Friday, December 19, 2008

Ode to Booting

So I booted the other night

It was one of those insta-boots. You get handed a shot you know you shouldn’t do, you throw it back, and it wants to come back up. You fight and you gag, and you run to the bathroom, but you know you are screwed. And so did I boot last night. Nothing serious, but the damage was done.

Now a mature adult would be shamed and concerned that he is still vomiting from alcohol consumption this late in his live. That adult has a very boring blog. I, in turn, have decided to chronicle the top 10 funniest boots I have ever had the pleasure to be involved in. You will note most of these happened years ago, which is for the best.

10: Landmines: Any time you played landmines, you would probably boot. That was the deal, and you accepted it. You would also get pissed at Hubris, but this is not a post about the top 10 most hilarious times I was pissed at Hubris.

9: When I was a freshman in college, Sketchrock booted in this girlfriend’s sink during a party, and told everyone I did it. Sketchrock is a dick.

8: Sophomore year in college, Bourbon Samurai drank half a handle of SoCo, and was about to pass out on my roommate’s futon, but then booted into his hand. He very politely asked where he should put this boot, like it was a beer can and he needed to know if I recycled. A well mannered lad, that Bourbon.

7: I did an all you can eat wings night with Hubris and Hodgkins one summer night. We then went back to my place and played Quarters. It turns out that cheap beer and Jamaican Jerk wings are not good co-habitats. I have never seen three dudes boot at almost the exact same moment until this day.

6: At a cast party in college, Uber260 was sitting on a couch, nigh brain dead drunk, and felt the need to boot. He caught the boot in his arms, and then proceeded to cradle it like a wee babe. Nuff said.

5: Back in college, Brownsox was in an A cappella group. Being Brownsox’s friends, we would go see their shows. Being an A Cappella show, we would get hammered beforehand. On one such occasion, I went out with Hubris and Vanisher to a Thai place in town, which had this great So-Dee chicken and cheap sake. We had dinner, then went back to my place to down copious amounts of bourbon/congac/whatever was on my bar. When we left my house, I demanding that Hubris carry me to the show, and leapt on his back. He promptly threw me to the concrete, so I showed up at the show bleeding from the head. But at least I showed. Somehow Vanisher and Hubris got lost, and ended up wandering around campus. At this point, Vanisher goes down hard. As Hubris tried to get him home, Vanisher boots. All Hubris can say at this moment is “Not the Chick So-Dee!” This stands as the best thing ever said while watching a friend vomit in the bushes.

4: For my 21st birthday, my buddies bought me a bottle of Vodka shaped like a Tommy gun. I decried that the only way this vodka could be drank was straight from the bottle, and could not be drank until someone brought a camera over, and captured the moment. So after a party one night, Hubris grabbed his camera and we all went over to my place to break out the Tommy gun. I took the first swig, and shock of shock, it tasted terrible. Hubris claimed that the flash did not go off (he is full of lies, and took a picture of also lies), so I took another swig. This shot was the deal breaker, and I ran to the bathroom to let loose. Hubris not only got a shot of me hitting the gun, but one of me booting the vodka back up, then a shot of me flipping him the bird post boot. This is the only boot on the list captured for posterity.

3: Brownsox booted on a bar once. I mean that literally. He was sitting at a bar drinking, drank too much, and booted on the bar. He quickly left that bar. Brownsox is awesome.

2: Uber260 was hosting a party at his apartment in college. He drank several Irish car bombs, and then challenged me to a raspberry Margarita chugging contest. He won. So he got good and trashed, and needed to hit the head. He way his apartment is set up is that the bedrooms and bathroom are along a narrow hall. While waiting for the bathroom, Uber260 could hold it no more, and let loose. He booted on the wall so hard, some of the boot ricocheted off the wall, and hit the wall behind Uber260. This is the most physically impressive boot ever accomplished by man.

1: On the second Quantumas, Brownsox re-defined the booting rally. When the gang was kicked out of St. Andrews for use of illegal substances in the bathroom, Brownsox booted on their front stoop as he left. Take that establishment! Brownsox then went out and kept drinking long until the night, until he needed to go home. He took a cab back to Queens, but realized he did not have enough money. He asked the cabby to stop at the all night supermarket, which had an ATM. Brownsox went into the supermarket, and once again booted (He claims it was just on the floor, but I thing it was in the lettuce crisper). He did pay the cabbie though.

Thus is my ode to the body’s natural reaction when you put too much poison in it. Feel free to add your own tales of booting goodness in the comments section.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Never Underestimate My Ability to Mess Myself Up

I may be the only person in the history of man to injure himself while using mouthwash.

