April 3rd, 2008


Happy Birthday To Me

Stupid of me, trying to go back two weekends when I can hardly recall what happened LAST weekend. Shit man, even yesterday's kind of a blur of receiving new bowling balls and thinking it was Monday all day, but I'll kick myself if I stop documenting the major happenings in my life. Two weekends ago, there was a happening to top all happenings since my illustrious return to the Pacific Northwest.

I don't know the name of the bar in Ballard we went to because I never really bothered to LEARN the name of the bar in Ballard we went to because all I really wanted to do was drink alcohol and play billiards and talk to people, so for the sake of this story we'll call it Bob's Bushleague Bar With Vagina Bouncers. There was a moment in time - kind of a cheesy moment, a moment you'd find in some crappy movie or sitcom as the emotional coda to a triumphant story - after the dinner for 20 at Pasta Bella, after logging our request for a lane at Sunset Bowl where we were facing a two+ hour wait, after the reception of gifts and song in the Sunset Bowl parking lot, after the unceremonious shot of tequila that kickstarted my drinking night, when I was talking to Big Iain in the front section of Bob's Bar near the tables and chairs and pitchers of beer, and he asked me that question I've heard so many times since returning home. "So, why'd you decide to come back to Seattle?"

Now, at this point in the crappy movie or sitcom, the camera would slowly pan across Bob's Bar, taking particular notice of the large group of friends laughing and enjoying one another's company as only a large group of friends can: by breaking off into smaller groups within the larger group. All the while, I'd make this very dramatic pause, following the path of the panning camera with my own eyes, before knowingly turning back to Big Iain and saying with the utmost certainty while referencing the large group of friends in the dim setting of Bob's Bar, "For this. For this right here."

But, the fact of the matter is, there was no dramatic pause, because I've been asked that question so many times I already knew the answer. But it's definitely a worthy-enough response, especially with the knowledge that Colin and Juli won't be too terribly long for Portland. The gang's all comin' back, baby!

As for the night itself, we really drank us some beer. I wasn't killed too bad on the shots, though. The worst of it was over with early on. After that, I think Pete got me a jager shot, and I seem to recall a group shot or two before leaving Bob's. I KNOW there was some pooltime domination by Juli and your's truly. It was the two of us vs. E-rok and Mario. As Chipwich was controlling things for his team, Juli was carrying the bulk of the ball-hitting load for us.

Until ONE fateful game. With everyone around us except my brother distracted in conversation, with four or five balls scattered around the green felt to Eric's one, with just the right mix of alcohol, pasta, skill, and staggering luck, I not only ran the table, I not only ran the table with a pleasant mix of easy tap-ins and complicated ricochet bounce-ins, but I ran the table and walked my ass right out of that room! I'm pretty sure Juli and I went undefeated on the night, but for that one game, I managed to pick up the slack and - like a professional ESPN weightlifter lugging around those giant boulders - throttle home an ! victory.

What wasn't so cool, which was really nobody's fault in OUR party, but nevertheless managed to put a haze over our otherwise glorious evening, were the Vagina Bouncers at Bob's Bushleague Bar. I couldn't tell you exactly what was said because I heard this second-hand, and then subsequently forwarded this third-hand to Konstantin, but apparently the Vagina Bouncer with the hat was giving Kon's sister a hard time because she wasn't drinking and/or spending money in their establishment. Accusations were made, followed by retaliatory accusations made by Mark and myself (and for all I know, others as well), threats were bandied about, and it all amounted to a big ol' "You Just Lost Yourselves A Customer!" Which, let's be honest, once Sunset Bowl rides off into the sunset, when are we EVER, EVER, going back to fucking Ballard anyway? They could be giving away free breastmilk from the jugs of lactating supermodels and I'd probably say, "Yeah, but I got to go to Ballard?" It's a hole of a city, let's be real. It makes Renton look like New York City.

I just think the funniest part of the whole thing - aside from Mark's newfound reputation as The Hothead - is that while we're both spitting mad and encouraging hand-to-hand combat with these Vagina Bouncers, Mark is being "held back" by Mario and I'm being "held back" by a combination of Kelsey and Megan Lee Spencer.

To quoth Scrappy Doo as he's being dragged away by his tail: Let me at'em; I'll splat'em!

Properly fired up, but also teetering on the edge of falling down drunk (I figure another three or four shots would've blacked me out but good), we headed BACK to Sunset Bowl, this time with two lanes ready for business. I ... did NOT live up to my end of the 175 boasting. My balls were flagging to the left and when I tried to compensate they were slicing to the right gutter before ten feet had been bowled. I probably edged AROUND a 100-point average until later in the evening - when I spotted little Ian Patterson - when I was running back and forth across the alley playing in two games at once, where I distinctly remember besting 120. Not my best moment, but for playing simultaneous games, I was the champ.

Let's see, what am I forgetting?

There was Kon forgetting his license, meaning he had no access to Bob's Bar, meaning he had to go all the way back to Redmond.

There was Eddie's girlfriend's cake, which was amazing and which I managed to hold down even though the mixture of alcohol and pasta from before potentially held a volatile mix.

There was no karaoke, which wasn't all that bad.

There were credit cards galore, including probably a half dozen on Megan Lee Spencer alone, in front of her boyfriend no less. I tried using that credit card the next day, came back declined, that's how many asses were swiped at my party.

There was my brother, bravely taking the bus from Downtown to Ballard all by himself. He had no atm card and bummed alcohol from me all night (to which he repaid me a few days later once gaining access to his bank).

This all led to my getting a ride from Cait and Gretch to their place, with my brother sleeping on the floor, with Little Ian Patterson joining us later and partaking in some afterhours partying, with The Big Lebowski playing on the TiVo, with us finally nodding off around 5 o'clock in the am.

The next day I was in NO shape to take my brother to work, but Little Ian Patterson was kind enough to oblige. Then, he returned and we had a little Hair O' The Dog, followed by the longest, trippiest, scariest drive from Greenlake to the U-District I've ever experienced. With the loudest, scariest metal music, and cops at what seemed like every single intersection staring us down and yelling at us to reduce volume posthaste. Once stopped for lunch, I bolted from the car never to be seen from again ...

I slept in my car, I ate Taco Del Mar in Fremont, I contemplated seeing a movie at the Metro before sleeping again, I joined up with Big Iain and Cait and Gretch at Iain's house in Magnolia, and we all joined up with Kon and Samson at the Bierstube before heading down to Dante's for more beer and pool. Dicks closed out the evening where I got the last Strawberry Milkshake and some fries. Slept on Iain's couch, had Cafe Flora for lunch the next day, got my stuff from Mark and Mario's, then headed on home to recover.

It was quite the long weekend, and I've yet to be back up since. March 21st - March 23rd. Rock on.