Wednesday Work Day
Today was a full on workday while Boogs was at his job and LB was at law school. I actually got up feeling kind of slow. Could it have been the moonshine from the night before? Maybe. Could it be that the trip is starting to wear on me? Possibly. But I’m not backing down and the show will go on.
After doing some research for some cases I’m helping with. I scanned out Boogs and LB’s bookshelf and came across Boogs’ 2000 Oak Harbor High School yearbook. Yes I’m dating myself a bit, but it was our senior year. Although I moved down to Seattle and transferred to Seattle Prep, I still consider OHHS my high school. I may have moved from OH, but you can’t take OH out of me (I suppose having Whidbey Island tattooed on my back should prove the point). Anyway flipping through the entire yearbook, I couldn’t help but tear up a bit. But in a good way. I forgot about all the shout outs my friends gave me in the Senior Last Words section. The OHP and Cassie Darlin, I still love you all.
After a long trip down memory lane and texting a bunch of people, I finally got some work done. I ended up taking a nap as I felt a fever coming on. Soon Boogs and LB were back home. We decided to pick up some local brew (seriously sounds like I’m an alcoholic on this trip, but when in North Carolina) and some steaks to grill up. In North Carolina if you go to a restaurant you can order BBQ and they know what you are talking about. Apparently BBQ is pulled pork, and well that’s about it. But being from Washington we grill whatever we can think of. Boogs also made his version of “dirty rice” a mix of rice, green and yellow peppers, and sausage. We also had a side of green beans. Unfortunately, I didn’t take a picture of my prepared plate as I was starving and it smelled too good.
The night was relatively calm, aside from the sips of moonshine, Red Stripe, and Bad Penny (a local brew). Figured we take it easy as we were expecting a big last night for me… oh and an evening it was…
Last Day/Night in North Carolina
I was supposed to catch up on my blog today, but as evidenced I’m writing it at JFK. Pretty sick as there is free WiFi in the Jet Blue terminal and I’m not forced to post a blog from my iPhone. Although the ability to post a blog from my iPhone is quite the technological achievement.
One of LB’s classmates’ husband, Chris, (what a long description) works at Duke’s athletic department. Most of you know my total hatred for Duke’s basketball program. I mean I respect it, but completely hate it. One, hardly any of their studs in college produce in the league. And two, I’ve lost too much money betting for and against Duke basketball. (See Duke v. Arizona in the 2001 NCAA championship an the subsequent trouble I got into because of that loss. We can talk about that at another time.)
Even though I do despise Duke, as a sports fan I had to see Cameron Indoor Stadium. We rolled up to Duke, an actually beautiful campus. All the buildings are made of stone and set amongst a forest of trees. But you can smell a grip of pretentiousness in the air. Whatever. We were walked through Cameron, however I didn’t take any pictures because the volleyball team was practicing. Along with the previous smell stated above, you could smell the tradition in this arena. All the banners hanging up, made me feel the same goose bumps I felt walking into UCLA’s Wooden Court. It is actually pretty small, seats 9,000 (the school’s enrollment is only 6,000) but I suppose that’s what causes the great atmosphere during the games. One day I’ll attend an actual game here, and hopefully see a Duke loss. Playing. Not really.
Chris walked us through the football facility where Boogs and I started to get nostalgic about our athletic days. Though Boogs’ collegiate career was better than mine when he played football at the Air Force Academy. We walked by Kryzewskiville, the giant lawn where all the Cameron Crazies camp out overnight for season tickets and games. Another tradition that I respect out of Duke. We took a look at the football field, where in which I said, “Man I wouldn’t mind running stadium steps here.” It’s a relatively small stadium and it reminded me of all the times I was punished while I swam at UW and had to run ALL of the stadium steps, including the upper decks. I swear I ran more than I swam at UW.
