lel Thursday, October 20, 2011 J/ The B-Side
LATE-NIGHT H S "
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" ..._ ... _.. .:. .. . ... ea r - M. _.
I0hrdaOtoe 0 21 / 'h -ide 3
The London band Fanfarlo's
latest single, "Deconstruction,"
intrigues from the start, opening
or liter- Deconstruction
ally decon- Atlantic
songs (to go
along with the track's theme).
But little time is allotted for
speculation as the ambiguous
sounds establish a punctual pat-
tern and the song takes off into
a cheery ditty. From that point
on, "Deconstruction" is dance-
worthy but disappointingly pre-
The music video features the
hard-at-work artists in a studio
while a metronome ticks on,
mimicking the song's energetic
and relentless pulse. The melody
is particularly pleasant as Simon
Balthazar lectures on "focus
and direction," joined by Cathy
Lucas in a male-female harmo-
nization. Everything inevitably
Workers taking the nighttime shift at Panchero's and Backroom Pizza must serve their customers and handle crowd control.
A walk on A2's cheap-eat streets
When the lights go
have to multitask
By ARIELLE SPECINER
The average night of a 'U' student
follows a typical pattern: Pregame,
party and then get hungry. As some
people's stomachs start growling,
there is always that one person who
yells, "Dudes! Let's get some food!"
This individual is now dubbed roy-
ally awesome, and his or her faith-
ful lieges stumble behind to the
nearest late-night establishment.
That's when my night gets
I arrive at Brown Jug on South
University Avenue on a Friday at
10:40 p.m. It's not terribly crowd-
ed, but Iknow it will be inthe later
hours. I go to check out the pre-
game drinks and the meals that
go with them. Most students are
starting their nights with pizza,
burgers or fries.
Cheers and whoops clamor as
one member of a group to my right
flips a quarter into a cup of beer.
He drinks. They socialize with the
waiters as they become increas-
ingly drunk, then finally order
some Brown Jug grub.
I spoke to manager Joshua San-
chez about Brown Jug's smaller
but just as significant store, Back-
Backroom, located at 605
Church Street, is an Ann Arbor
late-night staple. Sanchez
explained that on a Friday night,
it sells about 500 slices of pizza
between 1:40 a.m. and 2:40 a.m.
That hour is essential to the
business. At this point, the crowd
mainly consists of bar-dwellers
who've had enough partying and
are ready to sober up with some
delicious carbohydrates. And the
location couldn't be better.
"It's serendipitous," Sanchez
said. "We've benefited greatly from
being between three of the most
popular bars. I think (Backroom) is
one of the three places people think
of when they say, 'Oh I'm drunk, I
Because the bars are so close
to Backroom, the eating estab-
lishment witnesses some rowdier
times. Sanchez said customers cut
the line often, step on people's feet
and get in the way of others. But
the bouncers brought over from the
Brown Jug keep everyone in check
and make sure that everyone gets
their rightful portions of pizza -
pepperoni is the most popular.
There is also the issue of over-
payment and underpayment - stu-
dents who are under the influence
may not be aware of the money
they are taking out of their wal-
lets and pay less or more than the
necessary amount for food. At
Backroom, students who throw
cash at the pizza-makers may not
be aware that they've only given
a dollar instead of the $1.25 that a
slice now costs. Sanchez explained
the heightened security helps
prevent this from happening at
Backroom, but at Brown Jug, wait-
ers typically ask for a credit card
when parties order so they don't
just drink and dash.
"People are bummed out about
(the price hike), it's so easy to pay
with a dollar," Sanchez said. "As a
customer, that would put me out a
But a dollar and a quarter for a
slice at 3:00 a.m. is still cheaper
than other campus pizza places.
Sanchez told me if I wanted to
get the true Backroom experience,
I should headback at 1:30 a.m.With
that in mind, and with pre-gamers
starting to clear out, it's my turn to
At about 12:30 a.m., I check out
the goings on just up the block at
Panchero's Mexican Grill. I'm not
sure if it's the Mexican atmosphere,
but there are alot of people in cow-
Panch is a sight to see. At 1:00
you can hear the unanimous "Let's
go to Panch!" yells across campus.
Toward the late-night establish-
ment, those leaders start walking.
I'm sitting at a table by the door
to see who will come in. A few
girls walk in - their eyes glazed
over with hunger - along with the
guys who know the quickest way
to win a drunk girl's heart is buy-
ing her a chicken burrito. People
are sitting in booths, hunched over
their burritos as if someone were to
come snatch them away. It isn't the
rowdy crowd I intended to see, but
it's entertaining nonetheless.
I sit down with one of the cooks,
Fredo Cortez, to hear what typi-
cally occurs on a Friday night.
"It's hard sometimes because
people come drunk and try to
speak Spanish, but most of the time
they're not right," Cortez said.
He said that Panchero's makes
about $9,000 a night, mostly from
burrito sales from 1:00 to2:00 a.m.,
with another burst of sales at 2:30
"This season, football season,
people drink at the games and so
we have the lines out the door on
Friday and Saturdays," Cortez said.
Though I missed it, Cortez said
the post-bar crowd that often visits
Panchero's is a little crazier than
the one at Backroom. He said peo-
ple dance on the tables and even get
in fights. That's when the employ-
ees have to step in and break them
"We have to make the food and
also watch the crowd," Cortez said.
There are no table dance-offs or
brawls, so I check my watch - it
reads 1:45 a.m. Time to head back
to Backroom for the crowd.
The stacks of ready-to-cook
pizza I saw the workers prepar-
ing earlier that night are being
The line wraps around the build-
ing. People are throwing their
plates like Frisbees, a slice falls on
the floor and girls with no shoes on
walk up and down the sidewalk. As
amusing as all of this is, it's 2:15 a.m.
and I'm exhausted. I leave.
By day, a restaurant's focus is the
quality of the food. But when the
sun goes down, it transforms into
something more, with employees
simultaneously breaking up fights
and flipping pizzas at the speed
of light. Though getting the food
out is important, crowd control is
equally imperative. These tough,
multitalented purveyors of late-
night food must keep that in mind
while watching over a restaurant in
the early morning hours.
And though I leave to go to sleep
and ponder these thoughts, the
night has barely begun for these
hungry, late-night partygoers.
B le Bz
at South Quad
What do you picture when you hear the
phrase "Michigan nightlife?"
People streaming out of the bars on South U in
all hours of the night.
What's your favorite late night food?
I'd probably have to go with Panchero's.
What's the best thing on their menu?
Cheese quesadilla - it's simple, but it still has
that grease factor. And it tastes really good and
If you were a martini, what kind would you be?
I'd probably be the dirty martini. Very strong,
Excerpts are taken from the B-Side Buzz video,
which con be found on MichiganDoily.com.
Interview by Lauren Caserta
escalates into a symphonic blend whis
of trumpets, forceful drumbeats ing t
and tremolo-ing violins. But the ciga
brass is sleepy and whatever Inte
chaos the drumming attempts is m
to incite is much too controlled. of w
The violins resemble those of life,"
Arcade Fire's "Empty Room," "Det
which is to say they are rous- trite
ing but, alas, already done. The ing
music video features a pseu- throi
do-Nico - a black-clad blonde
pering in German, paus-
to artily take a drag on her
rette afterward. A quick
rnet translation reveals she
using about a "cacophony
'ords and corridors full of
summing up the irony of
construction" given the
lystructured - albeit pleas-
- harmony maintained
ughout the song.