Friday, September 30, 2011

Crappy Hangover

I have the distinct honor of having a birthday only a couple of days before Halloween. Starting on my 21st birthday and for the next couple of years, my birthday fell on a day that just happened to work into my schedule very well; my drinking schedule. Two of my roommates had the same response from their schedules, but to Halloween in general. Our great idea was to make it a marathon; hell, you only turn 21 once! I turned 21 on a Wednesday, so Tuesday night (Wednesday at Midnight) I went to Walmart and bought my first bottle of liquor. We all had a couple of celebratory drinks, and probably watched “Grease.” I wish I were embarrassed by that.

Wednesday was where we really picked up the pace in our marathon. After an unusually dry dinner with my family, I headed back (still sober) to the apartment and gathered the troops. One of the bars in town has a birthday shot special. It was buy one, get one for the birthday boy/girl free. Brilliant! This is a college town and I was with close friends but they’ll be damned if they take money out of their strict liquor budget and spend it on someone else…except the guys trying to go home with someone. Anyway, after 13 or so shots I was feeling really great. We left that bar at 11pm, I quickly headed to many other bars. I had a friend that bartended at, what soon became my favorite bar, Paddy’s. I enjoyed some more free drinks and left again. At some point I was separated from the group. How I ever got back with them is a mystery to me. I don’t even remember leaving Paddy’s and, after the next day reports, I had been to 3-4 other bars. In the peak of my buzz it was last call and somehow I got home, with both of the roomies that joined me. In the true fashion of a successful 21st birthday I spent the night between the couch and the toilet.

Thursday, the marathon continued…without me. Not because I was too hungover, but because at that time my work schedule got in the way of my drinking. Against my better judgment I decided to go to keep my 5am shift on Friday. Two of my roommates, Selena and Kari, were fortunate enough to partake in the annual Halloween bar crawl in campustown. Because of this particular year’s crawl with Selena and Kari it gained a reputation of a scantily clad, boozefest. That is an amazing accomplishment and I’m proud to call them my friends and was able to learn a lot from them. This day was the first night of dressing up for Halloween.  The girls were going to cycle through costumes old and new from one night to the next. Selena and Kari both, independently, bought the same costume. They both wore this costume on that night, with the anticipation of wearing them another night (Again, learned so much from them). Well this night they conquered every bar. Like Lindsay Lohan, they left no drink behind [the legal representation of Ms. Lohan may contact me at matt.m.vaughn@gmail.com]. By the end of the night they were beyond intoxicated. This is where the details get fuzzy as this is mostly hearsay, from the girls, until sober witness observations could come into play. Ending the night at a bar I nicknamed, “The Urinal,” Selena and Kari were in full dance and paid no attention to last call. And when everyone was kicked out they stayed for a little while and partied with the bartenders and DJ, who due to the many nights spent at this bar have become friends. After a few more minutes at the bar, they got a ride home. Well, we are giving them the benefit of the doubt on the ride part. There was no strong evidence either way, so innocent until proven guilty. This is America, damnit! All we know is that they were home safe and the car was parked nicely in a parking space, reasonable doubt at best.

As I had to work at 5:45am, I had the pleasure of being the first on the scene. Like the drunk high-schoolers that find the body of a dead hooker in the alley behind the abandoned factory in the opening of “Law and Order,” or any show on CBS. (P.S. CBS, you are no longer original, and I’m tired of it!) I stumbled out of bed across the hall to take my morning wiz. I turn on the light, do my business, wake up a little bit, and in mid stream I notice the crime scene before me. I saw chunks of spew in and around the toilet. Out of horror and disgust, I try to finish without adding to the mess. I look on the wall and see a hand smear very similar to the one from the car on the Titanic, you know the one Leo and Kate got freaky in. It would have been just as magical, but this mark wasn’t cast in the window sweat from steamy sex, but in an unknown bodily semi-solid. I quickly left the bathroom because I was late for work. Oh, and the bathroom was effing disgusting!

