Friday, September 14, 2012

Nurse the Hate: Hate Vegas


We are playing a Cowslinger show as part of the Grog Shop 20 year reunion next week.  That means we have to rehearse so we don't look like assholes.  We wrote a shitload of music in that band, and it’s fun to play those old songs again.  It’s really weird singing songs you wrote almost a lifetime ago.  It’s like flipping through a mental picture book as you sing them.  Images flash in my head with each line as I remember what made me write the song in the first place.  There’s one song in particular that I had forgotten all about until we played it, and memories of it came back to me like watching an old movie where I know every piece of script.  

The Cowslinger song “Must’ve Been the Whiskey” is about a guy I knew that was an alcoholic.  Well, I guess he still is an alcoholic.  Why get bogged down in semantics though?  When I met him, he was clean and sober and had been for 18 months or so.  He was a really fun guy.  The guy had a great sense of humor, got into wild situations, and always had some half baked scheme going on.  I always thought to myself that if he was this much fun clean and sober, can you imagine what a blast he would be if he had a few beers in him?  I did not realize how fundamentally flawed this thinking was at this time as most of my experience with alcoholics had been limited to movies and TV where winos shuffled out of alleys drinking out of paper bags.  Surely my friend wasn’t living on skid row.  How bad could his drinking problem have been?  I would find out shortly. 

He fell off the wagon shortly before going on a Vegas junket with some mutual friends.  I had no idea, as I am generally the last person to spot illicit drug and alcohol abuse in people unless they are holed up firing pistols at a police barricade or something.  That is probably due to a combination of assuming that things are what they seem, and not being empathetic enough to pick up on these things.  Regardless, my friend was back on the sauce just in time to jet into Las Vegas for some manly gambling on NFL Football and cards. 

I think we can all agree that Las Vegas may not be the best place for a binging alcoholic to take himself and his billfold.  I knew things had gotten out of hand somewhat when he insisted that “Natalie”, a woman he met on an earlier flight that year meet him Vegas.  Natalie had a sexual bent that made her particularly interested in being spanked and entered from behind while calling the man “Daddy”.  I’m up for a good time, but I don’t think I would have been into acting out her incestual rape fantasy with her dressed as a schoolgirl.  It’s pretty creepy, right?  My friend was very interested in doing this, and bought same day tickets for Natalie to fly in from New York with her schoolgirl outfit in tow.    

The illusion that my fun friend would become even more fun with a few beers quickly disappeared.  He also disappeared.   

I think he believed we wouldn’t know that he was drinking if he just ditched us.  The fact his personality had made a complete transformation into a horribly obnoxious crass fuck would have been difficult to play off.  I will give him that.  Distance might have been a good idea if he was trying to keep his behavior off the grid. 

Things went horribly wrong for him.  He somehow ran into one of the flight attendants from our flight.  He latched onto her, and that woman hosted his mammoth Las Vegas bender.  From what he pieced together, he left The Strip and went out to a truck stop casino.  Why you would fly 2000 miles to sit at a truck stop and play blackjack in that pit of sadness, I couldn’t say.  It was there he lost great sums of money.  Meanwhile Natalie’s flight had arrived… 

Natalie, who had been looking forward to some rough sexual intercourse and role playing, had arrived at what I recall as being Caesar’s Palace and found no sign of the man that had bought her an airline ticket.  Even more disconcerting was that fact that this man that had insisted she fly to him was not in his room, and had left no message of his whereabouts.  She sat in the lobby, probably thinking about the poor decision she had made on getting on that airplane at LaGuardia Airport hours earlier.

It was very unclear to my friend about how the last events of the weekend had unfolded.  He sat next to me on the plane with a look of puzzlement.  He knew he married the flight attendant.  That he could prove with the flimsy wedding band in his pocket and folded marriage certificate document.  He also remembered quite a scene in Caesars Palace lobby when he stumbled in with his new wife and discovered Natalie waiting.  Natalie was understandably irate with how the scenario had unfolded, and much screaming and yelling ensued.  After security separated everyone, my friend was put into a position to purchase a room for Natalie at the top of the card weekend room rate.  That was the last he saw of Natalie, who presumably put on her schoolgirl outfit and enjoyed rough sexual intercourse and role playing with some other dude elsewhere in the complex.

There was some talk about getting back on the program (he didn’t) and even some limited regret with the way the weekend had gone.  I remember turning to my left and asking him how he left it with his “wife”.  It turned out that he slunk out of the room while she slept.  He never said a word.  He then turned to me and said “I can’t even remember her name.”  Hence the chorus of “Must’ve Been The Whiskey”.  I don’t think he ever heard from her, and as far as I know, he never figured out her name.

What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.  Well, with this exception of course. 

Winners:  It’s time to get after it by betting football.  My kitty is stuffed full thanks to betting heavily against the Indians since the All Star break. What If? What if indeed!  This weekend I like Louisville -3 over North Carolina.  North Carolina just lost to Wake Forest last week as a ten point favorite.  How the hell did that happen?  And now these kids are going on the road to beat Louisville?  I don’t think so.  Give me Louisville -3  In the NFL, I always like home underdogs.  Even better, I like East Coast home underdogs hosting West Coast teams at 1p.  I like Miami over Oakland this week +2.5 despite the fact that I watched Hard Knocks on HBO and found the Dolphins a pretty boring and unlikeable group of guys.   By the way, the Dolphins #1 draft pick QB Ryan Tannehill had no idea what teams were in his conference, and thought somebody like Kansas City was in the NFC East.  You would think a guy that was going to be playing football professionally may have had enough curiosity to find out the very basics.  Nope.  Not him.  How much of the Oakland coverage schemes you think are sinking in?  Oh well, hopefully that dope can take the 2.5 and give me a winner on Sunday.  Yes, I know the Dolphins are terrible.  I am banking on the fact the Raiders are too.  Take Miami +2.5. 



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