About aspiring deadbeat dad

After being given a less than twenty percent chance of survival at birth due to extreme fetal alcohol syndrome, this author has continued to champion many different obstacles in life, taking up a highly competitive greeter position at North Carolina's most prestigious Wal-Mart. When he is not found writing pieces for the EJSIC, he can be spotted improving his shopping cart retrieving skills.

1,001 Things Not to Do: Riiiiight Near Da Beach

My name is not important. I’m a regular guy, like you and the people that you know. Only with two big exceptions. 1) I possess more ruggedly handsome features than you and 2) Although I’m a generally intelligent person, I tend not to put a lot of thought into my actions, which inevitably leads to getting myself into some pretty weird and sometimes frightening situations. Join me on my journey, where I take you through my misadventures as a guide of 1,001 things not to do.

This next story takes place during the summer sandwiched between my freshman and sophomore year of college. I was living in my parents’ house in Chapel Hill that summer, doing pretty much nothing aside from the occasional track workout to keep in shape for the team and the much more frequent all night drinking sessions that had my parents placing bets on what age I was going to die.

It was a typical night, as I sat there plopped in front of the television with my little brother, who was still in high school at the time. I was eyeing my dad’s wine collection, trying to decide which bottle would be least noticeable if it happened to be missing the next morning. Then I got a call on my cell phone. I picked it up and saw that it was my good friend Tim (refer to “Party Fouls” for background on him) calling. He was nice enough to give me twenty minutes notice that he was coming to pick me up for a weekend trip to Wilmington, a nice beach town about three hours away on the coast of North Carolina.

I try to decline, but I know that it’s of no use. Two girls are tagging along as well and he’s never going to let me hear the end of it if he gets stuck watching Oprah and gossipping about whether or not some random girl at the bar’s jeans make her butt look fat or not all weekend.

I hang up and start packing… Some jeans and a shirt nice enough to not induce girls throwing me spare change when I approach them? Check. Two bottles from my dad’s wine collection? Check. And I even decide to let my new friends in on a new hobby of mine just to show them how cool I was becoming….cigarrettes. What can I say? I’m a generous fella.

Before I know it, I hear Tim’s horn blaring, announcing his presence. It’s almost midnight and my parents understandably weren’t big fans of his actions and yell at me to hurry and shut him up before I’m never again welcome in their home. I open the door, bag in hand, ready for a weekend full of adventures at the beach. I say farewell to my brother, who predictably tells me that he hopes I die in a car crash on the way there, and I’m off.

I make my way to Tim’s jeep and hop in, introducing myself to the fine, young ladies in the vehicle. I had met Diana once or twice before (she’s also included in “Party Fouls”), but the other girl was unfamiliar to me. I learned that her name was Annie and that she graduated from the same high school as I had the year after.

Now I know what you’re thinking. Two guys, two girls. You probably think that it’s gonna be hook up central when we get there. But at the time, I was pretty into this one girl I’d been talking to in town. We’d only known each other since the beginning of the summer and our relationship only spanned about the course of a month, but that’s actually (and this still holds true at my current age of 25) a remarkably long time for me to be seeing a woman without some sort of relationship-ending fallout.

So I was going on this trip with no intentions of trying anything funny with either of these girls. Continue reading

1,001 Things Not to Do: Party Fouls

My name is not important. I’m a regular guy, like you and the people that you know. Only with two big exceptions. 1) I possess more ruggedly handsome features than you and 2) Although I’m a generally intelligent person, I tend not to put a lot of thought into my actions, which inevitably leads to getting myself into some pretty weird and sometimes frightening situations. Join me on my journey, where I take you through my misadventures as a guide of 1,001 things not to do.

It’s your typical lazy early Saturday afternoon and I’m doing what most college guys are doing. I’m relaxing on my couch, sitting back, and watching some college football, nursing a hangover with a case of cheap beer. Well, “hangover” may not be an accurate description, as most kids at that age are constantly alternating between a state of “hung over”, “drunk”, “wasted”, and then “hung over” all over again, and you’re never really fully immersed in any one state.

