Nightlife


At bartime on Saturday night I acquired a cowbell. The best part of acquiring a cowbell: you can never have too much cowbell. Even when one friend would say, “Molly, you need to stop with the cowbell.”, another friend would shake his head and mouth to me, “We need more cowbell!” Alas, I was a slave to the masses and gave my people what they wanted to hear: more cowbell. Mind you, a non-aggressive cowbelling, just a slight teasing of movement to produce a soft: ka-kling-klang … ka-klang-kling.

Was probably The Best Night Ever. Cowbells belong in an untouchable sphere of awesomeness where no one can hate them. Any night that includes cowbell is automatically ranked as an Awesome.

The night got less awesome when my friends tried to steal my cowbell. Jealous pricks.

‘Round 4am, I stopped keeping close watch over my night’s take, and just when my guard went down, that’s when I lost my cowbell. We blamed the guy who, that thieving bastard, left at coincidently the exact time the cowbell went missing. Hmm, how CONVENIENT. Recovering from missing cowbell, well, that takes some time. I pouted a bit until one guy friend suggested, “Let’s have a slumber party in [other guy friend who was currently sleeping]’s bed to cheer up.” AMAZING! – the three of us in his bed, primarily because it irritated the living fuck out of the one whose bed we crashed. He’s just so EASY to irritate and gives such a great reaction – how can a person NOT cave to that temptation? And then, while the irritated friend was yelling at us to leave his bed, a miracle happened: we heard a soft ka-kling-klang.

OH MY SWEET BOVINE I DIDN’T LOSE MY COWBELL AFTER ALL.

Having safely recovered my cowbell from being wedged between the bed and wall, crisis averted!, we all decided to retire for the evening, good night, sweet dreams, etc. etc.

I woke up WITHOUT my cowbell. Puzzling, but didn’t think much of it, left my guy friend a note to be on the lookout for it, went home, started my day.

FIVE DAYS later and my cowbell was still MIA. He has a small apartment, he doesn’t have that much stuff, only three of us could be considered as suspects; how can we keep losing this damn cowbell?

Finally, late last night, he texted: “Found a cowbell in my oven. I presume it’s yours.”

The best part is that NOT ONE OF US has ANY recollection as to HOW it came to be in the oven. Not a clue. None of us blacked out, one of the guys was the last to bed, another was the last to be in that room, and both of them have hinted that I was probably the one to hide it there for safekeeping.

Our card game categories used to involve vital topics like brands of pot or sex positions. The category on Saturday: Supreme Court Justices. What’s worse is that everyone was all, oo, good category! and then proceeded to give commentary when a Judge was named, Oh that bastard is such a constitutionalist! My little friends, they always surprise me.

“And on Saturday, you can be my beer pong partner!”

“… but I suck at beer pong.”

“Then we all win!”

9p: After class I park my car at a friend’s apartment in Uptown. We walk to Uptown bars and have a few cocktails. It’s raining.
1:55a: Bar closes. She goes home; I walk to a different friend’s house. Flip-flop strap breaks. Walk drunk and partially shoed in rain. See lone man walking in deserted streets as he calls to me: “Don’t get arrested! It’s bad!” Nod at wise words (the man has a point); take man’s advice and save law-breaking for another day.
2:21a: Reach my destination, Loring Park Neighborhood; regale Friend with tales of my evening’s adventures; fall asleep.
7:20a: Friend agrees to drive me to my car to save me from a 50-minute walk
7:35a: Arrive at my car. Do not have keys.
7:54a: Drop off Friend at his job Downtown; take his car to Suburbs.
8:28a: Arrive in Suburbs, pick up spare key, leave for Uptown. Require work laptop in my car’s trunk for Work-At-Home Fridays.
8:59a: Arrive in Uptown at my car. Original keys are not locked inside, still at large. Original keys have the keychain to bypass work’s firewall. Cannot WAH without keychain. Phone dies, rain starts.
9:20a: Give up search of Uptown streets and car interior.
10:01a: Back in the Suburbs. Call boss. Explain situation. She laughs (I love my boss) when I basically have to confess to being a drunk (“I was out last night …”) and a whore (“This morning, my friend let me use his car …”).
10:20a: Finish getting ready for office; curse self knowing showerless WAHing could’ve been an option.
10:23a: Find temporarily misplaced spare key. Crown self Queen Dumbass. Consider wearing tiara, decide against it.
11:05a: Arrive at work. Start day.

5p: Leave work. Park car in Loring Neighborhood. Walk 50 minutes to Uptown. Weather forecast: Thunderstorms.
6p: Arrive at Friend’s car. Drive back to his apartment (He left at lunch for a weekend in Texas, which is why he can’t come with me to make the car pick-up).

7p: Drive home to Suburbs. Nap. Live life without keys.

When he asked me to make out, I don’t think the reaction he wanted from me was a wave to [another guy friend], who was sitting five feet away from us in the cramped living room. Not awkward.

“Hi Baby Cakes!” –even added the powerful one-two combination of chin-lift/eye-roll to the greeting.

“Hello, Molly.” His returning wave reeked with mocking enthusiasm. I love/hate that about him.

The guy has a fairly serious girlfriend, so I knew nothing was going to happen – all the same, my battered ego appreciated that at least someone liked the idea of making out with me.

In my sober state –I had been nominated as driver when they were already in shambles when I arrived at the bar a few hours earlier –I diplomatically asked the make-out dude if he thought that making out might be slightly uncomfortable, what with someone sitting so close to us. He contemplated this profoundly, as if he hadn’t thought that far ahead. He then posed another question.

“Molly, why are you single? You’re so cute; why are you single?”

