Orlando’s The Milk Bar Closed Without Warning

Orlando's The Milk Bar

Without telling anyone, looks like Orlando’s the Milk Bar shut it’s doors. Well, it might not be permanent.

I’ll let Orlando promoter Jessica Pawli tell it.

Jessica Pawli and Orlando's Milk Bar


The Milk Bar’s license.

Orlando's The Milk Bar Expired License


Then, there’s this,

Luke McHenry and Jessica Pawli and Milk Bar

The Suzan they are referring to is local artist Suzan Elizabeth.  She had an art opening scheduled last Friday, but the place was closed.   Apparently, just like other people, she had no idea the Milk Bar was closing. (After pissing off Suzan Elizabeth, folks are still alive? 😉 )

Smelling blog material, I asked Jessica Pawli’s permission to use her material. For the record, she didn’t indicate the bar was closed permanently.

Jessica Pawli and Orlando's Milk Bar 2

UPDATE: A Milk Bar representative emailed me.




Speakeasy: The Last Night of an Orlando Poetry Night

Tod Caviness

Last month, I attended the last night for Speakeasy, one of Orlando’s longest spoken-word nights. Originally, the poetry nights started as The Backroom Words. Then, when Tod Caviness took over, it ended as Speakeasy.

Tod ended the night with these words.

The good news is, I won’t have to give the sex talk. By the time my kid starts making midnight milkshakes, they’ll have fleshbots for that sort of thing. Or third grade sex ed, or Broad City reruns. In any case, I plan on being senile.


The bad news is, senile or no, I will one day have to tell him about Speakeasy. He’ll be timehopping around Twitbook and there will be these pictures. Dad with heavy eyelids and a toothless smirk. That parody of a Wal-Mart greeters’ grin on the kid with the dirty blond hair. The goateed stick figure in a Jesus Christ pose. Dudes dressed up like homeless samurai. Things that allude to worse behavior than there actually was; faces that beg for names. And let’s face it, I can barely remember your names as it is.


Compounding the problem will be the fact that I’ll have to explain poetry to a human being who communicates entirely in emoticons, as we all will one day.


Crazy smiley face / microphone / LOL, he’ll say. Pot leaf / questionmark?


No, I’ll say, we weren’t on drugs. OK, some of us were on drugs. Look, forget it. Before we get into the drinks, the post-show meltdowns, the onstage meltdowns, the endless hangovers, you have to know there were easier ways to get all these things. Even in a place where that let the weird kids on stage six nights a week, we were the weird kids. Watching the regulars ignore us and sneak past to get to the bar was making love in a restaurant and seeing everybody else just sit there playing with their food. Some nights, I almost wished I could join them. Because not only was the sex that bad, it was metaphorical. Unlike the kind the people at the bar would be having.


What happened was, we all had this problem with words. They could be as meaningless back then as they are now, but we loved them all the same. The easy words like booty and ribcage. The difficult words like democracy and alpaca. We spent our days herding these little wayward fuckers around. Taking them in and tending their wounds after the 6:00 news had kicked them in the teeth. Put a gun in their hands. And then, once a week or once a month we’d get together and make them march in straight lines. Sent them to war on each other’s hearts and groins. Shoot the shit like any other barfly, only with armor-piercing ammo.


Okay, he’ll say. But goatee smiley face / dick pic / questionmark?


Look, kid. It wasn’t all pen strokes and politics. Sometimes the best times had nothing to do with poetry. And you really shouldn’t bring that up. Your Uncle Trevor has been reviewing septuagenarian erotica ever since that Tribune / Pornhub merger. I don’t even think he can stand to look at his own penis anymore, let alone Lindsey. It doesn’t help that the Pierres wrote, shot and starred in most of those movies.


