Alex's bachelor party (or how we got our asses kicked by 8-year old girls playing paintball)
Another, er, 10 22 days behind on this one (!!), but *three weeks ago* (as in August 5th) two car loads of dudes headed up to Vermont in celebration of Alex's last days of bachelorhood (13 days and counting as of today).
Cast of characters included Alex's friends from high school (Oliver + Nuti), some friends from college (Gabe + Kevin), friends from grad school (me + Manlio) and a softball friend with a busted wrist (Matt).
We skipped work on Friday, choosing instead to face the Thursday night commuter traffic. Alex and I both drove in, parking in the shitty ripoff lot just down the street from work. A wink and a smile to the not-so-sweet-sweet parking attendant girl and my "oversized vehicle" came in weighing $10 bucks cheaper than Alex's truck.
We took 87 thru Albany (as opposed to the 95 -> Wendys -> Mohegan Sun -> 91 route) which may actually be better come ski season (Will + J, take note) as there's a 24-hours supermarket on the way up. Team RR zoomed ahead at speeds exceeding 90 mph, giving us a comfortable lead over Team Pliot. Comfortable enough to hit the 24-aisle supermarket, pick up the biggest pack of ground beef you've ever done seen (+5 lbs!) and still feel as if we'd beat the other crew to the house by 45 minutes.
... which was actually more of a they-beat-us-by-30-seconds scenario. We were at the house by 12p and finished off a good 60 beers by 10am the next morning.
Speaking of which, I'm not sure whether to thank Jonathan (and the rowdy crew he brought up for *another* bachleor party the week before) or to thank the sweet old Grandma + Anne combo - but to whomever left two fridges full of beer behind, Alex's Wedding Party salutes you.
On a sidenote, weather = perfect. Three days worth in fact. Teendrama fans have seen this view prob 20 times, but suck it, here is it is again.
So, eight dudes in the woods for a weekend? What's to do?
Activity #1. Horseshoes! A few months back, JJ went to VT and built a horseshoe pit (not sure why exactly). I gave him shit for it because, well, he poured the cement (and the metal rod that sticks into the cement) pretty much in the middle of the driveway (foreshadowing for some drama this winter for sure)... but the horseshoe pit turned out to be pretty rad.
I put my digicam on the line to bring you this expose from deep within the land of fallen horeshoes. [video]
After a few rounds, someone noticed the clumps of hair left over (and blowing around the driveway) from JJ's sweet new haircut. Gross.
Activity #2. Fix the halfpipe!. Ha. I recruited poor Kevin into behing my carpenter's assistant on Friday morning as we set off to fix the halfpipe that was built last summer (winter thaw = lots of water damage). Two sheets of masonite = $50 bucks. By the way, I still suck.
Skate or die in my Bo Jackson's(, motherfucker!)
Activity #3. Vistit Vermont's Finest Restaurants! We sent Big Dig to scope out some local restaurants the weekend before. He booked us up at the West Dover Inn, home to the pansiest strawberry margarita you've ever seen.
A group shot, but no shot of the food? What gives? I had the steak.
ps: Hey Kevin, try to look more hardcore next time, okay?
Just for some cast-of-characters background: Alex + Gabe.
And Manlio + Matt.
Overall, Dover Inn = pretty good. My favorite part is when our waitress offered Alex some bachelor advice in the form of the story of her husband leaving her for some girl he met on The Yahoo Messenger.
Activity #4. Midnight Horseshoes! Oh, back to giving shit to JJ about the horseshoe pit, so he's up there with some friends last weekend, playing horesehoes at 4am (!) - all while our nice old neighbors (who were in VT for their ladies' golf retreat) were fast asleep. Long story short: neighbors call my parents at 4am to complain. Jonathan shoots bottle rockets at their hourse. Golfing ladies retaliate with a 9-iron to Jonathan's jeep. (the end)
ps: I made up 3/4 of that. The exciting conclusion was J apologizing with a bottle of wine.
Wait, so what were we talking about? Or horseshoes. Yeah, we played at 4am. No neighbors = a 9-iron free weekend!
Activity #5. Asshole! I have the worse luck. Oh, we played spoons too.
By this time, everyone is 12 beers deep. Special thanks to Oliver for paying us a late night visit in his tightie-whities.
Shots. Rainert loves the tequila.
And more shots. I actually half puked this one up. DPS = hates the tequila ("it tastes like birthday!")
Activity #6. Beruit! Ha, as I'm re-reading this, it's sounds like the Frat Monkey Olympics. Dens + Manlio vs. Alex + Gabe. We started strong, I swear...
Saturday morning. We hit up Dot's Diner just down the street for some delicious breakfast heros (think bacon egg and cheese on a sub roll). Oliver hit up Cassie (our sweet sweet waitress) with an invite to "hang out" later. Sketchy. Even sketchier is that he delivered said invite via that stoopid The Streets impersonation (listen to a taste here).
Er, we never heard back from her.
Activity #7. Paintball! You ever played paintball before? I have. Once. In high school when we made a Student Council fieldtrip out of it. We figured it would be pretty rad - Senior Student Council vs. Junior Student Council. We'll shoot each other, laugh a bit and have a grand old time.
Of course, that's not the way it works out. You think it's going to be just you and your friends running around, but when you roll up into the paintball place, you find a bunch of weathered old Navy Seals hanging around. And instead of Seniors vs. Juniors, it goes more like "Hey, how about you young kids vs. salty old Navy Seals?". And then you end up getting terrorized, ambushed and fired on from close range leaving welts the size of golf balls all over. So that was fun.
