Fat Cat

It seems like people are always going to Fat Cat to hang out.  Right off the Christopher St./Sheridan Sq. station, the place is bustling with people inside and out on the sidewalk.  Upon entering, you’ll flash your ID and pay a small cover in exchange for a wristband and a Fat Cat stamp, which may stain your hand for days after.

Fat Cat Women'sThere were too many people for my liking and I tried my best to not get jabbed by anyone playing pool, as I strained to carry on conversations with friends in the spacious basement space abuzz with everyone’s chatter.  It wasn’t so bad once we were able to get a ping-pong table in one of the netted areas off to the side.

The band added to the noise and quite frankly, it made little difference who played what.  Though there was a small attentive crowd on the couches surrounding the performance area, the majority was much more interested in playing games like chess, scrabble, shuffleboard and imbibing great amounts of beer.  Likely because of that last interest, the place had large and clearly marked restroom signs in prominent places.

And while it wasn’t my kind of scene, I was glad to be there to celebrate a college buddy’s birthday.  Many move out here from California for graduate school or work and I’ve a number of good friends from both undergrad and high school out here now.  In densely populated Manhattan, I’ve randomly run into familiar faces from home quite a few times, passing by someone and thinking a moment later, “Hey, that’s the girl from rhetoric class freshmen year.”

Fat Cat Women's entranceFat Cat Women's stall

Fat Cat Women's stall graffitiFat Cat Women's toilet leaks

The women’s restroom maintained the seedy dive feel of the rest of the place.  The toilet in one of the two stalls was leaking slightly and there was a bit of graffiti on the wall, which surprisingly, I haven’t seen in the other clubs.  I tried to get a peek into the men’s room but didn’t have a chance, as guys kept going in and out.  In fact, in hovering near the restrooms, I noticed that the men’s room often had a line, maybe even more than the women’s did.

Other than the nightlife activities, Fat Cat offers other services, from chess to music lessons.  Growing up, my dad, sister and I used to play ping-pong on the piano bench to determine who would have to do the dishes; I could take ping-pong lessons and show them up this Christmas.

Wojtek from Poland tells us how to say, “Where’s the restroom?” in Polish —

Gdzie jest toaleta?