My first ever college hook up is by far the most memorable. Memorable. It wasn’t the best, and Christ knows she wasn’t the prettiest, but I’ll be Goddamned if it wasn’t the most memorable. Its memorability is a fact made all the more impressive considering that I was an Everclear-fueled booze demon that night. The only thing keeping me from descending into the deepest and darkest of blackouts were the random, sobering instances of pain I was in and out of during the course of the night. More on that in a bit, though.
18-year-olds should not be allowed to drink Everclear. It should be illegal… well, MORE illegal. 18-year-olds aren’t good at drinking, period. Plus I was a pledge, and pledges are dipshits. And Jesus Christ was I an 18-year-old, pledge dipshit, especially at this party. I was grabbing and pounding every drink I could, as fast as I could, as if I had the tolerance of an angry, obese fifth year senior. It was a fraternity party, obviously, and my pledge brothers and I were in the last days of our grace period before we all officially became the abused manservants of our alcoholic elders.
The drink selection at the party was pretty standard: beer, shots, jungle juice/trashcan punch/whatever you want to call it. Drinking without any restraint whatsoever was still an incredibly novel concept to me. I think my inner monologue for the first week of college was something like this:
I CAN DRINK WHENEVER I WANT! SEE THAT COUCH? I CAN DRINK ON THAT COUCH! OR UPSTAIRS! OR FUCKING ANYWHERE! WHO WANTS TO HAVE SEX?!?! YOU? NO? YOU? NO? WHATEVER! I CAN DRINK ALL THE TIME! I AM GOD!
I was excited to get hammered, and on a mission to do so as quickly as possible. Luckily that wasn’t hard, being that I was a skinny 18-year-old whose tolerance was lower than that of the beefy girl who always spent the parties playing beer pong with her best guy friend. By 10:00pm, before anything had really even gotten into full swing, I was already the kind of drunk that would convince Keith Ablow America was destined to be raped and pillaged by Iranians.
Then things got out of hand. But actually, before I move on, I’d like to thank natural selection for deciding to spare me that night. How any person or unseen force of nature could have observed me and objectively decided I deserved to be a living, contributing human is beyond me. At my lowest point of the night I more closely resembled a rabid blunt head trauma victim than a drunk freshman.
Since I had raced to inebriation like Paula Deen on a freeway to diabetes, and because I felt extra cool for partying at my new fraternity, I decided to up my game. Commence shots of Everclear. I challenged one of the cooler active brothers to do a shot of Everclear with me, there had been a decent amount left over from the trashcan punch mix. He, being a smart and experienced drinker, or at the very least not a bumbling infant retard like myself, intelligently declined. I called him a pussy until finally, after being egged on by other actives, he reluctantly accepted. I would pay for my incredibly stupid taunts as soon as the grace period ended.
We both took the shots. As Everclear often does, it went down hard, burning like the vile liquid it is. If by some miracle you’ve never taken a straight shot of Everclear, it doesn’t taste like it’s been distilled. Everclear tastes like it’s been harvested from Hell, scooped directly from the River Styx and bottled by Nazi furnace operators.
I awoke, or rather, came to, puking up my balls on the side of the fraternity house while a random girl patted me on the back. That girl turned out to be a red head by the name of Sarah. We had met a few times before and for some reason that I literally can’t recall she had decided to comfort me while my stomach hit reset. She was clearly wasted herself, having obviously pregamed somewhere before coming over. When I was finally able to speak in between violent heaves I thanked her for help. Eventually we went back inside and rejoined the party.
Down in the basement someone who had apparently seen me vomiting earlier informed a few people, who then found and mercilessly made fun of me. Fair enough. I was/am a dumbass. Someone asked if I had brushed my teeth. I told them I was on the way upstairs to do so, but they suggested what they thought to be a better solution to my unclean mouth situation. Sterilize with Everclear. GREAT IDEA! Commence Everclear shots, again. I probably would have thrown up right there had there been anything inside of me to throw up. Blood maybe? My body was so angry with me at this point that I would not have been surprised if it sent all the shit in my colon back through my digestive system and up out my mouth. I probably would have deserved it. Instead I downed the Everclear, again feeling the harsh sting of what is in all likelihood serial killer tears, and chased it with a Natty and some of the trashcan punch (i.e. more Everclear).
Someone was giving me water. That’s the first thing I remember. It was Sarah. God bless her. According to my friends we had been talking over the course of however long my second blackout of the night was. According to them I was still drinking at a frenetic pace, and that because my stomach was full of nothing but booze at this point my physical appearance began to deteriorate rapidly. One of those clever dicks quipped that it was so bad, and so fast, that I looked like my problem wasn’t that I drank Everclear, but that I drank out of the wrong grail, a la “The Last Crusade.” It makes sense, at no point had I chosen wisely that night.
