(UPDATED) Wither Johnny’s II — In Which Dennis Block Tells Will Campbell to ‘Take A Hike!’

Oh this is rich! Ancillary and straight outta left field, but rich. Yesterday you might recall I posted an inquiry into the current state of Silver Lake’s Johnny’s Cocktail Lounge and wrote that it seemed the popular watering hole was in all likelihood kaput in large part because the inspection notice that I found posted to its door on April 10 had been prepared by the offices of Dennis Block, the self-proclaimed eviction master of the universe.

I closed the piece with my disappointment that my search for information hit a deadend when I hung up after having been left on hold with Block’s offices for a hellaciously long time. A short while later I visited Block’s website and decided I’d approach from that angle by submitting an email that produced an outrageously awesome response from the King Kicker-Outer himself along with the news that he’s either a chronic self-Googler or a Blogging.la reader (the entire e-thread unspools after the jump):

First, my initial email:

From: William Campbell
To: [email protected]
Date: Apr 11, 2007 11:14 AM
Subject: Information request on Johnny’s Cocktail Lounge

Dear Mr. Block and associates,

If the 20 minutes I was on hold this morning before hanging up is any
indication, then I won’t hold my breath in expectation of a response
to my inquiry, but I’ll still give it a try.

I am a resident of the Silver Lake area and in passing by the business
at 2939 W. Sunset Boulevard (Los Angeles, 90026) known as Johnny’s
Cocktail Lounge yesterday I found the inspection notice posted to the
door and at the bottom of it your firm’s information.

I have attempted to contact Johnny’s by phone on several occasions but
my calls go unanswered. So now I’m turning to you because I am simple [sic]
interested in any information on the status of Johnny’s. Have the
bar’s owners been evicted or are the property owners preparing to do
so? If you are not at liberty to say, can you provide me the property
owner’s phone number so that I may contact them directly?

Any assistance and insight will be appreciated.

Thank you,
Will Campbell

This morning I find this mind-blowing reply in my inbox from Block himself:

From: Dennis Block
To: William Campbell
Date: Apr 12, 2007 6:48 AM
Subject: Re: Information request on Johnny’s Cocktail Lounge

You ask for assistance and yet you slam me… You were waiting to speak with an attorney.. We do not charge for phone consultations and of course there is going to be a wait.. when you go to a Dr.’s office with an appointment you will still wait, corredt [sic]?!

Now to answer your question…… TAKE A HIKE…

Holy in flagrante dilecto, Blockman! Looks like I pinched a nerve! Touchy much!? I knew lawyers were the sensitive types, but that’s taking it a little bit too far and at first I sat down at my keyboard intent on showing him that I hadn’t yet begun to slam, but as is usually the case I throttled back and composed both myself and a pointed parry:

From: William Campbell
To: Dennis Block
Date: Apr 12, 2007 7:16 AM
Subject Re: Information request on Johnny’s Cocktail Lounge

Mr Block,

While I respect that you and your attorneys are tremendously busy
people, after such an uncalled for response, that’s about all I can
respect.

Since you fail to make it clear how I “slam” you, I’m not sure if
you’re taking issue with my email or my post about Johnny’s on
Blogging.la (though I suspect it’s the latter). But if my grousing
about patiently holding the line for 20 minutes provoked such a
discourteous and unprofessional reaction, I expect that cutting my
losses and hanging up when I did allowed me to avoid similar treatment
had I stayed on as long as it might have taken for you or one of your
associates to take my call.

As to your ill-fitting comparison, If indeed I had an on-premises
appointment with a medical professional, of course I would expect a
wait. If I had an in-office appointment with a lawyer I would expect a
similar delay. But if I called to ask a doctor a question and sat in
limbo for 20 minutes I’d hang up and find another doctor.

My call to your offices was not a scheduled appointment and no matter
how you attempt to qualify it, such a lengthy wait is indefensible.
That you attempt to defend it in an attack back at me is laughable in
its own right, but that you can’t seem to even appreciate that at the
very least your frontdesk personnel should have taken my name and
number for you then to contact or ignore is painfully ridiculous.

Will Campbell

One can only wonder what he might reply to that. And in the meantime, the search for the truth about Johnny’s continues.

UPDATE (4.13): Block indeed couldn’t resist coming back with a preponderance of partial and overloaded ellipses and at least a slighly conciliatory condescension this morning. From his initial lawyerly advice for me to “take a hike,” he follows up with a lesson how not to ask for help:

From: Dennis Block
To: William Campbell
Date: Apr 13, 2007 6:07 AM
Subject Re: Information request on Johnny’s Cocktail Lounge

It is wonderful that we do not need to deal with each other.. Please lose this email address.. Have a wonderful and prosperous life…. You should understand, however, that to start off with an insult is really STUPID when you are asking for a favor…Yes this will be my last reply to you…..

6 Replies to “(UPDATED) Wither Johnny’s II — In Which Dennis Block Tells Will Campbell to ‘Take A Hike!’”

  1. Thanks David. I’d be lying if I said it didn’t cross my mind to make the fix, but since I noted Block’s typo I felt it disingenuous to try and hide my own.

  2. I’m so very glad i read this!
    We were about to hire Mr. Block, but have now changed our minds!
    Thanks for posting this!

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