On Tuesday morning, I was using said product, and my swishing method must have been bad, because I pulled something on the right side of my jaw. It did not hurt at first, but after getting to work, the point where the right side of my jaw met my skull started to swell up. It got so bad that I could not eat my lunch.

My first inclination was to take sweet sweet drugs. Normally I avoid Advil and the like, what with that whole ‘don’t take if you have three or more alcoholic drinks a day’ thing (Which is very sobering the first time you realize this danger). But the pain was pretty bad, so I popped some extra strength Tylenol. Holy Shit that stuff is amazing. I still had a hard time chewing, but all the pain went away in ten minutes. I am now convinced I could walk around with a ninja star stuck in my leg if I had enough Tylenol going through me.

The pain being dealt with, I tried to figure out what caused it. I had done nothing obvious to myself to cause said problem (ie got into a bar fight or fall down some stairs), and the idea of doing this while using mouthwash seemed silly (I mean, it still does). I decide to consult the internet. Now dear readers(s?), if you ever take my advice on anything, take my advice on this; never consult the internet regarding medical treatment. As far as the internet knows, all human discomfort is caused by either working out too hard or cancerous tumors. Short of breath, sore elbow, limp, all caused by lifting something funny or tumors eating away at you says the Intertron. The funniest part here is that when the possibility of cancer crept into my mind, my concern wasn’t death, the horrors of Chemo, or the realization that I had wasted my young life. No, my major concern was, “Great, now I have to go see a doctor. I hate seeing doctors.” I am a big picture guy.

Now with all this jaw pain and concern about well being, you would think that our hero would maybe go home early from work and get some rest. But by now, you know better. I had already promised a friend I would go see his reading, which was at a bar. I had missed a friend’s workshop a month ago for personal reasons, and felt shitty about it, so I decided to buck up, throw back some more Tylenol Extra Strength (serious, this shit could get me through a defenestrating) and suck it up.

This reading was in the basement of the Zipper Tavern. The Zipper Tavern is a spot that bears some discussion. It is a bar/restaurant attached to The Zipper Factory, a performance space. On a pure physical level, the whole set up is beautiful. The theatre has it’s own bar, and is pretty decent space in an off-off Broadway sense. Next door (which is connected in the back) you have a restaurant with a bar up front, and a lounge space with it’s own bar upstairs overlooking the dining room, and even a roof space to go smoke. The tap is even good. The problem is that it is located in the garment district, which is south of Times Square, and kind of dead. So Last Call is at Midnight (which is a crime in New York) and the place can be less than inviting in its feel. The reading I was going to did not open its doors until 7:30, and I got off work at 6:15. Now it had been a rough day, what with the pain when eating and the fear of tumors, so I really wanted to throw back some beers. I had a couple of pints, and chatted up the bartender, a nice young lad by the name of Tim, and talked about the pros and cons of this establishment. The reading itself was very interesting, and was perfect in the venue. I did not hag out and talk to my friend about it, due to said jaw pain (also, the one side of my face had swollen up a bit, and I felt mildly self conscious).

At this point, I should have gone home and addressed this injury. But just as I arrived back in Astoria, Hubris called me, asking if I wanted to get a drink. At this point in the night, I had had enough beers where my brain decides beers equal joy and I always should be drinking them, and I was still stressed out about my jaw. So I head over to McCann’s and get a harp. Now at this point it is 10 o’clock, and all I have had to eat all day was some mashed potatoes, but I was working on Beer four. I grab some soup, and found that the Chicken Rice soup is the one thing on the McCann’s menu that would not make me fell sick the next day. Hubris came by, and we began slamming beers. After a while, Hubris’s girlfriend joined us, and more beers were slammed. I ended up getting home around 1:30am, put an ice pack on my face, and went to bed.

The next day, my face was still a little swollen, but it had gone down noticeably, and the pain was gone. So I declared myself cancer free, and went to work.

Serious, I defy all medical understanding.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Quarters, letters, and other excuses to drink on a weekday

Interesting week last week.

Tuesday night, I had to stay late at work decorating a Christmas tree (no joke), so when I got off; my plan was to just go home, hit the gym (ya, that’s right, I go to a gym. That Just Happened) and call it a night. On my way home though, I spot Brownsox and Kraut at the local sushi place. Now I thinks to myself “Well lad, ya have to eat, and do you want to eat alone” so I pop in and sit down. We have a lovely meal and a couple of beers, as Kraut tells us how her dentist caused her nerve damage. Fun times. After dinner, Kraut heads home (she has a real-people job), and I talk Brownsox into having another round at McCann’s (for he has a fake-person job).

