Drunken Recollection… What I Can Remember About Camping This Summer

gijoesquirrel

Don't worry. This happened during squirrel season.

With summer finally over, it’s time for me to drunken recollect some of my camping highlights.  Outside of drinking, eating, being in the water, being on the pontoon, drinking, eating, sitting by the campfire, beach volleyball, drinking, eating, and peeing in the water, this is all I can remember:

1) A squirrel fell out of a tree.
It happened in front of a few of my family members as they were walking.  When they reached to check on the immobile rodent, it sprung back to consciousness and took off.

2) Some cyclist had this shirt on, as well as a bushy beard:

A Whopper of a beard, in fact...

A Whopper of a beard, in fact...

3) There was a plan to tie me to a chair if I passed out drunk.
It didn’t happen on the earlier summer trip, but it did happen.  At least the dumping me in the lake didn’t.

4) I pulled a boat via a rope in my teeth.
There is a picture out there I do not possess.  I do remember my jawline aching, though.

5) There was a strange song playing on the iPod we took out to the sandbar.
Turned out it was from the film, Music and Lyrics.  Here it is for your, um, pleasure?

6) In closing…

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Drunken Recollection… Shopping At Target As A Morality Play

Seven seasons of septegenerian heaven

Seven seasons of septuagenarian heaven

If there’s anything I’ve learned in this life, it’s two things:

1) Don’t shop while hungry tipsy.

The second one I’ll share at the end.

Basically, I met up with some friends for a couple of drinks after work and opted to stop at Target because I needed a few things.  Those few things needed:

  • Laundry detergent
  • Vitamins and fish oil pills
  • Air conditioner air filters
  • Um… Charmin
  • And some food

On the way into the store, I noticed someone had left their headlights on.  I memorized the license plate and approached the cart guy outside the store.  He told me to head to the customer guest service desk, where this happened:

Me: Excuse me, but someone left their headlights on in the parking lot.
Worker: They’ll probably just turn off themselves.
Me: I don’t think so.  It’s an old green Escort parked in a handicapped spot.
Worker: I’ll get to it when the line is clear.
(I wandered off to look at the sales ad in case the worker wanted more information.)
Random lady (leaving): You were very nice for doing that.
Me: Well thank you.

Me Just Grim...

Me Just Grim...

Feeling victorious and uplifted, I made my way to the toy section first.  No real reason why, other than force of (forcive?) habit… of collecting.  Being in between a series of collectibles to search for, I’ve often eyed the animated Transformers toy line, and upon finally hearing the worker announce the Escort parked in a handicapped spot with its headlights on, I picked up a mini-Grimlock.  No essentials yet.  Just a small child’s toy.

I rounded the corner into the Lego aisle and what did I see?  Brand new Indiana Jones playsets.  Say what you will (and I have) about the last movie, the playsets from Raiders, Temple of Doom, and Last Crusade are pretty sweet, and in my hands in an instant (Ambush in Cairo almost made the cut).

Deflated and defeated, I put back everything but Grimlock and walked over to the electronics section.  Guess what I discovered there?

Every season of Golden Girls for $9 each!

I had a similar impulse a few weeks ago when the first four seasons of Saturday Night Live was on sale for $20 each, but this one I’d follow through.  Several weekends in September are about to be booked up.  Mjusayn.

I eventually gathered up my remaining essentials, plus a ton of food.  (Yay! Hard salami‘s back at Target!  For now…)  I put the bottle of Gain laundry detergent and a bottle of Liquid Plumr (‘cuz you never know) on the bottom of the cart, and a thought crossed my mind:

I wonder if someone will check the bottom of the cart…

At the checkout counter, the clerk brought something to everyone’s attention:

Somebody really must like Golden Girls.

I emptied the basket and pushed it forward to refill it with bagged items.  I noticed I had slipped the Gain and Liquid Plumr past the clerk.  I looked back into the eyes of the people that laughed at my must really liking Golden Girls, and a voice echoed in my head:

You were very nice for doing that.

I removed the two jugs from off the lower tray.  “I almost forgot something.”

After paying, I headed to my vehicle, past where an Escort with a dead battery could have been.  As I filled my trunk with purchases, the cart attendant approached to help.  I said thanks, and he nodded as he took the cart to add it to the returning basket train.

Finis.

Oh yeah, and the other thing I learned:

2) Don’t assume your friends ordered whatever beer was
on special, because it just might be regularly priced.

