Thursday, June 30, 2005

A Sick, Sick Man

Many, many years ago, I had a party side to me, and, well, I had a party one night. It was one of those guy things. Someone might have brought some Super 8mm cultural/educational movies. We usually would listen to music, like Pink Floyd, and throw darts and whatever. The place would get pretty smoke filled, if you know what I mean. It's a very good thing those days are long gone.

This particular event went into the wee hours of the morning. All said and done, everybody went home and I retired. I left all the beer bottles strewn about to be cleaned up later. All of a sudden, I was wakened when I heard the door slam. I looked at the alarm clock. It was 7:30 AM. What the?... My buddy, Frank, from across the street came strutting in and hollered up the stairs, "Hey Dave, come on down and have a beer with me!" Back in those days, if you forgot to lock the door, it was still pretty safe.

"FRANK!? Do you know what time it is? It's 7:30 in the morning, for crying out loud. What are you doing?" I know that I had not consumed nearly as much of that frothy beverage as he had, so he probably was still feeling the effects from only hours earlier. "Go home."

"No. Come on down." Well, I was now fully awake so I said, "OK," and down I went. I was much younger then and could still function on not much sleep. We both sat on the couch. In front of us, on the coffee table, were tons of beer bottles of different brands. Some were empty and others had various amounts of flat fluid left in them. All of a sudden, Frank randomly picked up one of the many Heineken bottles, with about a third left and said, "Oh, I think this is my beer from last night," and took a big swig out of it.

"Yuck, ugh, that's disgusting," I said, trying to keep my heaving stomach from erupting. "You don't know whose beer that was. You're sick."

"I don't care."

I scanned the coffee table and lifted a bottle with, maybe, a half inch left. "OK, then, drink this one." It wasn't even his brand.

"OK, no problem," he responded, while yanking the bottle and its wonderful contents from me. Down the hatch it went, all the while savoring that single gulp and proving it to me with a giant, sarcastic grin.

"You know, Frank, that was nothing but somebody else's swill left in the bottom of that bottle that had hours to fester."

All of a sudden, he made an immediate leap off the couch and bee-lined it into the kitchen faster than I had ever seen a man run. "Bla-a-a-a-h-h," went his stomach, retching every bit of whatever he had left in him into the kitchen sink. I mean, it was a sickening sound. I didn't go in there. When he got a grip on himself, he swore at me and said I was a sick, sick person for saying that.

"What do you mean, I'm sick? You're the one who did it and it was nothing but swill." Back into the kitchen he went.

When he finally came to his senses, he said, "Well, let me tell you something, Dave. I snuck in here this morning to purposely make you throw up. I went into the kitchen and drank most of that Heineken and strategically set it on the coffee table. Then I went over and opened the front door and slammed it shut to wake your butt up. I set the whole thing up to gross you out and I'm the one who got sick. You're rotten."

I sensed immediate laughter overtaking me. "Well, Frank, you should know better than to try something like that on me. You may be 5 years older, but you're 10 miles behind me in the practical joke department and you know it."

"Yup." And home he went, tail dragging between his legs. A defeated man.

I tried to go back to sleep, but, I couldn't stop laughing. Besides, I had lots of bottles to throw away, and cartoons were on and I was just in one of those moods for some reason.

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