The French Connection
12114 Old Hammond Highway

DBG and her Protector pulled into a small strip mall containing a closed convenience store and an abandoned
restaurant. A small sign out front let them know to pull around to the back where two cars were parked in a lot
facing an adjoining trailer park. A door was propped open with a barstool and a Rebel flag flanked the entrance.
A brief conversation about the legitimacy of the establishment occurred, and DBG and her companion agreed
upon the safe word “tiddlywinks” prior to entry.

Two older gentlemen sat at the bar and discussed their children, whose names and ages escaped them. The
bartender, an older woman named Cricket who had her cigarette lighter attached to a lanyard, watched an
episode of Law and Order. During commercial breaks, Cricket informed them that French Connection had been
around at least 40 or 50 years, and was a neighborhood place for the over 30 crowd. She also added that the
clientele was about 95% Republican. Then she let DBG play some free music on the “fancy computerized” juke

Later, some of Cricket’s friends arrived and taught DBG and her Protector how to play a dice game called 3’s.
The object of the game was to get the lowest score possible, which seemed very appropriate for the institution.
DBG never did figure out why the bar was called The French Connection. There was no homage to Gene
Hackman or mural celebrating gay Paris, only two lonely pool tables and an elderly big screen TV.