So, I’m hanging out in my room, flipping through the channels on my television, and the UNC/NC State game captures my attention for a bit. My friend Kyle stops by. We shoot the shit for a bit and he makes a suggestion that we should head to Chapel Hill, since it looks like UNC’s about to beat NC State and there might be some celebration parties around campus that night as it’s somewhat of a rivalry. I think it over and it adds up. Chapel Hill’s my home town, it’s about an hour drive, there are flocks of attractive women in that town, and we have plenty of places to crash at for the night. We round up a couple of others and we head out. Chapel Hill, here we come.

The other two guys that tag along are the Nicks, as in they’re both named Nick. I had met them through Kyle, who introduced them to me as “Nick” and “b-Nick”, because naturally one is black and that was his quick fix way of differentiating them. “b-Nick” is not particularly fond of this nickname, which is pronounced “Nick”, just with a slight “b” sound preceding it, but it stuck anyways. Despite the fact that he’s a block of muscle, being a former division one point guard, standing around 5’9 and 210 pounds, and he could rearrange any of our faces if he so pleased, he allowed us to call him that. He’s a good spirited guy, nothing but nice, and we’re happy to have him with us. The other Nick is a smooth talker Jersey kid who spoke as soft and reassuring as the game that he spat to the ladies. He doesn’t look or act like a kid from the shit-hole that is New Jersey, but he does wear a hat either sideways or backwards most of the time to keep in touch with his roots, despite the fact that he’s equally as likeable as b-Nick. We all get in Kyle’s SUV and we’re off.

I decide that now’s a good time to check my bank account and withdraw some cash to see how much damage I can afford in Chapel Hill. We stop by an ATM on the way to the interstate and I get out of the car, waiting behind a very large man who stands at least 6’6. I step up to the ATM, enter my code, and withdraw a pathetically meager amount of money from my shriveled checking account when I hear from behind me “Hey!…..Don’t you know to never stand behind somebody at an ATM?” I turn around and it’s the aforementioned very heavily muscular, tall man that was before me in line. His car’s running and he’s in the passenger seat as his driver appears to have stopped the car momentarily just so his friend could talk some shit to me from the passenger seat. Pffft, I pay him hardly any attention, as I give him an unimpressed sneer, turning back around to grab my fifty dollars from the machine. I had quit the track team last year and I’m now a man of somewhat impressive stature who had been kickboxing for the last year or so….I can handle my shit. I’m a former D-1 athlete in the prime of his life….I can handle myself, right?

Wrong.

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1,001 Things Not to Do: Koh Chang Part One

So I believe that I left off my last story mentioning that Tim and I were going back to the guest house for a couple hours of sleep before waking up and taking the next bus out of Bangkok. I lied.

We found ourselves back in our guesthouse, still a bit rattled from just having been arrested.  Sleep was the last thing on our minds. “Let’s go get some beers for the bus ride.” Tim suggests. “Now?” I inquire in an incredulous tone.

It’s not even seven o’clock in the morning and the sun came up less than an hour ago. I’ve been awake for about 24 straight hours, I just got off a plane seven hours ago, and this guy thinks I’m down to get drunk a SECOND time in the span of six hours? Damn right I am.

Tim packs his shit, we check out of the hotel where I paid ten bucks for his two nights’ stay (I now have a little more than 30 dollars to my name until I can get my ATM card working again, for the record), and we head down the road to the nearest travel agent to get a bus ride set up to get us close to our destination of Koh Chang island.

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Sihanoukville, Cambodia: Settling into a lifestyle of ridiculousness

My Country, My Beer.

Author’s Note: This is the seventh installment in this series of stories. If you have not already, it is suggested that you go back and read from the first story labeled “Justice not so blind in Bangkok” (also in “1,001 Things Not To Do” section) to be able to fully appreciate the awesomeness of this series.

We’re finally there. Sihanoukville.

I hadn’t really slept. It was one of those semi-conscious states, drifting in and out of sleep, dictated by the pattern of the van going over pot holes. But either way, I felt refreshed, as the van stopped on the side of the road, in front of a guest house named “Mick and Craigs”. We’d already paid the van driver, so we grabbed our stuff out of the back and wished our drivers a safe trip back. They make a U-Turn that would get you an expensive traffic violation ticket back home, and drive back out of our lives. It’s a little bit unusual for me to be spending hours and hours alongside various people, only to watch them fade away. But I was getting used to it.

