2009-08-17 - On Our Next Episode . . .
2009-06-12 - RetroReflectionReaction
2009-04-13 - The Me Decade
2009-03-03 - Super Powered Sounds #3
2009-03-02 - Super Powered Sounds #2QUOTES! V.1QUOTES! V.2QUOTES! V.3QUOTES! V.4
Halloween In New York With Pictures . . . And Pizza
2003-11-13 - 1:11 p.m.
Secret Word: Protein
Listening To: Pearl Jam, The Beatles, The Stranglers, S & G
Quote: "Of course I'm not full after two bananas! It's not like I ate a hero!" - Ben
Hi. November. Noveeeeeeemmmmmbbbeeer. Right.
Let's start over.
Hi. Hi. Hi-Ho. I never liked Hi-Ho's. Did you? I bet you did. I bet you totally did. In a fetishistic way too. Like how the Peaslee's are with Pecan Sandies. And honey. And candle holders. And vacuum cleaners. And flatware. And vermouth. Damn, what aren't the Peaslee's fetishistic about now that I think of it? Wait. How did we start talking about fetishes? Oh yeah, Hi-Ho's. I hate Hi-Ho's. Not really a big Chicken-in-a-Biscuit fan either.
Anyway. Did you hear? Halloween was a week and a half ago. Yup. End of October. Just like every year. But this year, Ben and I celebrated Halloween extra special like. No, we didn't hunt Bob St. Lawrence down like the giant Frog Monster that he is and stuff his carcass full of mulch. (Although . . . I'll have to remember that for next year . . .) Nope, instead, Ben and I hauled ourselves up to Albany to surprise KP & Mike for their Halloween/Flag Football Bash. It also happened to be KP's birthday days before, so let's throw that in there too. Kelly had told us that if we successfully pulled off the surprise that Kristen would, "totally poop her pants." Right. Well. What can I say when there's stakes like that involved? Technically it wasn't Halloween when we got there, it was November 1st. And technically it wasn't in Albany, it was in Latham. But that's ok, we still dressed up in costume and drank a lot anyway.
I'm not gonna lie to you. Part of me was hesitant about even making the trip. Not because of the distance, which, at 3 1/2 hours, was about 2 hours less then people claimed it to be, but because I was hoping that we wouldn't end up making asses out of ourselves in New York. We've had a spotty record. Sometimes great. Sometimes not so great. If you recall, one of the first times we encountered most of Mike's friends, it went pretty well. Whereas the next major time we all met up at a social function, it ended in burnt dolphin remains, wet clothes, and recriminations on either side. Kristen and Mike's wedding was a healthy draw. We all had fun, the Cantonites (or is it Cantonese?) and the Laconians didn't mix it up at the wedding as much as we had all thought we would. It must have been the international glow that was surrounding McLaughlin that distracted us all. Either that, or the frightening peach jumpsuit that was skulking around the dance floor at the reception. No matter. Ben and I decided we were definitely going and that was that.
Except, that wasn't really that at all. We were originally supposed to leave on Friday after work. But Ben insisted on going to see the UNH hockey game that night and leaving for New York the next morning. Fine fine. So Friday night didn't offer much fun. I had spent the afternoon in LA visiting Nanny and then returned to Rollinsford. Ben got back from the hockey game around 10:30 and announced to Kenichi and me that he was abandoning his choice of Halloween costume. He was no longer going to go as "a golfer". He explained to us that seeing the stop sign outside the house had filled him with the desire to dress up as . . . a stop sign. I asked him how he was going to do this. He said he was off to Wal-Mart for supplies. I said that was just grand but I was going to bed since we had to get up at 6 to get ready to leave for New York. And that was that. Except really, that wasn't really that either. While I slept, Ben was hammering and sawing and painting and acetylene torching in the basement until THREE IN THE MORNING making his stop sign costume. This better have been the Stop Sign costume to beat all Stop Sign costumes. It was. Don't worry. You'll get to see it soon enough. Anyway. He was pretty groggy the next morning. I told him I couldn't believe he stayed up that late. He said he never would have started all that if he knew it was 10:30 when he left. "What time did you think it was when you left last night?", I asked him. "I don't know. Just not 10:30."
So after a quick stop to Dunkin' Donuts and a less quick stop to the Liquor Store to buy some "It's Finally Our First Visit To Your House After Having Ditched Out Previously" gifts for Kristen and Mike. See, that's how Laconia boys do it. Booze. Anyone else would have brought a nice non-drinkable gift, or flowers, or some pine trees. Oh wait. Ben brought them pine trees too. He's a fucking freak. Anyway, soon enough, we were on the Mass Pike and made our long monotonous journey across the top of Massachusetts. There were some rest stops and lots of billboards advertising cheese. It was very strange. It reminded me of Ol' Wisconsin. Ah, cheese. Anyway. After a few secretive calls to Kelly and Roy (who were with KP at the mall and had to answer us in very clandestine ways so as not to let KP's brain think, "Hmmm, those responses sound like the way one would answer a question that Zach has posed." That said, Roy managed to sneak in to me that "KP is definitely gonna poop her pants!") we found ourselves crossing the border into New York, where they have funny exits like B1 and B3. I was hoping to get as far as B12 to see if we could drive through Niacin and Riboflavin but it was not to be. Sad. We made damn good time and drove into the school parking lot (where, by this time, everyone had convened for flag football) by noontime. I was happy to get out of the car. My knees hurt and my tongue tasted like grape jelly. And I hate grape jelly. Well, "hate" is probably too strong a word.
Anyway, I'd like to take this time to state that I absolutely knew that flag football was on the menu. No doubt about it. I knew that flag football would be played. I just figured, some people would play, some people wouldn't. No, no. I was wrong. This annual flag football game is serious shit. The winners even get photographed! Not for a paper or anything, but still. A picture! And this was like the third annual game or some shit. But like I said, I didn't think everyone would play, and I just figured I'd be in the group. So, not planning on playing, I didn't bring any stuff to play in. Ben and I hop out of the car, which can't be seen from the field - where everyone is, and the only person that spies us is Mike. He just happened to be by the parking lot when we drove in. Guess what the first thing he says to us is? And I am not making this up. "Oh my god! I can't believe you guys are here! Does Kristen know about this?!" "No.", we answer. "Oh man," he says, "when she sees you two she's so gonna poop her pants!" Seriously though? Maybe Kristen should see a professional about this obvious bowel related problem. I haven't run across someone who so frivilously shits themselves in a social situation since the heyday of David T. Marshall. So then Mike says to us, “Listen, you two suit up and then come running on to the field to surprise Kristen!” Ben says, “Ok!” and Mike runs off around the corner and on to the field. Then, the following exchange happened:
Z: Um, what’re we going to suit up in?
B: Our football stuff.
Z: I don’t have any football stuff.
B: I do.
Z: Um. Ok. Well, I don’t care since I wasn’t going to play anyway.
B: [standing behind the open car door so to sheild the neighborhood children from seeing his half naked body as he “suited up with his gear”] Ok. Well then what’s the big deal?
Z: It’s not a big deal. I just don’t want to go running out on to the field.
B: Why? Did you forget your inhaler?
Z: Fuckin’ rassum frassum . . . NO, I remembered my inhaler. That’s not the point. I just don’t want to go running across the playground and across the whole field like a bunch of psychos.
B: Why not?
Z: I don’t know. We’ll look lame.
B: Who cares how we look?
Z: I do. Besides, I’d do it if we could jump through one of those big paper like hoops that have the team name on it you know and we go crashing through it kind of thing?
Z: You know what I mean! Like those big hoop things.
B: Oh, with fire?
Z: No, not with fucking fire. Well . . . fire would be cool though.