I came back home and took a nap on the couch. I woke up to the sound of my roommate Andie wrapping on Selena’s door. It was about 10:45am and Selena needed to leave for work right then. Selena shoots straight up in her bed, wails her arms around, looks wildly about the room, yelling.
“I’m drunk!”
Andie gently asks, “Don’t you need to be going to work?”
Selena, still not sure where she is or what year it is, has Andie recite the day, time, her name. A hungover hour passes [10 seconds] and Selena finally realizes the reality she is now faced with.
“I’m late for work and looking so good!” she howls in an oddly good spirits considering her condition/situation. “Look at my hair, so much volume…Courtney Love watch out, there’s a new Crazy in town.”
She throws on her clothes walks into the bathroom to find her partner in crime. Kari was passed out with that night’s snuggle buddy, John.
“Kari, sweetheart, do you want to take this to your room? I have to pee!” Selena motherly requests.
“[Inaudible noise], ugghhh.” Kari, clearly not ready to live, replied.
“Just use my bathroom,” suggests Andie.
“OH YEA!”
Selena quickly emerges fully ready…well as ready as she was going to be.
As I was coming out of one of my “Couch Comas,” I was half paying attention to what was happening - “What’s going on?”
“I’m late for work, I look like trash, and Kari is with her faithful servant. He always knows the best position to help her out,” Selena said as she raced to get her shoes on.
“Oh, she slept in or around the toilet?” I acknowledge the least bit surprised.
Few things bring me as much joy as seeing the misery of an awful hangover, so I go to see Kari. Sure enough she was hugging that toilet like it was Elian Gonzalez. Selena scrambles around looking for God knows what; ends in her room flailing her sheets and pillows around.
“Did I go to sleep eating chocolate?!” cries Selena from her room.
“I don’t know. Where would you have gotten chocolate?” I ask, now hungry for chocolate.
“I don’t know! I was?...am? …wasted. I don’t remember anything. Well, I think I got some on my pillowcase and sheets.”
“Oh that sucks,” I quickly dismissed it, one of my favorite shows came on.
“Do we have a Tide To Go?!”
“Selena! You are late for work. I’ll wash those for you. GO!” Andie piped in at the perfect time. I knew Selena shouldn’t be wasting any more time, but I hate doing laundry.

Selena rushed off to work and Andie and I cleaned up the mess in the bathroom. An hour or two later Kari emerged from the bathroom. When we all settled back down we asked Kari what she thought had happened in the bathroom. She had suggested that the cat got its poop there because the litter box was in that bathroom. Puzzled I wondered how that would have gotten on the wall next to the light switch. And in what looked like a hand mark? We left it at that and moved on, well I did because “Full House” was back from its commercial break, the other two needed to go to work.

Selena’s shift was from 11:00/11:30am – 8:00pm at a cafeteria at the hospital. And this day she was mainly working the cash register. At 7:55pm three of us got a text from Selena. Now I want to emphasize where Selena worked. A hospital, in the cafeteria, talking with patrons at the cash register. This text said:
“I didn’t have chocolate in bed! I know this because THERE IS POOP IN MY HAIR!!!!!!!”
At that moment I spit my pre-game drink all over myself. I about laughed so hard there would have been a repeat of the mess that was in my bathroom from that very morning. She had spent hours at work, looking like a train wreck, with feces in her hair! She spent nearly her whole shift serving sick people and their families their food. Our crime scene of an apartment now had two mysteries: What happened in my bathroom and how/why there is poop in Selena’s hair. The first one we focused on was how poop ended up in Selena’s hair. This one was easy. We remembered that when Andie opened Selena’s door the cat, Caliber, launched out of her room. While her door was propped open, it was not open enough for the cat to get out. Of all the places in her room to take a steamy dump he picked her hair/pillow. She didn’t notice anything in her hair that morning because she didn’t have the time. She just quickly glanced at it in her rush. I also think it is important to point out that she also is a talented cosmetologist. So her pride and joy, her hair, had a Lincoln Log stuck in it. She showered and asked we not speak of it for a long time (we all lasted a surprising week).

Now it was time for out what had happened to the bathroom. Now that we knew the cat was locked away for the whole night we wondered how cat shit could have got on the wall. Naturally, we went to Selena for that, as she had become the leading expert in this field.
“It had to have been Kari. I mean think of where we found her. And I’m pretty sure I remember both of us going to our beds when we got home.”
“That would explain the mess within the toilet,” it was a revelation to me.
They got home from the bars and in true Kari fashion, she had to vomit. She tried to stop the upcoming lava flow from her stomach with her hand over her mouth. Like the scene from The Exorcist she spewed everywhere. Not realizing it was on her hand she struggled to turn on the light and left the streak on the wall. After she demolished my bathroom she struggled her way to hers, which, as we know, is where she spent the next few hours.
“Awe, mystery solved! Way to go team. Let’s put our badges away for the night and celebrate!” With this I became the enabler for the night and we got ready to continue my birthday celebrations.