While I was focusing on such worthless meanderings, Tim remarks that this Mick and Craigs joint has got a bar. I peer into the establishment and take note of an empty bar with a pool table being kept by a female Cambodian bartender, who appeared to be twirling her hair while staring into the blank distance, to keep herself occupied.
I scan a look at next door and see a bustling guesthouse, full of rowdy Westerners enjoying loud music, copious amounts of alcohol, and seemingly having a great time.

I begin to formulate an argument for why I think checking out next door might be a better idea, but Tim’s face is reminiscent of a little kid who finds a collar-less puppy while playing outside, asking his parents “Can I keep him!?!?”

It’s getting quite dark, I’m in a submissive state due to being in a good mood since an entire day of traveling from a Thai island to a Cambodian beach town has finally ended, and that I had the assurance that we would not be sharing a bed anymore.

I give in. “Fine. Let’s check in.” I say, as we walk up the steps, bags in hand.

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1,001 Things Not to Do: West Virginia Sucks

My name is not important. I’m a regular guy, like you and the people that you know. Only with two big exceptions. 1) I possess more ruggedly handsome features than you and 2) Although I’m a generally intelligent person, I tend not to put a lot of thought into my actions, which inevitably leads to getting myself into some pretty weird and sometimes frightening situations. Join me on my journey, where I take you through my misadventures as a guide of 1,001 things not to do.

westvirginia1

West Virginia Sucks

My friend Jared was my roommate during sophomore year in college and I had no plans for that Thanksgiving break as the date approached. He invited me to his house in northern Virginia and I took up his offer. Now this drive was a brutal, five hour trip from from the Piedmont of North Carolina to the north pole of Virginia in his broken down, heater-less, piece of shit car. To make it go by quicker, we did what most college kids would do. Drank 40′s on our way to keep warm.

The tone was officially set for my trip. We finally arrived, half-drunk, and it soon became clear that I was only the third biggest alcoholic in the house. Jared was already an accomplished drinker, but his mother was the surprise darkhorse. She was a single mom who had an always half filled wine glass seemingly duct-taped to her hand. I was fascinated with her interactions with Jared, as they constantly traded dead baby jokes and the like over casual dinner. Jared always struck me as sort of an odd-ball, but this offered a glimpse into his upbringing that I had always suspected.

The next evening, he tells me that we’re going to a party. Fantastic. I enjoyed hanging around their house, studying the world’s most unique mother-son relationship, but I was ready to start binge drinking and making bad decisions.

We drove twenty miles out to the middle of nowhere and turns out it’s a bonfire party, filled with the kind of north Virginian people you’d expect. I already knew how this night was gonna turn out. Four guys to every girl there, about fifty people total, with thick southern accents reigning supreme. Time to start drinking and pretending I’m somewhere worthy of my presence.

After about a couple of hours of helping myself to everybody else’s drinks, they started to not taking very kindly to the asshole drinking all of their beer and making sibling sexual relations jokes at their expense. Continue reading

1,001 Things Not To Do: Koh Chang Part 2, ‘Survive and Advance’

Things you need to know: If this is the first story of mine that you have read, you may want/need to check out “Koh Chang Part 1″ (and preferably “Justice not so Blind in Bangkok“, which is the travel blog’s first installment) for a summary of events leading up to the epicness that is the piece of prodigious literature that you are about to experience.

Basically, for those too lazy to click their mouse three times, the rough summation of events that took place in the last story is that my good friend Tim and I have made our way from Bangkok to Koh Chang island, which is right off the coast of southeastern Thailand, close to the Cambodian border. We have met a girl named Natasha who is staying at the same resort as us. We have a very limited sum of money between us thanks to our ATM cards that don’t work. Tim and I have also managed to get separated in our first night at the bars, where i went off with some New Zealand (or South African, can’t quite recall) girl for a night of unsatisfying sex. I passed out in a hammock (which I managed to break) in the resort lobby, which is where we are left off.

Koh Chang Part 2

I don’t want to open my eyes. The back of my head hurts. Although I’m quite familiar with this painful sensation, as I spend roughly half of my waking hours drunk, and the hangover soon inevitably follows, this was a different kind of pain. It feels eerily similar to the night that I got in an extremely drunken wrestling match with my friend from college and the back of my head got multiple up and close encounters with the floor.

I also don’t want to open my eyes because I can feel the daylight trying its damndest to seep through my eyelids and irritate my already high annoyed corneas, thanks to me sleeping with my contacts in twice in the span of less than twelve hours.

