Hidden on the corner of West Clifton and Calhoun – under a giant, black and white sign in the shape of a monocle – was a nondescript, little hole-in-the-wall: d.w. eye.
Small on the outside, small on the inside, with two rooms separated by a bar so you could see from one room to the other without getting up and spilling your drink. The main room was decorated with light green wallpaper offset by muddy brown palm trees. And in the middle of the main room was a very small stage.
Clifton was a hippy town, a mini-Haight Ashbury, but smaller and a bit cleaner. It was the University of Cincinnati’s campus and during the 70’s the town was alive with bars, boutiques, head shops and restaurants like Zino’s Firehouse Pizza, In Cahoots with its mile-high reubens, and the Beacon-sized Bogarts, where any mid-level name band could make you feel like you were at a happening.
On Calhoun, sandwich row, you could start at one end, say, Adriatico’s Greek deli and work your way down, eating and barhopping. Towards Clifton Ave you’d hit Arby’s, Wendy’s, the Acropolis, and then it was bar, bar, bar, bar, campus bookstore, bar, laundromat, Tony’s Pizza, bar, bar.