My groomsmen took me out for my bachelor party this last Saturday. At 36 years old, it's a little more low key. We started at Churrascaria Plataforma (a carnivore's paradise), where we ate every kind of meat known to man. If you're not familiar with a place like this, churrascaria is Brazilian barbecue and the rodizio style of eating was created just for me. It is all-you-can-eat-meat. You get a paper disc, one side red and the other green. Stop and go. It's as simple as that. Green side up meant men with 2-foot swords with skewered hunks of seared animal carve off charred deliciousness onto your plate. It had been many years since I was last at Plataforma, but my brother knew it was a favorite of mine and lined it up.
I arrived with him (he's also my Best Man) and found waiting for me the rest of my groomsmen - Alan, Jim, Brian and Tim - as well as my father and soon-to-be father-in-law. Eight men devoured a barnyard's worth of animals
I recall having chorizo, chicken, flank steak, top sirloin, filet mignon, ham, lamb, and bacon wrapped turkey, but I know I'm forgetting stuff. My plate looked like a battleground containing the remnants of vanquished foes. I occasionally shoved some yucca fries into my mouth to wash it down along with wine. The maître d' heard about the reason we were out there and came out with a chocolate cake impaled by a sparkler and to the tune of "happy birthday" he sang, "happy sorry to you." I'm not sure if he was being funny or sending a message (I found out he's on his 3rd marriage). All-you-can-eat must include cheesecake, espresso, some strange after dinner drink that was somewhere in between a port wine and chocolate. I recommend the tableside angioplasty as well!
The boys all look at their watches and nod in agreement. The synchronicity and organization led me to believe we were all going on a jewelry heist of some sort. As it turns out, we left the patriarchs behind and the 6 of us continued on to The Carnegie Club. Across the street from the world famous Carnegie Hall, the Carnegie Club is a dark, oaky cigar bar with 18th century book cases and singer who channels the spirit (and exact tone) of Frank Sinatra. We got smokes and whiskey and discussed our well-sated bellies, the fun to come in 6 weeks and we time traveled through all the days and nights we've all spent together over decades of friendship.
After the show we walked the streets and happened on one more bar/lounge for a few more drinks and that is where we closed out the evening. It wasn't crazy. We all survived, save for a few "meat headaches," that we are sure are a real thing. But it was hours and hours with most of the closest people in my life with the longest history all celebrating. We weren't celebrating the wedding as much as how happy we are to a part of each other's lives during major events like the wedding.
I'm lucky to have each of them in my life and can only hope I continue to stay that lucky for many years to come.