Fire, Mullets and Thad: The Past 7

Mullets, truck fires and the 1980s revisited wrapped up the week that was Nason’s last seven days; an interesting mix of deception, amazement and a celebration of hair.

–We wrapped up our final Mullet Night promotion earlier this week, a night where we honor the hairstyle known as the ape drape, Kentucky waterfall and neck warmer. This is the third season we’ve had this promotion and it gains national media attention through ESPN, CNN and tv stations throughout the country that pick up the story through satellite feeds. Yours truly took on the fictional role of Dave Sholow, the executive director of the Mullet Hall of Fame – a fictional place that provided the backbone of the promotion as we induct a new member every year. What was entailed in this title? Not much other than a couple radio appearances and a speaking role at the press conference we had last season. Whenever I think about looking in another career direction, I wonder if I’ll find a job where I can play a curator of a fake museum based on a hairstyle made popular by guys like Billy Ray Cyrus and European hockey players. Do you find these job descriptions on Monster.com?

–Whenever your roommate says they’re going to move out, two things should come to mind. One is how life will be after they leave. Two is if you’re going to have to help them move their shit. The trio of Allenstown has now become two as the man known as either Page, Adam or (chuckle, chuckle) Blaine has moved to an apartment closer to his law college campus. And yes, I had to help move which is one of those somewhat enjoyable/somewhat tedious social contracts you enter into with good friends.

After the move was complete Wednesday night, we drove to the UHaul place and then planned a goodbye dinner of sorts at KFC. Yep, fast food restaurants…that’s how we roll, dog. We pulled in and I went to find the car key drop as Page checked the mileage. When I got back, he looked at me and said, “There’s smoke coming from the dash.” Figuring it might have been a bad belt or some a piece of Whatchamacalit burning in the defroster, we stuck around for a few minutes to see if it was going away. Good thing we did, because it didn’t. It got considerably worse and a call to 911 was made. Good thing we did that too.

As Page was on the phone explaining what was happening, he said, “Is there fire? Nope…just smoke. Wait..now there’s fire.” A small flame started flickering behind the dash lights and within five minutes, the UHaul truck we were in was ablaze. We’re not talking a small little campfire; this was Backdraft-material. We were watching and eagerly awaiting the fire department (one of those experiences where minutes seem like hours) to arrive as the concerns about what could possibly happen began to grow. One was that the truck would explode, providing an experience that would never be forgotten but also one with serious reprecussions. The second was that the truck parked right next to the firebox would soon catch on fire too. Luckily, the fire department showed up and very nonchalantly put out the flames, leaving a charred moving unit in its midst.

Sitting watching something as surreal as this was one thing. Another is thinking back over the day and thinking, “Oh my god…that could have happened at (insert place here)” which would have made things a lot worse. Here at the house, at the new apartment, driving around, filled with Page’s stuff at any point or the worst one of all: at the gas station where we filled up 10 minutes earlier. Wow. It got me thinking a lot about things happening for a reason, guardian angels and all that gobbeldy-gook you hear about from people who have had near-death experiences and crap. But I think this experience in how lucky we were made me come to grips with stuff that I’ve thought about but never made opinions on.

I’ve never been a religious guy and have been in churches only for weddings or to get directions, but I now am convinced that something or someone looks out for us. Is it a God with long hair and a beard? Is it space aliens? Not sure, but I but I sure believe in something. I definitely not clearing my Sunday social calendar to attend church, but I’ll think twice and not be quick to judge those that do.

–So from fire to cold drinks, I had the opportunity to share some bar space and conversation with several players from the Monarchs while out and about Friday night. Dealing with athletes can be a funny thing and one of the most frequent questions I get is “What are the guys like?” In Portland, we had little-to-no interaction with players so it created this wall if you saw them out or interacted with them. Now, it’s different and makes things a lot more comfortable. Listen, at the end of the day, pro athletes are just like anyone else but just have a profession that is an entertainment option for a lot of people and can bring great financial rewards. It’s the latter that can change even the greatest person into a big jerk. Luckily, I’ve had good experiences and being able to carry on a conversation with these guys that doesn’t involve hockey is something I think is appreciated by both parties.

Oh yeah, we got hella drunk too – one of those nights when you think you’re fine until the next afternoon when you feel like you spent a night hanging out with the Sex Pistols as opposed to your work friends. Needless to say, my night ended blearily watching a VH1 show on Vince Neil getting plastic surgery. These are the things that I hope I can pass on to my kids someday…

–80s Party, pt. II: Being mentally deficient on Saturday, I could barely decide what to do: one was to head to my friend’s place in Derry, NH, for a night of debauchery with old high school friends or trek up north to hit up an 80s party that other friends were holding. After going over it my mind again and again, I decided to head to Portland as the amount of effort the guys put into planning the party was too much to pass up. This was decided at about 6 pm and with my Magnum PI outfit having been scrapped due to moustache malfunctions, I picked up a pair of Aviator sunglasses, grabbed a trendy polo shirt and pulled out a sweatshirt string for a retro headband. The look was complete, but the character was not.

Thus, ‘Thad’ was created – a brash young punk who has money made from Dad’s yacht club and likes to think or say pretty much anything he wants. Per the usual interactions, I did the bits on and off to get laughs but one person didn’t exactly know what to make of it: the new girlfriend (who we had never met) of one of the guys. Put it this way: upon meeting her, she asked what my name was and I replied, “Your dream.” And it was on…

Later on, good friend The Messiah came up to me laughing. I asked what was so funny and he said, “Ben’s girlfriend…hates you.” Apparently, she thought the whole thing was real including a talk we had on the porch where I got Hilton sister attitude thanks to some prompting from some friends. Suddenly, I became concerned that someone genuinely disliked me and I pleaded for Ben and The Messiah to make things right. (A day later, I’m convinced this was a drunk reaction as today I was pretty friggin’ impressed that I pulled off the stunt. I had a goofy grin for half the drive home thinking about the stuff I had said.) Surprisingly, the guys were a bit reluctant to clear up the misconception – happy to see me suffer I guess – and later on, told me they attempted to talk to her but to no avail. ‘Thad’ was a success, at least for 99% of the party.

I guess I’m not sure why the opinion of someone I’ve never met and may never see again affected me so much, but it did. I’m definitely not sorry for creating Thad, but…but nothing. I think Thad needs to make another appearance…soon.

And that’s that…I love when a week comes together. I doubt this next seven days will compare, but that’s why you play the games.

–thanks for reading,
thad

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