Anyway, so we hit up the paintball fields @ Stratton (25 mins away) with the same-style though of some three-on-three paintball. I warned everyone of my paintball horror story on the ride up, thinking that we'd probably be pretty likely to have our three-on-three dreams shattered by some drunken off-season hunters.
In preparation of the carnage, I went the snowboard-pads-under-my-shorts route. (250 feet per second will easily shoot your eyes out nuts off.)
Manlio went the good ol' sock-in-the-nuts route.
And so our competition... not the ex-Navy Seals we were fearing, but instead some high school kids and their middle school sisters. Outnumbered seven vs. five? Sure, we can handle that. (read: "Ha, we're going to SLAY you!")
Walking into the woods we actually felt a little guilty about the 250-feet-per-second beatdowns we were about to lay on these kids.
I mean, look at us! Can we be any more bad ass? We're like a team of Solid Snakes!
Overhead: "And don't think I won't shoot you in the face, little girl!"
Gabe, getting our troops fired up as the refs are about to blow the whistle. Quick background: we play in a roped off area of the woods, about the size of a football field. The woods are sprinkled throughout with hiding places - e.g three pieces of wood nailed together (the "saloon" or "salon"), a stack of tires ("post office"), some sandbags, etc. There's two type of elimination games to play: straight up shoot-everyone-else-and-you-win and capture the flag.
We started off with some shoot-everyone-else-and-you-win. Even stacked seven-against-five, here's a cocky Gabe telling the world how it's about to go down. video]
ps: five = we had two players on the DL: Matt (broken hand) and Kevin (left Fri morning for a wedding in NYC).
After the first game, we realized the kids were not going down easy. Actually, um, we got *smoked* by Team Middle School.
Our biggest problem: We lacked a clear strategy, while they had three girls stationed in the one of the makeshift forts each game just firing, firing, firing away. And while we were pinned down, the older kids would flank us and shoot us in the head. Exhibit A: Alex's beloved Yankees hat.
It didn't help that these kids were also stocked with ammo (like, canisters of paintballs strapped to their waists) while we were running around with about 100 shots each. [video]
Not that we didn't put out a heroic effort. We actually won one of the three games (a round of capture the flag, after the other team traded us a whiny + bossy 14 year-old who - fourtinately for us - ran around with three painball refills).
The big Medal of Honor goes to Oliver who, during a heroic mad dash through gunfire, attempted to dive over a river and into one of the safehouses (er, pile of sandbags)... only to actually tag a digger into the river (and then a paintball to the head).
I'm also going to give myself a +1 for pegging one of the kids in the head as he was pinning down Alex + Gabe with unlimited ammo. From like 50 feet away! Fucking yeah, Big Buck Hunter skillz represent!
After three games, the middle school kids finally decided we weren't worth the challenge (or, they just ran out of ammo). So, onto the X-Course(tm) - some competition-grade paintball field where instead of playing in the woods, you run around an open field which has a bunch of inflatable obstacles to hide behind.
X-Course = better as it's faster. Games take 5 minutes intead of 15 minutes. With fewer places to hide, there's more running around and firing (like the old-school Lazer Tag days). With fewer obstacles (trees, rocks) you also can kind-of see the paintballs whizzing by you (giving you the sense that you can actually dodge them, Keanu style)
Alex shot me in the face. I could actually see it coming.
Now while this looks bad, it actually didn't hurt at all. Getting hit on the arm or back, however...
... leaves a welt the size of a quarter. (poor Oliver got stuck trying to sneak around the ground the X-Course, letting Manlio and Gabe just unload on him from close range. I saw it coming, bringing back the same "Oh man, this is going to hurt" memories from my Student Council vs. Navy Seals days.
Okay, so Saturday night? What's left to do?
Activity #8. A Festival of Meats!. Not sure what to grill for dinner? Buy a little of everything! Team Alex + Gabe came back from the local Shaw's with pork, sausage, steaks, chicken, ribs and a little Aunt Jemima. (Did I miss anything?)
One way ticket to the Meat Sweats.
And an arial view of the festival of meats.
Saturday night. Our ambitious "let's drink the two 30-packs we just bought!" plans were put on hold due to a Meat Sweats -> Meat Coma 7-hit combo.
Instead, in between Direct TV, naps and talking about bachelor party stripper fokelore, we ended up Googling the girls we fantasized about taking to Winter Carnival in 7th grade. I had to ping Manlio to ask how it happened:
We were watching something (but I can't remember what it was), and Alex says, "That guy looks like Fred Savage's best friend from the Wonder Years."
And Oliver says, "Oh, the guy who ended up being Marilyn Manson."
And I say, "That's an urban legend."
So we argue about that for a few minutes (not actually coming to any conclusion), and I say, "Speaking of Wonder Years co-stars, the girl who played Winnie Cooper used to come to Penn a lot when I was there, she had a good friend in one of the fraternities on campus."
And then you said, "Winnie Cooper naked. Google it."
If this is your type of thing (and Mom, I swear this is *not* my thing!), you may want to check out celebritymoviearchive.com. I mean, if you can find Josie Davis on H, I'm sure you can find Tracy Gold in a Princess Leia costume if you Google hard enough.
Er, Kevin phoned in this request from Japan.
Wait, last photo? For real? We packed up and left early Sunday afternoon. An uneventful ride home, minus the road rage we experienced on the West Side Highway where Johnny Tokyo Drift nearly slammed into us (and we retaliated like grown ups by blocking him in behind a tow-truck at 60mph). Manlio, sorry I almost made you throw up.
And this is where I pimp out Alex + Manlio + Kevin's recaps. By the way, this pic is from Manlio's Flickr set - where the title pic is these two girls making out. When did this happen?!? (false advertising!). Anyway: