Dear Miami, Can We Please Stop Going Out So Late?
I can't do it, Miami. As far as I'm concerned, the only acceptable reason for leaving your house at 3 a.m. is if your pillow is on fire. Maybe an earthquake or family-member-turned-zombie situation.
The only other conceivable scenario is if you're the couple from Paranormal Activity. Seriously, I don't know what y'all are still doing in there. Leave, man! An invisible demon just dragged you out of bed by your big toe, but you're gonna give it one more night and see what happens? You people deserved what you got.
But I digress.
Miami, you've got to stop doing this to yourself. It's unhealthy. Walking out of the club to the sun hitting you in the eyes is not an accomplishment. It's like having a house party when your parents go on vacation, then ending the party the second they walk back in the front door. You could have gotten away with it if you just called it quits five hours ago, you buffoon!
I'm from Fort Lauderdale, and we, as a city, don't get a lot of things right. But you can bet we'll be in bed by midnight. That's what happens when you spend all day drinking warm Coronas on the back of a decapitated manatee. The first time I went to Club Space, I got there at 11 p.m., and I'm pretty sure the bouncer thought I was the health inspector. I had to order a drink from a bartender who was still putting on mascara. Only later was I informed that no one gets to Space before 3 a.m., not even the headlining DJ.
How did we get to this point? When did 5 a.m. become 8 p.m.? When did breakfast become dinner? When did Matt Lauer become David Letterman?
Why are people more jazzed-up about a proposed 2 a.m. last call in South Beach than they are about South Beach literally becoming part of the Atlantic Ocean? Is it because the drinks would be cheaper if ordered from a barge? You know damned well LIV will still charge you a pretty penny to get into its hyperexclusive moray eel section.
Look at all these people who should be sleeping.
Photo by George Martinez
Perhaps we can trace this phenomenon back to Spain's rich tradition of not leaving the house until after midnight. But last time I checked, the City of Miami does not enforce siestas (even though Tomás Regalado has been sleeping at the job for like 53 years now).
Many Latin countries embrace late nights, a tradition that naturally bleeds into Miami's diverse culture. But look at a country like England. In London, most pubs close around 11 p.m. And there's a reason those tea-heads spent most of their history colonizing the rest of the world. They weren't sleeping in till 4 p.m., tweeting about how they would, like, literally kill someone for a Tropichop and a Gatorade right now.
Think about all the Tasty recipes you could finally make if you didn't spend your Sundays as a sleep-deprived wreck chugging what you thought was coconut water but turned out to be just some really old greek yogurt.
The National Institute of Health puts the ideal number of hours of sleep for adults between seven or eight. Nowhere, as far as we can tell, does it recommend substituting sleep with Red Bull/vodka and Dutch DJs.
Look, I'm aware this is a losing battle. I am raging against decades of cocaine-fueled tradition here. I might as well be advocating for North America to fast on November 24.
But no matter how turnt I get, I just can't make it past midnight without yawning like a sloth on Ambien. Why do you people enjoy this?
That's a question I asked Oscar G, a Miami-born and -bred DJ who's been spinning in 305 clubs since the '90s. His set last Saturday at Space didn't start till 3 a.m., a time that, as far as I'm concerned, should be reserved for late-night urination or ice cream eating. Or both, at the same time.
"I think it's simply because we can," he says, from a hot tub filled with coffee (I'm assuming). "We have late-night/early-morning and even afternoon options. Besides, Miami is never in a rush; we run on 'Cuban Time.'"
This is what Space looks like at 3 a.m.
Photo by George Martinez
But wouldn't it make Oscar's life a little easier if we could all, somehow, agree to get in line by 9 p.m. and be home spooning a pillow by 3 a.m.?
"I love the fact that we get longer hours to get more creative with DJ sets. Most cities in the U.S. have 2 to 3 a.m. closing times. People still seem to go out later there, except they get cut off abruptly. Here, it just keeps going."
Oscar has DJ'ed from New York to Cuba but says that nowhere has he seen the party get started later than in Miami. But even Oscar admits that, sometimes, one has to draw the line. "Our weekly Murk Monday party at Coyo Taco 'only' goes till 3 a.m. We wanted to make it a little more civilized," he says. "It's a Monday."
Sadly, it doesn't look like Miami will be leaving the house earlier anytime soon. Despite my grumpy objections, the 24-hour Park West clubs continue to thrive. E11even serves breakfast at 8 a.m. And the biggest party of Miami Music Week was Damian Lazarus' Get Lost, which literally lasted for 24 hours straight.
But some of us, myself included, just have to accept the fact that we can't hang. Miami doesn't care about a lot of things, and it sure couldn't give less of a fuck whether you get your eight hours each night.
While the rest of the city is living the dream, I'll be having one. My VIP section is a mattress. My hostess is a cat who puts her paw on my throat when I start to snore.
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