« Dru Hill reunites, plans new album, reality TV show and tour | Main | Ed needs our help »

January 21, 2010

The Captain's Corner: Follow the Hole

capt. larry outside his bar, circa 2000

If you've ever spent much time in Captain Larry's, you've probably heard about the bullet holes in the ceiling.

They're tough to spot, but if you look hard enough, you'll see them.

In this week's column, the now-retired namesake, Capt. Larry Gross, reveals just how those bullet holes got there in the first place. The helm is yours, Captain!

I would close the bar at 2 a.m. My heart being with the cops, they needed a little release, so we would sit in there late at night and play games like Follow the Hole.

I would put a hole in the ceiling with a 40-caliber Glock, and then they would take their service revolvers -- if they wanted to bet -- and bet they could put a hole on top of the hole. This went on for quite a few years. ...

The only thing I can figure is the place had about four or five sub floors. When we fired, nothing would go completely through. Then I started seeing a few indentations in the bathtub (upstairs), and I said, 'Well, I guess we're through and we'd better stop this, because it's going to start going through.'

The apartment upstairs I had just rented to a former city police officer, Ron. He looked just like Doc Holiday in the movies. Ron's a strange sort of guy.

This one particular night -- it was a February night -- and it was about 4 a.m. I had some cops in there after hours. We were half juiced, and decided to play follow the hole. Poor Ron is sitting on the toilet (upstairs).

It's snowing outside. And I get this knock on the door. I'm going 'Jesus Christ, it's got to be the police.' The guys all said, 'Well, we are the police.'

I said, 'Yeah, they'll shut me down for three days, but you guys will all get fired.' I peek out the window, and it's Ron in a bathrobe, with nothing on under it.

I said, 'Jesus,' and opened the door. Ron's barefoot. It's snowing. He walks inside. I said, 'Ron, what are you doing? Are you all right? Christ, close that bathrobe. What's the matter?'

He said, 'Captain, who in the (bleep) is shootin'?'

I said, 'Well, we're playing Folllow the Hole, Ron. What's the matter?'

He pulls his robe back, and he's got a bullet graze up the back of his (buttocks).

He said, 'You sons of (bleeps) almost killed me.'

That was the last time we played Follow the Hole.

(Baltimore Sun archive photo)

Follow Midnight Sun on Facebook and Twitter @midnightsunblog
Posted by Sam Sessa at 12:52 PM | | Comments (11)
Categories: Bar stories


Thanks to Cialis, OLD MAN GNAR and OLD WOMAN GNAR are playing follow the hole almost every night nowadays!

You're welcome to join, Captain!

just.... wow.

awwwesome. the more old-school stories of baltimore here, the better. this is amazing.

Just wow. Great story.. Keep them coming.

Someone tell Ivars to frame this post and put it somewhere, anywhere where people can read it!

That was awesome. I like hearing stories about Baltimore's past like this.

Evan, I think Ivars has plans for that already. Was talking to him Tuesday about it.

Where was this picture taken? Doesn't look like the current Larry's storefront.

It appear Ron, strange as he may have been, had remarkable patience and enough tolerance not to call the police actually on duty.

...unless of course, we got the abridged story.


Aren't you being a little prudish not to use the word that buttocks replaced, after all, you don't seem to have any problems using what many people would regard as the more offensive, the blasphemous use of Jesus & Jesus Christ. They pass The Sun's Standards and Practices and a** doesn't?
Rather inconsistent application of policy, Mein Herr.

Comments to the readers from The Captain: The picture was taken in front of Captain Larry's before the place was remodeled by the new owner. Ron was shot a couple of times in "Nam" so it really didn't faze him. I use the name of Jesus with reverence and not in a blasphemous nature. I don't find it blasphemous to call on Him in times of difficulty. Do you?

Post a comment

All comments must be approved by the blog author. Please do not resubmit comments if they do not immediately appear. You are not required to use your full name when posting, but you should use a real e-mail address. Comments may be republished in print, but we will not publish your e-mail address. Our full Terms of Service are available here.

Please enter the letter "o" in the field below:
About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

Most Recent Comments
Recent tweets
Sign up for FREE nightlife alerts*
Get free Baltimore Sun mobile alerts
Sign up for nightlife text alerts

Returning user? Update preferences.
Sign up for more Sun text alerts
*Standard message and data rates apply. Click here for Frequently Asked Questions.
  • Weekend Watch newsletter
Plan your weekend with's best events, restaurant and movie reviews, TV picks and more delivered to you every Thursday for free.
See a sample | Sign up

Photo galleries
Stay connected