“Oh good, a ping-pong table to go with the deer head on the wall.” -JB

We marched down the street giddy that a bar was still open. An alleyway with a large metal gate protected sturdy wooden doors behind it. “Where the hell are we?” Clutch asked. There were no signs we were at a bar, let alone if the place was open. “It’s a safe house,” I replied. “In the event of a Zombie Apocalypse head to Ruba Hall,” I added. A large man flashed a smile and checked identification. “Go right on ahead gentlemen it’s getting packed quickly,” he laughed. A high-pitched cackle rang out behind us. A woman with a shopping cart and 20 coats appeared out of nowhere. The bouncer stopped laughing. “What did I tell you woman? You can’t be here, get goin’!” he yelled. She shrieked and mumbled some gibberish about the sky as she walked away. She had no clue we were two steps passed crazy right now; the Circus still had it’s intoxicating grip on us. We pushed open the heavy door and stepped inside.

Our eyes adjusted to to low lighting. The place couldn’t decide if it was an old church or a hunting lodge. Tables and pews were haphazardly placed, deer heads were mounted on the wall. If nothing else my suspicions were confirmed; consider this your only warning zombies. A ping pong table and pool table filled the room. A stage was off to the side. The bar faced the maze of dementia. I glared at the bartenders behind the counter. I could hear it now as they sit back and laugh at the drunks. “Hey other bartender, check out these idiots. They can’t even make it to the pool table! Ha,ha,ha, high-five, we’re rad.” Smug bastards using common sense as a weapon. There’s drinking to be done! This was going to prove complicated.

Out of desperation or laziness JB and I grabbed a table in the front. Now they couldn’t ensnare us in their trap. Clutch locked eyes with the bartender. “Three PBR,” he shouted. The cute bartender shrugged and threw up her hands. “All out!” she shouted back. It would be a shame to switch off anything other than PBR at this point I thought. “Give us three of this places equivalent!” I shouted at them. Clutch came back to the table grinning. “Aw yeah, Tecate beer,” he smirked. We were somewhere special when the next in line beer was a cheap yet satisfying Mexican equivalent. “Well, it’s time to make things happen,” said JB as he stood up and walked away.

He decided to play two hipster chicks to a game of ping pong. Flexing his arms he challenged both at the same time. “One handed and drunk, I’ll still beat both of you,” he said grinning. I turned and looked at Clutch. He was staring around the room. “This place is creepy-awesome,” said Clutch. I had to agree. If there are pearly gates, Ruba Hall is what I imagined it to be like. Every type of drinker was here. The sports pub enthusiast; Sports team hat and 10 year old worn Adidas shirt with matching shoes, The hipster; black framed glasses and thrift store nightmare, The beard; pretty much don’t want to piss this guy off, turns out to be a nice guy, The wasted; The people that probably should have stopped drinking an hour ago; The skater; ripped up jean shorts with skateboard in hand and The out of place older couple giving zero shits. The list goes on.

A local joined me at the table. “What up my man…great night tonight?” he said. “Yup! I saw the circus tonight,” I said. “Man, now that’s something special, and check out all the sexy girl ass in here,” he said. I looked around carefully. I hadn’t noticed all the gorgeous girls. “Damn!” I said excitedly. “That’s right, it’s a hidden treasure trove of fine ass in here,” he said while smirking. I was a kid in a candy store “So you up for smoking some hash my man?” he blurted out breaking my concentration. “I’m good, but there are some ladies I should say hello to,” I replied politely; I didn’t want to break his enthusiasm. “What a shame! A Shame! I’ll see if someone in the bathroom wants in,” he said and with that he left the table.

I looked over at JB, he was losing badly, but the girls were giggling. “If I score the next point, I get both your numbers,” he said to them. They nodded assure of their victory. With that, he smashed it past them both. They stared in disbelief as the guy flexing like Hulk Hogan just scored. He got their numbers and sat back down at the table. “Making things happen guys,” JB said with a smile.

The bottom line:

Hours:  9 p.m. – 3 a.m.
Crowd:  Casual | Hipster | Divey
Music: DJs | Background | Live
Price range:  $$
Accepts Credit Cards:  No
ATM: Yes
Dance floor:  Yes
Outdoor area: No
Coat check: No

This place is very cool. It can’t decide what it wants to be. It’s got a little bit of everything for everyone. Best part is everyone is even tempered and ready to have fun. Some nights there is dancing, and if nothing else there’s darts, pool, and well, ping-pong.

Addendum 1/11/13:
Ruba Hall has undergone some renovations. Apparently an NBC television show is being filmed there. Consequently, they added pillars and gorgeous mural paintings to the wall. There’s also a $5 cover fee now or $35 for the year! But don’t worry. It’s the same old fantastic late night spot we love.


RUBA Hall: