A brooding man sat on a blue barstool Wednesday at Pal’s Bar, a Mid-City neighborhood joint where, as usual, a dozen or so people drank and swapped stories.
During an 8 p.m. shift change, a bartender told co-owner Linda Novak that the man “gave her the creeps.”
An hour later, the man stood up without a word, whipped out a knife and slashed the stranger next to him. Then he walked methodically toward the door, grabbed a woman, another stranger, and fatally slit her throat.
“It was fingersnap fast,” Novak said. “He slashed, walked a few paces, slashed and left. There was nothing, no emotion.”
I haven’t set foot in Pal’s in years, and this sounds more like an insane and random act than anything telling about the bar or about New Orleans in general. Still, it’s a startling thing to read, and tragic.