It's 1:01 a.m. in St. Louis, and so begins the mass exodus to the Rocket Bar. Or, sadly, so began
. If you weren't there already, it was always the next place to go until it was the only place to go. But as of December 31, 2004, it was no longer a place to go. There are plenty of tales about why the Rocket crashed -- one for every scenester who lost his or her favorite hangout. But the whys don't matter once the waaahs kick in, and they did, in full effect, at 3:01 a.m. on January 1. No longer could teams of hipsters parade around the slinking bar, one eye upturned as a slew of local and nationally touring indie bands took the stage, the other wrestling with the door, ready to pounce on the next arrival. The Rocket Bar was a great rock & roll club, and if rock & roll has taught us anything, it is that it's better to die before your time and live on as myth than to succumb to the beast of years as it slowly gnaws at your vitality and relevance. Far better to remember Kurt Cobain as a youthful, brilliant madman than as the bloated junkie he surely would have become. Rest in peace, then, dear Rocket Bar. You will be missed, but we will tend very well to your legend.