the hostess with the mostest
August 10, 2010

…had a rough night.

That’s me on Sunday morning, surrounded by my loved ones, close to death by hangover.

I’ll spare you the more graphic photos, taken so lovingly by my boyfriend the evening before, as I’m quite confident neither your nor my gag reflex deserves that on a Tuesday night. Instead, I give you a quick step by step guide to being the most memorable hostess in the history of the world, a title currently held by yours truly.

1. Come up with the brilliant idea to throw a surprise party for your boyfriend’s 25th.

2. Get so excited that you eventually (completely intentionally) tell your boyfriend about said surprise. Promise to combat his disappointment/dismay at having had surprise blown by making mass amounts of baked goods.

3. Ship in all your friends from out-of-town.

4. Eat nothing but swabs of peanut butter cream cheese frosting and slivers of frozen banana chocolate chip blondies all day as you bake, bake, bake and frost, frost, frost for the big event.

5. Valiantly refuse dinner in the name of getting a good buzz and fitting into your new Urban Outfitters dress, purchased specifically for the evening.

6. Valiantly measure out the shots in your mixed drink, for safe partying, only to discover that two is apparently not the accepted number. (That’s a double, darling.)This is also known as: completely overestimating the alcohol content of one beverage. (See also: that time I thought champagne didn’t count as a drink.)

7. To add insult to injury, also completely overestimate your post-college alcohol tolerance.

8. End up getting sick by 11 p.m. In your one bedroom, one bathroom apartment. That’s currently hosting 25 of your boyfriend’s closest friends. Who are sadly not as wasted as you, and have perfect hearing. And now all think you’re a raging alcoholic.

Sigh. I hear it was a super lovely party prior to my little incident, all fresh baked goods and good conversation and a bunch of adults responsibly enjoying a beer or two.

I also hear I was super happy, flitting from new friends to old, sticking a billion candles in the chocolate peanut-butter layer cake, holding hands with the birthday boy and leading a stirring rendition of happy birthday.

I’m pretty much mortified by what came happened next – seriously, who does this? at their own party? – but I’m trying to get over it. After all, I know it could have been a lot worse. How lucky am I that I was surrounded by the kind of friends who will secure your hair in a pony tail and rub your back and tell you it will all be over soon, even as you’re in the throes of the worst kind of ickiness?  They sat with me on my floor and laid next to me on my bed – Trace, who’s been taking care of me since we were college freshmen, and Jon, who saw me in prime form on my 21st, and even Matty, who’s going to be a wonderful ED physician – and I am so, so grateful.

They also laughed at me a bit, which they were totally entitled to do.

And when it finally turned into the next day  and I woke up feeling like I was about to die and texted Dave with the simple yet poignant message of ‘help,’ he came back from brunch, with Matty in tow, and brought me water and pretzels and assurances that I would, in fact, one day be able to emerge from our bed. Matty even rescued my stuffed animals from the top of the dresser where Dave has relegated them for most of our relationship, to my un-ending delight.

None of this changed the fact that I couldn’t get down more than half a plain bagel on Monday morning (yes, Monday, you heard right) but I suppose averaging one devastatingly bad hangover every 2.5 years isn’t the worst thing in the world. And while I’m tempted to swear off alcohol forever – like I tend to do every 2.5 years, post-vomit, I’ll stick with a more realistic resolution for now: I’m done with vodka grapefruits for good. Nothing but trouble, those cocktails.

*Most photos by Matty, I think, and a few by Dave.

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p.s.
May 13, 2010

Three things I bet you didn’t remember, yet apparently actually happened second-semester senior year:

1. Chasing Bankers Club shots with celery.

(As I’ve mentioned before, I thought this was an urban legend. The photograph clearly proves otherwise.)

2. Bottle-feeding baby animals at an indoor frat petting zoo.

3. Um, simply attending junior Hey Day.

Or maybe that’s just me?

Bad decisions: a retrospective
April 20, 2010

The details from Saturday night are starting to float back to me, thanks to helpful reminders like my Pandora station (“Did I dance to that Black-Eyed Peas song with Lauren’s dad?”), that massive bruise on my thigh, and Dave’s 13-year-old brother’s curiosity (direct quote: “Why was Rachel so wasted?”)

It used to be a familiar occurrence, the learning about the things you did last weekend days after you actually did them. In fact, the Blabbermouth you know and love is the product of a vast history of alcohol-fueled disasters, most of which, of course, were simply known as Weekends at the time. Do you remember me back then? (Crowd nods heads, rolls eyes.) I wasn’t the easiest college roommate/spring break travel buddy/high school best friend to put up with. I was…how do I say this?…pretty much a drunken slut.

I honestly don’t regret any of it – the rough nights, the fun nights, the one-night-stands, the vomit. OK, maybe the vomit. That was gross.

I also don’t regret that I’m a little different now – calmer, more secure, more sober. Different things are right for people at different times, and the lifestyle that came naturally for me at 21 isn’t necessarily a good fit for me at 25. It helped me learn a few lessons and meet a few people, but I’m pretty sure it’s served its purpose now. And one can’t subsist on Big Azz margaritas alone forever, you know.

