The Prague Post called Chris Stander “Prague’s favorite controversial iconic iconoclast, troublemaker and tenacious, counter-culture pioneer”. Chris may not have been Prague’s expat community’s favorite, or even most controversial – but over the last 20 years Chris Stander was a sort-of uneasy landmark of every Westerner that had to communicate with home of find something that reminded them of their time away. He was a secret drunken anarchist and alchemist and collector of odd things. Google “Pickled-Gimp” and know that he had one.
Chris Stander’s little bohemian bar, nightclub, intellectual locale, at Soukenicka 6, Prague 1 – a place many worked under the table, or illegal, hacked websites upstairs, and had drunken trysts with the opposite sex while hearing drum and bass in the basement bar or found that odd book or movie that could not be found anywhere. The Terminal Bar, named after the bar that was at every terminal and stop on a train ride across Europe, was a place where so much happened. Thank you for that, Chris. After a look at the internet for Terminal Bar photos, we only found one, from a personal blog of some random visitor to town, their words were clear.
“Our only connection with home was this Internet Cafe (called the Terminal Bar). A very hip place to meet other Westerners.”
And that it was. What they would often find in the late hours of the night was Chris coming to his bar to drink an Absinthe with new friends or call someone out for being an idiot when they were being an idiot and into the wee hours before the move would be to another locale. Another tryst or twist of fate. If there was a patron saint of the Westerner-as-Boheme they would likely look like Chris, and be as defiant, different, and unwilling to return to the banal, unintelligent distinction of the pursuit of upwardly climbing nowness.
Chris was the character you all wanted an expat to be. Chain smoking, opinionated, tired, distant, bored. Dead.
Rest In Infamy. Peace for now.