Do you SEE-nco what I CI-nco?

If you live in Austin but didn’t receive this message, please know it was an oversight and not a malicious thing. E-mail me to correct my mistake.

A few nights ago, I was tossing and turning in bed from excitement. Today–while in Madrid for less than 24 hours–I’ve set aside time to e-mail you. I’m a simple man and I usually only get this worked up about select basketball games and every meal. This message, however, does not concern any of those things.

Go ahead and avert you eyes from the computer monitor for a moment. Look at the calendar on your desk blotter. There it is, beneath the Post-It notes and give away pens. April 5, 2007. Just another day, no? A Thursday to be exact.

Yes, yes: It is just another day, indeed. But April is the 4th month of the year. In exactly one month and zero days it will be 05/05/07.


“Wait, wait–that date does seem familiar. The fifth month, what is that again?” May. “Hmm, still nothing. Do you happen to know how to say ‘May’ in Spanish? I’m currently taking lessons, but the word escapes me at the present time.” Mayo.


Ladies and gentlemen, parakeets and chick-a-poos, without further ado, you–yes! you!–can start biding your time and biting your nails for the holiest (in some sects) and most fun (in all sects) day of the year: Cinco de Mayo!

Unbelievably, this will be the fifth year I have most likely pestered you with too long e-mails and invitations to join-in on the party. Hopefully you have before, and hopefully this year will be no different.

But, as with all institutions who wish to remain current, some things will be changing. Now, now: Don´t throw your sombrero on the ground and your manos in the air just yet. These changes are not the type of thing where we experiment with how much fun we can have without alcohol or any other heresy of the sort.

For reasons ranging from my ambiguous current residency to throwing Sublime Guy off our track once and for all, this year´s festivities will have a new location. This is the biggest variation and issue to deal with, for me personally, as I usually succumb to an 18 hour tequila-induced hibernation right as the clock strikes 5pm. But the change is worth it because the new locale is A)probably closer to you and B)sweeter than cherry pie and a Coca-Cola!

Miss Elana Farley volunteered and then secured exclusive rights for the use of her mother’s home for dancin’, partyin’, and carousin’. I’ve never met the elder Mrs. Farley, but she has a dandy of a home with 3,001 knick-knacks lovingly arranged, a pool house, an accompanying pool, and one honest-to-Pete-”good-lord-this-is-hot” hot tub. That’s right!–No more hot tub shaped area with regular old pool water running into it! This is the genuine article. As a token of your appreciation for her permission, I’m sure flowers or donations to the Lions Club in her honor would not be turned down.

The domicile also sports a green lawn in the backyard and it is here where we will stage one part of 2007′s activities: The Piñata Contest.

Rule numero uno: No store-bought piñatas–nil, nope, nada–which is one reason why this electronic mail has been delivered to you so far in advance. Start planning and building right now! While the outermost surface will be the main factor to which entries will be scrutinized upon, we are all well aware that True Beauty is a combination of looks and what’s on the inside, and so your filling counts. Live and/or dead animals, blood, or anything else that has the potential to turn the area into a toxic waste site or freak-the-fuck outta someone are strictly prohibited. Pudding would be good, but I just mentioned it, so it wouldn’t really be that original anymore. Everyone likes candy and treats, and they are your jury, so appease them and splurge for the good stuff.

In correspondence with the junior Farley, I asked if it the staging of chicken fights would be acceptable. I was referring to the pool pastime of crotch-on-head combat, but–either in jest or for realz–she I thought I was talking about actual chickens fighting each other. While they are different, I think we´re now both talking about cocks and not chickens battling. Regardless, she gave it the okay and while the local and state authorities technically do not, it is too brilliant of an idea to flat out reject–especially for just one day of the year. I personally have no idea where you’d procure a fighting cock, and from the little bit of time spent observing in Mexico it seems like quite the to-do to train such a beast, but it is your life and I will not stop you in this instance. If you yourself fight the cock in the pool, you will be awarded the Purple Heart of My Respect thenceforth. The aforementioned make up part 2 (as well as possibly 2a and 2b) of the activities (in no real particular order) of Cinco de Mayo 2007.

While the assorted brethren and sisteren who congregate together on the 5th of May may do so only once a year, it is nevertheless a family. Families are families best when all the members do their own thing for the betterment of the family as a whole. Part tres (3), The Potluch.

Whether you’re a culinary whiz or merely a freshmen in the kitchen, anything you would like to satiate the palates of the people with will be looked upon with kindly eyes and salivating mouths. Homecooked is the best, but if you want to rent out the Dog Almighty cart for the day, that’d be fine, too.

Speaking of things being looked upon kindly and family, it seems Ol’ Pa Wachs lost the gosh darn farm on account of dem dar droughts and the bank gone and foreclosed on him. (Read: Mike was selfish and wanted to see other parts of the world, but will be pretty poor upon arrival.) If you see fit to contribute to the Margarita Fund, the gesture won’t be forgotten or overlooked. I promise you that.

I have hitherto left unmentioned a couple of things; the first being where the Farley home resides. This is because I don’t have the exact address quite yet. I do know, however, that it is located in the keeping it weird 78704 zipcode whose distance is not unsuitable for a post-party bicycle ride to Polvo’s–I know!

Second order of unspoken business concerns the fact that this year’s festivities fall on a Saturday. You have scant excuses to not spend the day sipping on icy beverages, taking in the sun, and swimming amongst friends, so I suggest not even trying. If you are one of those souls forced to toil when the week ends, I similarly suggest requesting time off at the first opportunity available or inventing an appropriate medical malady that will behoove you of your time from noon to 5pm on the 5th of May.

I sincerely hope you will be able to attend.

Michael E. Wachs

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