But I like to remember the old gang the way they were. Patrick, back before his job with the L.A. paparazzi turned him illiterate. Curtis, whose last book of poetry was composed entirely of made-up slang. Jesse, whose scathing critique of it was the last thing ever published in English by the New York Times Sunday Book Review. Joe, who’s still trying to maintain a decent poetry scene in Brevard County despite the fact that it’s underwater. Brendan, before Michael Bay got the rights to his latest young adult trilogy.


And Butch? Well, Butch is actually doing alright since he started writing episodes for that new Star Trek series. And he’ll continue to do alright as long as those checks keep coming in and that video of the 12 Step Aside Program stays hidden in my safe.


As will happen anytime I speak continuously for more than 30 seconds, it will take my son awhile to pause his game of Angry Birds vs. Duck Dynasty on the VR interface, and notice that I’m still talking. With luck, he’ll catch me before I slide fully into senile reverie and ask me: Pointed finger / open book / gravestone / questionmark?


And I’ll smile like any man who no longer has to get up to pee. Well, I’ll say, yes and no. It’s true your Dad doesn’t write much anymore. But it’s also true that I never really stopped.


You see, I’ve always been shitty with endings. The tidy little moral. The awkward feedback after the mic drops. Wrapping things up in a bow made of fortune cookie slips so I could make it to the bar for one last beer. So the last night, I said, fuck it. I wrote a story that I never finished. The thing just kept on going as the bullshit at the bar became the verses, the private jokes the chorus. The line breaks measured in hugs and bathroom visits, the background music pacing out an unconscious rhythm. I add another few pages every time I visit that bar, even if I have to edit out the parts with Will Walker because the last coherent word that dude said was in 2018.


If I’m lucky, he’ll still be paying attention. If I’m lucky, he’ll be scrolling through his infinite pages of little faces, looking for the one that gets my goat, that pisses me off, that makes me laugh. And all the while, I’ll be looking at his.


Fuck it, I’ll say. Let’s go to Will’s.


Drunk Couple Arguing at Lake Eola

Lake Eolo Fountain at Night

After leaving Downtown Orlando’s Beth Burgers, I walked to Lake Eola. Because I photographed a nightclub earlier, I was carrying my gym bag containing camera equipment.

I sat on a park bench. I stretched out both my legs and arms. Then, I drifted into relax mode.

About thirty minutes later, a young white couple appeared on my right. I guessed both ages early to mid-twenties. Dude’s brown hair wasn’t shoulder-length. Yet, it wasn’t short either. He wore a baseball cap, sweatpants and t-shirt. I really couldn’t see clothing colors in the dark.

The young lady I guess had blonde hair with the patch of another color mixed in.

The young lady walked towards the lake.

“Come on,” Dude said.

“I’m tired of you ordering me around,” the young lady said. “Would you please go away?”

She was almost crying.

This went on for awhile. As he continued ordering her to come on, Dude’s behavior was kind of pissing me off. Yet, I remained quiet.

I keep wondering why the fuck do young girls fall for guys like this.

Dude gave up and walked away. Then, turned and started yelling for her to come on again.

As he walked off, the young lady walked farther down the lake’s edge behind him.

Next, a white guy who appeared to be in his early thirties sat beside me. He wore jeans and t-shirt. I noticed an ink spot by his right eye.

He told me the couple was on the other side of the lake arguing. Now, he was out to protect the Damsel in Distress.

“She told me he knows Taekwondo,” the guy said. “I know street fighting.”

The couple argued some more. Damsel in Distress complained about being ignored. Then, Dude tried explaining. By this time, I figured Dude was afraid for Damsel in Distress and didn’t want to leave her alone by the lake. I didn’t blame him.

Yet, I could’ve sworn I heard him say something about an earlier conflict with “homeless niggers”.

With me being black and walking around with a gym bag at night, I guess some folks would assume I was homeless. Was his mentioning “homeless niggers”  for my benefit? And was he including white Street Fighter too?

Next, Dude walked off again.

“That’s not right, man,” Street Fighter said.

“Shut up,” Dude said.

