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Scuba Keg & Other Bad Ideas
It was my neighbor’s college graduation party. He was my kid brother’s best friend, and like a brother to me as well. As was his older brother, Wes, who was my age. It was destined to be a wild night. It wasn’t quite yet summer, but the weather felt it was. The pool was open. The keg was on ice. A backyard party was a backyard party. Our friend groups all overlapped despite age differences. Furthermore, many of us were friends with our friends parents and we didn’t feel the need for our friends to be around to drink with their parents either. On the south shore of Long Island, this was the way. We were arguably white trash with foul mouths and lust for getting fucked up. We were arguably smart for achieving high GPA’s at good colleges. We were arguably hippies for our shared love of the ocean and adversity to wearing shirts or shoes in the summer months. We were arguably conservatives for growing up in a blue collar town with parents who wanted us to get pension jobs. We were arguably too young to understand how good we had it. We were arguably already too old to give a shit.
To describe my bond with my neighbor… This is the person who, during hurricane Irene, we snuck out of our houses to bike ride IN THE MIDDLE OF the hurricane. The streets were flooded in about two feet of water as we peddled our bikes, and when we saw a live wire snap and flare sparks about the sky I remember thinking, “if we die right now, we deserve this, Wes and I. We deserve this.”
Wes has saved my life more than once, but he’s also largely responsible why my life was in danger in those situations. I’ve known few people crazier yet more capable than myself. Between ourselves and our two younger brothers, the four of us were notorious for seeking extreme adventure. We often found it.
On that night of the graduation party, Wes’s mom watched the two of us quietly in the corner… “You guys are up to something, I can tell.” With giant false smiles, we said, “no we’re not. What would ever make you think that?”
Cut to us stealing the keg from the college kids and jumping in the pool with it to “scuba keg.” Ever heard of “scuba keg”? Probably not. Because we made it up. [Disclaimer: I DO NOT endorse the following behavior as it is highly dangerous.] This was the game. Two people held the keg at the bottom of the deep end. The scuba-kegger would swim down and drink from the nozzle at the bottom of the pool. Luckily, no one drowned, otherwise this hilarious night would have quickly turned horrible (though there were plenty of lifeguards there, including Wes). And that’s how Wes and I pirated that party. You could only get to the keg if you went in the pool. We were a rowdy bunch of assholes.
So… NO REGRATS………….. LOLOLOL. But if you’re looking for some safer but also stupid drinking games, here are some other fun ones we used to do:
ROXANNE: This is a simple but powerful one. All you need is The Police’s song “Roxanne.” Divide your party into two teams. One team is “Roxanne” and the other team is “Put On The Red Light.” One team drinks every time Sting sings “Roxxxaaaannneeee,” while the other team drinks every time Sting stings, “you don’t have to put on the red light.” Now, if you are familiar with the song, you already know, that’s basically the whole song: “Roxanne, you don’t have to put on the red light,” especially at the end, when it’s rapid fire. There are no winners or losers in this game (except maybe your liver loses). It’s basically a way to get a group of people hammered in 3 minutes.
RELAY: This is easily my favorite drinking game that is a combination of different games. Again, you divide into two teams. The first step is bouncing a ping pong ball into your first cup. Dunk and drink. Then, the second and third cups are flip cup (look if you don’t know what this, I’m not going to explain everything). Chug. Chug. Then you play beer pong, though you only have to sink one cup. However many teammates on your team, that’s how many beer pong cups there are. When you sink a cup, you drink it and the next member of your team starts (hence, relay). The key here is to have your best beer pong player last on your team. This is a highly intense game that often involves a lot of shouting and curse words (depending on how competitive your friends are—mine are very). This is a lot of drinking in a short amount of time and I’ve never been able to do more than two rounds in a row (I’ve seen many a person vomit from this game).
LOUISVILLE CHUGGER: Probably the dumbest drinking game I’ve ever played. Here’s how you play. You get a whiffle ball bat and cut a hole at the base. Then, you fill the bat with beer. You chug the beer filled bat. While chugging it, spectators count. However many seconds it takes you to chug the beer, you put your head down on the bat and spin around this many times. After your spins are completed, someone pitches you a ball and you swing. I happen to be god awful at chugging (and baseball!). So when I played I was doing a lot of spinning. When I went to swing (swing, batter, batter, batter, swing) I lost my footing and ran head first into the side of the house. I have never played this game again.
I basically lived on my bicycle growing up and rode my bicycle to and from parties to avoid getting in cars with drunk drivers. My logic was if I was too drunk to ride a bike, I wouldn’t be able to. And I guess, technically, it is illegal to drink and ride a bike, but my logic here too was that I was only putting myself in danger, and no one else. As far as I was concerned my life was mine to put in danger (and I often did). I didn’t care.
One time, I was riding my bike home and I saw a young man walking a young woman to her door. They stopped at the door and were in that “are we going to kiss” awkward moment. For whatever reason (I’m a creep?) I became highly invested in whether or not they were going to kiss that I stopped peddling my bike and was gliding slowly to watch them. In fact, I was going to slow, that I lost balance of the bike and fell in the driveway of the same house. They lovers were now torn from gazing into each others eyes and looked to see a drunk teenager collapsed on her bike, embarrassed and fumbling to get up. I quickly and gracefully (probably not so gracefully) got back on my bike and sailed away. Never knowing if interrupted a kiss or not.
While my binging days are behind me because I’m a grown ass adult, there is still little that brings me more joy than a cold beverage on a hot day, preferably on beach. And when I think of paradise, I image a palm tree, a warm breeze, a blue swell and a cold drink with perspiration like a goddamn Corona commercial. And you’re there with me. Yes, you. You are there too. Not you though, you son of a bitch.
And the sky looks like it did that night at Cherry Springs. And you see all the shooting stars I’ve been telling you about. We would make a wish, but we already have everything we ever wished for.
Wesley and I head to Fire Island for a drink. It’s a place we frequented as children. “Sometimes,” Wes says, “even when you’re enjoying the good times it’s only later you realize you were having the best time.”
“Yeah,” I toast to my brother in crime, “I guess life is tragic and beautiful like that.”