One of the things I liked about playing and touring in England is that you could drink almost anywhere. I’m not sure its technically legal, but no one ever stopped me from walking around with a beer in my hand or told me to put my bottle of liquor away. Drinking, as a whole, seemed to actually be celebrated and encouraged in British culture. Pubs were packed on any given day of the week and it wasn’t uncommon to see large groups of people staggering en masse through the city center streets. For someone who loves to drink, its not a bad place to spend a few weeks. Also for this reason, it didn’t seem to be too big of a deal the night I passed out on the front steps of a convenient store in the middle of downtown Nottingham.
Sometime around 2003 or 2004, we did a brief, 6 show tour of England with quasi-labelmates, Something Corporate. They are a great bunch of guys and the shows were all completely sold out. One of the stops on that tour was Nottingham, home to the legendary Robin Hood. We had managed to secure a hotel room right next door to the venue, perfectly suited to a long, easy night of partying.
We played to a sold out crowd, getting drunk on the ample cases of warm, shitty Carling the promoters had provided. I was walking around outside the venue, drinking a beer and chatting with some of the fans, when I somehow ended up talking to these two girls who had been at the show. We talked for a while, drinking beer and having a good conversation. They mentioned that they lived down the street and invited me back to their house for more drinks. I had an idea where things were going and there was no way I was going to pass it up. I was out of beer though, so I made the girls wait a few minutes while I ran across the street and bought a bottle of Goldschlager for the walk.
We headed back to their place, all three of us taking hearty pulls from the bottle as we passed it back and forth. I was pretty well intoxicated by this point, but the expectation of getting laid had been dangled in front of me like a carrot to a donkey and I was doing my best to stay focused. I was also trying to maintain some sort of directional coherence. English city streets are notorious for twisting and turning and ending abruptly. There is no rhyme or reason to the city layout like there is in the US with the grid system. We turned left, then right, then right again, then left… I was starting to get a little lost.
We came around a corner and, just as I was beginning to pull myself together, a tall, skinny figure emerged from literally out of the darkness. As the face moved underneath the streetlight, the girls shrieked in delightful recognition. It turned out to be a guy that they knew from school. No one had seen him in months due to some sort of overseas study program and he had just arrived back in town. He was wasted, carrying a case of beer, and the girls immediately invited him back to their house. WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON HERE? I just got unintentionally cock-blocked by some bumbling bloke I didn’t even know. Now I have to compete with this guy just for some (probably) shitty British lay? Maybe I had not accurately assessed the situation in the first place.
We finally made it back to the girls’ place (I kept my bottle of Goldschlager to myself for the remainder of the walk) and, as we walked through the front door, I heard one of them whisper, “Be quiet. My parents are sleeping.” Parents?! Fuck. Now this was weird. She led the three of us upstairs to her room. I begrudgingly took a seat on the floor where I was promptly ignored. For almost an hour I sat there guzzling the bottle of Goldschlager and interjecting remedial, unfunny witticisms into their mindless conversation. Once it became clear that the night was indeed going to be completely wasted, I excused myself from the room to take a piss. I took my bottle with me and walked straight out the front door and back into the dark, unfamiliar Nottingham night.
I had only a vague idea of where I was. It was somewhere around 2am and all I could do was follow the half illuminated sidewalk in what I thought was the direction of the hotel. All I had with me was a pack of cigarettes and my bottle of liquor. I chain smoked and drank my way in circles through the impossibly confusing city streets. I was completely and utterly lost. I ended up walking around the same block at least three times trying to find my way back. I had no cell phone and was too drunk to even remember the name of the hotel. There wasn’t a single person roaming the streets. It was strangely quiet.
Finally, after wandering for almost three hours, I gave up. My feet hurt, I was homeless, and I was drunk. I sat down on the steps of a convenient store with my back up against the brick wall, closed my eyes, and fell asleep clutching the bottle of Goldschlager.
I awoke to an intense sunlight and thousands of footsteps pattering by me on the sidewalk. Men and women hurried by dressed in business suits, carrying briefcases and checking their watches; a regular pedestrian morning rush hour. I laid there on the concrete in my filthy clothes, reeking of cigarettes and booze, the nearly empty bottle of Goldschlager sitting next to me. In a sudden burst of early morning clarity, I remembered the name of our hotel. I slowly stood up, using the wall of the store for leverage. I half expected the morning business types to cast disgusted glances at me but no one did. To them I was just another poor, homeless, British sap who had drank himself to blackout on the city streets. A common occurrence in a country of drunks. I stopped the next guy who passed and asked him if he knew directions to the hotel. He turned around and pointed up the road, telling me it was two blocks straight up ahead. Had I kept walking for 5 more minutes, I would have run right into it. Go figure.