Drunken Recollection… The Difference Between Wants And Needs

I learned a couple new things about myself the other night, courtesy of pouring fermented hops down my throat, of course.  Discoveries are rare as they are, so here are my findings.

There Are Things That I Want

Such as t-shirts that broadcast products that I like…

mtndewtshirt

Hey ladies, guess what I drink?

seinfeldtshirt

Hey ladies, guess what I've watched?

And There Are Things That I Need

Such as definitely bullhorns on my Honda Civic…

civicbull

Drunken Recollection… News At The Speed Of Twitter

Last night, while playing trivia at the bar (natch), a question came up (natch) that we made an educated guess on (unnatch… we usually guess blindly).

The question in question:

In what year was the stamp first used:

  • 1640
  • 1780
  • 1860
  • 1910
True story. Also explains BGP... ("Beer Goggle Phenomenon")

True story. Also explains BGP... ("Beer Goggle Phenomenon")

Since my intelligence increases exponentially with the amount of alcohol intook (intaked? intaken? I’m not drunk enough to know this right now!), I stumbled upon a method of deduction.

In ye days of ole, peasants probably wouldn’t speak to each other via any other method but their mouth or fastest son.  Maybe a carrier pigeon if they figured that bit out.  And monarchs had messengers, as did this country’s forefathers.  Remember, they had that whole bit about wax seals (not to be confused with wax walruses).

So we talked and chatted it up.  WWI would be way to late, and it seemed like the Old West would have had mail.  Then it struck me – The Pony Express!  I didn’t know what year they were around, but 1860 sounded ’bout right.  And lo!  ‘Twas!

We hooted and hollered it up and guessed performed well the remainder of the game… until Doc Holliday tripped us up.  Actually, it was Satine.  From the movie Moulin Rouge!  (The producer’s exclamation point – not mine.)  We could not for the love of the game of trivia think of tuberculosis, as in “What did she die from?”  We knew Doc had it, and maybe Walt Kowalski had it, but alas, we did not get it.  Farewell sweet $100…

But I digress. All of the above is not what this post was supposed to be all about.  I know it is so far, but bear with me.  This is about a little unexpected experiment that occurred after trivia, and it ties in with the Pony Express.

This took me way longer to make than I would have liked.  Speaking of which - do you like?

This took me way longer to make than I would have liked. Speaking of which - do you like?

Right after the game, my friend and I thought it would be funny to put on Twitter that he and his girlfriend (whom was sitting beside him) had broken up.  Not even a minute after posting it via my lovely iPhone (it’s just a 3G, not a 3GS – don’t H8), each of their phones were blowing up.  Followers Friends on Twitter asked for details and offered denials.  It was amazing.

Okay, I guess the bulk of this post was about the Pony Express after all.

(Sorry Sue about all the damage control, but remember what I do is in the name of comedy, whether people find it funny or not!)

No wonder Twitter Bird is so fast!

No wonder Twitter Bird is so fast!

In My Brain While Sleeping… Loud Noises, Where-Wolves, And A Bounty Hunter Makes A Correction Regarding His Name

Since this blog is an open book to all my weaknesses, it’s sorta turned into my (NERD ALERT!) Xavier Protocols.  Of my weaknesses (vanilla-scented anything falls high on that list), loud noises while I sleep smacks near the top.  On the night of these particular dreams, I fell asleep with the television on only to be awakened by a loud lawyer commercial.

Okay, it wasn’t that one, but imagine if the explosions were audible, then you’d get the picture.

hulkblonsky

Anyambulancechaser, in the first dream, I encountered a new breed of night creatures… the WHERE-WOLVES.  How were they different than werewolves?  Let me explain with a (NERD ALERT!) toy from the remake reboot whatever second Hulk movie:

You see, in the flick, which I have not seen, the dude on the right mutates into the monster on the left.  This toy, called the Hulk Deluxe Mutating Abomination, does not mutate at all.  Instead of either really mutating by adding water, or by simply imagining that it happens, the little guy fits into a compartment on the back of the big guy.  Dumb?  You bet.