B: Ok, well how about this? I go running out and you come walking behind me.
Z: Um, no. I couldn’t look any lamer than if you came out all valiantly running and I was bringing up the rear.
B: [at this point all suited up] Well I’m going now, so let’s go.
At this point, we both, pretty much at the same pace make our way behind the school and walk on to the field. While I wasn’t next to Kristen when she realized it was us with a very surprised look on her face, due to the absence of people running in horror and screaming I do not think, in actuality, that she pooped her said pants. As we got closer to everyone, in their assorted mesh jerseys, bandanas, and umbros I recognized a bunch of people. Of course, there was Roy and Kelly & Jim. As well as Mike and Kristen of course. Mush, Bo, Roachie (or is it Roachy? I surely don’t know.), Grub, and I think that’s all I knew at first. Ben insisted for a while that he had already met Max, but as Max attested, he did not. Rachel, Max’s girlfriend, was also there. Jim was the popular name for the day as there was “Kelly’s Jim”, “Big Jim”, and “Jim with the dogs.” There were also fellow Canton peeps Bonnie and Jarod, Mike’s brother Daniel, his friend Chris, and God forgive me if I’m forgetting someone else, but I’m shocked I’ve remembered this many to be honest. [And no, no one was wearing Umbros. I was just kidding. It’s not like we were in Gilford.]
So then there was much flag footballery. Ben went from simple armchair quaterback to real quarterback and was hellbent on making sure that Shum and KP both scored. He succeeded. He should be voted Homecoming King for that alone. That and he promised us chocolate milk every day and pizza on Fridays andThursdays. So . . . you know, he had that goin’ for him. I got kinda bored watching, which is my own fault. So I read a little bit. Explored the grounds. Called Monique, who was merely two hours south sunning herself on the window sill with Niko & Misha. Read some more. Killed a chipmunk and ate it. Chatted with Jim with the dogs. Chatted with Nicole, wife of big Jim. I got a new friend every few minutes when someone would come out so someone else could sub in. The teams were uneven. Hey, don’t look at me. I didn’t bring my “gear”, remember? Anyway, after all the pigskining fun we could handle we all piled back into the cars and made our way back to Kristen and Mike’s place.
I guess I should take this opportunity to state that Ben and I are the freaks who call Kristen’s husband, “Mike”. Huh? But isn’t that his name? It is. But I think Ben and I are the only ones who call him this. Roy and Kelly might but I don’t remember. Kristen calls him Michael and most of the guys call him either “Pie” or “Tro”, which isn’t odd considering few of them go by their first names themselves. Besides, it’s better than being called “Fo” or “Ote” I imagine, and God knows I wouldn’t wish “The Great Waldini” on anyone other than Ben. Once back at the house everyone showered - seperately, this isn’t the Real World: Albany - and then people vegged around the house reading, watching tv and talking about which parts of their bodies would be going into traction in the next few hours. Within the next few hours the following things happened:
#1. KP enlisted me to count how many people would be there that night and what people wanted on their pizza. Luckily I’ve had some experience in this kind of a thing. When there’s a big group of people that includes Ben and a pizza consensus is being sought, the best plan is to order 6 or 7 “normal” pizzas (i.e. - pepperoni, cheese, sausage, etc.) and then order a “special” pizza for Ben with lots of onions, peppers, olives, mustard, and fish heads. When all was said and done KP ordered 8 pizzas and 75 buffalo wings. That would seem to be plenty of pizza wouldn’t you say? You’d think.
#2. Alcohol slowly started to be drank. Or drunken. or droonken. Whatever. I had a rum and coke. One. That’s it. Well, until after we put our costumes on. But the point is, before all the festivities I had one drink. I stress this as it makes #3 even stranger.