I hate that question. There is no answer for that question. People who ask that question deserve a swift kick in the shins. Instead, I wryly said, “It’s my personality. It totally sucks.”

My humor was lost on him, but it made the other guy friend, who was slightly-less-drunk and chain smoking in a nearby old-man chair, complete with torn fabric and a broken recliner, give a chuckle and shake his head.

Left without making-out as a viable activity, he put my feet in his lap and tried to crack my toes. Most girls would get guys who, perhaps, would use the situation for a foot massage; I get ones who crack my toes. I win. Only two cracked, much to his annoyance.

The display was sardonically being observed, and I again heard laughter from the vicinity of the old-man chair.

His head eventually found way to my shoulder, in a beer-induced repose, and I started a nonchalant conversation with the other friend, as if I didn’t have someone attached to the underside of my chin. When my napping friend woke, twenty minutes later, alert and startled, he said, “OHMYGOD, I am TOTALLY hitting on you right now. IAMSOSORRY.”

Yes, he was. And it was awkward and unsuccessful and totally inappropriate, given his circumstances, but it was also amusing and harmless – and at least I didn’t have to finish the week like it started –feeling unwanted and pathetic and the fool. It’s a good friend who takes that role for me.

I have learned the secret of life –and its name is three-day-benders-of-pizza-and-beer. You’re welcome.

Bear Fights are not an easy succession of shots: a car bomb (Guinness, Bailey’s, Jameson) immediately followed by a Jag Bomb (Jägermeister, Red Bull). The heaviness of the first and the sweetness of the second react violently with each other, hence the etymology.

I do not typically partake in Bear Fights. I only did so on Friday because I lost. Lost ten times in a row. My opponent, that tricky bastard, did paper every time. Damn you, Rock-Paper-Scissors. After our shots, decently lit, my opponent and I were walking to the next bar to meet the rest of the group when I heard my name.

“Molly! Molly Elizabeth!”

He was outside a bar, sitting on the patio with friends, smiling a cautious smile. The first and only time I’d ever seen him in a place other than my house, his place, or the real estate office. And here I was, fresh from fightin’ me a bear.

We chatted, as per usual The Realtor was charming – obviously, the guy is in sales for God’s sake – and my friend and I eventually carried on our merry way. Reunited with our group at a bar down the block, the eight of us fought more bears, returning to Baby Cakes’ once the clock struck two.

We played cards until 4am, until everyone (paired off) retired to their respective corners. My floor space quickly became claimed by a heavily-breathing couple. Delightful. Which left me with a random boy and the pull-out couch. No big deal; it was sleeping time. Then his hands started to wander. Clumsily.

It’s not that my couch partner wasn’t attractive – because he was, in his way – but he hadn’t spoken to me throughout the course of the evening. At all. I find that awkward. Is one smile too much to ask before you put your hands on me? Maybe just a hello? I barely knew his name. Also, I have a rule where I don’t have casual hook-ups with guys within The Kid’s circle. It’s a respect thing, not that I owe him that, but with our history, I give him that. A guy has to have some potential if I am going to sacrifice my privacy and become a subject for gossip.

I tried to play the pass out card. It didn’t work. I had previously thought that the genius of the pass-out card is that it ALWAYS WORKS. Apparently not. [Side note: reading texts from The Realtor probably didn’t help my passed-out argument, so I stopped reading them after the first twenty minutes. He was inviting me over, even offered to pay for the cab. Very effortful on his part.] Throughout my FORTY-FIVE MINUTES OF FAKE SLEEP, he repeated the following actions:

1. Pulling my hip so that I was laying on my back (even though I had told him MULTIPLE TIMES that I had 48 NEW stitches in my back)
2. Picking up my limp wrist and dropping it
3. Poking my shoulder
4. Repeating, “Are you serious? Hey. HEY. Are you AWAKE?”
5. Wandering hands
6. Trying to hold hands, lace fingers, and massage(?) my palm
7. Spooning at various angles

Lather, Rinse, Repeat.

While I meticulously maintained my passing out act, sometimes integrating the subtle, “Shh, I’m sleeping.”, he KEPT GOING. Dude, even if you don’t believe my (very convincing!) act, I am still not sending signals of interest. GIVE IT UP.

Near 5am, bless his trying heart, my patience was approaching its end. All I wanted was sleep but those goddamn Red Bulls weren’t making my mission easy. Nor was my couch partner. When he took my hand, I grew hopeful that he was finally going to calm his hands and let me sleep, but instead, with my fingers twined with his as if that meant I was an active participant, he started to poke at my mouth with his finger. His finger. My mouth.

Poke. Poke.

Yes. When I am diligently acting non-responsive, PLEASE CAN I SUCK YOUR FINGER. Nothing I love more than waking up to a surprise finger-sucking with a random. Goody! Was just craving dirty boy-finger! Delicious!

Poke. Poke poke.

When my lips wouldn’t yield to his poking, he attempted to WEDGE it between my teeth. Sure, just cram it in there. A little force never hurt anyone.

Was the last straw. An excuse was given, and I left the apartment. I thought the lie plausible, but The Guy from the Couch repeated it to Baby Cakes, who found it hilariously improbable. Anyone who thinks The Bestest Friend and I wouldn’t go on an emergency stalking mission to catch her boyfriend cheating in the early-morning hours, doesn’t know us at all. Plus, I like using excuses that illustrate my crazy, because, you know, that saves time in the long-run.

I walked the streets of uptown –took less than ten minutes –and knocked on a door. He didn’t look surprised to see me.

“Hey,” he said. I was embarrassed that I was there, and defensive.

“Hey. I’ve come over to sleep. That’s it.”

And The Realtor let me sleep.

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