The shouting match continued until Dude threatened to kick Street Fighter’s ass. Street Fighter challenged him. Dude started walking towards him. Street Fighter quickly began walking away.

Damsel in Distress tried calming Dude down.

“No,” she started yelling. “Don’t.”

Thinking a fight was about to throw down, I put my cell phone on video. Yet, because Street Fighter walked away, nothing happened.

Dude turned and started walking away. Now, Damsel in Distress finally looked at me for the first time.

“You find this amusing for your laughing soundtrack?!” she yelled at me.

Let’s see. Drunk white people was arguing in front of me at Lake Eola. A guy who claimed to be a street fighter turned out to be a loud mouth pussy. Plus Damsel in Distress’ idiot male friend was all hyped about kicking some guy’s ass, someone who might have been mentally ill and homeless. Oh no, I didn’t find this amusing.

Speaking of kicking ass, Damsel in Distress said she was going to kick mine. Now, what would make a young white girl say she would kick a full-grown, black man’s ass? I guess I was just going to sit there, let her swing at me and not beat the fuck out of her.

Dude didn’t say anything to me. He kept walking and Damsel in Distress followed him. If Dude really did know Taekwondo, I didn’t think he was scared of me.

Still, thanks to crazy white folks, a black man couldn’t enjoy peace and quiet at Lake Eola. It was bad enough a Confederate soldier statue stood on the other side of the lake. Now, these crazy white folks fucked up my Zen.

I kind of had an idea what caused the argument. Damsel in Distress didn’t get the attention she wanted. Because of that, her panties got all twisted. Drunk and pissed off, the whole world now had to pay attention to her. It wasn’t a coincidence she happened to stop near me. Was I supposed to be like Street Fighter and play Captain Save-A-Hoe? I didn’t know. I did know when a woman hits age forty and continues this; it ain’t pretty. Watching a grown-assed woman throw temper tantrums is not a beautiful sight.

Because my Zen was interrupted, I stood up and walked away from Lake Eola.

Is the Word “Legend” being Overused in Orlando’s DJ Community?

Eye Spy Dance Floor 3

Before I reached the venue, I heard the headliner DJ was a legend. When I finally heard the legend’s set, disappointment crumbled me.

At another venue, I heard the same thing about another headliner DJ. They were called a legend.

By this time, it appeared “legend” applied to anyone over age forty and DJed since the late eighties or early nineties.

Like the previous legend, this legend’s set tanked also.

Sometimes, I wonder why Orlando falls for this legend crap. Some joker whose heydays are long gone gets the royal treatment…and tanks. Some I even wonder why they are called legend.

It isn’t just the DJ thing either. Recently, I heard an “experienced” promoter owns a nasty habit of not paying DJs. How did the “experienced” person gain access to Orlando’s DJ community? My guess is they talked a lot bullshit folks wanted to hear. Usually the bullshit involves promising success that never happens.

I understand if said DJ created or helped a movement. Yet, does longevity in the game automatically qualifies someone as a legend?

I found out I wasn’t the only one tired of hearing the word “legend”. An Orlando Facebook friend’s post flat-out said the word was being overused.

So, is that the case? Is the word “legend” being overused in Orlando’s DJ community?

Top 10 Ways You Know You’re Dating an Orlando Underground DJ

DJ booth at Sandwich Bar.

The following post is a guest blog by Sid Spurious.

10. They are experts on the caliber of the sound system at Peek, Native, Gilt, Tier, Space Bar, and Sandwich Bar.

9. They know half the people in Orlando.

8. All of their profile pics are event flyers.

7. They are not capable of having a serious discussion about music with anyone who is not an Underground DJ.

6. They remind you about their disdain for pop music at least once a week. But at least once a month, they have a serious discussion on how to rank footwear.

