“[Jay Swag] was obliterated. [Boy Toy] only had one beer. [MoPaddle] and [“J-Cray”] were hurting. Alex’s parents are pretty cool.”
And with that, TJ summed up his Memorial Day barbecue.
I could turn this into a lecture as to why you don’t plan parties on the Monday of Memorial Day Weekend when everyone there has to be at work on Tuesday morning, but I think the lesson’s pretty clear. The very fact that he had to tell me about the party via email on Tuesday says it all. I was involved in a deep catch-up nap on my couch for much of Monday afternoon, after 60+ hours spent alternating between inebriated and hungover states.
We gathered at TD and Boy Toy’s home in Mt. Washington for the Penguins’ playoff game. TD and her crew had been drinking for most of the day, so by the time I walked through the door with two six-packs of Goose Island, drunk people were rolling back and forth between the kitchen and living room like a wave motion machine. When you add in that the day was also Alex’s birthday, you have a recipe for reckless boozing—and my crew is Gordon Ramsey when handed that recipe.
- I could barely fit my six-packs into the fridge, which was packed with Miller Lite, Miller High Life, and other various beers of low pedigree. And then Tony rolled in around the start of the second period with a case of Hoegaarden. Almost all of that beer was gone by the next morning.
- It occurred to me that Tony and I were the two most sophisticated drinkers at that party. And that is a thought I never thought I’d think.
- “Under The Porch” (UTP) christened Tyler Kennedy “Sniper Pig.” Which means nothing to you if you’re not a hockey fan, and everything to you if you are a hockey fan.
- Swag insisted on feeding people shots of Jacquin’s Blackberry Brandy. The crowd was underwhelmed.
- Alex once again proved herself to be a woman who isn’t afraid to try new things.
- Shots, shots, and more shots. Holy shit was there a lot of shots being done. And TD was the ringleader, using them as a cure-all. It’s your birthday today? Let’s do a shot! Your birthday falls sometime in 2013? Shot? Oh, you’re feeling tired? Wanna do a shot? Pens just won the series! Do a shot bitches! Feel like calling it a night? How about a shot? Everyone thinks you’re racist? A shot’ll make you feel better!
- I was only half kidding about that last one. While some of us watched a Kevin Hart clip, MoPaddle leaned over to me and whispered, “I just don’t get Black comedy!” Of course, in her hammered state, her whisper was actually a normal-decibel’d exclamation, and UTP picked up on it right away, nearly spitting out beer and stammering, “Whaaa?!?”
- In her defense, though, MoPaddle prefers the comic stylings of Kevin Nealon.
- …That wasn’t a joke.
- I passed out on an air mattress in the freezing spare bedroom next to our friend “Marty”. I can feel 100% secure in his and my heterosexuality, since we didn’t wake up snuggling for warmth.
- …Instead I used a bath towel I found in a bathroom closet.
I awoke on an air mattress, shivering under a bath towel with a throbbing headache. A great start to any day, really.
Saturday was actually the day I’d been looking forward to all week. Alex and I had made plans to have a Shadyside night. Perfect temps, my homegirl and her sis, dozens more friends, and my home turf on the Saturday night of MDW—what could go wrong?
- …Oh yeah, hangovers from getting ridiculously wasted on Friday night, that’s what. Saturday was a 10-year war with my hangover. We each won battles, but I won the war by still making it out that night. Tony, TD, and others weren’t so lucky.
- I dragged myself to Shady Grove to meet up with Alex, her little sister (“Bedazzle”), Alex’s girl Em, and Shannon.
- …And Shan eventually checked out early. My favorite Irish lass, victimized. Friday night was a mother.
- I drank a gin & tonic, and realized it wasn’t going to fix me. Gin & Silver Edition Red Bull doubles are now a thing. You’re welcome.
- We learned that Bedazzle has a wild crew of her own in West Virginia. Including one friend who unabashedly turned an “I’m drunk and going to piss on your deck in front of you,” into an “I’m drunk and going to go ahead and follow through with a deuce. On your deck. IN. FRONT. OF. YOU.”
- …that friend was a female.
- This line from Bedazzle: “I guess some people think it’s a big deal to take a shit on a deck…”
- A sexy blonde girl with multiple visible tattoos began dancing—still seated on her barstool—when “Crank That” started playing. Yeah, I don’t know either why that sentence didn’t start, “My new bride began dancing…”
- I taught the bartender, our boy Greg, how to make a Fitzgerald. You’d think that would’ve qualified me for free drinks the rest of the night, but nnooooooo…
My alarm went off at 9:30 a.m.; I chucked a pillow at it.
TD and Boy Toy picked this fine morning to move most of their belongings to their new townhouse, and several of us kindly lent a helping hand, out of the goodness of our hearts. And for beer. …And pizza.
