Who: John Randolph • Where: Sunset Tavern, 5433 Ballard Ave NW, 784-4880 • When: Wed Dec 7, 11:10 pm

The eve of the smoking ban taking effect feels a lot like New Year's Eve—drunks acting very forward with one another and more than a few people getting extremely sentimental. Inside the Sunset, the rambunctious atmosphere is bad news for Centro-matic frontman Will Johnson, who is vainly trying to hold the crowd's attention with a quiet solo set. Soundman John Randolph is doing his best to keep the acoustics as clear as possible over the din and vigorously enjoying his fair share of tobacco products. "I voted against the smoking ban because I believe bars and smoking sections of greasy-spoon diners are fine places to smoke and 25 feet from a public entrance is an unreasonable restriction," he says. "However, I'm selfishly happy about not working in a constant sea of smoke." Watching Randolph methodically alternate between lighting up and knob twiddling makes me wonder how the ban will affect the rhythm of his work. "My work flow won't be affected as there is usually enough going on to distract me from smoking in the first place," he says. "If anything it should help me to quit finally." HANNAH LEVIN