#3. I’m sitting there on the living room floor perusing the ESPN magazine and realize I am feeling very dizzy. I stand up to get my bearings and almost fall over. No one sees this and I am glad. I go outside for some “fresh air”. Do you ever notice that getting “fresh air” almost never fixes any problem you’re hoping it will fix? Well, I mean, unless you are stuck in Harlem during the school year and come summer you get to vacation in Laconia. My cousins had Deshawna come up to LA one summer and we cooked marshmellows at Bond Beach and oh what fun it was. So yeah, the fresh air didn’t help. So I had another drink, ‘cause I’ve never been in a situation where rum didn’t make everything better. Now I was short of breath and even more dizzy. I hope you’re not all excited to find out what the fuck was wrong with me, because I never found out. Instead, while everyone played Asshole (Canton/Albany rules no doubt) I confided to Kelly that I thought my brain was slowly getting bigger and trying to escape through my ears. She suggested I go lay down in one of the 16 guest rooms. So I did. I didn’t really sleep but was in that 1/2 awake 1/2 zombie state where you think you keep starting a dream but all the noises you are hearing in the other room are part of it. You know? No? Anyway. I guess it helped, since I got back up like 45 minutes later and felt better. Not great. But better. Then it was time for costumes! Hooray! Costumes!
Things started rolling pretty fast once the costumes got fastened and buckled and airbrushed to our collective bodies. My low rent costume didn’t take long to get into. It involved me combing my hair out over my ears, giving myself a black/blue swollen eye with face paint, drawing blood cascading from my “wound”, putting on my Damon #18 shirt, and grabbing Ben’s glove and baseball from the car, and volia! Instant Johnny Damon! Ben’s Stop Sign took a little more face paint and a little more assistance in getting together. Let’s take a look at some of the get-ups shall we?
KP as the Devil and Roy as a Chef (not the Kenichi variety)
Later, two types of games developed. Survivor Flip Cup, which I must say is an improvment to Regular Old Flip Cup in that, like Survivor, the losing side has to vote someone off the team after each turn. It gets pretty cut-throat. Beirut, the #1 game of the Human Race, was going on in the garage with 2 tables, letting 8 people play at once. Which was sweet. Except you just know that LA rules were not welcome here. Instead, if a team makes two cups in a row? THEY GET THE BALLS BACK TO SHOOT AGAIN. Yeah, that’s like saying, “Asshole, can I have your three best cards?” The only good thing about that rule is that if you’re waiting to get on the table, it makes the games go by a hell of a lot quicker. Ben and I, under the guise of Team Kenichi, kicked some ass if I must say so myself. But we were beaten a few times too. When I wasn’t on the table I’d either be playing Survivor Flip Cup or making another drink so time flew by pretty quickly.
Jarod (sans costume), Bonnie as the Statue of Liberty, Roachie as Andy Dick from Old School - which while it may not translate so well on the screen, I assure you it was a hilarious costume, moreso if you’ve actually seen Old School - and Bo, as Will Ferrell in Old School when he’s refereeing the Wrestling Match between Blue and the naked girls. This picture of Bo makes him seem overdressed compared to his costume later in the night
Mush as the Spartan Cheerleader - man Will Ferrell was represented that night, Mike as the Energizer Bunny (though this picture doesn’t do his costume justice as you can’t see his feet and he doesn’t have his drum), Jim as a 70’s guy, and Kelly, I swear, even though it doesn’t look it in this picture, as a Hula Girl.
Jim, looking as if he’s gonna bite someone, Kristen getting fiesty over a more Hula-fied Kelly, and Max, as a slightly beheaded JFK looking on aghast!
What’s that? You’ve heard so much about Ben’s glorious Stop Sign you want to see if for yourself? Fine.
Feast on the redness of it all
Meanwhile, Chef Chen Kenichi sat at home, absconded into the egg crate / trash bin cover that he had converted into a crude bed while we were gone, feeling absolutely disgusted over our celebration of basically a Pagan Holiday . . .
Oh well, at least Strong Sad had the good sense to dress up as David Byrne.