There is a venue in Milwaukee called The Rave. We’ve played there countless times over the years and, with the exception of only two or three nights, we always stayed at The Ambassador, a historical, vintage Americana hotel located directly across the street. It’s a tall, square, brick building, its rooms smothered in ugly, 1920s style wallpaper. The hallway walls are painted a drab yellow-green and the floors are lined with tattered carpeting reflecting the permanently embedded footsteps of over one hundred years. A huge neon sign sits atop the hotel, a blinding, self-advertising beacon for weary travelers. The Ambassador is notorious for being one of the sites where Jeffery Dahmer murdered and mutilated one of his victims, the door to the infamous room now bricked up and sealed like a tomb. The entire hotel has a stale, eerie vibe to it, like you are walking through a time warp, silent eyes constantly watching you. We had some great parties in the hotel though, hosting roomfuls of naked women and leading drunken rampages to find the “Dahmer” room. Nothing was quite as bizarre, however, as the night Magoo (our long-time guitar tech) played his last show with us. That was the night I was raped.
We had drunkenly decided days before that we would “haze” Magoo in the hotel room after the Milwaukee show. For some reason, our idea of hazing was to tie him to a chair and drown him in assorted condiments. It seemed so wildly funny at the time. We thought Milwaukee would be ideal because of all the friends and fans driving up from Chicago that we could invite back to our rooms to participate. It would be a grand, ritualistic hazing of epic proportions.
We bought a trunk full of beer, a few bottles of liquor, and our party kicked off with a bang. Dozens of people were in the rooms watching as we duck taped Magoo to a chair and covered him in mustard, ketchup, maple syrup, and beer. In the process, I managed to cover myself as well. Despite our best efforts to rinse off the muck, we both smelled like human hot dogs for days afterwards. The room was completely trashed and everyone was drinking and having a good time.
After the Magoo hazing, I was sitting by the window having a smoke (you could smoke in designated rooms back then and we always reserved smoking rooms) when I was approached by a girl I had met at a suburban Chicago party a few months before. She had made the trip up to Milwaukee for the show and happened to be in a crowd of people we had invited to our party. She was petite, with short brown hair and a firm body. She was cute in a little girl sort of way, but not overly attractive. We had talked for a little while after meeting and had exchanged phone numbers, but had corresponded through text messages only a handful of times over the last few months. She was a nice enough girl, but after meeting her for the first time, I remember leaving the party thinking she was a little off her rocker. I had made a mental note to stay away.
We stood by the window in the room, she talked while I smoked, I smoked while she talked some more. It was fairly obvious what she wanted but I was disinclined to accept her drunken advances. She was getting rather annoying so I politely excused myself and made my way over to some friends. I continued drinking through the night, mingling with fans and talking with friends. It was getting late and, even though the party was still going strong, I had had enough.
Between all the bands on the tour, we had reserved 4 or 5 rooms all next to each other on the same floor. I stumbled into one of the rooms, beer in hand, and promptly passed out on one of the empty beds, fully clothed. I hadn’t even taken off my shoes.
I awoke suddenly to the faint sound of someone moaning. I was laying on my back but couldn’t yet pry open my eyes. Something was pushing against my legs and, as I tried to sit up and open my eyes, I realized that something, somebody, was on top of me, pinning me down. What the fuck is going on? I finally cracked my eyelids enough to find the girl from the party riding me like a dirty, south Texas cowgirl. Holy shit. Was this really happening? Am I dreaming this? No, this was definitely happening. She was on top of me, grinding up and down, her moans a loud whisper. Her face, a dark shadow and half covered by her short hair, contorted into various disturbing levels of pleasure. She had her eyes closed and her back arched, one hand on my chest and the other feeling herself through her shirt. My shoes were still on.
How the fuck did she get my pants off?! Jesus, how the fuck did I even get it up??! I’m fucking wasted… She obviously thought I was asleep. I had no idea what to do. Should I pretend to stay asleep (or at least awake but feigning incoherent drunkeness) or should I “wake up” and fuck her back? Clearly, this girl was off her rocker. I chose to “stay asleep.” Finally, mercifully, I finished, and she knew it.
I laid there motionless, half asleep, mostly drunk, watching her silently put her pants back on and walk out the door. She didn’t look up or make a sound. I have not seen or heard from her since.
