Monday, December 19, 2005

NYC For Xmas Time... Sexual Chocolate.

The second day in NYC is always a bit rough for me. Every trip. Due to my tendency to get staggering, kidney-failing, bold-faced-lying drunk on my first night there, I have trouble functioning the second day.

But somehow, as if by magic, I always pull through. Afflicted and affected, I trudge through day two with a numbness that can only be brought by relentless pain. On Friday, my whole body felt like it was being run over by a bus. Every ten minutes or so. Throbbing, exhausting, crippling hang over bullshit.

Anyone who drinks must admit to the power of the hang over, but unless you are amongst others who are equally broken, you must not dwell on it. There’s nothing more ridiculous than a first-class drinker who constantly cries about the hang overs as if it were a completely random thing. Like justice, or some shit.

But when you’re amongst other binge-bender lovers, then feel free to wallow in your collective downgraded mental and physical state. Have a circle-jerk to commemorate it or whatever.

I was lone-gunning the hang over that day. If anyone else was as bad off as me, they too hid it. And I was looking for signs, believe you me. My misery was goddamn lonely and was really up for some company. To no avail.

The day was taken up with lunch at a dumpling house off Canal in China town. Cheap, courteous, and manic, the dumpling houses throughout Chinatown are always a good bet for good value, and horrendous bathrooms.

Speaking of bathrooms. As we walked down Broadway from Bleeker to Canal, amongst all the shoe shops and bustling shoppers, some dude felt it completely reasonable to relieve himself on the front of a shop. I believe it was a clothing boutique of some sort. It was almost freezing outside, so his stream of piss was moving with the speed of molasses across the sidewalk to the slushy gutter. We stepped over the meandering stream as it pooled. People just passed right by like “ain’t no thang, mang.” To top it off, the guy was obviously not homeless. He had that penciled-in beard/chin-strap thing that all tough-guy, Bronx-boys appear to have manicured onto their faces. Like Prince or some shit. His shoes were bright white (blancos, son!), and his North Face jacket wasn’t cheap.

First world my ass.

Later that night we met up with friends in Brooklyn for dinner at one of my most favoritest spots: Planet Thai. It’s right off the Bedford stop on the L, in Billysburg. There were around twelve of us there in total. I always enjoy going to Planet Thai when in NYC because it was the last restaurant I went to when I left Brooklyn back in 2001. Sentimental reasons. Plus, the food is good and reasonably priced.

But I was there, really, to see my friends and get drunk. I won’t lie. That hang over had been hounding me like a goddamn school loan all day, and I wanted to relieve myself of its weight. The best way to lighten a hang over load is to float it off. With sake, if available. Shots and shots and shots until all was warm and pleasantly confusing.

We booked it from dinner over to The Abbey for Brooklyn Lager, pool, Gallaga, and to meet up with more friends. The friends who met us there, met us drunk. We Wonder-Twinned together to form a horde-mass of drunkenness. Beautiful.

Shit got talked, beer got spilt, cards got played. And then it was time to wander down to Galapagos for what they advertised as a “Dance Party: Guaranteed to Make You Shake Your Ass!” Since I was already dancing to the muzak that constantly plods along in my mind, it was not a stretch to be interested in such an event. I was already pretty blitzed by then, so I do not remember much of the details surrounding what happened there, but I do remember some pieces.

There was a taller fellow, who was not part of our dinner group, and who was only known in a pedestrian sense by some of my Brooklyn friends. They had seen this guy out and about on occasion. They believed he was a local teacher of some stripe or another, and that he had been kicked out of just about every bar in Brooklyn for one reason or another. Sensing an immediate kinship with the man, I did my best to make friendly. But his dancing was far too erratic for me to enjoy. Far too erratic for anyone, apparently. No one would get within five feet of the guy, even though he was mixing and mingling IN our circle. When I tried to get close to tell him that his dancing was rather “inspired”, he almost knocked me in the jaw with an errant elbow. His dancing technique was very…epileptic, I suppose. It was very strange, but I appreciated it nonetheless. He was free-styling, and that deserves my respect if nothing else.

Once it hit two in the morning, half our group chose to leave in order to make their basketball game the next morning. The rest of us clung to our drunkenness like rabbit’s feet at the dog track and pushed on into the night. We literally pushed ourselves into a hapless hipster who was walking along Bedford Ave, on her way home from wherever. We accosted her for information. What did we want to know?

“Hey, hey, hey!” [tugging on her jacket] “Where’s the karaoke at?”

She was not pleased with being harassed by drunks on the street, but pointed us right around the corner. According to her, we were mere feet from a place with microphones, couches, and grand opportunities to make asses of ourselves in public.


I called her a liar, which did not sit well with her. She should have punched me right there. In my defense, she was rather rude about the whole thing. It really did appear that she was just trying to brush off some drunk assholes who had grabbed her on the street and started asking her really stupid questions. Hell, I would have lied. So I assumed she would too.

