Frontier Former Editor

July 30, 2006

A cautionary tale of drunken revelry . . .

Filed under: Uncategorized — Frontier Former Editor @ 9:03 pm

I told Laura E I’d publicly humiliate myself with this little trip in the wayback machine in return for her own drunken confessional.

One fine spring evening while I was in grad school in Richmond, Va., some of my friends noticed the general finals-induced malaise about my person and invited me to go drinking.

To set the scene, the bar was Max’s and scenically wedged between the life-threatening Oregon Hills neighborhood and a downhill view of the old Virginia State Penitentiary (also know as Castle Dracula on the James). We often went there because it was a rather fast-paced execution scene in Virginia in the mid-1980’s and it was a great view of the pro-death and anti-capital punishment demonstrations associated with those days.

On this particular occasion, my general attitude led me to start with a vodka gimlet and a plate of battered, fried mushrooms. After three gimlets and the mushrooms, I felt that the ice and lime twists were getting in the way of perfectly good Absolut, so I started ordering shots.

My memory of the ensuing 45 minutes is still fuzzy 22 years later, but I do remember a table full of shot glasses and the irresistible urge to question the manhood of several frat boys at a nearby table.

My next memory is that of flying through the hall of my dorm while hearing voices above me.
At about noon the next day I regained consciousness. The hangover was actually relatively tolerable since it was vodka-based and not whisky induced.
After showering and returning to he room to pass out, one of my drinking buddies came back by to fill in the blanks.
After standing up to offer some observations of the fraternity gang’s ability to coexist in a manly world, I passed out, fell across the table and let the mushrooms air out, so to speak.
We had ridden to the bar in a pickup truck, and the driver apparently threatened to drive it through a car wash with me sprawled in the back like a sack of potatoes, although the rest of the group prevailed on his humanity.
The flying sensation came from being carried, face down and by each extremity, by my compatriots.
As I heard my tale of woe, I noticed that my glasses were missing. I asked if we could go back to the bar to get them.
“That’s not a good idea,” he said. “You’re banned from Max’s.”
He did go get my glasses, returning with a colorful and hilarious account of the bartender’s reiterated stance on my return to Max’s.
Later that night, I consumed two greasy, wonderful cheeseburgers with onions and mustard and two vanilla cokes.
The State Pen was demolished a decade later. Max’s was razed to accommodate urban renewal. And I sit here, gray-haired and alive to tell the tale.
The moral? Don’t mix Absolut and mushrooms.

And to cap this evening’s story, enjoy a little Frank Zappa. Somehow he fits the situation.

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