We strolled over, and sat down at the end of the bar. Next to us was this couple who appeared to be a little older than us. The woman was a red head. Brownsox loves redheads (really, all men do, Brownsox just targets them). After staring at the woman for a while, Brownsox notices that they are playing some sort of game with a quarter. Brownsox, always the forward kind of chap, asked what they were doing. They explained the game as follows; A player spins the coin and calls the side. If when the coin falls that side is up, they make another player drink a shot of Spinning Player’s choosing. If the coin falls other side up, Spinning player does a shot of another player’s choosing. Brownsox, on the couple’s urging, decided to give the game a go. He spins the coin, calls heads, and it lands tales. The couple tells me I am to choose the shot. I choose my favorite shot, Wild Turkey. This scares the couple a little, but we are unfazed. Brownsox shoots, and then spins again. He wins the spin. I must drink a shot of Jim Bean. The couple is scared, we remain stoic. We then pass the quarter along the four of us, playing the game and splitting the cost of the shots. In the span of twenty minutes, I do a shot of Jim Bean, Jose Quevo, and SoCo Lime. We leave after about 45 minutes of this, not because I wasn’t having fun, but because I had work the next day and did not want to vomit on my boss during the staff meeting.

Thursday was another late work day. We were doing an end of year mailing, which meant we had to stuff, seal, and stamp literally thousands of envelopes. I agree to help, and stay late on Thursday. Now, 7 pm comes and goes, and it’s just down to this one guy and me in the conference room doing this mailing, everyone else going home for the day. I decide that I do not need to be sober to do this, and head to my desk. A playwright had giving me a half bottle of Vodka for an opening night gift, and I decided it would best be served as ‘work booze’. I looked around the office for something to mix it with; I wanted Orange Juice, but the closest thing I could come up with was Sunkist. So Sunkist it was. Now I did not plan to drain that entire bottle, but we had a lot of letters to get out, and anyone who has done a mass mailing knows it is real boring. So I and this work buddy drink several vodkas and Sunkists (a drink we dub the “Philips Head”) and get a ton of letters ready. When the stack ends, and the bottle is dry, we decide we need a little more booze. So we head to the defacto work bar, The Irish Rouge, and grab a couple of beers. As I am finishing my second beer, I get a call from Teach, telling me he is at O’Hanlin’s (that bar under the train at 31st and Ditmars) and that I should come by. Realizing that a change in venue is the only way I am not going to get super-blasted, my buddy and I decide to head our separate ways. I meet Teach at the bar, chat up the bartender (the Irish lass who works at Stout, this whole bar is there the cool people from Stout end up at) and tag a couple of Harps. Around Midnight, I stumble home and eat leftover chicken.

I start tech in a couple of days, so not sure if anything exciting will come up. But January is around the corner…

Friday, November 21, 2008

Self-realization, violence, and Bond. That's a good weekend.

Okay, so one week into the one drink rule, and here is what we learned.

It’s a stupid rule.

After about a week, I realized that while it was very necessary to call myself out on my drinking of late, this was not the way to deal with the problem. I did indeed need to stop getting drunk, but that did not mean I could not have a second beer at the bar.

The trick was I had lost respect for booze. I had forgotten that booze is in fact a scary thing which can ruin lives. I treated it lightly, and it was taking its toll on me. So after a few days of using it sparingly, I remembered its power, and how to respect it.

I am still riding this out until Thanksgiving, but if I am at a bar having a good time, I will get a second beer, maybe even a third. I just won’t slam the damn thing and follow it up with a chaser of JD.

Alright, enough navel-gazing, onto the goofy.

Not surprising, the week was kinda slow, what with no show and said drinking ban. I did take the opportunity to go to a real cool speak-easy with Brownsox. I had forgotten that there is an art to mixology, and a good bartender can make you a crazy tasty drink filled with booze. I think I may try drinking more cocktails, if I am in the right bar. The problem of course is that I am usually at the wrong type of bars to get a cocktail, as I mostly go to Irish sports bars.

The weekend was far more interesting. After a rough morning at Nevada’s (see other blog) I dog-sat for my parent’s most of the day. That evening, I saw a play that a friend of mine was in. The play, on Broadway, was kinda bad, but not terrible, and my friend was pretty good in it. So there ya go. After the show, I ended up at Playwright’s tavern, to watch the UFC PPV. Both Bourbon Samurai and Slaggard were in town, and they were both pumped for the fight. The overall card was very good, with a lot of technically impressive matches. The main fight did not disappoint as well. During the fight, Teach arrived, and talked us into going out afterwards. We hit off the Bull Moose, where Teach and I shot some pool, we discussed how hilarious the remake of Bengi would be if directed by Chris Nolan (as a dog, I could be run over or neutered, but as an ideal…) and drank several Bud Lights. It was at this moment that I saw the limitations of the One drink rule, and had a couple of beers. Not enough to get drunk mind you, just a couple. We left around 3:45, and I went to bed around 5am. Been awhile since that happened.