I woke up the next morning thinking the entire thing was a dream. As I rolled out of bed, parched and hungover, I saw a used rubber haphazardly tossed onto the floor next to the hotel night stand. And I still reeked of booze, ketchup, mustard, and maple syrup.
At some point on any given tour there is always an inexplicable shortage of bathrooms. Sometimes you have to piss or shit at the most inopportune times and there’s not a whole lot you can do about it except, well…to go. I don’t think I’ve ever laughed so hard as the time one of our roadies dropped his drawers in very awkward, yet hilarious fashion.
We were driving Interstate 80 somewhere between San Francisco, CA and Reno, NV. It’s an extraordinarily mountainous drive, taking you up and down hills, through winding valleys, and coasting precariously beside thousand foot high cliffs. The scenery is beautiful during the summer, treacherous in the winter. It is supposedly one of the more dangerous highways in America, namely because of the steep hills and cliff edges. The few towns on the drive are usually comprised only of fast food chains and hotels.
We were about halfway through our five hour drive when I heard one of our roadies pipe up from the far back seat. He was still dressed in his Guns ‘N Roses pajamas because we had left so early in the morning. “Yo, can we stop? I have to take a shit.” “Yeah, but we just passed a town and I think the next one might be a ways up,” I said as I guided the van up and down the mountains. “Ok. Just stop whenever you can,” he told me.
I drove for what seemed like forever without seeing any exits. Not even a rest area. “Hey, how much longer man? I’ve practically got a turtle head poking out back here,” our roadie said. “Man, I’m working on it but there’s just no place to stop. Not even a rest area,” I yelled back to him. I could see in the mirror he was getting a bit agitated. I felt bad but what could I do? As I kept driving I finally spotted a sign stating the next small town was 10 miles up the road. “Yo! Hang on man. We’ll be stopping in 10 minutes,” I called back to him. “Fucking hurry it up! I seriously can’t hold this much longer!” he screamed back.
We finally reached the exit for the town, which was a winding, uphill climb to the main road. I turned around to see him sweating and gripping the bench seats, cursing and mumbling under his breath. “C’mon! C’mon! I’VE GOT TO SHIT!!” he screamed. As I pulled up to the light at the main road, the first place I saw was a Holiday Inn. “Ok look, there’s a Holiday Inn. I’m pulling in.”
I had just started to pull into the Holiday Inn parking lot when all the overhead lights in the van went on. What the hell? I turned around to see our roadie climbing over the back bench seat, out the back door, and onto the hitch of our trailer. “What the fuck are you doing?!” I screamed at him. “Just keep driving! Go through the parking lot! I can’t wait any longer!” he yelled. The parking lot was full so I was forced to slowly pull the van through the turnaround of the hotel. There were a few people milling around outside the lobby. I watched through the rearview as he held on to the open back doors and squatted in between the van and trailer. “Oh! Fuuuccckk! Oh my God! Yes!” I could hear him yelling while I drove. He arched his back and shit right there in the turnaround driveway of the hotel, huddled in between the moving van and trailer, wiping his ass with his Guns ‘N Roses pajama pants and leaving them in the middle of the driveway. I could see them in the sideview mirror as we pulled back onto the road, our trailer wheel bumping over them as we fled. I could also see the massive brown pile of steaming shit he had left on the asphalt. The whole thing lasted about seven seconds.
“Go! Go!” he yelled, climbing back into the van. I floored it. We hauled ass back out onto the main road and got right back on the highway. We were in hysterics. I still laugh out loud to myself every time I think of him crapping outside in the middle of the day, driving through a hotel parking lot while the hotel patrons looked on.
There is something devilishly pleasurable in the wanton, indiscriminate destruction of property. I don’t condone such deliberate behavior, but I must admit that it sometimes feels pretty fucking good to throw rocks through random windows or toss an occasional television set from the third floor of a hotel. We all need to blow off a little steam every now and then, eh? Better your anger and destruction is aimed at material, inanimate objects than at another human being. I have absolutely no tolerance for violence and I certainly don’t have much of a temper, in fact I’d go as far as saying I’m a sure-fire pacifist. But, when you are actively encouraged in the pursuit of complete demolition knowing there will be absolutely no repercussions, it is all the more invigorating. Sometimes you just can’t help yourself…
We did a short tour once with the Fat Records band, Useless I.D. Hailing from Israel, they had gained a decent underground following in the US through word of mouth, relentless touring, and an incredibly tight live show that often ended with the guys completely naked, their long, sweaty dreadlocks flailing around on stage. The were the happiest, most genuinely cheerful DIY punk rockers I’ve ever met, and I fucking loved the short time we spent with them on the road. They loved to drink and have a good time, yet they were always a bit hesitant to truly let loose for fear of losing their visas and being deported.
