You know how you go to a bar, hop on a stool to knock back a few, before witnessing some complete tool down the other end behaving like an imbecile, and all you can think of is why the bouncer at the door let him/her in in the first place. Usually late in the evening, there’s always a dickhead or two to watch get absolutely smashed by first the drink, then some stranger they’ve met and abused, and finally the bouncer throwing them out. Often, it’s quite hilarious, with the bodily fluids and hoarse, booze-affected vocalisations threatening various forms of “wahahh blergggg ahhhrggerbylyyy”, before finding solace in spending the rest of the evening picking teeth from the pavement outside. Unless it’s you that’s the cause, of course, which would be indicated by a lack of ability to stay inside the bar you just got thrown out of.
The problem with alcohol, aside from the obvious physical stuff, is the fact that it makes some people furious. Not sure why, but there are people in the world known by the somewhat appalling label of “they’re a mean drunk”. Generally, add alcohol to make an absolute wanker. People who can’t handle their alcohol, even in minor doses, and turn to rage and antisocial behaviour to make their points, are among the most abhorrent kind of drunkard – perhaps only bested by those fucksticks who go home from the bar and beat their wives. Generally, antisocial behaviour is less tolerated, and in Australia at least, a lot less socially acceptable than it might have been back in the day. In this day of lawsuits and “what about me?” attitudes from the younger generation, people aren’t so easily ignorant of those who seek to create havoc with their drinking. Since humans are fundamentally social animals, the majority of us spend time in the company of others – work, home or simply out stalking a Hollywood movie star. While normal human interaction is controlled by social etiquette and conventions, the addition of alcohol can often (and does, often) lead to a breakdown in those social barriers, to create a Super Human…. in a sense. A human who is no longer restricted by their upbringing, who no longer walks inside the laws of Right and Wrong, is a dangerous one. Often, they do stupid things involving property destruction and public lewdness, invariably leading to some kind of police involvement. Or, they involve themselves in a dangerous scenario leading to hospitalisation and months of rehab: jumping from a rooftop or driving a vehicle, among others.
I’ve seen a few truly hilarious drunken escapades in my time, mostly involving a groom’s Stag Night or a bride’s Hens Night – usually the most socially acceptable scenario in which to get plastered and wander the streets with a pair of fake boobs attached to your front, hollerin’ down any car that’ll stop and asking them to take you to your intended love for a session of mad, romantic sex. (Which reminds me, I’m working on a post regarding drunken sex at the moment!). Myself, I didn’t drink on my Stag Night, although I did visit the obligatory strip club and enjoy a nice, sensual lapdance (or three) from several eye-candy pieces strutting the floor. My intent at the time was to actually be able to remember what happened on my Stag Night, rather than have it disappear into a haze of rum-induced phantasmic ghost-memory, empty moments from which those weird phone calls begin with a husky female voice saying how much they loved what I did to them and wondering if I could do it again, and soon. And missing clothing.
I don’t think I’ve ever tried to pick somebody up while I was drunk, but I will admit to trying to pick up a girl while she was drunk. Bad, I know, but I was about 18 and didn’t know any better. See, I’d been doing a shift of the local radio station for the Saturday night party show, and had been phoned up at the studio by a young girl who wanted me to come to a party with her after I finished. We chatted in between songs and adverts about everything she could think of, and I do remember she seemed like a pretty nice girl, if a little flirty. Mind you, how can any woman resist the dulcet tones of a man on radio, right? Yeah. I finished my shift at midnight, and after a drive of a half hour to the party (it was in the next town from where I was) I met her at a predetermined place we both knew. I can’t for the life of me remember her name, but I think it was Tracy or something. Anyway, MaybeTracy had a couple of her friends with her, and they were all of sweet 16 – and had been drinking. Not that I minded, because as soon as she saw me, young MaybeTracy gave me a big hug and didn’t let go. Perhaps she saw me as a giant bottle of hooch, I’m not sure, but as we walked from my car to the party (about three blocks) she didn’t once let me go. Since I was 18, my hormones were going absolutely crazy with her intimacy – I would be lying if I said I wasn’t slightly turned on, but being stone-cold sober and a little timid to try anything, about the worst I did was put my arm around her to support her as she staggered along. MaybeTracy was quite pretty, a fair face surrounded by a frame of dark hair, and that soft, lilting voice of teen drunkeness – slurred words and spittle.
We arrived at the party, which was at some dude’s place whom I did not know, but I went in like I owned the joint, MaybeTracy at my side and her friends trailing along behind, giggling wildly. We sat on the couch, I had a beer thrown into my hands (I didn’t drink the stuff, and eventually found a spare second to casually put it aside without much notice) and we sat there, listening the sounds of Rednex murdering “Cotton Eye Joe.” MaybeTracy was yabbering away in drunk-speak to me, hardly pausing to listen to any reply I may give, while I was passing a casual eye around the room with increasing amusement. The majority of the people at this party were my age or younger, the tweeny-bopper giggle-shits, and the majority of them were holding those stupid pre-mixed lolly drinks with names like Lemon Spike and Pink Velvet and stuff. The dance music, after about twenty minutes of a mega mix of Reel 2 Reel’s “I Like To Move It”, Roxette’s “Sleeping In My Car” and Ace Of Base’s “All That She Wants”, eventually shifted to the more slo-motion make-out crap like Bryan Adams and his band doing “All For Love”. Fuck you Bryan Adams, you soft core music peddler: go back to your garage band in ’69. All I seem to recall from the early 90’s was your gradual whoring of a decent singing career to shite like “Please Forgive Me”, the aforementioned “All For Love”, and “Have You Ever Really Loved A Woman?”, the latter of which is designed specifically to make men feel both guilty and inadequate. Yeah, fuck you Bryan Adams. My radio career highlights involved your incessant warbling – and it ruined me.
