Elliot's Kurt Russell hair was vibrating with giddiness when we parked the muscle car and had a homeless man tell us he’d make sure the car would be up on blocks unless we gave him money. Elliot interpreted this as a good sign, that the rock gods were smiling on us. It turned out Elliot happened to be right, but don’t let him know that; it'd go straight to that Kurt-Russell-hair covered head.
We entered Showtime Clothing in the heart of Detroit’s Cass Corridor. Showtime is a special place—this is a clothier for the rock star. You enter the place and one corner has studded leather jackets for apocalyptic (or real) biker gangs, another has every shape and style of boot (some bedazzled, some with teeth), there’s mesh shirts, cowboy shirts, bluesman suits, flowing vampire gowns, a mannequin head wearing another mannequin's head as a hat, just heaps of the type of threads we have seen displayed on every incarnation of rock band.
Stunned by the Godly glow of this mecca, I hardly saw a gentlemen spring up from behind a counter: “what can I help you with?”
I believe the man had a maroon track suit with the words "Detroit" embroidered on the front, but that might've been the two red bulls I had for breakfast doing the seeing. I opened my mouth and this came out:
“I’ve been looking far and wide for a pair of legitimate mariachi pants, but I’m 6’2” and most mariachi pants I’ve seen around are cut for shorter people. Do you have any mariachi pants?”
The man stared at me with a dumbfounded look on his face. The look morphed into a mask of rage:“Why the fuck would you think I would have mariachi pants?"
His eyes were locked on mine, like a death ray tractor beam. I'd rather be hanging out with the homeless guy, helping him threaten people instead. We stood there staring at each other like we were in a spaghetti western. Right when the Ennio Morricone score would’ve swelled and a trumpet would’ve played it’s final, quivering soloing note, the man shuffled one step to the left. There, in the space he had just been occupying, and glowing from sun rays shooting from the heavens like fingers of God, right there where the most beautiful pair of mariachi pants I had ever seen.
“Go try those on,” the man told me, the pants flying into my arms.
I never try to get too excited, never too high, never too low. Deep down, I find my baseline is, strangely, very positive--but usually this baseline is only exposed by my emotions being stripped away via a traumatic loss by the Green Bay Packers. Regardless, before reaching emotional troughs, I try to stay positive but there is nothing more depressing than trying on clothes. I’m not a typical body shape: former amateur strongman and semi-pro football player, tall, yet from a long line of stout Polish cranberry farmers, built more like a linebacker than a dancer. I didn’t have much faith in these threads fitting like a glove. I put one foot in, and damn, pulled the pants up to my thigh. Holy shit, not too tight. Eventually, got the waist all synced up, and holy shit, these were my exact dimensions.
Come Saturday, we'll be back in the city of motors, and damned if I won't be up on that stage wearing those same mariachi pants. God bless you, Showtime wardrobe, and your wise proprietor, Dan.