I woke up Sunday at 12:30pm, and found no one else close to stirring. I went to the gym, came back, showered, and was still the only one up. I left my barely conscious roomates in their stupor to go see Me of Solace with Teach, his lady, and Arsenal. Honestly, I was in the minority of the group but I was not a fan. The set pieces blew, and in an attempt to update Bond they are losing some of the things that make him a unique character. We do not need a Jason Bourne with an English Accent, we need Bond, James Bond.

After the movie, Teach took us to this new bar, Blackbirds. One of Teach’s co-workers was working the bar, a cool dude named Ely. This bar was pretty sweet, had a great tap, a dart board, and really good barfood (the standout was this Chorizo and Mushroom stuffed pastry). It also turned out that this was a ‘training bar’ meaning that the students from the bartending school that Teach teaches at come and can tend the bar for a half an hour, getting real world experience. This is great, as you can harass them by demanding obscure drinks you made up (you can’t make an explosive badger? How about a crying unicorn? What kind of bartender are you). Bourbon and Hubris came by, and we watched a lot of football, demanded goofy shots be made by neophyte bartenders, and drank mini Michelob Ultras given to us in a bucket. Ely turned out to be a cool guy, and we chatted about how awesome Citizen Cope is. All and all, a good addition to the Astoria drinking holes.

So a good weekend, with a little self-realization thrown in. What more can you ask.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Alright, let's try something new

Okay so a lot has gone down recently

1: America elected a black guy.

How Q spent the event

Went over to Arsenal’s house, spilt a bottle of Wild Turkey with Hubris, left a apologetic message on Uber260’s cell, don’t remember how I got home.

2: Arsenal beat Man United

How Q spent the event

Went to work, went drinking after work, went back to Nevada’s after drinking after work, don’t remember how I got home.

3: The show I have been working on for the last three months closed

How Q spent the event

Split a Heineken from a mini-keg with my boss, had dinner at a famous stage directors house, drank in lower east side, don’t remember how I got home.

You seeing a pattern?

So while the last couple of weeks have been extremely awesome, I have been losing a little too much time and sense. Thus I am engaging in a social experiment. For the next two or so weeks, I will be ‘One Drink Q’.

What does that mean, you ask dear reader(s?)? What it means is I can only have one drink. No more infinite beers or glass after glass of Whiskey. Now when I go out, I can only have a single drink. There are some tiny exceptions.

1: Nevada Smiths acts as a ‘safe zone’ where I can only have one beer, but it will not count for the beer of the day. This way, I can go to the game in the morning, and still go out for a drink that evening.

2: At meals I may have one drink, and again it will not count for the daily total

3: If several hours have passed since my last drink, (like 4-6) I can leave it up to good judgment as to whether or not I can have another single drink.

So what is the real point of this, you ask? I have gone on several enforced ‘dry spells’ before, and while it is good for my health, there is a desire to avoid everyone, and that one inevitable evening when you are swilling seltzer and decide that you hate everyone you know. My hope is that allowing myself a single drink; I will still be sociable and not erupt in rage.

Also, I might start acting like an adult.

I will do some sort of post mortem about the experience when it is done. Right now the deadline is Thanksgiving (no one should have to be sober for a family holiday) which is followed by a two Derby Sunday at Nevada’s (Stanford Bridge is falling down!). After these events, the ruling may be extended or altered (2 drink Q? No Beer Q? Only high end cocktails Q?) depending on how I am feeling and what I have learned from the process. I am excited to see how this goes. It is a chance to chill out, loose a little weight, and rethink some stuff, all while not going crazy denying myself something I enjoy.

This is the kind of shit that happens when you get too old to die young.

Friday, October 31, 2008

State of the Boozin

So here as what has been going on since I stopped blogging.

1: I have been doing a lot of ‘work drinking’ i.e. drinking with my co-workers after the show, as appose to drinking with the same group of lunatics I have been drinking with for the better part of this decade. While it is fun drinking with a new group of people, there are concerns. Namely, since I work with them, I am less inclined to, say, down half a bottle of Jameson, set fire to a tablecloth, and steal a street sign. I work with these people, and need them to have the illusion that I am a sane competent person (how that has been maintained is nothing short of a miracle). Thus, a noticeable decrease in idiocy. Some mild exceptions.

