Thursday, January 21, 2010

Beer Pong Dunk Contest: Time to Step Up Your Game

I've never personally dunked while playing beer pong, nor have I seen anyone do it. I can't lie, though: I have thought about doing it. And come this Saturday, when I'll likely be playing at my friend's party, I think I might have to throw down myself. Great video here (props once again to my boy Gallina for the find).

Monday, January 18, 2010

Unicorns and White Whales

Recently, the boys and I have identified two specific types of girls that exist in each of our lives: unicorns and white whales.

Some of you may be familiar with these two terms. Some people even consider them to be synonyms. But I disagree, as I see one fundamental difference between them: Unicorns, being the mythical beasts that they are, represent the ideal woman. A unicorn is that girl out there who you would consider worthy of wearing your wedding ring (or your pinkie ring, if you’re LRG). Your obsession with her is based upon love (or maybe just a deep amount of “smitten”…like, really strong, full-on-smit). She’s beautiful, intelligent, funny, trustworthy, caring,…non-whorish; in short, she’s wifey material. A white whale, on the other hand, is far from perfect; in fact, she’s dangerous and destructive. Odds are you know and accept just how big of a worthless slag she is. She may not even be all that hot, but yet you chase all the same. Your obsession, therefore, is based on lust. You want to knock the bottom out, cross her off the list, and move on with your life without ever looking back (well, maybe just a quick morning-after rematch—but then after that no looking back).

At most, you might know one or two girls who fit the unicorn mold. If you think you have more than two unicorns, you’re delusional. And you are probably mistaking a white whale for a unicorn. Either you just don’t know what kind of despicable, dirtbag things that female is up to when you’re not around, or you’re just too drunk to notice them happening right in front of you. Like when she punches you in the face. Twice.

Ladies and gentlemen, I almost wish this last tidbit was about me. There’s a part of me that’s so jealous that my buddy will forever have this story to tell. Of course, that part is outnumbered 999,999-to-1 by parts of me that are shedding tears of laughter, and have yet to pick themselves up off the floor that they’ve been rolling around on since first hearing this tale.

Late last November, a friend of mine—let’s call him “Affliction”, or “Aff”—met a pretty young thing while out on the town one bar night. He found her to be charming; beguiling, even. Now, to know Aff is to know why my friends and I ever got into the unicorn/white whale discussion in the first place. Aff has had an unrelenting crush on almost every cute girl that has ever smiled at him. It’s a character trait that the rest of us have puzzled over. Aff’s not a tool, nor is he a naive virgin; nevertheless, he is unable to see the bad and undesirable in a girl if she’s even moderately attractive. And so, upon meeting this new temptress, he quickly found himself under her spell.

Soon thereafter, he announced to us that he had found himself a new unicorn, and prattled on and on about the unreal connection he had with her. This lass, however, has a bit of a character defect. When she drinks, she becomes…less than logical. Or, in Dupa’s words, “this broad turns batshit insane when she smells alcohol.” Case in point, late in the night that he met her, she randomly—and without provocation—cocked back her tiny fist and punched him in the face. What was Aff’s reaction to this outrageous act, you might ask? He decided that she was merely flirting with him. You just can’t make that up.

Fast forward to a couple of Saturdays ago. After finding out that Pugilist would be sloring with her friends at Dolce, Aff decided to show up uninvited, this time with Chappy along for the ride (if it had been me, finding out that she was hanging at Dolce would be almost as big a turnoff as getting punched in the face; I’ve made my feelings about that joke of a club abundantly clear in the past). Chappy, understanding Aff’s tendency to overvalue girls, decided to test her out by pushing some buttons. He saw the night as an opportunity to knock her straight off the pedestal on which Aff had placed her.

As fate would have it, Pug’s ex-boyfriend was on hand when they arrived, and Chappy quickly recognized him to be a total douche. Hellllloooooo button. Chappy called Pug’s attention to just what a d-bag her ex was. Since she had been drinking, it was more than enough to bring out Ms. Hyde. Pug went ballistic. She yelled at Chappy and, as per their new tradition, punched Aff in the face once again.

After a week or so of laughing at this epic saga, it occurred to me this afternoon that I had not heard any further updates about Aff’s feelings towards her following that night (at the end of which, she walked over to Aff, gave him a hug, and said, “Have a good night”…*sigh*). The natural assumption, of course, would be that he had reevaluated his views on Pug. I decided to IM Dupa about it.