Well that’s pretty much how where-wolves worked.  Wolves merged with their host humans so both could exist.  To recombine, humans hovered over the wolves.  Now that you’ve pictured it, moving on…

My other dream involved a (NERD ALERT!) Star Wars character.  Growing up, I knew this bounty hunter…

4lom

…as Zuckuss and this guy…

zuckuss

…as 4-LOM.  But as it turned out, the original Kenner toy line had it wrong in the 80’s, and with the re-releases of the toys in the 90’s, they rectified the problem and named each of them correctly.  To me though, Zuckuss will always be 4-LOM and 4-LOM will be Zuckuss.  Until I was corrected in a dream.  This guy…

4lom

…showed up to tell me his name really was Allen.

INGREDIENTS: Turkey and provolone on a bagel and a Mountain Dew.  And beer.

Drunken Recollection… Going For The Goldfish?

I wouldn’t exactly say that I’ve been around the block (although technically, as a child, I rode my bike around the block a ton… I don’t know what I want this metaphor to mean!).

Let me begin instead with this: I’m for all intents and purposes (or is it “intensive purposes?”)…

I’m a bar frequenter.  An aficionado of affordable alcohol.  If you have drink specials, considered a seat filled.  It’s been this way for me for quite awhile, as I haven’t been tied down by much of anything.  Tumbling tumbleweed is how I often refer to my life.

So it’s safe to assume I’ve seen a fair amount of oddities in my bar days.  I went to New York City to participate in a Snuggie Pub Crawl for Pabst’s sake!

But now I’ve discovered this:

Yup.  Goldfish racing.  In the bar.  For prizes.

It's better than swallowing goldfish when drunk. Barely.
It’s better than swallowing goldfish when drunk. Barely.

Apparently, this is not a new practice either.  It (seems to have) started back  in Utah, as long ago as 2004 (whooohoooo), and it’s been a subject of controversy since it’s inception.  A press release by the Humane Society:

Words, words, words...

Words, words, words...

 There are a few styles practiced.  There’s the squirt gun style, as seen in the above video.  Some people use straws, and they blow above or below the water, depending on the arena.  And of course, some guy in Japan’s turned it into an art form… not unlike NASCAR:

Why do I bring this all up, you ask?  As we were leaving one of the bars I frequent, a friend mentioned he saw a sign saying something about goldfish racing.  I laughed and thought he was making it up, yet here’s this post.

Now if I can just remember which bar we were at…

JusWondering… Does Beer Make Me Smarter?

Sure… during my month of not boozing, I might have woke up each morning with an extra bounce in my step, but at work, more mistakes were made and more things were forgotten.  Yeah, it’s possible I slept better or longer (courtesy of passing out) during the many sauced months that came before, or that the heaped upon hours I spent in front of the boob tube boobed out my noggin and rendered my work performance lackluster.

So I started to wonder… maybe I’m smarter under the influence.  I do play a lot of trivia at the bar, and maybe that’s like running with ankle-weights for my brain.  Research ensued and I discovered this headline:

Whuuuuhhh?!

Whuuuuhhh?!

Dost thine eyes deceive, um, me?

From the BBC article:

Mice fed moderate quantities of alcohol grew extra brain cells, but also showed a preference for alcohol over water.

Lead researcher Professor Stefan Brene said: “We believe that the increased production of new nerve cells during moderate alcohol consumption can be important for the development of alcohol addiction and other long-term effects of alcohol on the brain.”

Okay, maybe it doesn’t sound perfectly fantastic – or does it?  

Alternatively, the extra cells might help with learning and memory, [Brene] said.  Another theory, according to the researchers, is that the tranquilising effect of alcohol triggers the growth.  All of the new cells developed normally.

My favorite line:

A spokeswoman from the Campaign for Real Ale said: “It is well known that alcohol in moderation is good for your body so it’s no surprise it’s also good for your mind.  “Maybe that is why lots of pub quiz teams are so bright.”

Some other favorite lines… from The Legend of Bagger Vance:

Rannulph Junnah: Now, the question on the table is how drunk is drunk enough? And the answer is that it’s all a matter of brain cells
Hardy Greaves: Brain cells?
Rannulph Junnah: That’s right Hardy. You see every drink of liquor you take kills a thousand brain cells. Now that doesn’t much matter ‘cos we got billions more. And first the sadness cells die so you smile real big. And then the quiet cells go so you just say everything real loud for no reason at all. That’s ok, that’s ok because the stupid cells go next, so everything you say is real smart. And finally, come the memory cells. These are tough sons of bitches to kill.

