September 07, 2004

The First Rule Of The Lake: Have The Phone Number Of A Good Bail Bondsman Accessible At All Times

I recommend tatooing it to the bottom of one foot; that way you have it on you even if you're arrested while naked. But I'm getting ahead of myself. Let's start at the beginning - actually, a bit before the beginning, as a large contingent of the Usual Suspects were already at the Secure Undisclosed Location before we got there...

It was a bad week for electricity at the SUL. First, Carmine and StitchMistress's water heater went tango uniform. Carmine took one look at the installer's estimate and said "Screw that, I'll put the new one in myself."

Later that day, with the new water heater...
Carmine: "DA, you sure the power's off?"
DA (at the other end of the house): "What'd you say?!?"
Carmine: "OK, let me just grab this wi- "
ZAP! [followed by the sound of circuit breakers popping and Carmine getting blown halfway down the hall]
Carmine: "*#$(!@$)#(! Dammit, DA, you said the power was off!"
DA: "What?!?"

They eventually managed to get the water heater installed without killing anybody. After all, the power damn sure was off after that incident.

Meanwhile, about the same time down at Kenny and Leen's place, Kenny was trying to replace a cracked fixture on his yard light.
Kenny: "Now, Dad, I need you to keep that photocell covered while I unscrew this fixture."
Kenny's Dad: "Um, are you sure that - "
Kenny: "OK, let me just grab this wi- "
ZAP! [followed by the sound of circuit breakers popping and Kenny getting blown halfway across the yard]
Kenny: "*#$(!@$)#(! Dammit, Dad, you were supposed to keep the photocell covered!"
Kenny's Dad: "Now that I think about it, I'm pretty sure you're supposed to keep it UNcovered if you want an open circuit..."

All repair work was complete by the time flower_goddess and I arrived last Friday afternoon right about beer-thirty. A quick dinner of apple brats, burgers, and flower_goddess's criminally tasty caesar salad, and we were ready for the bar. We were planning on going to the Parrot-Dice Club, which may come as a surprise to regular readers of Tales Of My Neighborhood, given Deej and Rusty's experience on Memorial Day weekend (there's a reason they're called "The Two-Man Orange Alert"), but they were in Chicago this time. So DA, Dimples, flower_goddess, and I headed to the Parrot-Dice.

And saw the marquee: "This weekend: Shar-Pei Banshee."

And did a quick 180 and headed to the Channel Tavern.

I have had the misfortune of being unable to avoid hearing SPB once. I can only describe them as 'tear gas for the ears.' So we got to the Channel Tavern, and, after some discussion as to whether it was outside the Minimum Safe Distance of where SPB was playing, we decided it was OK to proceed.

Small world - we saw half the SUL crew there, including Kenny and Leen, Carmine and StitchMistress, Squeak and Wilford, and Kenny and Guido's folks (who rank right up there with Ward and June on the Cool-Parent-O-Meter). They'd just finished eating and were enjoying an after-dinner on the deck, so we pulled up a table and joined them.

[Just as an aside - you can't tell the players without a scorecard, so here's the scorecard, and yes it looks an awful lot like a game of Six Degrees:

  • DA and his wife Dimples are our next-door neighbors back in the Fort. They have a place on the lake at the Secure Undisclosed Location.
  • Kenny and his long-long-LONG-time girlfriend Leen have the place next to them, right on the water.
  • Kenny's brother Carmine and his wife StitchMistress live a few houses up the cul-de-sac from DA and Dimples.
  • Leen's sister Squeak and her husband Wilford live one street up the hill from the others in the same addition.
There are others, but that's enough for now.]

Right off the bat, Carmine demanded we do a group Jagerbomb. Under normal circumstances, this would require the use of the Group Drink Array (a ski with eight glasses fastened to it, so when it's filled and tipped sideways it's "drink it or wear it!"), but it was in use by another group dropping a SpongeBobBomb, so we were off the hook there and just did our Jagerbombing individually. I understand now why Red Bull is such a popular mixer with "the kids;" it covers the taste of alcohol very well (surprisingly well, in the case of a strong-flavored liquor like Jagermeister). It makes you think you're not drinking as heavily as you are and is an excellent way to get girl drink drunk.

After the Jagerbombing and a few volleys of conventional munitions, we returned to the cul-de-sac (just in time to miss sunset, great) and firewalled the beer throttle. Carmine was insistent in challenging me to a rematch in a game of Night Vision Jarts (on our previous visit to the SUL, DA and I shellacked Carmine and Kenny to the tune of 21-3, with a toe thrown in for style points), and I was good to go, but we couldn't find the delightful banned-in-all-fifty-states-and-half-of-Canada toys, which was probably a good thing considering our BAC at the time. Personally, I think Dimples hid them; she's got this bad habit of being the conscience of the neighborhood that DA can't break her of. We settled for starting a fire in the portable fireplace sitting on DA's deck.

Did you know you can scorch stained decking?

Well, it wasn't quite that bad, but it was close. We had to move the fireplace a few feet every twenty minutes or so to keep it from setting the deck on fire.

The weekend continues tomorrow. I mean - oh hell, you know what I mean (although I really really wish the weekend continued tomorrow).

Continue with Part II here.

Posted by Chris at September 7, 2004 04:34 PM

Category: Tales Of My Neighborhood