D.E.F.I. (4:59:56 PM): is [Aff] still enamored with the crazy broad who punched him in the face?
Dupa (5:00:15 PM): dunno she stopped bbm'ing him back so he's mad at her apparently
D.E.F.I. (5:00:33 PM): bbm ing?
Dupa (5:02:52 PM): blackberry messaging
D.E.F.I. (5:03:00 PM): ah
D.E.F.I. (5:03:13 PM): lol...THAT pissed him off?...not the chin check?
Dupa (5:03:57 PM): yeah he doesnt like the silent treatment

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Drunks Say the Darndest Things 2

If you think there is a limit to the amount of idiotic, ballsy, or plain-outrageous things my friends, family, and I will say when marinated in alcohol, let me reassure you: there isn’t. Last year’s posting on this subject was one of my favorites of the year, and not long after it was published I began remembering additional stories and fantastic lines that I had not included. Not to mention the new ones that we were busy living on an almost weekly basis. Many of those have been part of much larger stories, and therefore have already been told (a case of mistaken identity by “The Ex”—nee “Girlfriend”, Dupa’s testimonial to his lovemaking abilities, T.C.’s diffusion of a tense elevator ride, LRG’s dating arithmetic, etc.). But there still remain others that have been executed just as flawlessly, but have remained amongst our crew…until now.

  • The day after Thanksgiving, my friend Steph invited me to a party at her house in Mt. Washington. When I arrived, though, the house was seemingly empty. I knocked on the door, but to no avail. I called her up to politely ask, “WTF?”

    Steph: *noticeably tipsy* “I’m at Carson City Saloon. I came down here this afternoon with some of my friends to watch the early [college football] games. We’re leaving here in like ten minutes.”
    Me: “Okay, but isn’t anyone at your place?”
    Steph: “Bill (my boy, who is also her roommate) should be there. Did you knock on the door?”
    Me: “Yeah. No answer.”
    Steph: “Well kick that fucker down!”

  • When I was about ten or so, my dad’s side of the family held a 75th birthday party for my grandfather. As we all sat around a table in the private room of a nice Baltimore restaurant, some of my aunts and uncles discussed the different milestone birthdays while enjoying their pre-dinner cocktails.

    Someone: “Well 25th is silver, and 50th is gold. What’s 75th?”
    Uncle Red:Marble!”

  • In May 2004, Tony celebrated his birthday with a raucous cookout at the house he lived in with his boy, K-man. Late in the night—after a keg and two bottles of Jager had been polished off—we were all pretty hammered, but the birthday boy was easily the drunkest. Chief showed up with Mudd, who none of us had met before. And Mudd, who is black, was wearing a cowboy hat.

    Tony: “Chief—you brought me a black cowboy for my birthday!”

  • One fall night in 2001, BlahBlahBlah and I were out in Shadyside with our friend, “Em”, and two of her girlfriends, “Pin-up” and “Badonk”. All three of the girls lived in The ‘Side; Em had an apartment on Walnut St., and Pin-up and Badonk lived in a large house a few blocks away with two other girls. After the bars closed we all went back to the girls’ house to continue drinking. Although BBB and I were supposed to stay at Em’s apartment that night, things were going swimmingly between Badonk and I, not to mention between BBB and Pin-up. So when Em decided to call it a night, expecting us to be rolling with her, she got two peace signs to the face. For whatever reason, though, neither of us hooked up; instead, our party of four ended up passing out in a girl-guy, girl-guy lineup in Pin-up’s bed (she had a queen-sized mattress, but quarters were still pretty cramped—if we had rolled over in our sleep, the poor lasses would’ve suffocated).

    Early in the morning, I felt the bed shake, and looked up to see BBB getting up and walking out of the room. I looked back down to find a sexy chick sleeping next to me in the same bed, and another one a BBB-sized space away from her. Still drunk, I shrugged it off and went back to sleep. An hour or so later, all of us were awaken by a blaring smoke alarm. Pin-up hopped up and ran out of the room to investigate; the rest of us got up, BBB and I plopping ourselves down on a couch in the middle of the bedroom. When Pin-up returned, she said that a candle had been left burning in the bathroom and the smoke from it had set off the alarm. “It was probably our roommate—she’s always lighting that fucking candle!”

