Instead general manager Rudy Wilkins, a Texan of Mexican descent, fills the restaurant with authentic Tejano fare and flair. “The previous owner spent a million and a half dollars to build this place,” he says. “The wood for the bar alone cost $340,000. We just basically moved in like a boll weevil lookin' for a home.”
The restaurant's comedy showcase will kick off a series of late-night events, including appearances by rock bands, country-western groups, mariachis, and flamenco dancers, all meant to give grownups south of the Miami city limits a place to play. “We're going to try to make it into a dinner- and nightclub,” explains Hawk. “We're also talking about having an open-mike night for poets, comedians, singers, dancers, and hula girls -- whatever special talents people might have.”
A professional comic who has been featured on Fox, Galavision, and Sabado Gigante, and who works regularly at South Florida clubs such as the Improv in Coconut Grove and Rascals Comedy Club, Hawk claims his own talent lies in talking about weird things. “I talk about midgets,” he clarifies. “I do humor that puts myself down.” Is he a little person himself? “For the right price, I can be,” he offers gamely. “If you say my name really fast, it's Tomahawk. A lot of times you don't see the joke coming until it hits you. This makes it hard for hecklers. They leave with low self-esteem.”
Helping Hawk dodge hecklers will be a rowdy roster of locals, all of whom, says the host, “have been on HBO, Comedy Central, or pay-per-view, or have day jobs installing cable.” There's Javier “the Latin Lover” Carrion, who has appeared on the television show about Latinos who have grown up in the United States, Qué Loco. “We call him the Latin Lover because his show is all sex,” says Hawk. “He talks about sex with his girlfriend, sex with himself, and the kind of sex that dogs have.” (Chihuahuas?)
Speaking of canines, there's also “Larry Dogg,” a.k.a. “the black guy who grew up in Little Havana.” A specialist in relationship humor, including the special connection between Miami's Cuban and African-American populations, Dogg is a visitor from the north. “We fly him in all the way from Opa-locka,” quips Hawk. Dogg likes to smash people's pretensions, as in the case of the woman who calls herself a child care technician. “You're a baby sitter, baby!” he corrects.
Another yuckster, who goes simply by the romantic name of Romeo, is famous for his interpretations of Franz Kafka's dark works. “No one can do his material,” boasts Hawk. “He does an impression where he looks just like a cockroach.”
Don't let the anthropomorphism fool you, though. This show is not for kids. Take Lady T, please. According to Hawk's analysis, this comic's material is “99.99999999 percent about sex.” So call the child care technician, ditch the niños, and head south for humor as hot as jalapeño.