We concluded our tour and headed back to Boogs and LB’s house, driving by NC State, waiting for LB to get back from class. As was the theme of the week, we were starving when LB got back from class. I wanted some good ol’ North Carolina BBQ so we went to The Pit in downtown Raleigh. This definitely was a class joint, but hey even the OHP can be classy from time to time. We had some hush puppies and biscuits to start off with. Boogs’ ordered a full rack of ribs, LB ordered the traditional BBQ (pulled pork), and I had the beef brisket with the sides of mac n’ cheese and BBQ beans. I’m telling you I was going for the BBQ. The food was excellent but again I was so damn hungry I forgot to take a picture of the food. LB’s friend Ashley met up with us and we headed back to the house.
Bellied as a mofo and suffering some extreme food itis, we kicked it for a bit at the house. I decided that Boogs and I try, try, to finish off the moonshine. I kept thinking the more I drank of it, the better it would eventually taste. With only a couple of sips left, I can tell you it didn’t taste any better. Getting a serious buzz and feeling tremendously warm we watched a few shows of Jeopardy (we would seriously KILL Cash Cab, maybe my next trip out we walk around NYC to find it) and popped in Friday. I hadn’t seen Friday in years, but all the lines were still fresh in my head. The Friday viewing basically became which of the four of us could quote the next line first. After a good drinking warm-up (I could’ve stopped drinking then) Ashley drove Boogs and I to City Limits.
Boogs used to work at City Limits and was pretty amped for me to go to the bar. Walkin in, you definitely get a twinge of country in you. The bar is pretty big and there is an electrical bull up against one of the walls. Apparently it was Bikini Bull Riding night. Now the rest of this story I’m going to tell without hyping it up too much…
So we were standing around and a girl amongst a group of girls came up to me. She said she wanted to take a shot, not shy about buying shots, I said I was down. So I grabbed Boogs, said girl, and I a shot of Jack. After the shot, Said Girl, whispers into my ear (and I can’t make this up), “I’m a lesbian, but need [a man] tonight.” [a man] is in brackets, for well whatever, she said something else. I turned to Ashley and Boogs and seriously wanted to cry, they were amused, I was scared.
Next thing I know I’m whisked upstairs with her and her group. I’m thinking, “Fuck how do I get out of this one.” Next thing I know she’s stroking my arm, and I actually start to feel sick. Could’ve been the moonshine, could’ve been Said Girl. But hey I’m interested in what she has to say about her situation and she bought me another beer. How tables turn in North Carolina versus LA when it’s the dudes buying girls drinks.
She starts telling me about her job, she works at some restaurant. She asks me what I do, I simply said, “I travel.” Good enough. Then she tells me how her partner is 16, in high school, and “Bless her soul, she’s a good girl, but she’s so young. Though sex is great.” So of course you know my next question (well next question after the obvious series of questions), “Well how old are you?” Said Girl responds with, “How old do you think I am.” Recalling Kid Cudi, I go, “1988, old enough.” I’m sure I confused her, but she goes, “I’m 23.” Dude, I didn’t even get to guess, but something tells me she probably wasn’t 23… or maybe she was, I dunno. She starts talking as a woman “who needs a man” would talk. And I start to freak out a bit as she’s getting a wee bit too close for comfort.
THANKFULLY, Boogs comes out of nowhere and hands me a beer. I go to Said Girl, “I gotta go to the bathroom, are you gonna ride the bull?” Her response, an obvious one, “Fuck yes I am.” (Said with a North Carolina accent). I’m thinking, just don’t find me the rest of the night… Boogs was thinking, and saying, “Bring her back to the house. Seriously dude.” Come to think of it, I’m not even sure if she was attractive or not. Not that it would make a difference, but it would have. No it really wouldn’t have, cause I’m just not about meeting girls in a bar and well I’m just not about all of that right now. My head and heart is elsewhere. But I’m blaming the excessive moonshine for even getting myself into the situation. Damn you moonshine.
Boogs and I make an escape and head over to the DJ who hands me two beer cozies, a Jack Daniels shirt, and a Miller High Life shirt. The Champagne of Beers seems to follow me around on this trip. Chip and I also had High Life from the draft in NJ and it tasted surprisingly well, it was also hot as balls and I needed a beer at the time. Not to mention the $1.50 High Lifes the other night.