And then there’s always Cliff Clavin’s take:

Well you see, Norm, it’s like this… A herd of buffalo can only move as fast as the slowest buffalo and when the herd is hunted, it is the slowest and weakest ones at the back that are killed first.
This natural selection is good for the herd as a whole, because the general speed and health of the whole group keeps improving by the regular killing of the weakest members.
In much the same way, the human brain can only operate as fast as the slowest brain cells. Now, as we know, excessive drinking of alcohol kills brain cells. But naturally, it attacks the slowest and weakest brain cells first. In this way, regular consumption of beer eliminates the weaker brain cells, making the brain a faster and more efficient machine.
And that, Norm, is why you always feel smarter after a few beers.

Drunken Recollection… I Might Be More Afraid Of Lizards Than I Thought

Drinking time with old friends usually includes a back catalog of stories we’ve all heard before. 

Last night, for example, the tale of how one of my pals and I almost burnt down an entire Boy Scout camp (it wasn’t our fault as much as it was the scoutmaster’s pyromaniac son) was brought up. 

Or how one the friend’s family seems to think some of the other guys built a new cabin one time (they didn’t).  Okay, so maybe I shouldn’t have mentioned our BSA days at all, but my point is this: we’ve heard it all before.

At least that’s what I thought.

My buddy was regaling us with an episode that occurred while he was in Malaysia.  Apparently, he had rented a dirt bike and was traveling around with his girl at that time (this story was brought up most likely because his girl of this time wasn’t present).  They were planning on taking a shortcut up a dirt path on a hill, but at the top, they encountered a chainlink fence. 

On his side of the fence, a dumpster full of reeking trash.

On the opposite side – a cadre of monitor lizards clawing at the fence, hissing, and shaking it.  I imagined something like a zombie movie.  He said rather than riding the bike in a small circle, he stood up (with his girl hanging around his neck the entire time), grabbed the end of the bike, and spun in his spot.  He sped so fast down the hill he almost popped at wheelie at take-off.

Okay, it’s not a classic story, but considering what’s happened in Indonesia with the Komodo dragons, it kind of freaked me out.  Also… I was drunk, so I kind of pictured it something like this:

Dramatization of actual events

Dramatization of actual events

Drunken Recollection… First Rule Of Bachelor Party – You Don’t Talk About Bachelor Party

For the last two weeks, not a smidge of alcohol has quenched my parched, getting-very-used-to-water, lips. 

One bachelor party changed the no-drinking-in-May plan (at least for that night).
Two beers in, I was feeling tipsy.
The third film in the X-Men series almost killed my burgeoning buzz when it was brought up before the bus bid farewell.
Four… ah, I’m at a loss on how to keep this list up.  Oh, wait!  Four bars is the amount we visited.
Five beers came in a bucket at our second stop.  Or should I say a fifth of Jack was passed around (of which I passed on).

Okay, yeah, now I give up.  Anyway, overall it was fairly trouble free, aside from my cousin slapping me in the face, punching me in the gut, and tucking his feet in my armpit as he curled up in a ball to sleep – all within six minutes (I told you I’m stopping the number thing).

I recall talking to a stripper dancer woman at one of the stops extensively about this:

Like our purloined dispenser, except ours had sunflower seeds, peanuts, and Reese's Pieces. I think.

Like our purloined dispenser, except ours had sunflower seeds, peanuts, and Reese's Pieces. I think.

Someone in the group who will go nameless, but was prone to slapping and punching despite being sleepy, stole lifted a candy dispenser and someone else in the group got really upset about it. 

The best man forbid a couple of women from joining the group on its road trip, which at the time, sounded like a bad idea to not let them, but hindsight being what it is, was simply a bad idea, so kudos to him.  I can’t get too upset then that he had the bus drop him off directly at home.

Back at our original point of departure, I was done.  Well, I was with it enough to eat a few Pizza Rolls. 

I guess some of the other guys put the candy dispenser on top of the guy’s car that was getting upset.  (Sure, he had a reason for being irritated, but it was meh at best.)  I guess that inflamed him further and he smashed it on the ground.  Someone else took it upon himself and completely busted it open.  Quarters flew everywhere, and those who were still awake scooped them up.

The next morning, the three of us that drove together walked out into the gloomy daybreak.  I spotted a crapload of quarters that went unclaimed.  My reply: “I would like to say that if I was a kid right now, seeing this would make me happy as hell.  But as an adult, I can’t say that I feel any different.  I’m not too proud to crouch long enough to pick up a few dollars.” 

