In January of 2001, I joined a sorority that embodied Regina George‘s life view and essentially bought my ticket atop the social hierarchy at college. The pool of eligible guys was narrowed through this natural selection process and that’s how I met TheGoon. He was part of our Greek counterparts and they were invincible – they partied like Jim Belushi, behaved like Tucker Max, matriculated like Doogie Howser, and spent money like they already had their Goldman signing bonuses. The most mature and level-headed of the bunch fell from a third story window and lost a kidney during a frat party; the rest of them were straight up maniacs.
THE FIRST “DATE”
Once I earned my Greek letters, my calendar quickly filled up with date paties, formals, charity functions, and the like. Since college coupling is wildly disorganized, these engagements at least provided some structure for “dating.” In March 2002, I was a sophomore with a Crush Date Party on the horizon and I invited TheGoon (by this time a senior) as my date. TheGoon was exceptional at catching a party in its natural decline and then sqeezing another 5 hours out of it before finally letting it die at sunrise. So, I wasn’t at all surprised when he and his housemates arranged an after party off campus once the date party ended.
I’m going to take a short break here to opine on an important topic: Which activities go with booze and which activities don’t. There are so many activities that call for a spirit of some sort – a julep at a horse race, a glass of champagne at a wedding, a bloody on a morning flight, a pina at the beach, a whisky at a closed-casket-open-bar Irish funeral, a two-martini lunch on a twos-day (get it?)… the list just goes on and on and on. There are really only 3 activities that decidedly do not go with drinking and they are 1) driving, 2) hotel bubble baths <sorry Whitney – too soon?>, and 3) shooting guns.
Back to the after party, TheGoon and I decided to shoot BB guns. We set up targets against the front wall inside their house – and even though I knew better – shooting the targets turned out to be pretty fun. After two rounds, this seemed like a reasonable activity for a whole group of people at 4AM. I got up to re-set the targets at the front of the room for the next round of participants. That’s when it happened. I heard TheGoon scream out and felt very thin blood trickle down my leg before I computed what had occurred. I’d been shot in the thigh and I was crumpling to the ground.
And that’s the story of the first time I was shot down by a date – both literally and figuratively.