The First Time I Got Drunk – A Parable

Seems an odd thing to blog about, I know.  However… this incident happened in the 80’s and plays a big part in who I am.  Rather than sit here and regurgitate 80’s crap you are already familiar with like: stickers, video games and Madonna (and we 80’s heads love all these things!) I thought I’d share a bit of personal nostalgia.

Sharon Howard will be guest blogging here on The Great 80’s soon.  Stay tuned for that.  Her blog is awesome for a  lot of reasons.  Two of them being: She writes and lives in England! 😀  Her guest blog will reflect on growing up 80’s in England.  I am looking forward to hearing all about it.

Now, on with the show!

Rational people usually learn that if they do something (A) and it turns out a not so pleasant experience (B), then (A) no longer fits in their lifestyle because (B) is no fun.  Right?

Right… for rational people this applies.

For people like me (slightly neurotic, alcoholic (sober!), obsessive, and with an alarming lack of common sense) rational thinking is was a foreign concept.

Let’s  take the first time I got drunk.  I was thirteen, gangly and had a severe lack of self-esteem.  On the flip side of that: I was taller than the average bear, athletic and silly. These traits offset each other, which I believe lead to the perception that I was a) normal and b) not to be messed with.

It was a cool night and my sister and I happened to finally get to hang out with Julie who did not live on the street.  Hell, she didn’t even live in the same neighborhood.  Julie’s brother Charlie got us two six-packs of Budweiser from the Cannonball Tavern.  I sat there staring at the cans of beer.

Should I? Shouldn’t I? What’s gonna happen?

After about three hours of drinking and acting like imbeciles.. the three of us walked back down to my neighborhood.  I think I uttered the words  “I’m straight” at least 25 times (implying that I was not inebriated).  The three of us made it to the neighborhood park where we sat on the steps.

We sat on those steps because I had a moment of clarity. I was 13, drunk and I had to go home.  The short version of this was: I was deader ‘an dead meat.  As I sat there I had a revelation.

We could walk to the candy store and get Lemonhead’s, soda and play pinball. THAT would get us (or me at least – I was feeling very narcissistic at this point) feeling better and home safe.

Well, the whole night just went downhill.  I managed to make an ass out of myself in front of a boy I liked.  I fell (twice) and cracked my head on the step (which I just told my mother about this past Thanksgiving).  When I made it home, my mother was still awake and asked me a series of questions which required me to answer with a lot of words that contained the letter “S” which came out like “shth” of sorts.  Shthe knew there was shthomething wrong with me.  Shthe had to! 

Well, my mother didn’t beat me.  I really thought she would.  In fact, she never said anything to me. I wonder about this. Maybe she didn’t know?

For the remainder of the school year, I had a lump on my head the size of an egg (and probably a concussion) and was called “two-can Sam” by everyone.

Have you ever done something that embarrassed you?  How did you handle it? Do you laugh about it now?


I Learned by Watching Kermit

Piggy and Kermie - Froggy Love

Most of us have heard of the book, Everything I Know I Learned in Kindergarten.  I actually never read the whole book.  I have this bad habit of getting into a book and if it bores me for more than two pages or I find something else an octave more exciting to do, the book gets put down.  I am sure all the books I have put down half way through have their own support group going at this point.

BPDBD Group – Books Put Down By Darlene (she really did like you!)

Ok, I’m getting loopy.

My point is… almost everything I have learned in my entire life, yes, my entire life, I learned from watching Muppets.

Sharing, caring, winning, losing, spelling, grumpiness, selfishness, hedonism, lust, jealousy… yeah, it’s starting to sound like the throwback pile for the dwarf that would not be.

I learned obsession and cruel jealousy from watching Miss Piggy swoon and curse over Kermie.  I remember one episode when Kermit was to do a duet with a woman (Linda Rondstadt I think) and Miss Piggy locked her in a closet! Miss Piggy… why?  I loved it when Kermie went virtually insane that he would run screaming off the stage or set, arms flailing… AHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I learned spazzing from Grover and Animal, grouchiness from Oscar and the goons in the balcony, Silliness from Ernie, Seriousness from Bert (which sounds and acts a lot like Squidward of Spongebob Squarepants).  And I learned all about feelings: happy, sad, hurt, angry from the one and only Big Bird.

But my most favorite Muppet of them all is and will always be Kermit the Frog.  He is on the November 11th cover of Entertainment Weekly.  Go!  Check him out in all his handsome greenness.

Remember…. “it ain’t easy being green.”

Were you able to identify with any Muppet characters when you were a child?  How about as an adult?

Have a happy weekend 80’s heads!