14B Orchard St. NYC
When the common-folk bitch about a place being too ‘hip’, I usually roll my eyes, collapse that face into a slacked-jaw, glazed over ‘you’re not even worth my full attention’ pose, maybe a flippant raising of the brow, slowly blink, noisily exhale, and possibly gesture a surrender with my hands. Honestly, ‘too hip’? You’ve completely given up on youth culture? That’s it? You’re going to die at your current level of hip? That’s enough to satisfy you? Why do you even exist, mannnnnnnnnn?
Sweet Paradise is too hip. I attended a birthday party there, and the place was pitch black. After grabbing a few faces and seeing if they felt familiar, I resorted to using my cell phone as a flashlight. Automatic hipness demotion. The music was generic dubstep, blaring out of poorly positioned speakers in a tenement building not built for acoustics (the nerve).
I attempted to buy a drink but was met with a catatonic brunette who kept scratching her face. I ordered two beers and two shots (PBR & Jameson) and she returned with one shot of tequila, $11. Ok, it’s loud in here, allow me to rephrase. Two beers, two shots of Jameson. “Happy hour…is over.” she squeezed out of her sloppy face. Fine. Two beers. As soon as she turns around, a huge sign hangs that was not visible to me prior: “Beer & Shot $5 ALL DAY!”. Five minutes later when she returns with two canned beers ($12), I point to the sign like “What’s up, lady?” and she’s all like “I can’t hear you!” as if my physical gesture required audible translation. I know when I’m being taken for a ride, so I paid for the beers and left. My sister later ordered two whiskeys and didn’t pay but she didn’t seem to notice.
Maybe if this place had cool Yakuza gangs hanging out in the back, slowly nodding to the hipster girls gyrating on the couches, who would then to approached by foot soldiers for ‘a few minutes of their time’, who would be enormously flattered, giggling and blowing air kisses to their girlfriends as they’re carried away, just maybe then I would come back and have a good time.