not into public embarrassment, though, perhaps karaoke Mondays aren’t for you. How do you feel about tacos? Every Tuesday, from 5-10 p.m., the Brick offers $0.75 tacos, which can be paired perfectly with a tallboy of Pabst.

Wednesday night, from 5-10 p.m., is Burger Night. Take a trip up to 18th and McGee streets and treat yourself to a delicious burger, among the best that KC has to offer.

If you’re more of a trivia buff than a burger buff, then tune in on Fridays, when Roland hosts his own Trivia Night!

Feeling as if you’re somewhere you belong is a rare condition for most. If you crave it as much as I do, acquaint yourself with the Bricks’ regulars. Even if your singing abilities are atrocious; even if you’re a drab psychoanalytical doctor with a successful spin-off series; even if you met your wife in a bar; you’ll be welcomed with open arms and delicious, delicious tacos.

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