Last week, I lost two sofas, a receiver, and a subwoofer from my mancave totaling $5800. Pretty Bride lost over 1000 sewing patterns, a bunch of fabric, and a lot of other stuff that I didn’t know lived in our basement. I spent a couple days ripping out walls and pulling up floors while vacillating between depression and anger. So, on Thursday, I decided to hop on a military cargo plane for Maine. Because I’d never been to Maine, and I felt like my heart needed the benefits eating lobster supposedly gives. I think Pretty Bride was glad to see me go. My attitude was in the shitter.
I filled a bag with clothes I won’t be able to wear in Atlanta for 2 more months and left. I read two Seth Godin books and some Hunter S. Thompson on the plane, so that I’d be inspired to be different, change the world, and get fucked up. I took notes on radical ways to market my firm while lamenting my affiliation with the military’s keeping me from dropping acid or taking red pills.
Friday night, I got stuck in the back of a rental car going to Applebee’s.
Me: Are you fucking kidding me? I fly 4 hours north, and you people want to go somewhere I can find in the Atlanta suburbs?
I was pissed but had a burger and a bunch of 22oz beers anyway. I watched an in-the-process-of-divorcing nurse try to sleep with every guy around while a couple of her friends repeatedly told her not to, because they’d done the same thing immediately after their divorces, and they regretted it. I encouraged her to follow her loins and ignore the wrinkled naysayers, but the roadblocks continued until I grew bored and left shortly after 4am.
Saturday, I asked the person in charge of the group if I could use the rented Chevy pickup truck to go across base to the gym. Then I drove it 30 miles to the coast. I figured I had 4 hours before the plane got back and they’d miss the truck. Except, when I arrived in Portland, they were still on the ground waiting on the birds to go away so that they could take off. I was scared for a few minutes but then got the “okay, we’re taking off…will be in the air for 3hrs” text message. Screw you, authority.
I parked on a cobblestone road and found a bar by the water; I plopped down between a man who resembled George Lucas and a woman who resembled Kathy Bates. A man in a Harvard sweatshirt walked up to Kathy Bates to ask if he’d met her the night before, and the two of them talked for over an hour. George Lucas is an engineer who lives in the mountains and travels to give expert testimony in lawsuits against the Department of Defense. We fell in love over lobster rolls and Shipyard Ale.
At 3:15pm, I realized I’d better get the hell back. I pocketed my parking ticket and pushed the Chevy to 90mph. I was 10 miles away when I got the “we’re on the ground” text. One long debrief later, and they were exiting the building as I pulled up to the curb. I am Ferris Bueller without a Sloane Peterson.
A group wanted to go to Cook’s for dinner, so I volunteered to drive them to Portland, where I was certain the restaurant was located, only once I’d pulled onto the street where George Lucas had told me to find a sports bar to see the Alabama game, I pulled Cook’s up on the Garmin and found that it was an hour in the opposite direction. I got out and let them drive off, asking that they return my GPS tomorrow. I considered feeling guilty but then remembered that the Tide needed me.
The Tide won, another truckload came to Portland to meet me, and 7 of them got dinner while I got more Shipyard Ale.
About 10pm, I decided that the conversation needed to shift to my balls. For the next two hours, every time a male walked by our table, two of the women in our group would stop him to ask if he would blow himself if physically able like “this guy” (pointing to me). I decided that they were all liars when each one said “no,” and I made sure the whole restaurant knew I thought they were liars. This was not well-received by management.
We played a game I invented called, “Guess the age of the Whores From Yesteryear.” Shortly after this game started, I found our table to be the only occupied one in our section of the restaurant. The server handed us checks without asking if we were ready to leave, and she added 18% for good measure.
She was thrilled when I ordered a peanut butter pie; she returned with one giant slice and eight forks. I used all eight. Someone in a “Hard Rock Cafe” sweatshirt called me obnoxious. I reminded her that she was wearing a “Hard Rock Cafe” sweatshirt at a seafood restaurant on Saturday night. She blushed and walked away.
I flew home on Sunday. Back to the 30′ dumpster in the driveway and 11 oscillating fans placed in front of corners and crannies to try and eradicate mildew and mold. And my mother-in-law. Which is why I filled a tall glass with ice and emptied the last of the Maker’s Mark and Woodford Reserve.