Alright, Still: Utter Sh*t

Friday night. Abram Wiese is down at the bars, as usual, but this time he's got this girl on his arm, this pretty higher ed in black leggings and a purple and white polka dot headband, chanting passionately along with Kanye West's Stronger which is, like, her, like, favorite song ever and Kanye's totally in her top 100 on MySpace. And sure she's a little a vapid, a little too The Hills for Abram, but there they are and he's smoking the cigarettes he swore he was going to quit but feeling fine about the world. The world seems a little more fine in that particular bar haze of ganja smoke and ciggies and the wafting smells of lager and fruity drinks and that kind of juvenile anticipation of that moment where things click and you're standing outside with the girl at bar close and she kisses you and all the utter shit disappears.

So Abram trudged along through the tedium for most of the evening, meeting Leggings plethora of male friends, each one more drunk, more tanned, more whitestripped than the previous one. And they would sort of drift off into conversation about school and how that bitch professor is a total dyke and how SparkNotes saved their ass again, and can you believe how hungover So-and-So was during their presentation. While Leggings and mates chattered away, Abram stood around, puffing his cigarette, scratching the back of his head. He'd want to tear off and find some of his friends, his townie friends who smoked pot in the back of the place and ripped off dumb freshmen from Cities suburbs who somehow ended up here.

Leggings, more shrewd than her choice of ensemble would suggest, would sense Abram, "Abie," wanting to pull away and would put her arm around his waist and pull him into the conversation, usually about music, about his record collections, his rapper friends, his brief stint in a Talking Heads cover band called Byrne Victims.

"I love Talking Heads," said one of Leggings' friends.

"That's cool," Abram would mutter.

"Yeah, they sound just like Modest Mouse. Have you heard of Modest Mouse? They had that song?" Leggings' friend paused and turned to one of his friends. "What's that song dude? That Modest Mouse song."

"I don't know man," the other guy stammered, just finishing his eleventh shot. "I think I'm going to hurl."

"Don't be such a faggoty fag," Leggings' friend said. "Anyway, we used to rock that song all the time during our tippy cup tourney."

"Cool," is all Abram could muster.

"Dude tell him about how you got kicked out of Subway last week," screamed Modest Mouse Lover. "He got kicked out because he went in there and like started demanding his free shot! At Subway! That's so fucking gangsta dude!"

"I'm going to go hurl, outside," said the friend, rushing out the doors.

"He's such a little bitch," Modest Mouse Lover sighed in a near parental tone of voice. "Anyway, so you and Leggings huh?"

"Yeah, me and Leggings," Abram said with a nod.

"She's good people. Classy girl. Strictly over the clothes on the first date."

Modest Mouse put his arm around Abram for a bit, swaying to Sweet Caroline. As he mumbled words until the chorus, Abram caught that wonderful frat-boy-esque stench of Axe Body Spray fighting with Aqua Di Gio for smell supremacy.

"Just don't fuck it up. Or I'll kill you. Or like at least teabag you."

Thinking he was way too lucid for his surroundings, Abram excused himself and went off to the bathroom with some Xanax that he swore he wasn't going to snort next to the pack of cigarettes he swore he wasn't going to smoke. But there he was, in a bathroom stall, with a debit card, crushing up some of the pills in his collection. He paused momentarily, wondering when he had become that guy who ends up snorting drugs in a bar while Cotton-Eyed Joe plays. There used to be a time that he was opposed to drugs and premarital sex and believed in God. And there, in the bathroom, he wondered if he was ever going to be punished for his misdeeds, his utter lunacy. As he did another line, he determined his comeuppance was going to come. So he might as well be numb to it.

"What's going on in here?!" bellowed a loud voice.

Fortunately, or unfortunately depending on how one looks at it, it was not the voice of God but the raspy voice of muscle-tee clad bouncer who promptly yanked Abram out of the stall and out to cops waiting for him.

"Crappity crap crap crap," Abram sighed to himself.

He was in the back of a cop car. Leggings, in her own special stupor, had gleefully waved to Abram as he was escorted out of the bar while she danced on top of a pool table.

"So we're going to test that stuff on your debit card," said a police officer as he got into the driver's seat. "So you might as well just confess."

Abram had been here before once, the back-of-the-cop-car foreplay where they try to scare him into admitting something and therefore be fucked when it comes to a defense. Abram, more tired than actually stand-offish, said nothing.

"You know we're going to find out what this stuff is."

"Okey dokey."

The police car circled around the block a bit. Abram rested his head on the window, looking at the blurry faces of people walking around main street. The police car eventually pulled over to the side. Abram surmised this is when he'd get bitch slap like an episode of Dragnet.

"You're free to go," the cop said begrudgingly as he opened the car door. "But don't think that this is over."

"Thanks?" Abram said to the slamming door and the exhaust fumes as the car pulled away.

It was slightly cold out. He stood in the middle of the street, staring down at the bars in one direction and the residential area in the other. After a moment of hesitation, he turned and started to walk home. Maybe he could catch the drunk bus home. Do I have my cell? Shit, no. Ugh, she's never going to talk to me ever again. He muttered all these things, stomping in the light dusting of snow. Cars occasionally came by, honking like drunk drivers do. But Abram felt safe, since he was walking in the street and not on the sidewalk.

"Abram!" shouted a voice.

It was Leggings and her crew of Modest Mouse lover and Faggoty Fag, all stumbling around in the snow.

"We've been looking for you!" she said cheerfully.


"Leave no drunk behind!" Modest Mouse lover laughed. "Unless it's a faggoty fag who pukes like a bitch."

"Shut up man!"

"So is it true that you were caught smoking crack in the bathrooms," Leggings said as Modest and FF scurried ahead to go make intoxicated snow angels. "That's what they said at the bar and I said bullshit."


"I said Abram is strictly a methhead."


"I'm kidding," she said, punching him in the arm. "So, like, other than, like, your almost jail trip and my friends being, well, them, did you have fun?"

"It was interesting, I'll say that."


"You know," Leggings said, "if you wanted to like make out, I wouldn't use my rape whistle or anything."

"Stole that from the Spark Notes of Romeo and Juliet?" Abram said, leaning in and planting a kiss on her lips.

And there they were, two people on a sidewalk near drunk acquaintances playing in the snow, kissing. And that, my friends, was definitely not utter shit.

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