One of the shows we played with them was at an old, run-down, squat house in Connecticut. The house was inhabited by members of the rugby team from one of the local universities, but it was in such utter disrepair that the city had condemned the house for demolition and was relocating the rugby players to another section of town. As it happened, the demolition was scheduled for a few days after our show. I don’t quite remember but I think the show was put on in part to help the guys raise a little money for relocation.
The kids putting on the show had picked up a few kegs of beer and we crammed about 100 local punk rockers into the house for the night. It was completely DIY and completely amazing. There were no noise limitations, no rules, and by the end, everyone was drunk. By midnight, most of the kids had left. I lingered around outside for a while chatting with a few of the locals and finishing the beer when suddenly there was a commotion inside. Someone was yelling and I heard what sounded like pounding on the walls. My initial thought was that I’d have to break up some sort of drunken rugby fight. Thankfully I was wrong.
I walked into the house to find one of the rugby players and two of the guys from Useless ID holding cups of beer and kicking holes into the walls of the family room. The beer was sloshing all over and they were laughing and smiling like playground children. “What the hell is going on?” I asked. “C’mon dude! The house is getting demolished anyway, let’s fuck it up!” cried the rugby player. I was drunk and this sounded like the greatest idea in the world. For the next hour or so we literally smashed the house into pieces.
We turned the walls into swiss cheese, punching and kicking holes throughout the house. We smashed light fixtures, tore down the staircase banister, and threw bottles of beer through every window. Someone produced a baseball bat and I watched as the guys from Useless ID methodically destroyed the entire kitchen, annihilating the cabinetry and pounding holes in the tile floor. We tipped over the refrigerator and broke all the leftover dishes, tossing them against the wall like frisbees. It was total devastation and none of us could have been happier while doing it.
Eventually the destruction ceased and we stood back and admired our work. The inside of the house was unrecognizable. We had virtually done the demolition crew’s job for them. We hung around for a while, finished the beer and finally left, the house a dark, silent, ruined mess.
One of my favorite things about touring the country was that we really got to know the intricacies of various big cities. We knew where to drink, what bars to avoid, which sections of town were safe, and which were dangerous. We knew the hot spots, cold spots, and just about every spot in between. We visited some cities so often that we even developed strong friendships with people that we still maintain today. There are a few places in particular that I became quite fond of on the road, and we would make it a point to visit every time we drove through town. For various reasons, each one holds a special place in my heart, and I highly suggest visiting if you are ever in the area. They are, in no particular order, as follows:
Minneapolis, MN – MATT’S BAR
Standing quietly at the corner of 35th and Cedar Streets on the south side of Minneapolis, Matt’s Bar is home to the Juicy Lucy. It’s a dive bar in a run-down, residential part of town, but they serve one of the best burgers I’ve ever eaten. The burger is essentially two beef patties sandwiched around a slice of American cheese. It’s served with mayonnaise on a toasted bun and you can choose to add grilled onions. What makes it so mouth-wateringly delicious is the melted cheese they somehow cook into the center of the beef patties. If you’ve never had a Juicy Lucy, the waitress will warn you before biting into the burger for the first time. The melted cheese inside is HOT. Be careful. It’s served with fries and they have a variety of domestic beers on tap to wash it down. Matt’s Bar was a mandatory stop whenever we’d pass through Minneapolis. We liked them so much, in fact, that we had a friend of ours drive down to pick up a dozen one year that we played the Warped Tour. It’s been years since I last had a Juicy Lucy. I may have to make a trip up to Minneapolis real soon…
Portland, OR – THE ACROPOLIS
We did a short west coast tour way back around 2001 or 2002 with Showoff and The Lonely Kings that was relatively uneventful and relatively unattended. The highlight of the tour, by far, was THE ACROPOLIS, or, as Jake from the Lonely Kings introduced it to us, Naked Breakfast. Throughout the last few days of the tour, Jake would comment on how he couldn’t wait to get up to Portland so he could hit up Naked Breakfast. He explained it to us as perhaps the shittiest strip club in the entire world with the cheapest breakfast in town. They served beer all day and the girls were supposedly “not terrible.” Legs and Eggs? Cheap food and cheap beer? Naked women? Fuck yeah, we were in. “The only thing,” Jake told us, “is that they only serve breakfast for a little while, so you have to get there early.” I never thought in a million years I would ever park outside of a strip club and sleep in the van just to get a cheap breakfast, but this is what we did every time we played Portland….for about 5 years.
