Two days ago, I was informed that a large group from the Submersible Death Trap would be out last night, in celebration of two crew members gaining their freedom from the boat. The plan was to have dinner at Hibachi, a Japanese steakhouse near the Nexus of Hate, and then to roll into downtown Portsmouth. It was better than anything I had planned for the night - and by that, I mean it was better than me staying home and drinking. I was planning to join them until about 2:00 yesterday afternoon, when another co-worker informed me that there was a poker game scheduled for last night - in my own apartment. Given the location of the game, and that the mix of people scheduled to be there, I altered course and chose to play some poker.
As the clock turned to seven p.m., nobody had shown up. Shortly thereafter, Evan (who told me about the game) rolled in. He and Ray played Halo 3 as I followed the Cornell-Dartmouth hockey game on my computer. It finally got to the point where we were frustrated with the fact that nearly everybody we'd invited had flaked out, and so we picked up some pizza. One other person did show up, and just as Ray returned with the food, we discovered The Price Is Right Million Dollar Spectacular. This captivated us for the next forty minutes of so. It certainly captivated me, being as I was already into my fifth beer. During this interval, we drooled over the Price Is Right girls, collectively enjoyed Doing It Wrong, I wrote last night's entry here, and I continued following the game - although with the Big Red leading 6-0, that wasn't a huge concern. Just after 9:00, we decided to try to meet up with the crew at Hibachi. When we got there, we couldn't find them, so we rolled back to the apartment. At this juncture, our guests departed. Ray and I were walking back inside, when he asked me, "do you want to go out?" And thus the second portion of the night began.
We took his car into downtown Portsmouth, and parked in the garage on Hanover Street. After exiting the car, I pointed us in the direction of the Portsmouth Gas Light, where everyone said they'd be. But when we got to its third floor, we saw nobody familiar to us. So we returned to the cold New Hampshire night - without our coats, no less - to search for our co-workers. We went to Fat Belly's - nothing. We went to the Portsmouth Brewery - nothing. We went to the Rusty Hammer - still nothing! So we rolled back over to the Brewery and got a couple of drinks. At ten minutes to ten, Ray bought the first round - and it was Patrón. As it appeared before me, I had two college related thoughts. The first was: "the Elixir of Death. I haven't had the hard stuff since we were all out in Durham nearly six months ago." The second: "I might puke tonight...for the first time since Ithaca...that's a lot of days...one hundred thirty-nine, to be exact." Did I let either of those thoughts stop me from downing the drink? Of course not. We both followed the Patrón with a very stout beer. As we finished our brews, Ray's phone alerted him to the fact that our people were heading to the Gas Light. So we walked back over there, and took seats near the back.
I opened a tab so that Ray could put a round of Courvoisier on it for us. That went down smoothly, as did two more over the next hour or so. Our friends arrived, and so we met and greeted them. Not too long after that, we encountered a difficulty that put our night at all-stop: the Gas Light refused to serve one of our friends, someone who was completely sober. Apparently, he'd had a bit too much last weekend, and the result was that he was cut off - and so were we. This was a clear signal that we needed to be elsewhere. It turned out that the "elsewhere" would be back at our apartment. Since Ray had been drinking, he wisely chose not to take his chances with Portsmouth's finest, and called for the duty van. The first guy we called was unable to deduce our location from Ray's explanation. It amazed me that my drunk navigation sense was better than his sober one. So we called another driver, and he got to us quickly. When we arrived back home, it was just about 11:30...so I had the sudden urge to watch Chelsea Lately for the first time in a while. I really didn't comprehend any of it; about the only things I do remember were turning off the television and playing "1st of tha Month" just after midnight. Of course, I did pass out in my bed at some point, but I don't remember that.
Without question, tonight will be less eventful than last night - and not only because Sunday is a duty day. Cornell faces Harvard at home in both men's hockey and men's basketball tonight. For the hockey team, it's the biggest game of the year; not only that, the team has everything to play for, as a win will clinch a regular season finish of fourth or better and a first-round bye in the conference tournament. The basketball team can wrap up an outright Ivy League title and claim the first slot in March Madness. It would be the first time in twenty years that a school not named Princeton or Pennsylvania has gone through to the Big Dance. This confluence of potential Big Red greatness will keep me glued to the computer tonight.
Final note: I didn't puke. 140 days and counting...