This all happened Thursday into Friday of a five day drinking marathon. Friday evening was another dress up day for Halloween, same with Saturday, and Sunday kept the theme going. All four of us took part in Friday and Saturday. The girls cycled through costume quicker than Ryan Reynolds does with wives/fianc├ęs. I refused to wear a real costume, it was my birthday. I don’t have to wear one if I don’t want to! After Saturday night Andie and I both were done for the next few days; but Sunday, Selena and Kari tried to relive their Thursday night. Unfortunately, for the rest of our entertainment, it wasn’t nearly the same as Thursday. But after it was all said and done my heroes had finished a five night drinking endurance test. Even though Night #2 was pretty bad, they kept it going. This was the start of a great series of, not as epic, but fun nonetheless, weekends at the bars.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Stolen Car

As many of our stories start or end or revolve around, we were at the bar. Every time we went to the bar Selena always seemed to drive. On this night that was a hot topic while the girls were getting ready and I sat on the couch waiting, trying not to pass out. Passing out early was my specialty for quite some time. Well this lighthearted argument started by Selena asking, “who is going to drive?”
                “I can’t drive, my car is stick shift,” Kari quickly responded.
                “My car isn’t big enough for all of us,” Andie came back with.
                 From the couch I shout, “I’m going to be too fucked up to get us there!” Why sit there and beat around the bush? I like to keep it real. Let’s be honest, I had just got a new bottle of amaretto. And with the 12 ounces of sour mix left over from my last amaretto getaway, I had the perfect amount to finish the bottle. I like to try to pace myself, it’s a fast pace, but pacing nonetheless.

With all of us saying were going to be too drunk to drive, Andie and Kari’s answers were code for such, Selena decided this was not a battle worth fighting. We piled in her ’93 Caddy and headed to the bars. We get to our usual spot, “The Urinal.” I nicknamed it “The Urinal” because a) I really didn’t like that place, b) I witnessed someone peeing on the dance floor, and c) it was in the basement of the building and was warm and had a faint smell of urine lingering in the air.

Once inside “The Urinal” we took our normal places, the girls on the dance floor and me leaning against the bar. We always met up on the dance floor once my muscles were warmed up after the many drinks I bicep-curled up to my mouth. We kept doing our own thing, I was chest pumping with no one and the girls were sexually assaulted on the dance floor by the black Roxbury brothers. Again, the usual. This night it was all four of us and only us four that went back to our apartment. Consequently Kari, Andie, and I were all too drunk to drive. Selena who had seen this coming had prepared to drive. This night Kari had more than enough to drink. We get to our apartment and at this point Kari’s condition had hit critical mass. She was ready to vomit and pass out. Now when Kari vomits she will pass out the instant she is done. There is nothing even close to a rally. She also can’t postpone the eruption. So this is a very delicate time and the window to get her in a safe place is small. The condition had deteriorated exponentially; there was not enough time to park the car. We raced out of the car and got to the back-driver’s side door, pulled Kari out of the car by her shoulders, she was seconds from being a child’s volcano science fair project. We left the car sitting in the middle of the parking lot with the doors open and the car was running. We lived in the middle of Iowa, Mayberry had more to worry about. We get her safe and comfortable around the toilet. Immediately she hugged the throne and paid proper homage.

Once she was settled in we remembered how we left Selena’s car. We stroll downstairs to see that the car wasn’t there anymore. The moment I noticed that her car wasn’t there, I freaked out while all color drained from Selena’s well bronzed face. My anger was real but I had no one to direct it toward. Fists in the air I started yelling at the heavens, I kept yelling, “What the Hell! Who steals a car?! Who the fuck?!” This continued for a couple of minutes, my directionless anger then shifted topics; fists still in the air, I started yelling about how this is exactly why Selena shouldn’t be forced to drive-as if this only happened because Selena drove. Finally, Selena, the owner of the car, tries settling me down. We start searching for her car. I, being the helpful jackass, start looking under cars and behind trees. What the hell would that do for us?! So after the shock of not finding anything under the other cars we direct our search to the rest of the apartment complex’s parking lot. We walked to the other side of our building to find the car in the middle of the parking lot with all of the doors open and engine still running. Calmed down a little more, I was able to fixate my anger toward an arbitrary window on the opposite side of our building. I was yelling at how inconsiderate it was to move the car and leave the car running. I remember using the phrases, “gas is not cheap! You could have turned the car off! Who knows how long we were going to leave the car!” The last argument really set off Selena’s laughter she had been subduing. With her laughter a light switch in my head went from pissed off to totally ok with the situation. We sat there laughing, car still in the state we found it, for a few minutes. Finally, Selena and I look at each other and simultaneously asked, “should we go back to the bar?” Being that it was only midnight we went back to finish the night like champs! Do we have a drinking problem? Maybe/who cares!

Introduction

I have been working on a project for awhile. I have been recapping the unusual/funny experiences I have shared, willingly or not, with my roommates throughout the years. Please excuse the terrible language, those are the words that surrounded the event. You have been warned. I find many of these hilarious. If you don't; stop reading them!! You can't make these stories up, they happened and the names of those involved may or may not have been changed to protect identities.

Enjoy!