But there was Sarah, feeding me water, apparently completely unconcerned with the fact that I looked like I had been exsanguinated. She convinced me to eat so I ordered a pizza for us. Meanwhile the water had given me JUST enough strength to start acting like a normal person again, so naturally I resumed drinking.
It didn’t take long for me to get back to my previous level of intoxication. A couple more beers did the trick. Add in a shot with a few of my soon to be official pledge brothers and I was right back to a level of intoxication that could have allowed me to be classified as subhuman. I didn’t mind, the pizza was coming, I was sure that would TOTALLY sober me up. The pizza arrived and Sarah, myself, and a few drunk vultures killed it pretty quickly. By now Sarah and I were pretty much locked in on each other for the night. There wasn’t much in the way of game or conversation happening, just that magical “Eh why not” drunken connection. We started to make out a little bit, but both of us still wanted to keep drinking and have a good time.
Then the “cool” active I had challenged to an Everclear shot earlier, clearly still letting his one and a half ounces of crystal evil marinate inside of him, found me, with the bottle of Everclear. There was roughly enough left for one shot (probably a little more). He decided it was mine. FUCK. Commence Everclear shot. This was the first of many instances of payback he would bestow upon me.
I fought, hard, to keep this one down. Praying the delicious, bready beast I consumed would absorb the gut punch I had just taken. Soon, the pain passed. The active left disappointed but still amused, and I returned my attention to Sarah. To avoid further interruptions, we decided to go back to her dorm. We made it about as far as the front lawn before we started making out pretty hardcore. I don’t know if it was the sudden movements from the make out, or just God perfectly timing his punishment, but there was a rumbling in my stomach that could not be ignored.
Without time to explain I sprinted straight towards the street and immediately began projectile vomiting. No blackout for this one, I was there for the whole thing. Which sucks, because throwing up food you’ve just eaten is WAY worse than throwing up more fully digested food. At one point I’m pretty sure a full pokey stick (cheesy bread) shot out of my mouth. I was so hungry earlier I hadn’t exactly properly chewed my meal. To this day I’m still not sure if I was actually throwing up or if my internal organs were just trying to escape the fiery liquid death inside my body. I started on my feet but quickly fell to my knees and eventually found myself laying in the gutter. I’d feel more ashamed, but considering all my choices, it was where I belonged.
How anyone could still be attracted to me at this point is beyond me. Maybe I put on a level of charm I can’t remember (doubtful), or maybe Sarah was far drunker than I could tell (likely), but there she was helping me out once again. As the scene and my insides unfolded in the street, about fifteen or twenty people from inside the house came out to watch and laugh. Sarah asked me if I needed anything. By now I was more concerned with getting laid than anything else so I mustered the strength to say “gum.” Clearly she was still equally interested (how I will never know) and turned to my spectators and shouted:
“HE NEEDS GUM! WHO HAS GUM?! SHUT UP! STOP LAUGHING! WHO HAS GUM?!”
Her request was met with uproarious laughter as I lay half dead in the street, but luckily one of my pledge brothers was feeling especially brotherly and gave her a stick of gum. Now fully deflated, I took the piece of gum from Sarah and chewed. Sarah and I went back inside the fraternity house and up to my room, no longer wanting to make the ten minute walk to her dorm. Back in my room we started to get down to business. Finally this was going to happen and I could end my awful, stupid night on a mildly high note. She might not have been the cutest girl in the world (or house, or room) but hey I was hammered and not exactly all that fetching myself after several painful purges. Plus she was sweet to me all night and at this point, because she was a ginger and I had vomited mine into a street gutter with everything else inside of me, neither of us had souls. It was a perfect match.
“Oh my God I’m gonna throw up. WHERE’S THE BATHROOM?!”
That’s what Sarah shouted as she sprinted out of the room and into the second floor bathroom. I followed her into the bathroom to find her puking into the furthest toilet. I asked if she needed anything, she said water. I went and got water, came back, and gave it to her. She did not hold it down. I got more water. She held it down. Then she said:
“I need gum. We can’t hook up unless I get gum.”
I spent the next ten minutes searching for gum, my quest impeded at every turn by people mercilessly making fun of me. Fair enough you bastards. No one had gum. Apparently I had used the last piece my pledge brother had. Everyone else was either out or lying. Eventually, in what I still consider a top 5 low moment of my life, I was offered and accepted a cherry Now and Later. I went back to my room, as Sarah had made her way back there, and gave her the Now and Later, somehow convincing her it was gum. Things progressed and eventually we had a drunken, sloppy, grope-y hump session that an anthropologist MIGHT classify as sex. We did that twice actually, one time each in loving memory of our now deceased dignities. Fuck Everclear. Fuck me.