Mike Seely

To call SW’s managing editor Mike Seely a poet of the dive bar isn’t quite right. Because unlike your more grandiloquent writers, who attempt to elevate mundane subjects—like, say, baseball—into a cerebral sphere, grasping for higher meaning with florid language, Seely meets the dive bar exactly where it is. He knows its vocabulary, its denizens, and most especially, its drink menu. He doesn’t try to fluff it up because he doesn’t have to. He loves dive bars and their regulars exactly for how homely, sketchy, frightening, funny, and comfortably unchanging they are—in a city that (until quite recently) has been piss-drunk on its own wealth. If you saw the excerpt we published two weeks ago, or follow his Bottomfeeder food column, you already know how brilliantly funny he is on paper. Tonight you can perhaps also witness the grunt-like, animalistic vocal delivery he adopts after he’s had a few, as he reads from his new book, Seattle’s Best Dive Bars: Drinking & Diving in the Emerald City (Ig Publishing, $12.95). (He also threatens to scat; hopefully accompanying keyboardist Jason Rowe won’t play anything too swinging.) It’s all in celebration of perhaps the most famous and beloved dive bar in all of Seattle—the Blue Moon—whose sign adorns the cover of Seely’s book, and whose barstools have been favored by gifted writers like Mike for 75 years. (21 and over.) MARK D. FEFER

Mon., April 13, 8 p.m., 2009

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