24 Hours of Drinking in Dallas

A swing around the clock in some of our favorite places to drink.

We're at the beginning of a five-hour stretch when the strip club Cabaret Royale temporarily plays host to Eternal Afterhours, a BYOB 18-and-up pop-up venue popular with the raver crowd. Only the girls really bring the raver style: scanty clothing, neon bracelets, those enormous fuzzy legwarmers (looking for all the world like bits of a captured, shaved and dyed yeti). The boys look like boys, barely old enough to drive, in tank tops and scratchy tattoos, trying hard not to stare at the girls.

A sweaty, round-faced dude in a bandana and a black T-shirt approaches a knot of guys in line. Bro hugs are exchanged. The dude's T-shirt says, in various shades of neon, "I'M GETTING SHITFACED FUCKED HAMMERED STONED DRUNK TONIGHT." Everyone seems very happy to see him.

"What kinda pills you working with?" a little blond boy says to him, way too loud and way too enthused. A security guard patrolling the parking lot doesn't seem to hear. Bandana Man gives the blond kid a dark look and edges off.

Jamie Laughlin
Mike Brooks

We inch forward in line, just behind a guy in a fuzzy blue hat with long hanging flaps, like a moldy lumberjack, until finally we're inside, where it's very dark, and blue lights flash everywhere, and there's a sound like a thousand angry vacuum cleaners emanating from the DJ booth. More girls in neon outfits dance in the cages recently vacated by the strippers, and on top of banquettes near the bar. A woman in a blue G-string and thick white athletic socks does a frantic-looking jig, next to a guy standing stock-still wearing sunglasses outlined in green LED lights. A few strippers still getting off work amble across the floor in G-strings and disappear up flights of stairs toward the dressing rooms.

The drinking rules are unclear. Hardly anybody's brought in booze, because hardly anybody looks old enough to drink. One group of guys brings in a cooler and they start cracking open beers; a waitress hurries over and asks them to put everything in a cup. They obey, looking baffled.

The best thing in the room, the best thing for miles, are the glow gloves. A few kids are circulating here and there, wearing pairs. They're studded with dozens of little LED lights, and when the wearers trace the air with their fingers, it forms beautiful patterns: infinity symbols, globes, double helices. They stand in front of slightly spaced-out-looking kids and trace invisible worlds for a few seconds. Then everybody hugs. The vacuum cleaners grind on.--Anna Merlan

10723 Composite Drive, inside Cabaret Royale, 3-8 a.m. Sundays; twitter.com/eternaldallas

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schultzybeckett topcommenter

While  its personal matter  whether  to drink  or not  but  i  think  a  little  bit  of restraint is  essential to maintain  order  or  decorum.the overdose of  alcohol  as we all  know  makes  loose  person  all  his  senses

Schultzy @ https://9thelm.com/


Where I live its safer to order alcohol and get it delivered!! London is a scary place at night! I have used the same company for years http://www.booze-up.com never let me down!


In the UK there are a lot of places that sell alcohol 24 hours a day. Just take a look at 24 Hour Alcohol for example. I don't think that many people really drink alcohol early in the morning but it's nice to have the option. We are all adults after all!

primi_timpano topcommenter

You have to get up early in the morning to drink all day.


Drinking between 2AM and 4PM is gross.  People who use the word "daydrinking" are fucking scum.


Actually, that rave shit happens at the Fare Room which is an all nude BYOB strip club next door to Cabaret Royale. I have always wondered how they handle the switch. Do a bunch of bouncers come in at 2am and round up the horny old drunks like the Polish Jews in Schindler's List? Or do they allow them to stay while the place gets filled up with scantily clad 18 year old girls on molly? And just how can you tell the difference between an old drunk having a heart attack/seizure and an old drunk dancing to that music? I guess no blowpops or glowsticks means you leave in an ambulance.


@JustSaying This is a very important correction, and also filled my head with various unwanted early-morning images. Thanks, Kenny Powers. 


@Anna_Merlan Well you are the one that wrote the original piece that filled my head with troubling images, dearest Anna. Now I really want to know how they get the strip club patrons out and the EDM kids in or if they all just hang out together. I want to know if it looks like a law and order SVU when the black light hits the floor, walls, and chairs. I want to know what it looks like when an old guy in Bermuda shorts and black socks dances to dubstep. So. many. questions.


@JustSaying Didn't see anybody that looked like a strip club patron still hanging out, so they must have some sort of incredibly orderly procedure in which the old dudes are herded out before the girls in dayglo everything are ushered in. Just seamless. 

The walls, chairs and floors looked no worse than in any other strip club. Better than some. I sat in a an armchair at the Clubhouse one time that was just incredibly crusty all over the arms. THE ARMS. How does that -- never mind.