Binge drinking: always better in theory, also when no one is fighting
by Christopher Jeske
Staff Blue Goose
Weeks ago, I sat alone in my room, perusing Craigslist in search of a third roommate in hopes of lowering the housing fee on my tuition. In a startling burst, the door flew open, and my roommate Michael entered, visibly excited. “Yo, bro. We’re going out tonight.” I began to sweat profusely. I should say, I continued to sweat profusely. Since entering my air condition-less room on the first day, I had been as slick as the catastrophic 2010 BP oil spill. I was filled with dread.
In truth, a drop of alcohol had never graced my lips prior to my arrival at Rose Hill. Everything changed that fateful night. Michael led me out of our dorm and onto Fordham Road. When I inquired about his planned method of alcohol acquisition, he confidently replied that he intended to request the aid of a desperate older fellow. As we approached the Best Buy, he selected his target. “Watch this,” he said, swaggering toward a scruffy, middle aged man and his canine companion who sat nearby, calmly sporting sunglasses and holding a bucket of change in his mouth. Amused, Michael crouched next to the pup. After ordering me to take a picture, he deposited a dollar in the dog’s dangling bucket. He then turned his attention to the man. “Can you buy me a handle of Jameson?” he blurted, cash in hand, extended towards the gentlemen. The dog owner quickly snatched the twenty and headed in the opposite direction. The pup remained at our side, perhaps understanding his role as the collateral of this transaction, perhaps unable to see or move due to the sunglasses resting on his snout. Thirty four minutes later, the man returned with a single tall boy Straw-Ber-Rita. Apologizing for the store’s shallow inventory, he handed Michael $2 in change. Confused, but satisfied, we carried on.
I have chosen to spare you the details of the consumption of that Strawberita to avoid incriminating myself. But for the sake of this story, assume the entire Straw-Ber-Rita was finished without gagging or choking.
Later, Michael and I decided we were prepared to face the bars. We soon discovered that we had less to face than previously expected, being denied entrance from the first two establishments we approached. At the third, a place by the name of ‘Orange Duck,’ we had more luck. The bouncer, a large Italian man who resembled a meatball resting on a barstool, forcefully requested our Fordham IDs. Seeing mine, he scoffed and grabbed it from my hand. “This is fake,” he declared. “What?!” I exclaimed, “I’m a senior!” “Yeah right. I’ve never seen you around here. Listen, if this really was a Fordham ID, could I do this?” He began to aggressively bend the ID. I stood there mortified, knowing I would face a $30 replacement fee if it broke. He choked up on the card and attempted to apply more pressure. As his forehead began to perspire, he admitted defeat. “Alright I’ll let you go this time. But listen, we’re trying this new thing on Tuesday -- it’s a drink up from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Cover’s $2 for girls, $20 for guys. Tell your friends okay?” “Sure,” I said as he applied a temporary Spider-Man tattoo to my hand. I looked at him inquisitively. Ashamed, he explained they ran out of stamps shortly before my arrival.
I crossed the threshold of the bar and was immediately blasted by the stench of sweat and the body heat of at least 100 disgustingly drunk teenagers. A fellow bar-goer overheard my laments and casually removed a full bottle of cologne from the pocket of his hoodie. “I come prepared though,” he told me, spritzing himself liberally. The bar itself looked more like a shoebox than anything else. Children were pressed against every wall, screaming and jumping to the likes of the Jonas Brothers and the Chainsmokers, violating fire codes left and right. I tried to move closer to the bar, but I found myself stuck. It seemed as though the gallons of spilled beer had transformed into a thick glue, holding me in place by my shoes. Then, a boy wearing an upside down visor turned away from the bar and raised his pitcher of beer. With the ferocity of a Spartan he screamed “HA-RAM-BE!” into the air. Within seconds, the entire bar had joined in the chant. Michael, having watched this boy unify the entire bar by the means of an exhausted meme, unloaded a massive blow on his right cheek. The meme enthusiast collapsed in an instant, igniting something of a brawl. The commotion rose to such a level that the bouncer guarding the bar’s second door awoke from his slumber for the first time since our arrival. Irritated, he grabbed Michael by the shirt and dragged him out of the building as members of the crowd desperately reached to land punches on him. I frantically followed them out of the door. Michael sat on the sidewalk, apparently having been pushed. The tired bouncer struggled to feign interest as he demanded that “[Michael] and [his] friend stay away from The Duck.” We have found it exceedingly easy to comply with his request as time has passed.