The Acropolis is a drab building in a shitty part of town. It sits in a tiny gravel parking lot, just off a major four lane highway. Conveniently, there is a porn shop directly across the street, complete with an “arcade,” for those of us who needed one after a drunken, early morning striptease. We would drive overnight to Portland, park outside the blue and white striped building around 2am, and wake up and head inside around 6:30am. We’d stagger in and sit down at the folding tables across from the “main stage.” The stage (which really wasn’t a stage at all, it was actually just a dance floor surrounded by a waist-high wall strung with Christmas lights and lined with bar stools) was punctuated in the center by a gold metal pole. There was a circular cast-iron staircase at the back of the dance floor leading up to the “backstage” where the girls would prime themselves for their “performance.” The strippers would casually walk down the stairs and head straight to the boom box resting on a crooked shelf on the back wall. They would eagerly select a CD from the nearby booklet, pop it into the CD player, and start to dance. It was (and still is) the most pathetically awesome thing I’ve ever seen. They would shake and grind through one or two songs, three if they really liked the band, and then it would be the next girl’s turn to repeat the whole process. It was full nudity and the girls were definitely “terrible.” There were more botched breast implants, bad tattoos, and disgustingly dirty pussies than you could shake a stick at, but it became a ritual for us and it was always exciting to introduce the place to other bands.
The breakfast, though, was actually really good. For $2.99 you got three eggs, hash browns, bacon, toast, and coffee. It was a fucking steal. We’d watch the girls and have breakfast, eventually ordering beers around 8am. There was almost never anybody else there that early so we’d have the run of the mill for a few hours. We got to know some of the girls (NOT in the way you might think, thank you very much) and the waitresses would almost always comp us a few beers. We’d eventually stumble out, broke, and too drunk to play a decent Portland gig. In fact, I can remember two shows in particular where I had to be propped up on stage because we had spent the entire morning at Naked Breakfast. It’s been a few years but I’m sure it’s still there, resting peacefully on MLK Drive in the Southeast corner of the city. I’d also be willing to bet that some of the same girls are still there. There was one girl in particular we saw every single time we were there….for 5 years. God bless ’em.
Hamden, CT – WHITNEY DONUT
Hamden, CT is a small town just outside of New Haven. It’s quiet and peaceful, a typical New England town. Whitney Avenue is the main thoroughfare running through the city, and on it sits Whitney Donut. It is hands down the best breakfast place I’ve ever had the pleasure of eating at, this includes Dunkin Donuts. Our first experience at Whitney Donut came during the week of 9/11. We were staying at a friend’s house, just up the hill from Whitney Donut, and we inevitably had almost a weeks worth of shows canceled. Our friends were gracious enough to let us crash at their house for over a week, and each morning we would slip and slide our way down the wooded hills behind their house to get coffee and breakfast. For me, the nostalgia for Whitney Donut comes mostly from the events surrounding 9/11, but the food is fantastic and the people were always smiling. They were always willing to serve us and were more than accommodating when we would spend hours there, reading the paper and downing coffee after coffee. If you’re ever in the Hamden area, stop in to Whitney Donut and grab a coffee and a fritter. It will be well worth your while.
Our bass player has an incredible knack for discreetly pissing into bottles without spilling a drop. It’s something he perfected over years of touring and I’ve always secretly admired him for it. Instead of interrupting the monotony of our long drives to stop and piss, he’d simply whiz into an empty Snapple or Gatorade bottle. Nary a drop was spilled, and the van never stank of urine. Whenever we’d stop for gas, he’d toss the pee bottles in the trash. None of us knew the difference. Of course, the one time I tried to emulate him, the entire fucking city of New Orleans knew about it.
New Orleans is home to some of the greatest music in the world. On any given night, you can walk through the French Quarter and hear some of the best live blues and jazz musicians in the country. The volume and quality of live music is staggering. It surrounds you from every direction, enveloping you in blissful rhythm and harmony. As a musician, I fucking love it. New Orleans is also one of the only cities where, on any given night, you can almost always find someone willing to show their tits. It doesn’t even have to be Mardi Gras. Just toss some beads around and you’ll have a sweet set of fun bags in your face for the rest of the night. Couple all of this with the tantalizing aromas of spicy cajun cuisine, and you can see why it might be a great place to party.
