Venue: Cubby Hole
Location: West Village, New York
My disclaimer: This is my favourite gay bar in the whole world. And I don’t even live in new york city.
The cubby hole is a hole. No, really! The name does it justice. It is a teeeeny tiny space on the corner of W 12th st & W 4th st a short walk away from the more popular bars and pubs in Greenwich village. The first thing that strikes you when you enter is “wow, this place is small!” and as your eyes adjust themselves you try and search for expanses of space in the dark corners, but there are none. Your second thought very likely is “What the heck is all that stuff on the ceiling?” Ornaments? Christmas decorations? Tacky lanterns? A Mardi Gras party ? All of the above truthfully.
Lets get the basics out of the way: The cubby hole is cash only, Has a drink special every night – always a great deal, is open till reasonably obscene hours, is an incredibly straight friendly bar, close to 3 subway stations and a hop, skip and long jump away from Gray’s papaya and/or Kati Roll Company [This is a desi space after all] for a hangover pre-emptive nosh post all night imbibing. Perfect in so many ways.
But what makes this place so much fun ? Everything! The Bartenders are lots of fun and terribly nice – My favourite is Gay, Polish & Snarky [ Bar Patron: ”Could I get a Bud Light please?” , Bartender: “Hold on a second, I am texting my boyfriend…[20 seconds later]…How do you spell ‘touch’??” ] There are the regulars that you see if you hit up the hole ..oh I dunno…twice or thrice a week ? (Guilty). And the vibe here is just warm and welcoming to all queer & straight for a large part due to the people who come here are friendly, unpretentious and out to have a good time. You will see many straight folks and gay guys at any given hour, but women pack up the place during weekends. I’ve always had an obscenely good time dancing away till 4 am in the morning whenever I’ve been here and I can’t put my finger on what exactly it is that makes me always want to go back – Its everything!
One trip to the hole, I do believe I saw a fellow Desi lesbian chatting up a lady friend she had come with. My one attempt to start a conversation with her failed miserably – I blame the jukebox, I can never get it to work ! It works for everyone else just not me, so truthfully using that as an excuse to talk? Bad idea. Desi Lesbian was standing right next to jukebox in conversation with friend. I shimmy on over there with my dollar bills and casually asked her if she knew how to work the jukebox, She tells me, I did exactly what she told me to do ( Even her “friend” was giving me instructions ) but I somehow bungled up that relatively simple task much to her annoyance ( Yeah! She was annoyed!) – So I shimmied on over back to the relative safety of the bar and my friends away from the music-spouting, money-chomping jukebox and Desi Lesbian.
But I shall go back. Again and again. On every trip I make down to the Big Apple. Despite the jukebox, Despite my miserable luck with Indian women. Give it a go the next time you are in town, Gaysi it up at the cubby hole!