The Shittiest Love Song Ever Written – All 4 One: I Swear
Anyway, the Juice-box had just kicked in with All 4 One’s “I Swear” when MaybeTracy decided she’d had enough of sitting there with me, and she got up and started dancing. She grabbed my hand and dragged me up, pulling me close. Dear Penthouse, I never thought this could happen to me. As we swayed there, surrounded by half-shouted conversations and alcoholic staggering, I looked down at her – she looked up at me – and we kissed. Awww. So I thought my luck was in, dontcha know? But the problem was, she was drunk (and getting drunkererer) while I was trying to stay sober – after all, I still had to drive home, and the thought of crashing on the couch of this house was as unappealing as typhoid. I began to feel guilty, an attack of my conscience like Jimminy frickin’ Cricket was sitting on my shoulder yabbering away. I didn’t want to take advantage of her, so my options were to either get hammered myself, or stop and go home. So I went home. Like a loser. A perfect chance to get laid, albeit with somebody who most likely remember later on anyway, gone begging due to my principles. Damn me for not being an asshole.
The point of this, though, isn’t to ask for your sympathy is a missed sexual opportunity. It’s to highlight the fact that I was an alcoholic spectator – instead of drinking and becoming part of the seething mass of teen-drunkeness, I stayed sober and ended up feeling worse. I look back and thank God I didn’t go through with the plans my penis had for MaybeTracy, because I know it was the right thing to do, but for years afterwards I regretted my decision. Had I been drunk, had I had a few bevvies whilst sitting on the couch and cuddling with this girl I’d just met (God, how much of a whore am I? – Don’t answer that!) I could very well have ended up doing the x-axis tango in a blur of thrashing limbs and fumbled seconds. Mind you, watching the girls at this party losing their inhibitions was a pretty sweet trade-off. Whilst on the couch, goggling at the skimpy outfits worn by the girls of the time, the amount of faux-flirting going on by both the guys and girls was extraordinary. As opposed to a drunken rampage of toxic anger and rage, like you’d find at any club and bar you care to visit these days, it seems, the teenage-dance crowd seemed content to get hammered, get frisky, and get-to gropin’. The mix of rampant hormones and alcohol induced a sexually liberated malaise over the group. I did see a few boobs that night, although not from MaybeTracy, which made me happy: a poor offset for the fact that I didn’t actually get any sex.
When I moved to the big city, however, the adults there behaved like maniacs when drunk. Instead of a “free love” environment reminiscent of the Swinging 60’s, Austin Powers was pretty much gang raped by the late 90’s adult-drunk animosity which permeated our culture. Instead of the frisky, hint-of-nipple groping going on, for the most part, adults became even more isolated from each other, as alcohol served to inflame tension rather than quench it. The infrequency with which I joined the boys at a bar to drink a few only served to highlight the general stupidity of adult humans when pissed. Almost every time out, we’d notice some imbecile making an ass of himself (side note: now, it’s more often the girls being an imbecile… a social swing which is only too recent) and inevitably the cops would be called as punches started to fly. But, as with the couch party I attended waaaay back, there was also plenty of flesh being shown off. And that’s the thing, isn’t it boys. Go to any bar, anywhere, and if it’s loud enough, eventually those skimpy dresses and short skirts, skin-tight tops and boob-tubes will begin to lack the ability to cover what they’re supposed to. The more crowded the bar, the more likely it is. And of course, the drunker the girls are, the likelihood skyrockets. Which is why I usually like to go to a bar and not drink, just to scab a perv at some free flesh – although when I say it like that, it really does sound disgusting.
Going to bars isn’t high on my weekly quota of activities either, don’t get me wrong. I’m not a bar-hound in real life. The danger of frequenting a bar, especially the wrong bar, was made all too clear one day when several of the boys at work didn’t come in for a week because they’d been involved in a bar brawl (something I’ve actually always wanted to see, an all-in brawl like they have in the movies!). When they finally did return to work, all battered and bruised, one of the guys showed me a specific injury which he seemed to be wearing with pride. False pride, I think, as he pulled up his shirt to expose the still-visible bruise-mark of where he’s been hit with a bit of chain: apparently, the biker he’d bumped into at this bar was carrying a piece of chain around just for special occasions, and so had whipped my work colleague like a dog with it during the fight. You could still make out the individual links in the chain from the indents in his skin. Who the fuck carries a chain into a bar? Bikers, apparently.
I now consider myself to be an alcoholic spectator: somebody who will tell you he’s drinking a Rum+Coke when he’s actually drinking just Coke. I maintain my equilibrium, by ability for rational thought, and my dignity, while laughing internally at the folks who end up plastered all over the floor and sidewalk. Like a massive game of Eye Spy, or Bingo, you mark off the clichéd alcoholic behaviour you witness until the board is full, and you can put your hands in the air and exclaim “BINGO” with as much force as possible. Watching drunk people is more fun that being drunk myself, I find. That’s not to say I don’t mind having a drink, but no longer to excess (unless it’s a special occasion) – I just find people trying to behave normally while their brains feel like hot syrup is much more amusing than a hangover.
So let’s hear it folks: what’s your best Spectator Drinking Story – if you have one. We want the funniest, most insane stuff you’ve got! Let fly below in the comments!