Our author inadvertently subjects himself to a "Super Size Me" month of habitual gluttony, substituting burger and fries for jack and ginger, and doesn’t realize it until yesterday.
Week one: school’s out for Christmas.
Face it, Portland is snooze-town in early December. With the exception of successive trips to Forever 21 and same-old-disco-pop DJ nights, there’s really only one entertaining activity left: hand jobs. But before that is handled, you’re in line at the bar.
One small problem with the booze is that…er…yeah, what was I saying, fuck, my head…oh, right: that it’s hard to remember what the hell happened the night before. You spend brunch piecing your night together, taking note of who you owe apologies to, and giving yourself some bullshit line like, "I’m not going out tonight, or at least I’m not drinking liquor."
I don’t recall much of the week after finals, but so what? I was outta there like powdered hair and, to me, that means something.
Symptoms: lapse in memory, erectile function.
Week two: NYC
Owning a bar in New York is on par with possessing oil fields, or an original pair of the first Air Jordans still in the box. Seven dollar well drinks, in Brooklyn? A’ight.
The first few nights the debauchery stops at pissing off the train platform and putting Hot Pockets in the Easy Bake. Then there’s dancing – dancing with a full stomach of alcohol is right there with vinegar and baking soda, Pop Rocks and Coke. Shake it up and watch it blow.
Getting drunk in New York taught me one thing: The traveling drunk is the inconvenienced drunk. The cups are dirty, the couch is gross, there’s never toilet paper and the cat is rabid.
Still, there’s something endearing about barfing Mexican food (authentic) into a toilet while a crazed kitten sticks his entire leg under the door to scratch at your sock. It’s as if he’s trying to tell you, "I too have sucked."
Symptoms: long morning walks in huge circles, wiener completely dysfunctional
Week three: home
No, not Portland. No one is from Portland. Home is Louisville, Kentucky: a city born of bourbon, smokes, and horse racing.
The booze is officially free, or $2.50, the girls are generous, your old friends have missed you and your family ignores your hyperextended college stay for the most part. Ah, it’s so good to be here.
All right, down to business. Wearing a collared shirt and tie does not excuse poor behavior, though it should. Snazzying up is comparable to the arming of the hero in classic lit or "Rambo First Blood," but I guess some folks missed class.
Symptoms: shatterbrain, waning confidence, cutoff at family Christmas party, awkward conversations about plans for future.
Week four: New Year’s Eve
What, it’s not over? There’s still one big night left? New Year’s is only fun 25 percent of the time? Come again? A bunch of jerks will be there asking the same old shit? Yay!
Symptoms: One month, give or take, and I’m breaking down. My heart beat is in rhythm with Ace of Base’s "Don’t Turn Around," my stool is… pool, and I can’t really climb stairs but on all fours. Mentally it’s all regrets and embarrassment, but with a smirk of course. Conversations are painstaking, and I’m homesick at one home dreaming of the other one.
Financially it’s not much better. That’s $600 pissed away, literally. Metaphorically, I crawl back to Portland to begin another quarter. It’s time to steer that wagon. One month on, one month off.