On Lincoln Avenue, between Wrightwood and Diversey, you will find one of Chicago's coziest dives: Rose's Lounge.
Nothing has changed in this place since it opened in the early 1970's, especially the tables with chairs on wheels, which look like they were lifted from a Howard Johnson lobby from that time period. The jukebox knows nothing of what transpired in the world of popular music during the 1990's or 2000's. As far as it's concerned, Patsy Cline and Johnny Cash are still burning up the charts, and that's all right by me because they provide the perfect accompaniment to such a place. There's tons of ancient junk haphazardly displayed behind the bar: ceramic animals, plates that weren't tacky in their day, old beer signs, and a movie poster for a Pacino movie I've never heard of.*
Last night, as I sipped my Old Style draft, Rose, the elderly, Macedonian owner and namesake, and I discussed the Summer Olympics, which was showing on the archaic television set. We then got talking about her memories of the 1936 in Munich, which then turned into a discussion of World War II.
On another trip there with Classy, I tried to convince her to work on the facade out front, since people could easily drive right by, thinking it was condemned. Classy even let her know that the city would help fund such a project. We were right, but it was evident that a project of that nature was nowhere near the top of any of Rose's to do lists.
Yet another time I was there, when the men's room was occupied during a serious code yellow for this guy, Rose came out back to yell at me for peeing in the garden out back, yet she didn't throw me out.
If you come by, be sure to belly up to the bar, be kind to Rose, and enjoy a place like this while you can because a lovable, time capsule dive in the heart of Chicago's ritzy Lincoln Park neighborhood, sadly, isn't likely to be there too much longer.
*It turns out it's for a play called The Basic Training of Pavlo Hummel (1977).