Last night we celebrated our friend Jason’s 29th birthday. First we had dinner at an Italian restaurant in the East Village, and then we walked over to a bar called Doc Holliday’s.
Jason, Brendan and I met working at the Caller-Times newspaper in Texas. The three of us know that there are many things to love about Texas, in spite of its general reputation among blue state residents. Doc Holliday’s is a bar that channels Texas, from the rockabilly on the jukebox to the Lone Star bottled beer to the dusty cowboy boots hanging from the ceiling.
It’s a place that feels a bit like home, even if the atmospere is supposed to be ironic.
But, lest you get too lost in the Texas daydream, there’s always the men and women in mustaches, and the pirates. First, it was a tall man wearing a Abe Lincoln top hat and a hot pink crowbar mustache. He sat at the table next to us. A short woman, wearing an olive green outfit and Che Guevara hat, came in and sat across from him.
They chatted, and I watched out of the corner of my eye as Pink Mustache Man took a large, fur-like piece of black-and-white fabric out of his backpack, and began trimming it with tiny scissors. His creation eventually began to resemble cat whiskers, but furrier. He placed them on the woman. She smiled like a Cheshire cat.
Near the entrance to the bar, I noticed a tall woman, who in her snug red minidress, looked a bit like Venus Williams, but prettier. I looked closer. Was she wearing a Band-aid above her upper lip? No, it was just a light grey mustache. (Oh. Of course, I thought.)
Soon, everywhere I looked, I was meeting the glances of people wearing fake mustaches. I looked back at Pink Mustache Man, who had begun trimming his long cotton-candy goatee while staring into an equally hot pink framed mirror.
I can say, quite emphatically, that this was the first time I had been in a bar watching a man trim his hot pink mustache. Finally overcome with curiosity, I asked my friend Dora, who was seated the closest to him, to ask what was going on.
“It’s mustache night,” he giggled. “Tell everyone — it’s the International Night of Mustaches!”
Shortly after, all the mustache people got up and left. It got quiet for awhile, until about an hour later, 10 people arrived dressed as pirates.
So, yeah, so not Texas. But (sometimes) just as fun.