It’s 1 PM in Adrian, Michigan, on a Sunday. South of Tecumseh and north of Delta, Ohio, the city’s home to three minor colleges, one pretty big hospital, and a small branch of the River Raisin. So, you’d think there’d be something – anything – to eat, even on this most holiest of days, the Sabbath.
Turns out there’s nothing. Nada. That’s all folks. Stop the presses. The city has officially shut down and it’s time to go home.
Well, OK. There might be one or two places to eat, and one of those might be Hooligan’s Grill.
Beware. From the outside, Hooligan’s looks like a normal, harmless Irish pub, the kind of place you patronize when wanna overpay for Guinness and pick up cougars. Inside, though, it’s a dangerous, dangerous mix of upscale and tacky, a bizarre mishmash of stuff that shouldn’t go together. Why, you have suspended lights vs. a mounted moose head, exposed bricks vs. a photo of a young boy and girl smoking and drinking, shit food vs. pretensions of fine dining. It’s enough to make your head spin before the first drink.
And it ain’t Irish or German or whatever in the least.
But hey, what did I know? Maybe they were being purposefully ironic. Y’know, hipster. It could all be fuck you, Sid Vicious-style punk sentiment, and I’m the clueless irrelevant jerk that doesn’t get it. Strap on a fanny pack on me and shoot me to the moon.
Then I took one look at my spray tanned, beach blonde waitress and I knew it wasn’t a joke. Hooligan’s is for real. This is really happening.
Honestly, it’s times like this that when I wonder what the in the Sam fuck I’m doing with this blog. I could be writing weird historical fiction posts that no one understands or wants. I could be writing about trivia so obscure you’d never care to know, my insides safe and sound. But no, here I am, shoveling more greasy, cheap, bullshit Michigan slop down my throat for easy hits. I’ve gained at least 20 pounds over this shit.
I… I could be sexy still.
If it sounds like I’m in the midst of an existential crisis, you’d be too if you’d eaten what I affectionately termed “Hooli Sludge”. They probably had a slightly more attractive name for it, but I can’t imagine it did it more justice than my off the cuff descriptor. Picture big chunks of potato fried to hell and back and four or five shrimp with tiny slivers of grilled onion and peppers, all served on a small ass plate like it’s fucking delicacy.
Sounds great, doesn’t it?
Eating Hooli Sludge is like having a cannonball shot at your stomach. It’s as if they thought grease alone could salvage any dish, no matter how half-assed, plain, and starchy. A noble thought, to be sure, but horribly incorrect nonetheless. The chef’s cute attempt to add the colors of Irish flag to this putrid dish with the onion and pepper medley was simply insult to injury.
My stomach hurt for the next day. Look. I’m not usually one to complain. I like to think that I have the constitution of a lumberjack, the pain tolerance of a chronic bath salts abuser. But this one got me, man.
It got me bad.