Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Jonas' Club called "The Zone"

I go out only three or four times a month. A guy has to pace himself in this town or wear down to a frazzle.

For some time now I’ve been meaning to stop in at a friend’s club called The Zone on Field’s Avenue here in Angeles City. His name is Jonas, from Sweden, and his place is on the north side of Field’s about 50 meters from where it runs into Macarthur Boulevard.

Jonas is an interesting fellow. Very tall, around 6’4 or 6’5’, he’s in extremely youthful physical shape. He and I are about the same age; I think I might be older by a month or two, but I would have loved to have been in the shape he is now when I was 25. Back then, in MY questionable prime, I had the physique of an athlete, at least of a slender one. Unfortunately for me, big masculine muscles were not part of the package and they certainly aren't now!

But as for Jonas, the man is a horse. I see him in the gym all the time and the man lifts some huge weights. His physique reflects that strength; he certainly puts me to shame. I’m 49, but I like to say that I have the body type of a 35-year-old—woman that is, after she’s had 4 or 5 kids. Yup, that’s me! On second thought, maybe I’m not QUITE that bad, …YET.

Jonas dabbles in a lot of different dealings. Occasionally, he does commentary for TV broadcasts out of Manila covering 9-ball billiards tournaments. Pool playing is big in the Philippines, and it’s really big here with so many of the local bars equipped with pool tables. Even I play at times, although not well. Jonas definitely plays well; he was once a 9-ball champ in Europe. He certainly sounds like he knows what he’s talking about when he describes the table play on the tube—very impressive. Too bad, but his club is too small for a table. I’d love to see him show his stuff.

When I first met him more than 4 years ago I thought he was Russian. Before I found out he was Swedish he mentioned that he’d just spent several years in Russia as a fitness instructor. Watching him go about his workouts I could believe that, especially with his willingness to pass out free “pointers” on the correct way to use the gym equipment. His many other skills include several martial arts styles including boxing, karate and Muay Thai kick boxing. I don’t think he much practices anymore, but he certainly looks like he could.

Compared to most of the clubs in town Jonas’ club is rather small. What it DOES have is class. It’s very clean, even the restroom has a décor—post modern!

His sound system is superior, and happily for me, they NEVER play any form of modern urban music, also known as ghetto rap. My policy is that if any club plays more than two of those in a row then I’m out of there. I hate that crap. They play mostly European style dance music or similar stuff from the 80s. Ahhh! My kind of music. There is a small dance floor just inside the door, so if you feel like dancing a little there’s always at least a half-dozen cuties to groove with—dance with one, or all of them!

All of the clubs in these parts have girls and The Zone is no exception. Jonas has a beautiful bevy working for him. He complained to me that he’s requiring his new hostesses to sign a 6-month contract to ensure they stick around. It seems that many of his most gorgeous ladies have taken off with the customers. Secretly, I thought that was kind of cool. For me (and the girls!) it’s a success story, but for Jonas it’s just a pain in the ass.

The last time I was in there he was a bit preoccupied with business matters, but if you get the chance, he’s an interesting fellow to talk to. He’s been to a lot of places, done a lot of things, and knows a lot of stuff. Two weeks ago we started talking about subjects Scandinavian, since he is one of course. I proudly showed him the messed up palms of my hands declaring in jest, “I must have some Scandinavian blood since I have the “Viking Disease.” He’d never heard of my particular malady, but it resulted in an interesting dissertation from him on the history of the Vikings, a subject obviously near and dear to his heart. The guy knows his history, a man after MY own heart.

The front of his establishment is set up like an outdoor café—perfect for drinking a brewed cup of his unique house blend of coffee—Swedish, of course. It IS smooth, the first time I tasted it I had three cups. It’s hard to find good brewed java in these parts.

Finding a place that makes a good brewed cup of coffee around here is difficult. Most often its burned or bitter. The Zone’s coffee is better than good and it’s definitely not bitter. Talking about it, now I’m looking forward to my next visit.

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