- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 12, 2001

Washington-area bars and restaurants open last night were much busier than usual, as shellshocked residents flocked to local watering holes to commiserate over the day's events.
"It's like when the snow comes to D.C.," said Paul Lusty, owner of Lucky Bar, two blocks south of Dupont Circle. "It's the same feeling, you know, we're all at the same level. It's amazing."
The bar normally opens at 3 p.m., but knocks on the doors began around noon, prompting the business to open two hours early.
"It was a lot of people, especially for that time of day," Mr. Lusty said. "And a lot of drinking — more than usual."
By 8 p.m., some 50 to 60 people had crowded into the bar.
Following the news on television at another bar, the Dubliner Pub near Union Station, was Jake Comer, a 69-year-old American Legionnaire who recalls the day Pearl Harbor was attacked in December 1941. He was 9.
"They say Pearl Harbor was a day of infamy," he said. "Don't know what you call this. A day of insanity."
People needed to talk with each other last night, said Alan Popovsky, owner of Felix Restaurant & Lounge on 18th Street NW in Adams Morgan, where business was up about 30 percent from a typical Tuesday.
The lounge opened around noon, five hours earlier than usual.
About half of night-life spots in Adams Morgan were closed last night, reflecting the situation at most other businesses throughout the Washington region.
At Joe Theismann's restaurant in Alexandria, all seven televisions were tuned to CNN last night. The restaurant was packed, everyone focused on the TV screens.
David Nakley, a San Jose, Calif., resident in Washington for business, said he had been watching CNN since 9:30 a.m.
"I don't know what else to do with myself," he said.
Not all restaurants that opened did well, however.
The Brickskeller near Embassy Row, for instance, saw about half the typical number of customers.
"We're definitely not as busy as usual," said server Andrew Kent. "Usually, when people go out drinking, it's for a celebration, and for that, no one is coming out."
The scene at the Sweetwater Tavern in the Merrifield neighborhood of Fairfax County was similar.
"We're usually really busy — you can't even set foot in our bar," said Jessica Dodson, a hostess. "And there are people on the bar, but not people on the rails."
Business at the Normandie Farm Restaurant in Potomac was slow, too, said Kay Hussain, general manager.
"We had a couple of big parties, and they were canceled," he said.
But nobody canceled pizza-delivery orders last night. Shops that were open said business was good.
"From the newspeople, firefighters — those people," said Aldaf Chaudry, nighttime manager at Trio Pizza, on 16th and Q streets NW.
A worker at Pizza Boli's on 18th and U streets NW said business was about 25 percent higher than usual, and management called in extra drivers.
Donna De Marco, Bill Glanz and Tom Ramstack contributed to this article.


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