But I have no choice. I feel a very dull, but firm and swift jab at my right rib. It does not feel pleasant. I open my eyes, through the crusty eye boogers that have almost sealed the sides shut, and though I am in a mostly enclosed guesthouse-ish lobby area, it takes a couple of seconds for my tortured baby blues to ascertain the details of what is causing my ribs this unbearable pain.

I shield my eyes from the sunlight, peering upwards at this figure holding a long and thin object, with a glaring look on its face. After a couple of seconds where my eyes finally have the strength to make eye contact with this figure, I immediately recognize it as the lady-boy that had checked us into our room yesterday, holding a torturous broom stick in his hand.

“You get up now!” He/she barks at me. My head is currently rested on the wooden floor, with my feet at about a 45 degree angle to my torsoe, wrapped up in, and stuck in what’s left of the ruined hammock. He jabs my midsection again with the broom, and a sharp pain once again ensues.

I get that I am not supposed to be sleeping here. I get that I have somehow managed to destroy a hammock. But if this fucking sexually confused, broom stick wielding, ten dollar-a-night pole smoker pokes me one more time with this broom stick, then I’m going to try my best to ignore the female features on this freak, and start wailing on him.

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Fanbase stereotypes: Because regardless of what the Asian woman driver might tell you, they’re fun.

As somebody who interacts frequently with college basketball fans of most every variety, one cannot help but notice certain similarities amongst fanbases from time to time. The following are my observations.

- Kentucky: Fans of arguably the sport’s most successful program have little else to hang their hat on, aside from their two bottom row teeth. They can usually be found thousands of feet in the air, with their heads in clouds, pretending their players aren’t scumbags, their coach (John Calipari) has an ounce of integrity, and masturbating to early 90′s Ashley Judd VHS movies. (DVD’s coming to Kentucky this summer!) Speaking of Ashley Judd, their posterchild, she’s got more in common with UK basketball than just fandom, as she is also overexposed, overrated, and outdated.

- North Carolina: Another top of the line program, but whose coach sheds more tears in end of season pressers than a daycare serving habanero chili peppers for lunch. This fanbase, in fact, has embraced this femininity, but taken it a step further, contributing to Chapel Hill’s enormous gay population. There are actually very few discernable qualities between an actual gay North Carolina basketball fan and the pink polo shirt wearing, Croakies-laced sunglass sporting toolbox. This UNC basketball fan can frequently be spotted in shopping malls, in the eternal search for UNC basketball shorts that doesn’t make his ass look too fat.

- Duke: Amazing how Duke and UNC can be separated by eight short miles, yet be worlds apart in terms of fanbase makeup. To start off, their coach, and I don’t have to tell the casual basketball what his name is, as I believe he’s working on his 47th commercial by now, looks like a rat. And the average Duke fan has the social skills of just that. If you want to find a Duke fan (this scenario has never actually occurred), try your local Magic: The Gathering tournament, or in a high school locker, having gotten his lunch money stolen for the third time that week.

I believe you have my Duke basketball tickets?

- North Carolina State: NC State fans are quite the venemous bunch, stemming either from having no basketball related success to celebrate for the last quarter century, or a new endorphin-sapping ingredient SKOAL has put in their products. You’re likely to find NC State fans, crowded around their livestock, engaging in a discussion on whether the the university is a football or basketball school, fluctuating from year to year depending on which team is less pathetic at the given time. One cannot find an NC State fan in bathroom stalls.

Not your typical NC State fans....but aren't you glad I put this picture up anyways?

- Maryland: There’s a reason that the University of Maryland’s Comcast Center is one of the hardest places to come away with a victory if you’re an opposing team. They do usually put a pretty good team on the floor, but a lot of it has to do with the fact that opposing players take every jumpshot, fearing a AA battery could be pelted at their head in mid shooting stroke. Coupled with the unoriginal obscene chants coming from the student section that reflects the IQ that the average UMD basketball fan is left with after their ritual two day cocaine bender pregaming ceremonies.

- Wake Forest: I’m still not convinced that there are actually any Wake Forest fans in existence. My brother graduated from WFU ’04 (he’s a UNC fan) and I heard a rumor through his best friend at undergrad that somebody showed up at Joel Coliseum to cheer on the Wake Forest basketball team. Regardless, WFU fans are as few and far between as their basketball teams’ accomplishments.