The second party was getting underway, almost exclusively under the leadership of my charismatic and quite inebriated little brother. I found him upstairs in the kitchen, loudly pontificating on I-don’t-know-what to a 60-ish friend of Todd’s. At 6’ 1” and fully filled-out frame, my brother has the power to be intimidating, but if you know him he’s about as formidable as a kitten. Still, I had no idea his voice could be quite that loud until this particular day.
I arrived on this scene, my brother holding court in my kitchen with this gentleman, who was leaning back in his seat at the island looking impossibly comfortable, and three of my (much) younger friends from work. One of them, who shall remain nameless, was also three sheets to the wind and apparently thoroughly enjoying himself at my soiree. What a treat! I’ve never seen him drunk, like ever, and here was my chance – but I blew it because I’d had too much to drink and had lost my ability to spot a drunk at my own party. Imagine my disappointment when I heard I’d missed him comparing himself to Galileo. I still don’t see the connection, and apparently he has forgotten, as I’ve since asked him and he couldn’t elaborate. See what alcohol does, people?! It opens the door to magnificent dialogues, but guarantees to slam that door on your memory when you awaken from its fog. It’s a travesty.
Earlier in the day, my brother had texted me a picture of Don Julio 1942. Unbeknownst to me, he had been mixing a variety of concoctions based on our bar selections and offering tastings (at the very least) to family members and more than once to me (though I’d forgotten this until Todd reminded me). Don Julio came out sometime around half-past-flagged, and together my brother and I handed out shots of this liquid confidence to the round table of aunts and uncles, plus my mom and two others on the other side of the deck. I even handed one off to Galileo. We all raised our Dixie cups and toasted to something profound, and just like that an entire bottle of top shelf tequila was gone. It was awesome.
The guests continued to filter out by the second half – the neighbors went home and my family said their goodbyes – but not before the not-unfamiliar scent of something organic permeated the air outside my sliders. Apparently the smell isn’t unfamiliar to a certain young family member, who made a point to ask me if I smelled something. I didn’t at that moment and, in my own state of oblivion and without anything to base my assumption on, promptly threw someone under the bus. Whether I was right or not is still up for debate, since I never saw the offending herb nor the alleged perpetrator engaging in it, and so I apologize for my guilty-until-proven-innocent accusation. At this point I’m sure most anyone would assume it was my brother, but in this case I can quite assure you it wasn’t – since he was standing in the kitchen at that very moment bellowing at the aforementioned man about the merits of (insert any subject here).
This conversation was the first of three I completely forgot by the next morning. Sure, it may sound funny, but there is absolutely nothing funny about someone calling you about it the next day. Further, while there are less than a handful of pictures from this party, there is one of my brother and I seated together on the couch – taken by a still-unknown photographer, with my phone. Hey – at least I remember having the picture taken, unlike my brother.
It would be prudent to mention that while I’ve never seen my brother drunk (he has, in the past, demonstrated that mystical wooden leg phenomenon we’ve all heard about but never experienced), he is most definitely a high-functioning drunk. He helped me with cleanup as we two finished off our respective cocktails. I was unnaturally energetic under the influence, and so cleaned off the buffet table and washed up dishes, wiped down countertops and filled the trash can, put away the liquor bottles and wrapped any food leftover. The next day I had completely forgotten where I’d put the leftovers (in the fridge in the apartment).
By now I'm sure you're wondering, where was Todd through all this? Because you know he was there, somewhere. The second half of the party he was downstairs in the rec room watching the big screen, I think, and I don’t know who was down there with him. Eventually my brother made his way down there, and I made my way to my bed.
The next morning I was up at 5:00 – because parental obligations don’t take a holiday and I had to pick up the kids – and woke my brother up twice to ride along so he could get home. One chafer in the kitchen still had some dried up mac and cheese, a mere shadow of the killer melty dream it was the day before. And, while there were no bodies on the front lawn like there are at my dad’s parties, I did find a broken red cup by the curb out front. Now THAT is a testament to a good party. Ever want to know where the good parties are? Take a drive-by the next day and see the aftermath. Remember Sixteen Candles? Exactly.
It’s been two months since the party, the volleyball net is still in the box (because no one ever set it up), and I am still looking for a small white bowl I frequently use in my kitchen. I am positively baffled, and more than a little sad. I have no idea where it is, and can only guess that it went home with someone at the party.
I recently decided to fix a martini and discovered the shaker inside the china cabinet filled with some unknown liquid – most assuredly from the party. This obviously left me with some belated anxiety over the condition of everything in my kitchen when it was put away so helpfully by my brother. None of us developed any bacterial infections, so I guess my fears are unfounded.
I don’t remember anything else. There comes a point in time for me where drunkenness is ethereal, and I feel like I’m floating about the edges of each scene. I’m there, but not a part of the action. I’m an observer by nature, but in this case observing is a lost cause when I fail to remember any of it once I have access to a computer and a little time.
Who’s ready for another round???
Miscellaneous, and possibly irrelevant, tidbits…
Galileo Galilei’s right middle finger is on exhibition at the Museo Galileo in Florence. Apparently it – along with 2 other fingers and a tooth – was removed from his remains when his body was moved to the main body of the Basilica of Santa Croce in 1737 nearly 100 years after his death. He was originally barred from burial in 1642 in the main body of the Basilica by Pope Urban VIII who cited “vehement suspicion of heresy,” and instead buried in a small room next to the novices’ chapel.
Why not try on some vintage slang "drunk" terms for your next party?(borrowed from a Huff Post article):
Fuddled, top heavy, stewed, half-shot, corned, boryeyed, cockeyed, jiggered, has a bun on, has a glorious (or elegant) jag on, has more sail than ballast, can’t see a hole in the ladder, can’t lie down without holding on, off your trolley, over the bay, half-seas over, full as a tick, drunk as a boiled owl, all mops and brooms, drunk more than you’ve bled, got the gravel rash, hugging the bar, measuring sidewalks upside down.
The most expensive tequila in the world is Ley .925 Tequila Pasion Azteca Ultra Premium Anejo. The “cheap” bottle is handcrafted of white gold and platinum for a mere $225,000. Apparently there were a handful of diamond-encrusted bottles made, selling for $1.5M. Who knows if the tequila is any good? The cheap bottle cost more than my first house.
AsomBroso Reserva del Porto, in a beautifully phallic handcrafted bottle packaged in a lovely wooden box, is mature blue agave tequila aged in port wine barrels. This "package" is surely intended to distract you from the $2,400 price tag, which also comes with a story about ancient gods and a lost recipe. At that price I want it to drive me home, and make me tamales.