A friend of mine got another job in another area. We used to work together when I worked at that area. I received word that the going away party was going to be on Tuesday. Perfect. Tuesday was a day off and Wednesday was another day off that would be used to recuperate from Tuesday. Last week sometime, Saturday if I remember right, I drove into another State to purchase some real alcohol for less than an arm and leg. For those of you that don't know anything about the State of Utah, the alcohol must be purchased from the State Liquor Store or it is only 3.2 alcohol. And when you purchase it from the State store you are paying 11.80 for a 6 pack. I bought the same beer in the other state for 13.00 for a 12 pack. Welcome to a state run by religion.
The party wasn't until 730pm on Tuesday and I knew if I arrived any earlier, it would just require me to drink more and begin earlier so I didn't leave for the 2 hour drive until about 4pm. I played a round of golf and watched a IFC film before heading out.
It is a drive I have done so many times that I could probably if legal do it blindfolded. It is a drive of absolute beauty with the scenery changing every 10 miles. Tuesday's drive had the addition of clouds a building and the desert lightning. There is no way to explain lightning in the desert except grand and breath taking. I listened to my XM radio comedy channel the entire way and laughed continuously.
I arrived around 6pm and by 630 the first cocktail of Malibu rum and pineapple juice was flowing into my veins. I brought that entire cooler of beer and drank one the entire time. You know the saying--liquor before beer, you are in the clear. Beer before liquor you are never fing sicker. I hadn't eaten all day so the buzz was going to come quickly. 1 hour until dinner was to be served. We started snacking as we were preparing everything. It wasn't going to help what would happen the rest of the night. Dinner was served and more drinks were consumed.
There are going away parties and then there are roastings. In my line of work, be prepared that you are going to be roasted. Be prepared for those stories 'what happened tonight stays here' to be told. Be prepared for your deepest secrets to come ripping out in the open. Just be prepared. JB really didn't get that roasted. Mostly because he is an unbelievable guy who minded his Ps and Qs whatever the hell those are. He had stated to someone that he was leaving the area to find a suitable girlfriend or wife so he was given a inflatable wife including fur handcuffs. They were hoping he would stay if they gave him the wife. No, he is California bound with surf board and everything.
I would say the party had about 25-30 people at it. A society of its own if you would say. Most of the people living in the provided housing projects. When there is food, there are people, and where there are people there is laughter. And JB provided us all with a great laugh that no one will ever forget and I will make sure I bring up at his next going away party. JB sat down on this white chair to have his dinner. I really didn't see the entire thing, except the aftermath of it. But from what I gathered he tipped back when he sat down and fell back which ultimately knocked over the food and the tiki torch (which was burning) which in succession caught the fence and the grass on fire. Hightower immediately sprang into action and put the fire out. One of the owners of the house was sitting inside where I was standing and said um, my fence is on fire.
ZZ Top brought the ever famous jello-shots. Once he brought moonshine to a party. It was strong enough to blow fire. Anyway, ZZ is famous for these jello-shots. It just happened when I was in that other state I saw ZZ in a store and asked him if he was going to make the shots. He said sure. They went quickly. I usually lose count of how many I suck down. And it is absolute peer pressure because when someone opens the cooler holding them, you hear 'throw one here, over here, right here'. It is a group thing. You never do one by yourself. Definitely not a closet drink. Then the screaming Os came out. I lost track of those as well. Then I moved into the milk, Kuala, and vodka. At one point, I looked down to find a beer in one hand and a drink in another.
Back around 730, I remember blowing up the air mattress I was going to sleep on that night. That was an important thing to do because then they could just roll me onto it after I passed out. I brought out the air mattress around 130am, possibly because time was irrelevant, and laid down. The house started spinning like it did in the Wizard of OZ. The foot on the ground stabled it. What is with that? I asked for a blanket and then another one. I remember showing Paul my mouse tattoo and then it was over. Sound asleep. I remember JB saying earlier in the night that he would call people around 11am tomorrow to see what was planned for the day. I rolled over at 11am and decided I needed a coke badly because I had this sickening taste in my mouth.
Good friends, good food, good conversation, good laughter and all just to say Good-Bye to a great friend! That is just how I want my funeral to be like. One big party.