My cousin and I gathered about ten bucks each.  My friend with us had already grabbed about ten bucks the night before…

Drunken Recollection… The Empire Snuggies Back

In the middle of the night, a strange cough – that sounded distinctly male – startled me awake.  I was passed out in a queen-size bed with my cousin Steve.  We were in a hotel in New York City recovering from a long day of travelling and a longer night of drinking. 

…And we were each wearing a Snuggie.

 

EPISODE V
THE EMPIRE SNUGGIES BACK

The pub crawl on which the trip was focused was starting at noon.  It was ten when we started moving.  Steve kept mentioning how well he felt; I kept quiet about how much I was not.  We had set our sights on getting back to East Village by noon, but our first mission was to stop at the store to buy a vital item.

Steve called them safety pins; I referred to them as diaper pins.  Steve thought we could find them at Staples; I thought that was funny.  To be honest, I wasn’t even sure if they were still made.  Was there a need for diaper pins anymore?  (Safety pins?  Maybe.)  And why did we need them?  We each had grown fond of our Snuggies and didn’t want to ruin them.  (Oh, and we ended up finding some at Walgreen’s.  They weren’t by the baby supplies, but amazingly, condoms were.  Hmm.)

We had a plan to carry the three Snuggies we possessed in a backpack, and to don them as required (the third was Mike’s – another friend that was coming in from DC for his birthday).  It was New York though, and we probably could have worn them the entire way from Midtown, but… well, I don’t have a clever excuse.  I guess we weren’t 100% convinced the Snuggie Pub Crawl was real, and didn’t want to be left out in the cold heat (it was such a nice day… 70+ degrees).

Our first stop was the sign-up location.  We had purchased four tickets in advance (even though we thought it might not be real we used credit card information on the web… go figure), and on the train ride over, Steve verified the first bar stop on those four tickets.  When we arrived at the sign-up, Steve checked his pockets.

“I have some bad news.”  Apparently, somewhere between checking them on the subway and walking to this bar, the printed up sheets fell out and blew away.  We weighed our options.  We thought of alternatives.  They guy told us we needed tickets, and we didn’t want to have to purchase them again.  Luckily, he accepted viewing the receipts on my iPhone, gave us four tickets and four cups (Tim from Episode IV would be also joining us), and we arrived at our first official spot:

Bar None: The Fun Begins

Bar None: The Fun Begins

Now properly attired in our blankets with sleeves and with full crew in tow, the drinking began.  The three of them were off in a mad dash, but I was limping.  Mike put it best:

The days that start off slow very often end in a hurry.

Now I’ll let some pictures do the talking.

img_0056img_0057img_0061img_0063img_0065

Needless to say – some drinks were poured, some drinks were spilled, some conversation was had, and the Yankees got blown out by the Indians!  All-in-all, the crawl was a success.  But the night was not yet finished…

———————————————————————–

Over the course of the day, I had received information about a secret place.  The specifications were these:

  • It was a hot dog joint in Manhattan.
  • This hot dog joint had a “secret bar” located within it.
  • To access this “secret bar” you had to enter a phone booth and pick up the receiver to enter.
  • The location I was texted stated: 113 St Marks Pl

Here’s where my hubris caused an issue (and maybe drinking… maybe).  I thought I understood the lay the island, and I took the location to mean “113 St. @ Marks Place”… not what it said.  And the little torn brochure map I carried with me cut off around 110 St. at the the top, so how could I be wrong?  Birthday boy Mike passed out at Tim’s place (near East Village), and Steve, Tim, and I made our drunken way out to the fictional 113 St. and Marks Place.

The taxi driver didn’t even correct us, and brought us to 113 St. and Broadway, way up on the west end.  As I approached the waterfront, I stumbled into a closing bakery.

“Excuse me, do you know where Marks Place is?”

The confused baker answered, “He probably lives down by the river.”

As we brewed and stewed and reviewed my mistake, something caught my eye down the road.  It wasn’t a wasted trip after all!  This is where we had a late night burger before returning to home base (to pass out in our dirty Snuggies in a queen-size bed):

img_0068

"Doo doo doo doo, doo doo-doo-doo..." - Suzanne Vega / "Tippy toes, tippy toes, tippy toes!" - George Costanza