“What happened to your face?” Grant asked me matter-of-factly.
“I got slapped … twice.”
Twelve of us had stayed the night in the Power and Light district in Kansas City for our friend’s bachelor party. The morning after was a mess.
The night before had started off well … sort of. We carpooled from Lawrence only to have one of the cars — the one I was riding in — break down.
Once in Kansas City, we rendezvoused at the Kona Grill. Through rounds of drinks and delicious food, we tallied a $400 tab, laughing all the while at this poor, depressing couple seated beside us.
Whether or not the guy was a tool is difficult to say, but he certainly looked and acted like one. The girl, on the other hand, sat silent with this stale look on her face that could be closely related to an infant’s after having its first taste of cough medicine — and I mean real cough medicine.
Clearly she’s disgusted with the whole situation, and worse, she’s having such a bad time that she’s perfectly content not hiding it. I loved it. Then she pulled out her phone and began the texting, while he sat silent, checking out the groom job on his manicured nails. Wes Anderson couldn’t have directed a more perfect scene … well, maybe Wes, but not Opie.
Matt, the bachelor, was instructed by his little darling not to have more than six drinks and to check in every two hours. We topped the drink limit at dinner and I changed the key-lock on his phone to prevent the check-ups. Matt’s a good guy; I think she could handle trusting him that night. We were just going out to the bars at Power and Light; nothing too crazy. Though at the first bar, there were a couple random people frantically fornicating in the corner. Classy.
Eventually the group was split and got stuck with two flower girls from Wisconsin, who attached themselves to us. I then led us to the piano bar. It rocked, but halfway through some song I, holding their cameras, got lost again. Being from small-town Wisconsin, they assumed I stole their cameras, and they freaked out, running around the whole area trying to find me.
Jackie, the more competent of the two girls, found me at the same piano bar, sitting down, waiting for anyone after having already searched the bar several times.
She slapped me.
“Where have you been?!” she asked.
“Right here. Where the hell did you go?” I said, rubbing my face.
“We thought you stole our stuff so we reported you to the cops.”
“Thank you,” I smiled at her.
“We gotta go. If the cops find you they’ll probably arrest you and I can’t imagine what Betsy [Wisconsin girl No. 2] is doing right now. I’m sure she’s crying somewhere.”
And she was. She had found the rest of my friends and, refusing to let go of their arms, sat there crying. My friend Kyle didn’t know what was going on, but he assured her I had not taken their stuff. She didn’t care.
So Kyle called me and eventually Jackie and I tracked them down only to find some were in line for the mechanical bull, while Kyle was off at the side, obviously annoyed and little Betsy was crying her eyes out … until she saw me, of course. At that instant the tears ceased and she marched right up to me, hit me in the chest a couple times and slapped me good across the face. Beautiful. The inside of my lip was cut open.
I don’t know how I got singled out in all that mess, but the weirdest part was, at the end of the night, Matt was the only sober one out of the lot. So we shoved a few more shots down his throat before going up to our rooms where we were unexpectedly faced with the task of kicking two prostitutes out of one of them.
“What the hell was that about, Ernie?” we asked the one guy we found in the room.
“Hey man, I was just hanging out here and those girls just came into my room and started soliciting. I didn’t want anything to do with it.”
Right, Ernie. I loved that he actually used the word “soliciting.” It was just a weird, weird night. I wonder if the cops are still looking for me …