Despite these seemingly positive attributes however, the city is a fucking dump. Garbage is piled up at every intersection. I’ve literally watched people piss and shit in the middle of the streets, and the entire city smells like the inside of porta-potty. It’s disgraceful. I was sorely disappointed with my first visit (all subsequent visits rated about the same; somewhere between “I don’t think I’ll ever come back,” and “Get me the fuck out of here now before I burn this place to the ground”), yet, because of a long night of drinking, I virtually blended right in with the city’s trash.
I don’t remember if we actually played a show in New Orleans on that first tour, but we had a day off and we were excited to spend a night in the heart of a city with the reputation of a being a serious party town. We were with our friends (and labelmates) Caught Inside, and we spent the majority of the afternoon walking up and down the French Quarter streets, drinking tall boys of PBR and occasionally stopping outside of a club to listen to the band. I wasn’t 21 yet, so I couldn’t legally get into the bars, but you could drink on the streets and we took full advantage of it.
After a few hours spent walking around in the sticky Louisiana heat, we ducked into a local hot dog shop to cool off in the air conditioning. I grabbed a glass of water from the shop owner and sat down with my friends at circular table topped with a 50’s style checkerboard tablecloth. We sat and bullshitted for a while, drinking our PBR and trying to decide what to do for the night. I was pretty drunk by this point and really had to take a piss. I got up from the table and asked one of the employees where I could find the bathroom. He told me they didn’t have one. Shit. I was in serious pain now because I had to go so bad. There was no way I could hold it any longer. As I walked back to the table, I spotted my empty water cup. Perfect. I can just piss into the cup underneath the table and no one will know the difference, I thought.
I sat back down in my seat, grabbed the cup, and held it underneath the table as I unzipped my shorts. I did my best to act as nonchalant as possible as I held the cup down between my legs and began to piss. What sweet relief…. The cup was getting heavy in my hands, but it was big and I figured I had a ways to go before I got to the top. Before I knew what was happening though, I could feel warm piss spreading across my shorts and down my legs. Oh fuck. The cup was overflowing but there was no way I could stop. I was pissing all over myself. It was running down my legs and into my shoes, dripping onto the floor underneath the table. Mercifully, I finished and was able to replace the plastic top on the styrofoam cup. I left it underneath the table but the damage had already been done. My friends had caught on to what I was doing and they fell into hysterics when I stood up.
My shorts were drenched in piss. I now had to walk around the French Quarter of New Orleans for the rest of the night smelling and looking like a fucking bum. I had no place to go to clean up and all my clothes were in the van which was parked over a mile away. Thankfully, I was drunk enough that I didn’t care. I got up from the table, cracked the top on another tall boy of PBR, and waltzed right back out onto the streets like nothing had happened. I got some funny looks for awhile but eventually my shorts dried and I more or less forgot about the whole thing. We kept drinking. And drinking.
It was getting pretty late and we decided to pool all of our money together to get a hotel room that both bands could share. We stumbled upon some cheap, sleazy motel in the middle of the French Quarter so we booked a room. Most of the guys went upstairs to bed but I stayed out with two of my buddies from Caught Inside. We continued walking around the French Quarter, stopping to listen to bands, popping into a few shady strip clubs (you only had to be 18), and downing beer after beer. I finally decided I had had enough. I left my friends and somehow managed to find where our van was parked. I grabbed my backpack and sleeping bag and wandered back to the hotel. I was barely able to stand up. Our room was on the 2nd floor and I remember falling out of the elevator when the doors opened. I crawled down the hall to our room, lugging my backpack and sleeping bag behind me. I remember reaching the door and knocking once before I passed out.
I vaguely remember being dragged into the room by my arms. It was dark and there were bodies and blankets laying everywhere. Someone had taken a shower and there were wet towels laying on the floor of the bathroom in a puddle of water. I laid my cheek on the edge of the toilet and puked my guts out. Everything was spinning and felt like I was going to die. I puked about 10 more times until finally I passed out on the cold, wet, tile floor, still wearing the same shorts I had pissed all over earlier that night.
As I waited outside the next morning for someone to pull the van around, I puked 3 more times, spraying it all over the streets and sidewalk in front of the hotel. There were plenty of people walking around outside but nobody seemed to notice. Or maybe they just didn’t care. That morning I was just another drunken tourist, spilling his guts and merely adding to the vileness of New Orleans.