But she didn’t lie. Right around the corner was Lulu’s (or something like that). A basement karaoke place.

We fell down the stairs and immediately went to the bar.

The place was very dark, with a small stage to the right, long bar to the left. Various tables and chairs were scattered about the floor between the bar and stage, and on the far wall from the entrance was a large screen with some artsy looking crap scrolling across it. Sometimes it corresponded with the song, but really it was just some random bullshit imagery floating around behind the prompted lyrics. There were maybe twenty other people in there besides us. But it could have been only ten, which I was seeing double of. Some guy was singing on the stage, alone, when we walked in. He had lots of spirit, which I believe is 99% of karaoke anyway, but he was ruthlessly butchering the Madonna (or whatever) tune that was on. We cheered him on anyway, because like I learned in Chicago, that’s what you fucking do in karaokeland. Everyone is a goddamn rock star, regardless of whether any talent is apparent. If they get the words wrong, you clap anyway. If they sing off key and vomit on themselves half way through, you go ahead and cheer like it’s a parade. Even if they produce photos of your beloved grandmother and defecate on them whilst chanting voo-doo instead of singing your favorite George Michael song, you congratulate them on a “job well done”. That’s the nature of these things.

So we fell in and I recommended that everyone take a seat at a table near the stage while some of us danced and sang back-up for the stranger on stage. I had no idea what the plan was, but everyone seemed pretty lost as to what it was we were doing there. Not everyone appreciates karaoke, drunk or not.

Apparently, karaoke was the brainchild of but two of us in the group. Everyone else had been somewhat coerced into going. I don’t remember threatening anyone with violence, but it would not surprise me. I get emotional over karaoke sometimes. It’s a sickness.

The real tragedy though, was that I was far, far, far gone. I had entered my “nomadic” phase of inebriation. The typical attributes I display when acting out in this condition:

1) No conversations last more than ten seconds.
2) No standing still for more than five seconds.
3) Anything remotely wet is consumed, whether it is mine or not.
4) If I know any racist jokes, I will try to tell them, and they will make no sense whatsoever.
5) I will make friends with anyone in shouting range, because it is always brilliant to wait until black-out drunk before trying to meet new people.
6) I disappear for extended periods of time without telling anyone where I plan to go. This is when I usually get in the most trouble, since I am acting on impulse ONLY.
7) I will shout/sing into any microphone/stick in arm’s reach.
8) I ALWAYS forget what I am doing in the middle of doing it and will break a conversation or jump out of a cab on a second’s notice. Beyond impulsive.

So I turned in my choice for a song, Sinatra’s “My Way”, but couldn’t wait for it to be put into rotation. They said they’d call my name when it was my turn, and I said “cool”, but in my mind I said “man, fuck that. I gotta get my Sinatra on NOW, damnit. NOW.” So I abandoned our drinking crew by the stage and sought out the microphone, wherever it might be in the club.

I found it, in the hands of two rather talented singers. A cute couple sitting in front of the stage. I have no idea what the hell they were singing, but they were singing it rather well. But, they were being very reserved about their performance. As if they were going to be graded on the realism of their treatment of the artist’s original work. Whatever man. So I sang back-up, with all my might. I must have made something of a positive impression on them because they were very nice to me.

That could also be because I had the expressions, mannerisms, and social skills of a head-trauma victim.

Once the mic was in my hands, and my song was on, everything went a bit blank for me. I destroyed the song. Lyrics were out of place. I kept loosing the beat. I was wandering around, standing on people’s tables, walking on couches, and acting like “hey honey, you remember that fucking douche-balloon from the karaoke place last night? The really drunk guy who took off his shirt and drank your Jack and Coke after stepping on my purse and breaking my sunglasses? Remember him? I hope he gets SARS. What a fucking idiot.”

Yeah. I was that guy. “Sexual Chocolate, everybody!” So, so, sweet.


Zander said...

Ha, I've never met you in person and yet I'm upset that I'm not in New York for this myself. Because as I'm sure you know, we drunks of the world sense disruptions in the equilibrium, and seek each other out. Good to know someone is still tearing the place up, please don't get arrested.

Benji said...

I wait until I have the microphone to tell my racist jokes. It's fucked up, but everyone automatically thinks you're funny if you're holding a microphone (and wearing a blazer).

Oh my f-ing God, have fun. I love that town.

dungsta said...

This "Sexual Chocolate" you speak of; does it come with NUTTS??

Anonymous said...

Damn white chocolate.

brother nick

Truecraig said...

Actually, I have already returned to Austin, and avoided imprisonment. In fact, since my NYC trip (I called it “Xmas in NYC” because we were celebrating a tad early for our NYC friends) I have gone to Atlanta and New Orleans.

Yes, I am behind, and my writing reflects that. Lots going on around here. I write when I can! Word.


Debbie said...

There is a word from three years ago.

Impulsivecompulsive said...

Oh how you make me laugh. And feel much, much better about my drunken stupidities. (There's strength in numbers, ya know.)