That something was VODKA.
It all began when I met Agent Alice for a couple of cocktails in Chelsea.
"Should we get some snacks?" Alice pointed at the appetizer menu.
"Good idea," I launched into a mini-monologue about how smart it was not to drink on an empty stomach. I am all about not doing something so exceedingly dumb.
The waitress, who was approximately seven feet tall and built like a toothpick, brought me a bright yellow martini that tasted like spiked lemonade. Yummy! And dangerously non-alcoholic-tasting.
Dinner consisted of six oysters and a spring roll the size of my thumb. This was okay, because I wasn't planning on having more than two drinks, and was possibly going to have a snack when I got home.
What I didn't count on was this second drink. Agent Alice and I decided to go hardcore and get vodka martinis. The last time I had a vodka martini, four years ago, I ended up having unprotected sex with my first love on my best friend's futon. One reason why I generally stay away from these dangerous cocktails.
The waitress (Did I mention how tall she was? So tall! And so skinny! Eat something, missy!) brought out these martinis... really it was about a liter of chilled vodka poured into a glass the size of my head. With three olives. Ooh, I love olives! This counted as not drinking on an empty stomach, right?
Agent Alice and I proceeded to get toasted. Luckily, we parted company before 8:00pm, so I had plenty of time to sober up and fly right. Except that I was several blocks away from Bar K, the bar Willow and I love so much.
Oh, Vodka, the things you make me do.
Some crazy impulse made me stop into Bar K. Just one drink, I told myself.
I hardly ever go to bars solo, but this one is a small place, the bartenders know me, and it's easy to strike up a conversation with other patrons.
I was having a good time and just finishing up my vodka-cranberry when I turned around and saw Charlie. This wasn't so strange, since it was the same bar where I ran into him six days ago. However, I usually visit Bar K twice a month, not twice a week. He found it a bit odd as well, but was thrilled to see me. He bought me drink (are we all keeping count?) and told how he wished he had gotten my number, how glad he was to run into me, etc.
I was under the suspicion that Charlie was coked up again. He kept asking,
"Can you hang?"
It was only 9:00pm or so, so I said sure. Hey, he was cute, attentive, and remembered little details about me, like my nickname and where I was born. Why not?
Charlie bought a second round of drinks, and we had a good laugh over last week's narcotic incident. He asked if I wanted to go get some food.
"That would be a very good idea," I nodded.
"Okay, how about we have one more round, then we'll go."
That was a very bad idea.
Oh, I should confess that Charlie and I made out a little bit at the bar. Let's bear in mind that I was drunk as all get-out and hadn't kissed a boy in over a month. And we all know my weakness for tipsy make-out sessions in bars.
Charlie kept disappearing, probably to do more coke or call his dealer or something. I didn't see him for a while, so I finished my drink and left the bar.
I must have gone into a deli at some point, because I found myself on the subway eating ranch-flavored Wheat Thins. I do remember being very excited that all of a sudden Wheat Thins had a ranch flavor (when did that happen?).
At some point during the ride, I realized it would be a miracle if I made it home without being sick in public. To make things even more surreal, I ran into a friend from high school on the train. I told HS Hailey how drunk I was and how I thought I would puke at any moment. She offered to let me come home with her and crash on her couch. I thanked her, but said I could manage the two extra subway stops.
I made it the rest of the way home without incident. Oh god, I had crossed over into the dark side of being drunk. The dry mouth, the dizziness, the sickening, unbearable nausea.
Up came the six oysters, one spring roll, three olives, and unknown quantities of ranch-flavored Wheat Thins.
Today I am nursing one of the biggest motherfucking hangovers of my life. How could you do this to me, Vodka? I thought we were friends.
The moral of the story?
Eat before you drink, kids. I mean, like, a real meal. And don't order vodka martinis the size of your head.