    She left the room again and Badonk followed her. Alone for the moment, BBB started chuckling.

    Me: *whispering* “What?”
    BBB: *whispering* “I lit the candle!”
    Me: “Wha…Why’d you light the candle?”
    BBB: “I took a shit!”

  • BBB’s confession wasn’t going to be the last great line of the morning, however. He and I walked back to Em’s place, giggling and still tipsy. When we rang the buzzer for her apartment, she came to the door and opened it, and looked up at us like a lost toddler.

    Em: *dejectedly* “Did you fuck my friends?!?”

  • A couple of Christmases ago, several of us spent Christmas Eve Eve (the 23rd) drinking at Shadyside Saloon. At the end of what was a blindingly-drunk night for Hollywood, the last four or five of us were drinking beers in my apartment. As he perused my liquor supply, he happened upon my bottle of Glenlivet Nadurra, a 16 year old scotch.

    Hollywood: “‘Glen-li-vay’. Nice.”
    Me: “Thanks, but it’s ‘Glen-liv-it’.”
    Hollywood: “No it’s not; it’s ‘Glen-li-vay’.”
    Me: “It’s ‘Glen-liv-it; it’s Scottish, not French!”

  • On a Friday night last November, Tony and I were sitting at a table in Shady Grove, finishing our drinks and casually watching some of the night’s talent walk past. Then a passing petite blonde with a nice bottom got Tony to thinking.

    Tony: “If I was Vinnie Chase, I’d pull an average chick like that, and then I’d send someone out to buy a bucket of sausage gravy, and I’d eat it out of her ass.”

  • As TD and Baby Joey’s 2008 Labor Day party wound down, I received a phone call from The Ex, who at the time was still a mysterious and little-known “Lady Friend”. I answered the phone and sat down on one of the couches in the living room while I talked. 1L, as I reported once before, was confined to the other living room couch by the effects of the day’s drinking. Mind you, she was wide awake and had been involved in the conversations going on between TD, Joey, Tony, and I; she just couldn’t keep herself upright while doing so. The Ex was out of town, but wanted to call to see how my day had gone. As I was involved in the phone conversation, I was absent to the group’s discussion, and was unaware as to where it had wandered off. But I was about to get a strong idea.

    As I talked with The Ex, I suddenly realized 1L’s slurry voice was projecting in my direction. “Hey!” I glanced over, and saw that she was leaning towards me, stretching to show me her cell phone; on the screen was a crisp, clear photo of a well-sculpted butt (which, I’d learn later, belonged to none other than 1L herself) in pink and bluelace panties. I tried to ignore her and focus on The Ex, but 1L was determined to show off her booty to me.

    1L: *louder* “Hey! …I bet that girl you're talking to doesn’t have an ass like this!”

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Coming to a Bar Near You: Oh...F**k.

(That title is the more diplomatic of the two options that I considered for this blog. My original choice was "The D-Bag of Beers," but I felt that would be a little unfair to my boy LRG, who's been an Ed Hardy fan long before it reached the douchey status that it has today.)

Ed Hardy now makes beer and vodka? As a respectable semi-pro drinker, I feel so...violated. I was fine with them clothing d-bags; but, for the love of God, don't FEED them!

This "news" (apparently it was released late last year, yet somehow I'm only finding out about it now) just disturbs me. Thankfully, my buddy Bearcat at Daddy's Sugar Ball provides this beautiful writeup on Ed Hardy Beer.

*sigh* Maybe, at the very least, this development—combined with the sad surge in popularity of "Jersey Shore"—will lead to me bagging a douchebaguette or two. As the immortal words of Ron White go, "When life gives you lemons, you should make lemonade. And then you should find someone whose life gives them vodka...and have a party."

