My BFF Taught Me How To Drink- By Kym Smith
The summer I finally got my picture ID (since I didn’t have a driver’s license yet) my best friend Kaye decided she would take me out on the town. Never mind that the last words out of my mom’s mouth were, “NO Drinking!” We were out to prove a point, by God we were going through with this thing. The plan had been in the works for quite some time, Kaye’s brother worked at a honky-tonk bar in south Ft Worth, she considered herself the authority on drinking. What I couldn’t have known and should have learned that night was this night would go down in history as the worst yet funniest drunk story in my long history of drinking; I should have learned something about mixing my alcohols, however, that lesson did not stick. I like every other teenager on the planet, considered it a rite of passage to go out drinking once I became the legal age. At that time in Texas, legal was eighteen. I had never had a drink in my life unless you consider sneaking sips from the glasses of Tom Collins I would occasionally make for my dad. My parents were champion drinkers; my mom had one of those nifty little beer coolers where the keg goes inside, and the tap is part of the bar top that makes up the cooler. She literally went into the city every week or two to the Miller Brewing Company and had her keg refilled. Or bought a new one, I was a little kid, how do I know how these things work? All I know is we accompanied her, marveling at the giant brewery and all the cool neon beer lights on display. Once we got home, she would roll the keg inside somehow and hook it up to the tap. Dad kept his liquor and bar tools on the tiny bar next to the tap. At some point, she became the proud owner of a neon beer sign, probably a gift from the management for all those years of weekly purchases. I could not even stand the smell of beer, Mom’s beers didn’t interest me, so of course, it makes total sense that the first thing I did after procuring my ID was to go purchase a six-pack of beer. Not only that, they didn’t even card me! I was incensed! Regardless, I headed back to Kaye’s car, popped the top off the first bad boy and chugged it like I knew what I was doing. It was gross, so I had another thinking it must need to “grow” on me or something. Nope, not so much. Well, of course that was not the end. Kaye had much bigger plans in store for this lucky girl. I should have been smart enough to sense the doom looming in my future, but no, I was so happy with my newfound freedom I didn’t think about what could possibly be next. The next stop was her brother’s bar, The Daily Double. I had never been to a bar before, even with my parents, in fact, I don’t remember them drinking at a restaurant or anything. They were the at-home or at a friend’s house kind of drinkers. Kaye decided it would be a good idea for me to order something called a “Wild-ass Indian,” which was a mixed drink served in a mason jar that consisted of a shot of everything behind the bar yet tasted like Kool-Aid. I was in trouble then. Walking around the bar like I was cool or something, it never dawned on me that mixing beer with liquor was going to have serious consequences. Kaye was on a mission I tell ya because the next thing I know, I’m puking in the bar’s parking lot and she offers me a cigarette, telling me it would make me feel better. This was my best friend, can I remind yall of that fact right now? I vaguely remember her brother Kent lurking around in the parking lot, possibly checking on us, and Kaye trying to hide from him. She must not have wanted him to know she was trying to corrupt me. What I did not know at the time and didn’t find out until years later was that I am also severely allergic to gin. That must have been one of the ten or so shots that went into the drink. It’s a miracle I ever touched liquor again. After the cigarette, as if I wasn’t dizzy enough already, the world
spun out of control, but I was not giving in. I refused to pussy out on what was supposed to be an epic night, so when Kaye spied the Opry House-an historic movie house at the time, I was not going to refuse the chance to see the latest hit…The Deer Hunter. Unfortunately for me, the only seats left were on the front row, so we literally had to slink as far down in our seats as we could go while staring up at the overly large screen. All that action moving in front of my eyes was evidently more than I could take, I puked again right there on the front row. Laughing at me now, Kaye escorts me to the bathroom, hanging over the stall next to me as I puked some more and asks me if I’m having a good time yet. I was too naïve to know she was messing with me, having a grand ole time at my expense, and so I said yes and that I still wanted to try and watch the movie. We found a seat further back this time, but the motion was still more than I could take, we ended up leaving before the intermission. Had I known it was going to be such a depressing flick, I would have asked for my money back. Back we went to the car which had the beer growing hot in the back seat, so Kaye could drive me home. I dreaded trying to sneak into the house, remembering the warning Mom had left us with. Somehow, I managed to play it cool, kept my head down and walked right past her to my room. She never said a thing, knowing full well I was drunk but never letting on. The next day I had a hangover from hell, she left me alone to sleep it off, never mentioning it again until days later in passing. Of course, I lied about it, I didn’t want further escapades with Kaye cut off forever. Let’s just say though for the record that I never trusted her again to order my cocktails.
Kim Smyth is a freelance blogger, a writer from the DFW Metroplex who lives at home with her hubby Dave and their three furbabies. She runs two blogs, contributes to different publications on Medium and has been published in Therapeutic Thymes and VitaBella magazines.
Find her at https://kimmy1563.com
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