At least the beer was Victory Hop Devil. That was just the day’s warm up activity, though—something to get the blood pumping. The second half of Sunday was earmarked for drinking faces off in the South Side on a bar crawl that would celebrate the start of Skeets’ 29th year. When I left everyone at the old Casa de T-Toy around 3:30 p.m., my immediate plans were getting cleaned up and navigating my way to my mother’s for dinner. Their immediate plans: BOOZE. (Don’t get ahead of me here…)
- I caught up with everyone at OTB in the sidewalk seating area around 9 p.m. The scene I walked into: Skeets was wobbly, but standing; TD, MoPaddle, and J-Cray were crushed; Swag was nearing Swag Montana territory, and was so invested in a conversation with some guy I’d never met before that he barely noticed my arrival; our girl “Special K”, Mitch Canada, Tony, Marty, and UTP were in varying degrees of “functional”, and were herders keeping the cattle on the ranch.
- Missing-in-action was TD’s significant other. Tony explained that Boy Toy had been playing beer pong at Belle and Finger Bang’s house, and arrived at the birthday crawl’s first stop completely shitfaced. So much so, in fact, that he had to be driven back home shortly thereafter, and threw up all over the car of the friend taking him there.
- J-Cray was so wound up that she was in full-on molester mode, smacking my ass and dancing her booty on me anytime I turned my head. I felt so cheap.
- TD was on a mission—a mission to remove panties. It’s well known that my little sister from another mother isn’t a fan of wearing skivvies, and something inspired her that night to crusade against any other woman who didn’t adhere to her religion. One-by-one she led Skeets, MoPaddle, and J-Cray to the women’s room and ordered them to remove their drawers. After Cray surrendered her panties, the little blonde pantyjacker threw the captured underwear straight into the garbage.
- Her crusade ended, however, with Special K, who fought to keep her panties on no matter how much
I loudlyTD protested.
- We moved on to Cupka's…with a quick stop to take pictures in front of Chinese So Relax Massage, first. Because why not?
- By now the mystery guy to whom Swag had been talking had been revealed to be Belle and Bang’s neighbor. And homie was going through some things. Tony happened to make a trip to the men’s room at the same time as “Neighbor”; while finishing up at the urinal, Tony said to him, “You know, there’s nothing quite like taking a piss when you really have to go.” Neighbor, who was at the sink washing his hands, paused in thought for a moment. “Yeah,” he replied, “…This definitely isn’t where I pictured myself being at this point in my life,” and walked out.
- This being the height of the NHL postseason, some of the guys—myself included—had been growing playoff beards. TD informed me that J-Cray and MoPaddle, wanting to participate as well, had been growing “playoff bushes.”
- Yes, I gagged a little, too.
- TD’s buddy Tom stopped by. She told him that she’d made three girls remove their underwear that night. Tom’s response: “Teach me your ways…”
- While sitting on the patio talking, I heard a crash and looked up to see Neighbor rolling on the ground next to an overturned chair. He was helped to his feet, and advised to cab it home while we walked off down Carson St. Rumor has it Bang came and got him—that has yet to be substantiated, but may very well have happened. There’s also a rumor that she took advantage of him in his physically-and-emotionally-weakened state. That also has yet to be substantiated, but is just as believable.
- When Tom went in to pay his tab, he was told that Neighbor had taken a similar tumble inside Cupkas, prior to doing so on the patio.
- We were headed towards Rumshakers, but given the distance, we stopped at Mullen's On Carson along the way. A regular seated across the bar thought I was pimping, because I had Cray, TD, MoPaddle, and Skeets all around me at the bar. I was tempted to yell back, “…And none of ‘em got drawers on, homie!”
- We finally made it to Rumshakers. Shots and beers, shots and beers, shots and beers. And dancing. Then more shots and beers.
- Our buddy Joe, a bartender at Rumshakers, took a shining to J-Cray’s drunk behind. We then killed his designs on the night when we told him she’s married.
- Swag Montana was shlammered, and it was time to say goodnight to the bad guy. Canada, Tony, and I bought six packs and got everyone into cabs.
For the third morning in a row…“Ouch.”
- I awoke on the floor of Canada’s bedroom, clutching a large Clifford stuffed toy that I’d used as a pillow.
- TD was still smashed. Swag slightly less so, but he wasted no time in cracking a beer from the fridge to start anew.
- The three of us, Skeets, and Canada went to DeLuca’s in the Strip District for breakfast. While we waited in a line that extended out the door of the restaurant and down the street, it quickly became apparent that having my little sis out in public was both a bad idea and incredibly entertaining. She was like a puppy sister.
- The Pirate Parrot, without warning and completely at random, rode past on a moped, tooling down Penn Avenue.
- As we walked back to Canada’s truck after eating, we happened upon two women getting into a parked car. TD yelled “High five!” and put her hand up for the woman getting into the passenger side door. The stranger looked back at her with a shocked, nervous smile; TD reacted by yelling “Hunnnnhhhh!” and running away.
- Everyone planned to hit TJ’s party that afternoon, and Swag saw no reason to half-ass it. He asked that we drop him off at Redbeard’s. We stopped, he and TD hopped out, and we pulled off. “So,” I surmised, “They’re actually going to be worse by the time the cookout starts?”
- I got back to my car, got back home, grabbed a bottle of Gatorade, hit my couch, and slept through the cookout.