Rookie Mistake

Labor Day Weekend.

I think I mentioned that we went to Minnesota; ‘we’ being my mom, step-dad, brother, Zack, Arlo and myself. Oh, but it was perfect weather, many hours on the Mighty Mississippi, good food, great company, and much, much booze. Our families know how to have a good time, people. And a good time was had by all. I had such a good time on Sunday, in fact, that I woke up Monday morning – the morning where I had to get back in the car – with a vicious hangover.

My headache began in the wee hours of the morning; I should have gotten my lazy ass out of bed at 2 a.m. and taken some damn Advil, but instead I rolled over and took off my pants (I know, in the light of day and an ache-free head I’m all “WTF???” too). By around 7:30 the nausea arrived. That’s pretty customary for me, a little drunkstomach before I get some food in there to soak up the ugly. But as the minutes ticked by, I began to realize that this was no ordinary hangover. This was The King Asshole of all Hangover Land.

Lying in the fetal position on my twin bed (oh yes, we got all up that 1950’s shit this weekend) I prayed for Zack to wake up so I could ask him to get me Advil and some water because DEAR CHRIST I WAS PARCHED. But on he slept for another hour and the guilt of having done this to myself – along with the knowledge that he would now be driving most if not all of the way home – kept me from croaking at him in desperation. When he finally did wake at 8:30 I was in baaaad shape. I had decided somewhere around 7:40 that I was never going to leave that bed unless it was to vomit. I’d pulled a blanket over my head to shield my eyes from the incoming sunlight, heat be damned. Every time I changed position my head swam and the pain would move to some other unfortunate part of my brain. I tried to remember what I could have imbibed that would result in such agony, and then I remembered. My stupid, stupid mistake.

I drank beer all day and then switched to red wine around 9 p.m.

What a fucking idiot.

Internet, I drank my face off in college. I admit it. A power hour was my group’s warm-up before going out. I am no rookie boozer and you’d better believe that I MOTHERFUCKING KNOW BETTER.

So I chilled out in bed, waiting for the painkillers to kick in and the stomach churning to subside, hoping no one would come downstairs to witness my gross misfortune or to call me out on the fact that I’d brought the end of days down upon myself.

Eventually, I decided that maybe a shower would help me feel better. I’m a big believer in showers and baths when I’m having stomach issues. I think it’s the relaxation that comes with hot water or something. However, I NEVER use the basement shower at my in-laws’. They have a delicious rainfall shower head in their upstairs bathroom, so I take advantage of that when we visit. On Monday, though, I knew I couldn’t make it up the stairs. So I [very ineptly] tried to use the downstairs shower, where I soon discovered that I could not regulate the water temperature to save my life. By the time Zack found me, armed with Pepto, I was standing in the shower, trying not to touch the spray of boiling hot water, crying. I WAS CRYING OVER WATER TEMPERATURE. Trying very hard not to laugh at me, Zack repositioned the knob and immediately the water became a much more acceptable hottish-warm.

The shower helped, but not enough to make getting in the car seem possible. I dragged my sorry self upstairs, gagged a bit at the remnants of breakfast sitting on the counter, and stood around pathetically as everyone else loaded the cars and got ready to leave. I sat at the table and put all my effort into consuming a piece of plain bread, got about a quarter of it down and decided the effort was not worth the risk of puking all over our new car. My mother-in-law hooked me up with a pillow, soda crackers and a “just in case” plastic barf bag for the road and Zack deemed it time to go.

I passed out in the car. For a good long time. After about three and a half hours, I started to feel human again. I even decided that food sounded good! Here was the hangover I was used to; I was ALL over this business. I ordered up some greasy Burger King (Weight Watchers was already long-damned, so why not?), popped some more Advil, dozed in and out for another hour or so, and by the time I really woke up again I was able to take over the driving, much to Zack’s relief. Because I don’t know if you know this, but Labor Day traffic is one angry bitch and it took us over two hours longer than usual to get home. By the time the Chicago skyline came into view, I was headache-free with a settled stomach. The thought of drinking still makes me vomit a bit in the back of my throat, though.

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