Boogs and I continue to drink on the cheap from all the bartenders and next thing I know we’re standing next to the bull ride operator. Apparently Bikini Bull Riding was about to start. And apparently they were changing right in front of me. Apparently we were supposed to be guarding them while I changed. Dammit North Carolina. The festivities began, I had my money on the one with glasses… who apparently also “needed a man tonight.” What the hell? Maybe it was because it was the first time they saw an Asian in the bar. I dunno. But one thing I’m realizing is that North Carolina girls are pretty straight-forward. For better or worse, I actually like that as opposed to the girls in LA where you never know what the hell to expect. Whatever. Chick with glasses starts getting all close to me, I’m thinking, “Damn you moonshine.” Next thing I know Said Girl is dancing all up on me, I make the same frightened look as I made when Said Girl first started talking to me. Glasses Chick and the three other girls crack up laughing. Boogs, well this guy was loving it. I was not. Thankfully it was time for them to do their thing and Said Girl got the hell off of me.
Bikini Bull Riding as LB and Ashley eluded to earlier in the evening was not exactly what it could be. I mean maybe it is the contestants, maybe the moonshine just wasn’t doing the trick. That being said, I was amused and as I told Glasses Chick was yelling for her to, “Ride the fucking bull girl!!!” And getting the crowd to cheer for her. Said Girl did terribly, as was expected. After her ride she tried to get all close to me, but as a defense I moved towards the bull arena to hype up the Glasses Chick in a “ride off.”
Lemme tell you, Glasses Chick rode the shit out of that bull. Did I mention I’m a Taurus. I kid, see above. It was then up to the crowd to choose the winner, and for the first time in some weeks my bet on someone finally came through. Victory Glasses Chick and moral victory for Leon. With that Glasses Chick said she’d buy me a drink, I told her in a lil bit. By lil bit, Boogs goes, “You ready to bounce.” I’m thinking, not soon enough. Though Glasses Chick seemed cool enough to at least let her buy me a drink. But at this point, I really didn’t need another.
Boogs and I peaced out, got into a cab, and made a stop at Snoopy’s for some hot dogs. As if I needed to put anything else into my stomach. Boogs was a little upset that I didn’t bite the bullet and take either Said Girl or Glasses Chick home (I’d tell you their real names, but neither stuck with me). But I think me being out in North Carolina and kickin it with him made him forget, thank god. Although like an idiot I did give my business card to Glasses Chick. I didn’t want Said Girl to know I was a lawyer, nor have my number, not like I wanted Glasses Chick to have it either. Damn you moonshine! But really meeting a girl at a bar is just begging for trouble, and like I said I’m just not in that mode right now.
We finally make it home and I pass the hell out.
On to Chicago
After saying goodbye to LB and their dogs Cruiser and Harper (I realize that everyone I’ve stayed with so far on this trip are either married or in a serious relationship with a pet. Damn I’m getting old) Boogs dropped me off at the RDU airport. I told Boogs I would be back, hopefully during the summer so we can rent a house out on the Carolina shores. This promise I intend to keep and hopefully I can bring the rest of the OHP with me, so that I can pawn off run ins with people like Said Girl to Jay. Hey, I’m always looking out.
I realized that I drank quite a bit of moonshine last night. Apparently I was still drunk this morning. I thought I bought apple juice at the Popeye’s in the RDU airport. Now sitting here at JFK I go to drink it, thinkin it tastes like orange juice… sure enough it’s orange juice. Damn you moonshine.
Currently I’m sitting through my layover, hungover, and wishing I could just pass out. But soon I’ll be in Chicago and a bit later I’ll be in South Bend, Indiana gearing up for the UW v. ND game tomorrow morning. Hoping I’ll catch some shut-eye on the plane and find enough courage to enjoy events of the evening and the tailgate tomorrow. Who am I kidding, of course I’ll be ready. Then tomorrow evening, once the alcohol wears off (for me I don’t think it will til a week I’m done with this trip, but hopefully for John it will wear off sooner) we’ll drive down to Indianapolis for the Hawks v. Colts game.
Oh shit I just realized they are boarding my plane to Chicago… I’ll post pics soon and tell you about how I’m going to the Dominican Republic next week.