So yeah. We played lots of beirut and everyone got pretty drunk. I know Kristen and I took a time out at one point to look over some funny pictures she had. The highlights were easily a picture of long haired Jimbo being totally covered in rascally Prescott kittens, and pictures that Shannon and I had taken years ago of us laying in the street in the middle of winter in the poses of the body outlines for crosswalks. Ah, youth.
At some point earlier I guess several members of the party were worried that we’d run out of pizza. It was highly unlikely seeing as we had mountains of pizza. Well, at least mole hills. Anyway, in an effort, I guess, to make a contingency plan if we did run out of pizza several of these people decided to hide some “secret pizza”. Right. See, the thing is, so many people apparently made secret deposits of secret pizza around the kitchen (under eggs, in the crisper, in the freezer, in the cupboard, etc.) that it was the direct cause of us running out of pizza! So food soon became something highly sought after. I remember at one point someone was making some sort of soup and then the smoke detectors went off and everything was smokey. Yeah. But I’m kinda iffy on the details as I was pretty drunk at that point. As was everyone else. Aye, but here’s the rub! While everyone thought the pizza was gone, all the secret pizza hiders came back looking for it and to be all secret squirrel about it only to find . . . all the secret pizza was gone! They then admitted to everyone else that they had hid pizza in various places and were heartbroken to see that a person(s) had double-crossed them. That was only one mystery that never got solved. I know I screwed Ben out of a place to sleep since I didn’t want to hear his snoring, and Roy will probably never forgive me as he slept in the same room she did. But the important thing is, in the middle of the night, while everyone was sleeping, a majority of us heard someone in the bathroom puking up what sounded like a horse and a small child. It seriously shook the whole damn house.
The next morning people slowly filed out of their various rooms and filtered into the living room and watched Super Troopers in relative silence. Like any social function I am at that Roy is also in attendance, I woke up to her voice. People were hungover, sore, hungover, and missing their secret pizza. Also, they were hungover. I had never seen Super Troopers (I know, I suck) but I liked it a lot. When I first came into the room everyone asked me if I was the one that puked up 3/4 of my body the night before. I swore it wasn’t me (because it wasn’t) but said I had heard it too and wanted to know who it was. It soon became like Ten Little Indians, but in reverse. More people kept entering the room and more people would get grilled and then, with the eventual alibi, would get let off the hook. Finally, everyone was up and everyone had denied it. Everyone . . . but Ben. Ben was still sleeping and it was almost 10:30. Which, if you know Ben, drunk or not, he’s usually up at 6. So we were pretty sure it was Ben. Until Ben came downstairs and admitted to puking. Upstairs. Not in the downstairs bathroom that everyone heard the reverse gorging in. And no one would admit to puking in Place A but not Place B. And believe me, Ben had nothing to hide since he would go on to puke FIVE more times that day. That’s right. Even after we all went to breakfast in town without Ben, he continued to puke. Even after everyone left, on bike, by car, by plane, by scooter, Ben still continued to puke. The 1 o’clock football games came on and it was just Mike, Kristen, Ben and me, and still he continued to puke. 4 o’clock rolled around and we were STILL IN NEW YORK. We had planned on leaving that morning. I couldn’t drive since Ben drives a stick and I only know automatic. So we sat there until Pukey LaRue felt like he could take to the road. We never did figure out why Ben puked so much. he drank the same as everyone else. It must have been all those fish heads on his pizza. It was a looooong drive back across the Mass Pike, and due to late football games we just barely made it time for The Simpsons Halloween special. I skedaddled over to Brooke’s just in time for Alias. It was a really long weekend. And this entry is even longer than that.
Seriously. I’ve been writing this damn entry for days. I’m so glad I’m done. So glad that I will reward anyone who actually read all of it with this picture of Ben in a mullet:
Isn’t that beautiful? I think so.
So is this:
Oh man. That gets me.
Anyway, enjoy the new Mini-Poll function. I enjoy it. And you should too.
It’s been real,
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