Except, sometimes, I’ll admit, I have those moments where I miss it a little bit. It’s hard to separate the nostalgia for my days of sex, drugs and Kenn Kweder from my nostalgia for college itself, since the two were so intertwined, but suffice it to say: I liked living with a gaggle of girls. I liked staying up all night. And those cheese fries always tasted delicious at 3 a.m.

As luck would have it, I still appear to be perfectly capable of getting drunk and making bad decisions (see: Saturday night.) In fact, you all were such a rapt audience for this past weekend’s debauchery that I considered doing it all over again tonight, minus the bar mitzvah part (just the alcohol and embarrassment, seeing as it’s a Tuesday.) Then I remembered a- I’m a Reponsible Working Person now, one who has to catch the 7:30 a.m. train to Wilmington tomorrow, and b- I already have tons of amazing stories in my arsenal.

So I was thinking that in honor of Spring Fling – which, yes, coincidentally was last weekend – I would take a little trip down memory lane and share a few tales from my personal archives of shame with you. (Mom, you can stop reading now.) If nothing else, they’ll probably make you feel better about yourself. Consider it a little Tuesday pick-me-up, from me to you.

Christine’s graduation camp-out sleepover, 2003: Kids, thank god there aren’t pictures of this on the Internet (note: if this is not true, please don’t tell me, I’d like to keep living in this bubble. Thanks.) I was 18-years old, thought I was hot shit, and somehow sought to reenact the drama of Dawson’s Creek, season 3, with a few weird twists. To this end, I a-chugged the better part of a handle of cheap vodka, no doubt smuggled in from Bridgeport b- joined a group of boys in baking a tent we had borrowed from our calculus teacher and c-told my boyfriend I was actually in love with a close family friend. (I wasn’t.)

The evening soon evolved into a massive disaster that seriously puts Saturday night to shame. And the kicker is that my graduation brunch – complete with catering and white tent – was the next morning. I don’t know what was more of a tragedy – the fact that my boyfriend, boyfriend’s mother and totally unsuspecting family friend all showed up at the same time or the fact that I was too nauseous to enjoy the fruits of my own omelette man. Sad.

Spring Fling, 2005: Believe it or not, this was actually the  first time Dave and I met. (It still counts if one of us was passed out at the time, right?) After chasing an unknown number of Bankers Club rum shots with Bankers Club vodka shots, I was extremely intoxicated and decided it was a good time to, um, escort my friend Mike back to his room in the quad.

After a sexual experience that was wrong on so many levels (not the least of which being he had already hooked up with about 60% of my friends), I immediately run to the bathroom, where I proceed to pass out on the floor. Cue the entrance of Mike’s roommate, our very own David Matthew. Apparently Mike is still in his boxers, pretty distraught over the fact that he just hooked up with his good friend, who’s now marooned on his bathroom floor. While Mike calls my three best friends to come pick me up, Dave comes up with the fabulous idea to feed me the Passover leftovers his mom had dropped off a few days before. I believe the line was: “Give her the Matzah, man.” (Thanks Mrs. B!) Not only did I survive, the whole ordeal also precipitated The Greatest Photo Ever.

My princess-themed 21st birthday party, 2006: Sparkly tiara + feather boa + pink franzia = a recipe for disaster. That’s really all you need to know. That, and my college house was a shit show.

Alissa’s wedding, 2007: My friend Courtney had been trying to set me up with one of her sister’s friends from college for years, so when said sister got married, it seemed like the perfect opportunity. When the plan actually started falling into place – I sat next to him, we flirted, he graciously offered to grab my tequila sunrise from the open bar – I did what any sensible college senior would do: got extremely intoxicated. In my defense, it wasn’t really on purpose: this was back when I thought champagne didn’t actually count as a drink. Apparently, I was wrong.

Rest assured, I eventually did seal the deal, conquering that hookup goal three months later. (Hint: he played the entire Justin Timberlake cd. And already had a spare contact case waiting for me at his apartment.) But that night it was not to be: I had to be forcibly removed from the after party and brought back to our hotel room at the Ritz, where I hear things went downhill fast. In fact, a few weeks ago, when Bridget and I were discussing possible, theoretical venues for my possible, theoretical nuptuals, currently scheduled for 2060, I insisted that my heart was set on the Ritz in Philadelphia. Bridget’s response? “You don’t get married in the Ritz. You throw up in the Ritz.” Touche, Gidge. Touche.

Senior formal, 2007: See that picture on my about page? The girl in the pink dress popping open a bottle of champagne amid her encouraging friends? Yeah, twelve hours later, that girl was wandering home from a local frat house, sans knowledge of a-what happened the night before and b, most importantly – what happened to the cream-colored satin stilettos she certainly had on her feet upon leaving her house for the downtown venue. She would never see those heels again — though she would eventually find out what transpired in those lost, blacked-out hours. But that’s a dirtier story for a different time.

Admit it – don’t you feel like a better, more capable human being now? You’re welcome.