Friday, January 1, 2010

It's a Family Thing

It’s the age old psychological argument: nature vs. nurture. Are a person’s character traits and behaviors inherited, or merely a result of the influences of his environment? It’s a debate that often takes place while drinking, but I think it’s also worth looking at when talking about drinking (that is, aside from examination of the root causes of alcoholism, in which both nature and nurture tend to factor—trust me, I’ve been to enough AA meetings to know that much**). This being the holiday season, I’ve once again spent some time mixing my family and alcohol. And it has reminded me that my proficiency with booze, whether because of nature or nurture, is largely due to my own flesh and blood.
  • On Christmas Eve I had dinner at my mom’s house, and we were joined by two of my cousins (“PJ” and “Jump”), as well as PJ’s husband, Jump’s fiancée, and his fiancée’s son. Shortly after their arrival, my mom had the realization that she hadn’t picked up any beer for the occasion. All she had was the few cans of Coors Light in the refrigerator in her garage—cans that have been down there so long, even I won’t touch them. Jump sprang into action, despite our warnings, and ran down to get a can. He’d cracked it before he had even come back upstairs, and he declared it to be "fine" as he took a few preliminary sips. Later, when he’d finished the beer, my mom asked him what the expiration date on the can said. “September 2007.”

  • Jump stuck to wine the rest of the night.

  • An unapologetic yinzer 20 years my senior, Jump has never found a moment where he felt uncomfortable saying exactly what is on his mind. Particularly when he’s been drinking. Even at family gatherings. Especially at family gatherings when he’s been drinking. And this hasn’t changed now that he has a fiancée with an 11 year old son. As PJ, his sister, explained which kinds of vegetables—fresh, frozen, or canned—that she and her husband eat, Jump patiently sipped from his glass of wine and waded through the mind-numbingly mundane conversation, awaiting his chance to speak.

  • PJ: “…He won’t eat frozen. But we both like canned.”
    Jump: *beat* “Do you like kielbasa in the can?”

  • Jump got at least part of his drunken bravado from his mother, my late Aunt Pat. As a kid, my favorite feature of each year’s huge family Christmas dinner get-together was the inevitable moment when Aunt Pat was visibly sauced. It usually came shortly after dessert and just before we began unwrapping gifts. One Christmas, as all of us laughed at her feeble attempts to entertain our cat, Jagr (we’re Penguins fans—fight me), she slouched back into the dining room chair and said, “Jagr…you little pussy!

  • I’ve already written about my mom’s night of celibations a few weeks ago. Although such nights have always been few and far between for her, I do have a few childhood memories of holidays and parties where she and her siblings would indulge and cause hilarity. There was even a late night peanut fight when I was about 11, where my Aunt Barbara, my mom, and I battled in a winner-take-all peanut-throwing showdown that led to us finding peanuts in different corners of the house for the next few months.

  • Throughout my younger years, there were several summertime cookouts and parties at Jump’s house, and they often involved him and his buddies polishing off a bottle of Ouzo (among other things). When I was about 14 or 15, they began offering me a taste or so of my own. Now I can drink the stuff without much change in my demeanor; I’ve done shots of the Greek delight with friends, however, who afterwards look like they’ve just drank turpentine.

  • In June 2005, I was in Connecticut for a cousin’s wedding. As people began to roll into his house for the rehearsal dinner, I helped my uncle carry the first keg out to the back porch. Picking up the tap, he asked, “Do you know how to put one of these on?” I had it locked in place and was bleeding the foam before he could finish his sentence. “Ah,” he countered, “I see you’ve done this before.”

  • In October ‘99, my boy E and I were in Baltimore for Morgan State’s homecoming weekend. While sitting in my grandmother’s living room on Sunday, we talked with my aunt, a couple of my cousins, and one of my uncles (“Uncle Red”), who was sitting quietly at the dining room table with the Sunday paper. My aunt, ever the little sister, grabbed the glass of iced tea sitting in front of Uncle Red and took a swig.

  • Aunt: *shocked, nearly choking* “[Red]! This is almost all whiskey!”
    Uncle Red: “That’s why you don’t take other people’s drinks.”
    Aunt: “It’s 11:30 in the morning!”

  • As long as I can remember, when my uncles and cousins would gather for a family event, the two most plentiful liquors on hand were always Ketel One and Jack Daniels. One day several years ago, I walked through the liquor store on a Friday afternoon, looking to replenish the bar in my apartment. I had no particular brand in mind to buy, but I knew that I wanted a bottle of vodka and perhaps a whiskey or some other dark liquor. As I placed my items on the cashier’s counter, I realized that I had picked up none other than a fifth of Ketel and a fifth of Jack. I texted my cousin, “Mrs. Blue Moon” (MBM)—Uncle Red’s daughter, coincidentally—and explained what had just happened. She laughed and said, “It’s in our blood. Don’t try to fight it.”