5. They don’t hit on girls… at the club.

4. They decide if they like the music in 5 seconds.

3. They make an angry face whenever they hear electronic folk music.

2. They dance like they have a moderate urge to use the bathroom. (the shuffle)

1. They always get in free.

Love is Dead in the Orlando EDM Scene

Crowd Dancing at Roxy Orlando

The following post is a guest blog by Sid Spurious.

Before anyone loses it, there is love. There are beautiful, soulful, loving couples, and they are usually the backbone of the underground scene. However, they are in the significant minority of club hopping freaks. The majority is a melting pot of single dudes in their 20’s and 40’s and women in their 30’s and 40’s.

The young single boys are full of energy and hormones. They get a pass for their wicked ways because of the lack of blood flow to their mushy little brains. It isn’t their fault! The Orlando EDM scene is seething with good vibes, scantily clad women, and bass lines that make women jiggle. These post-emo bucks, hopefully, have enough wherewithal to imply deeper intent to their target, and perhaps sometimes it’s true. But quickly after tasting the raver candy, the sun comes up, and the party is done.

Girls in their 20’s don’t know what they want, so they don’t count. They are looking for attention, which means they have a lot of sex. Promiscuity in the dark rooms of an after party is a rite of passage too many up-and-coming social wannabees fall victim to. It’s not the young strumpets’ fault, they don’t comprehend the real value of the pudenda. But, it’s tough to comprehend anything when you are still finding the line between slightly buzzed and ‘that girl.’

Electro-scene newbies are exploring the territory and having fun. The girls want ego-boosting attention, the boys want to have sex with the girls.

The real leaders of the love death squad are the men in their 40’s. Now before all the deaf music lover boys get their boxer briefs in a wad, let me state that wrinkly raver fellas are NOT evil. However, they have reached a point in their lives where they justify their actions with a life-is-short mentality. Therefore, they take what they want and leave what they want. All of that glow-stick-watching pill popping in the 90’s has made them overly sensitive to even the slightest real relationship. Sometimes, they manage to find a girl who convinces them to try on the boyfriend sweater vest. Six months later, at the most, they have a panic attack and tell all of their like-minded dj buddies how lucky they are not to be tied down again. There is a reason these men are single in their 40’s. Anything in the realm of compromising is equivalent to attending a gig with a prerecorded set.

Lastly, we have the women in their 30s and 40s. These women have been seasoned by their 20’s like a pair of JNCOs at a rave festival. They have dated their fair share of djs, caught at least one mild STD, acted like the crazy girl multiple times in relationships, paid for dinner more than they will admit, texted a guy too much, and approached for sex like a thousand times. These women grow into old women who write off dealing with men completely. They die bitter and strong as hell.

So, there you have it. Sex, drugs, and alcohol. Everyone is free and loving and feeling at-one with the most dope sounds in Orlando. But true love is hard to find.


Aquatic Bass V: Another Fun Orlando Pool Party Event

Last month, I attended Aquatic Bass V,  an Orlando pool party series.

Aquatic bass 5

Actually, my friend Joe Vaught drove us.  Like usual, the event centered around breaks music. Also, it remained a family-oriented event.  Some folks brought their kids.

Drink prices and food prices were reasonable. If anything, a person could buy a tall Rolling Rock for three bucks. As for food, I paid eight bucks for a combo: a cheeseburger, chips, pasta and a drink.

Rain threatened us twice.  Because of lightening, folks were ordered out of the pool. Still, the party continued.

I do have one complaint. The fault isn’t with the organizers.  I just wish the event gained more coverage.  Not for the sake of gaining a larger crowd, but because I feel more people would enjoy the event.

Just about everyone who attended Aquatic Bass V definitely enjoyed it. Some folks enjoyed the pool. Later on, many people danced, even the kids. Everyone’s main focus was fun. If you enjoy going to places just to be seen, Aquatic Bass isn’t your type of event.

Aquatic Bass VI happens August 15.  I’ll be there.

To see some amazing picss visit Brian Miller Photo: https://www.facebook.com/brianmillerphoto

Here’s my pics.