Monday, February 22, 2010

The Definitive New Haven Post, Part 1

I am having a little trouble digesting and compressing this past weekend into a comprehensible post. A lot of booze. A lot of funny stories. A lot of weird happenings. Official beer count of the trip: 15. Unofficial: eleventy billion. I'll try to group my thoughts together and use bold fonts for the first time. Warm up those eyeballs. You're in for a long read.

Why I Entered the God-forsaken, or Satan-saken, Town of New Haven, CT.

You might know New Haven, CT primarily for its cracked out, aggressive homeless people, but did you know there's also a school there??!! One of them fancy ivy league book learning schools, no less. I believe it's called Yale. Well Yale's law school put on a conference called RebLaw for leftist/progressive/activist lawyers and law students. While I may lean slightly left and think activism is all well and good, I went to RebLaw primarily to drink in another state with a bunch of my friends. There were a lot of legitimate hippies there, as you can imagine. I am a little disappointed that the people in attendance at the conference weren't super weird, but I did see one guy eating a bowl of soup in the middle of an academic panel on education reform. That was pretty weird.

So that's why I was there. Academic conference.

The First Day (Friday)

We got off the train at about 3:30, checked into the hotel, and made our way down to Yale. Went to the aforementioned education reform panel till 5. Then the drinking started. RebLaw had a free "happy hour" in their "cafe" before the key note "speaker." You might think I went to town. Well if you thought this, you also think I'm an idiot, so thanks. No, I only had two beers of indiscriminate origin (they were poured from a Yale pitcher and I didn't bother to ask what they were). I moderated myself because 1) I didn't want to sleep through the key note speaker and 2) the night was young, I didn't want to cap out too soon. Went to the key note speaker then it was off to dinner at a downtown Thai restaurant where I had one Sam Adams with dinner and, in perhaps the most impressive moment of the weekend, our group of about 15 people was able to successfully and painlessly split a large bill for dinner and drinks. Then we went to the RebLaw sponsored party at a bar called Lansdowne. Then things got weird.

Friday Night (Where Things Get Weird)

So things started off fine enough at Lansdowne. Had some beers. I had five official beers here, a combination of Stellas, Sam Adams Noble Pils, and Miller High Lifes purchased for me. I say official because a few halves of beers may have been in there, and due to the complicated round buying scheme we had going, it was hard to tell if I bought myself a round or two of High Lifes, which wouldn't count toward my list, so I decided to go conservative in my count. Lansdowne was your typical bar with a dancing area/dj. The ratio of guys to ladies was ridiculously good for the guys. The crowd seemed like it was mainly RebLaw attendees, so a bunch of nerds. But these nerds were drunk and on the prowl. A girl from a nameless PUBLIC LAW SCHOOL in New York City started talking to me and my friends. We were on our way out to another bar and she asked if she could tag along. "Sure!" we all said in a unified voice. And off we headed to a place called Bar.

Bar is, as my friend Ben noted, four bars rolled into one: 1) A restaurant/bar, 2) A microbrewery, 3) A chill lounge, and 4) A raging house music dance club complete with lasers and strobe lights. You might imagine that I was most interested in 2 and 4. Finally you're right about something!

***If you're not interested in reading about crazy girls quite explicitly propositioning me and my friends, I suggest you skip this next part. I'll let you know when to jump back in.***

I went up the bar to order one of their house brewed beers, a Scotch Ale, that didn't have a name. Apparently they exhausted their creativity in naming their place Bar and didn't have enough left to name their beers. Anyway, while I am ordering at the bar, said NYC girl approaches me and we have the following conversation:

Her: Hey, you're married?
Me: Yup.
Her: Me too, but I'm in an open marriage. If I wasn't I'd just cheat all of the time. So my husband wouldn't mind if we went back to your hotel together.
Me: Uh, my wife probably would.*
End scene.

So that in and of itself, not so weird, right? However, she then proceeds to go introduce herself to my friend Dave, who I was sharing a hotel room with that weekend, and immediately starts discussing how much she loves having sex. Well, Dave is not so interested. Not one to be deterred, this girl immediately proceeds to my friend Jon, who is also in my hotel room for the weekend, and begins a discussion with him about her bisexuality. Did I mention this was all taking place in a ridiculously packed dance club? There were five of us staying in that hotel room. If the other two were with us at the time, I can only imagine they would have been next. Later that evening we would discuss the opportunity for some ultimate friendship building we all passed up, and exactly how many people would have to be involved in order for my wife not to be upset.** Anyway, we closed the place down, getting our dance on with other, not so crazy ladies. Perhaps another weird thing about Bar is that I only had the one beer there. In fairness to me, my official beer count was at nine and my unofficial might have been through the roof.

***Hey! Come on back now, you hear!***

After closing the place down, we ditched the crazy lady in the bar and jumped in some cabs. I apparently chose the wrong cab, because mine made it back to the hotel uneventfully. The other people had to wait a few minutes for a second cab, and in the meantime apparently saw a bunch of fights and cops macing people. New Haven is crazy and its bums, and apparently drunk frat guys, really are super aggressive. We all got back to the hotel around 3, laughed and thought back fondly on our adventures that evening. Then the five of us drifted gently off to sleep.

Join us back here tomorrow, for the thrilling conclusion (and the numbers!) of the Yale misadventures. Here's a preview: "You call yourselves teenagers?" "I'm stuck between a clam and a tomato!" "Academic panels on identity politics!" Enticed? No? Well come back anyway. I need you. You're all I have.

*I texted her immediately there after just to make sure I was right about this. I was.
**I'd imagine six would be enough.

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