  • My Uncle Johnny has often told a story about my Uncle Rob visiting him once. Johnny had a bottle of some liquor that he proclaimed to be deceptively strong. Rob’s response was a confident, “I find that hard to believe.”

  • An hour later, confined to his chair by the potent drink, Rob called on Johnny’s son to take the glass from his hand and put it up on the counter for him.

  • Once MBM, Uncle Red, and I were heading to a small family reunion at my sister’s house, just outside of Washington, DC. We packed up the trunk of Uncle Red’s car with coolers of drinks and food, and hit the road. While navigating our way to the highway through the streets of Baltimore, I casually mentioned that I was eager to get started on the day’s drinking. Uncle Red, ever the gracious host, pulled over to the curb, ran back to the trunk, and came back with bottles of Dos Equis for MBM and me.

  • In the summer of 2000 my dad’s family held a large reunion in Raleigh, NC. Because a cousin of mine—who herself lived in North Carolina—was also getting married that same summer, they decided to combine the two events. This meant that nearly everyone in the family, even many of those who lived in North Carolina, got rooms in a nearby Homewood Suites for the weekend. My boy Chris and his girlfriend made the trek with me; upon checking into our room, we decided our #1 priority would be keeping the kitchen fridge stocked with bottles of all sorts. Our room quickly became the default party room, where my generation of the family hung each night to booze and party.

  • MBM is a skilled drinker herself, and often the instigator of intense boozing sessions. She volunteered her house as the site of the afterparty following our cousin’s wedding last May, and it was there on her porch where I first witnessed beer pong and flip cup being played in the hood. Often when I would come to Baltimore for a visit, I would crash at the upscale townhouse where one of our uncles lives. On one such trip, we decided one night that we wanted to drink, but neither of us felt like going out on the town. MBM came up with a remarkably perfect solution: The uncle who owns the townhome hardly drinks at all, but yet has shelves full of alcohol in his basement closet (he keeps it stocked for those occasions when he’s entertaining guests). And since his basement features a plush TV room, complete with a large sectional sofa and a large television, it was the ideal place to quietly relax with some drinks. It quickly became a mini-tradition that anytime I was in town, at least one night of my visit we would get twisted with drinks at the townhouse.

In the end, it’s difficult to say which has played the bigger part in making me who I am. While nature has certainly ingrained me with a comfort level with booze, it’s hard to deny the nurturing that went on while hanging with my crew during my college years—or any that has occurred in the time since. Each has played a part, but I would never have become elite without both of them. To put it into drinker’s terms: A glass of Guinness is good on its own, but if you drop in a shot of Baileys and Jameson, it becomes something much more powerful.

Damn I’m thirsty.

[**Sadly, that’s not a joke. My stepmother has been sober for over 18 years now, and I’m proud of her for it. Although this page is a dedication to the pouring pastime and I often (read: constantly) make jokes about my friends and I being “drunks”, I would never belittle the disease of alcoholism. I’ve seen firsthand the kind of pain and damage it can inflict on both its victims and their families. I would hope that any and all of you out there reading this understand that my writings are largely tongue-in-cheek. I like to have fun, as do my friends. But each of us knows his or her limit, and I only feel comfortable talking and joking about our drinking because I am secure in it being merely social recreation, and not the symptom of deeper problems.

This is something that’s very personal to me. When I was younger I spent a lot of time at AA and Al-Anon meetings with my stepmom and my dad. I listened to people tell stories that not only crossed that ever-so-fine line between “funny drunken antics” and “destructive addiction,” they raced across it like a Top Fuel dragster. That’s why, with every story I report on this page, I do so knowing that its participants were firmly on the safer side of that divide. I have also, on a few occasions, talked with people who are authorities on the subject of alcoholism—namely, men and women who counsel people that abuse alcohol and drugs. I don’t consider myself an expert; but I do feel that my own hands-on experience with the sickness makes me slightly more qualified than the average person to identify who might or might not have a serious drinking problem.

And yet, despite this, I have had to defend myself from the reckless accusations of a few individuals in my private life who know very little about alcoholism, but who have naively decided that because I drink a lot, I must be an alcoholic. If you know anything about the disease, you know that my consumption habits fall well short of anything that should sound off any alarms. I already have a mother, and she worries about me as a matter of standard operating procedure. And if she’s not concerned about my drinking, then you shouldn’t be either.]