Under La Botarga
Exploring the Plushy Dungeons of Zona Norte
“It gets hot and uncomfortable, but I deal with it,” comments Patricio Herman Dominguez, also known as Dr. Simi. Patricio comes from the humble town of Houses of Saint Cristobal in Chiapas, Guatemala.
“I’ve always dreamed to be a botarga,” continues Patricio. “I went to the big city because I got sick. That’s when I saw the jolly old man with the gray mustache that gave me medicine. Ever since then, I wanted to be just like him. Just like Dr. Simi.”
Patricio dances non-stop in front of a farmacia in Tijuana. Kids cheer with joy when they see him and he fist bumps all of them. When the farmacia allows it, he hands the kids a lollipop.
“It was when I was 14 that I left my family and everyone I knew and moved to Guadalajara.”
Roberto knew that to follow his dreams, he had to study at PhIG (Pharmaceticos Internacionales Guadalajara), the company that created Dr. Simi in 1966. Guadalajara is the city that produces the most pharmaceuticals in Mexico and almost the world, second only to Munich were Beyer is headquartered.
“After four years in PhIG, they told me I was going to be working in Tijuana. I never imagined my life would take such a turn…”
Once the sun sets, Patricio does not take off his Dr. Simi costume and heads down to Zona Norte.
“I never knew this world existed. Who could have? But it is a dream come true and I have been doing it for eleven years.”
The club is known as “Los Botis,” but there is no indication the place exists. The light neon sign above the door reads “pen” the O on the sign is out. Behind heavy red curtains, there is a short hallway, a few steps downstairs and a basement that smells like mildew.
“Simi! Simi!” The small crowd of men and old women chants. Most wear different stuffed animal costumes. Some only wear masks. There were two other Dr. Simis in the crowd. Most have glitter all over their body.
This is where Patricio shines.
“I do anything. I get on the floor. I dance, I twerk, I purr, I play with fruit… and I don’t mean juggle. There is only one rule. I can never take off the costume. Well. At least the head.”
The stage is just a filthy carpet. There are plastic and foldable tables everywhere. Beer sells for less than a dollar. There is no cover charge.
“I never thought I would have this life. I get to be what I want for people, and no one ever sees me.” People are allowed to do whatever they want to Dr. Simi. Tips are voluntary.
“It’s not about the money. I love being a plushy, and other plushies love me. There is a strange comfort at doing what you want under the costume…”
Patricio says he washes the costume daily before work. Under the policy of Farmacias Similares, the Dr. Simi outfit belongs to the employer after one year of work. Patricio burns his costume at the end of every year.
The above story is obviously fake.
Patricio Herman Dominguez, initials = Ph D.
Get it? Like Dr. Simi!
Also… there is no such place as Houses of Saint Cristobal in Chiapas, Guatemala. It’s San Cristobal de las Casas in Chiapas, Mexico. or PhIG. Or other shit that is obviously made up… But yeah.
Here is what happened.
With nothing to write, I got bored and decided to go to a bar early. On my way there I caught me some Pokémon. Then I saw Dr. Simi, and I thought to myself, I want a great picture of Dr. Simi, but I don’t want him to pose. Didn’t take the picture because I’m shy.
Almost to the bar, motherfucking PoGo tells me there is an Onix nearby where Dr. Simi was. Fuck. I need a couple more Onix candies to evolve that fucker into Steelix. So I walked back.
Why not. Let’s take a picture of Dr. Simi.
He was standing on the other side. Fuck. Now it’s going to be backlit. Ahhh it will still be fine.
Nope. It was backlit.
It was just an okay picture.
And I decided to create a bullshit story.
Because why not?
My second visit to Anthony’s Sandwiches. This time I got the “Trucha” which has ham, bacon, lettuce, American cheese, cheddar cheese, tomato, bell peppers, jalapeños, and mayonnaise.
The price already went up 10 pesos in every sandwich. From one day to the other…
So this one was 75 pesos (instead of 65). It was okay. Again. Pretty good for the price.
Before going to Anthony’s, I had some picadillo burritos and two caguamas at Nelson. Grabbed Anthony’s to go and went home. Only ate half a sandwich, then met with my girl and took her to La Justina.
La Justina did not disappoint. There steamed buns have to be one of my favorites, not only in town but that I have tried. Girlfriend got the octopus burger. Their octopus is also very well done. A pricey place, but it was worth it.
And I still have nothing to write. Two things in my mind. That fucking sandwich shop, and Haitians. Need to narrow it down. I think I almost have it. I think I have it. I’ll be doing some work this weekend.
Roommate hasn’t been here in forever. And he is yelling SHRIMP. And it’s not even noon. But it’s the weekend. Time to drink some beer. I haven’t hung out with him in forever either.
Too bad babe is at work :(
Because we are going to eat some shrimp tacos and drink a beer or two, and perhaps more.
I love playing tennis.
And I haven’t been able to because of two reasons:
- You can’t play tennis by yourself.
- I don’t know where to play tennis.
But this might be resolved. A friend wants to go play this Sunday. I’m going to own the poor bastard so hard. He doesn’t even see it coming.
I mean… maybe.
I haven’t played in a long ass time. So maybe I’m not as good as I remember.
But I for sure want to play. I need to work out more.
Push-ups have been reduced to around 50 or less a day. I’m nowhere near 100. I did some drunken ones yesterday. I think I did a total of 70… Still need way more.
And I don’t want to work.