A: Rocking out a sweet karaoke renditions of “Sweet Caroline” on a Sunday Night (God Bless the Theatre Schedule). By the by, Irish Rogue has Sunday Night Karaoke.

B: Hanging out at the bar one night, one of the actors was having dinner with his wife and some friends. I decide to mess with him, and tell the bartender to send over the girliest drink he could come up with. The bartender rose to the challenge in ways I could not have imagined. The result was some neon blue martinit thing with whip cream and sugar. My teeth rotted just looking at it.

C: I got a free steak by accident.

2: Hubris and I have taken the 'no beer in the house' rule to strange new places. We decided that the rule should be amended to ‘keep no beer in the house’. The idea is that we do not buy beer as groceries, but if you come home from a long day at work and want a cold one, you can grab a beer at the deli, but you have to drink it that night, so beer does not linger. So, as you guessed, this just leads to Hubris and I each drinking a six back each Monday Night in the comfort of our home. At one point, there were enough empty tall boys that we could have built a pyramid (not a beer-amid, an actual building where I could be entombed).

3: Most of my team has been lost to the Election. This means I am either drinking with my roommate of people I work with. Either way, I am drinking with people I see 6 days a week. I may stab someone soon, hilariously.

3: Catching up on the new TV season. I think I have written about this in other posts, so I will not go into too much detail here. Lets just say that Showtime has way surpassed HBO in terms of quality; I will miss “The Shield” greatly when it ends next month, Every asshole who tells you “Mad Men” is brilliant is right; “Chuck” is so much more fun to watch than “Heroes”, and Thank God “30 Rock” is back.

This covers a lot of ground. Life should change to a more standard form in about a week and a half, and I may go back to some of the old stuff. Also, expect another video game post, as we adopted a baby Xbox.


Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Just another manic Monday

I had a day off this Monday. Days off are rare occurrences for me. Here is what I did.

9am: Alarm goes off. Forgot to turn it off. Damn.

10:20am wake up.

10:22am, check work email. Do productive work stuff via intertron.

10:30am without leaving bed, fire up the Civilization Revolutions. This game is like crack to me.

12:15: Take over the world. Have not left bed yet today.

12:30 Shower. No need for a shave, cause who I gonna see.

1pm Go to Barber.

1:15pm My barber is not in.

1:20 Decide I should join a gym.

1:30 Go to Hubris’s gym, which is in a strip mall three blocks from our house. A appropriately perky cute girl shows me around, trying to sell me on something I already was going to buy. Fill out all the paperwork and whatnot. Am now a gym member. Look forward to meaning to go but not.

1:45 Make use of the stripmall and buy shaving cream and paper towels.

2pm: Return home, drop off goods.

2:10 Return to barber. My barber, an Irish guy who used to be my landlord, is in. He cuts my hair, and we chat.

2:30pm: Leave Queens

3pm: Go to work. Yes it is my day off, but something comes up that is time sensitive, and I left my sneakers at the theatre anyway. Need those for ‘meaning to work out but not’.

3:30pm: Leave work, finishing various tasks and earning brownie points. Return to Queens.

4pm: Hit off deli on 23rd Ave and buy Bomb sandwich, which may be the greatest sandwich ever made. The deli is not open late, so this is a rare treat to be treasured.

4:20pm: Return home. Eat amazing sandwich while watching Sons of Anarchy on Tivo. Should watch Mad Men but in no mood for anything that good. Episode watched better than expected. Hope for show continues.

5pm: Hubris returns home, confused why he is the guy coming back from work and I am the guy on the couch. I also am confused

5:15pm: Hubris plays Assassins Creed in living room. I play The Force Unleashed in my room. All is well.

6:30pm: Hubris and I watch On Demand. Declare that Dexter is great, Entourage may have redeemed itself, Californication has been saved by the addition of Leobin, and True Blood does not merit viewing.

8:45pm: Hubris has crazy plan. Get hammered and watch Speed Racer. I raise concern, but am swayed.

8:55pm. Deli for beers.

9:20pm: Speed Racer begins

9:23pm: I am scared

9:42pm: I am convinced that I am having an acid trip. Hubris will back me up on this.

9:55pm: We finish the beers

959pm: We get more beers. Movie paused.

10:27pm: This movie is a special kind of bad. A magic kind of bad.

10:50pm: We finish the beer again. Debate on to where or not we need more beers

10:52pm: Hubris gets more beers.

11:30pm the movie is finally over. I have no idea what just happened, but I am afraid of it.

Midnight: Bed, with the possibility of going to the gym tomorrow.

Thus was my first Monday off. The perfect mix of relaxation, accomplishment, and stupid.