For Pete’s Sake


You can’t have a Real Country unless you have a BEER and an airline – it helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a BEER.

Frank Zappa

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As I type this, my skull seems one large, dull, throbbing ache, which starts in the front of my head and careens through to the base of my skull, which feels as if someone attempted, and was in fact successful, at beating with a metal pipe.  My stomach is churning and feels a little wobbly and uncertain of itself.  Thoughts come slower, and memory, while intact, seems ever so slightly questionable.  There is a word in the English language for what all these myriad things are.  A simple eight letter word which describes exactly what I have.

It’s called a Hangover. 

I hung out with the rest of the temps last night after a slow final day at work as an art handler at Sotheby’s. 

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Before going on about last night, I have to say that it really was a fun assignment.  That might, especially for those who worked there and did the work, sound crazy, but it is, for me at least, true.  I treated the place less like a workplace and more like a gym.  It wasn’t work, it was a workout.  Alternately pushing and pulling walls is one helluva good workout,  hits all the muscle groups, and hits them hard.  Wall dollies, which weigh about 35 – 40 pounds each, are a good upper and lower back workout, done exactly like one of my favorite exercises, the bent over row.  Get hella strong lats and shoulders doing that.  A lot of people got upset when I would lift them 2 at a time.  They were worried about me hurting myself, while I was just getting a few extra reps in.

Not to mention all the pedestal lifting, and moving all the statuary and art and everything else, and just in general keeping the place up and running, the whole place is like a giant gym for your favorite Rhino.  I am gonna have to bust my ass something fierce at home to replicate the sweat I broke there.  It isn’t going to be easy. But if there is going to be a second half to this assignment, I want to walk in stronger this time than last.  Gonna start the workouts tomorrow.  Today I rest and hang out with my wife, it being our 3rd wedding anniversary, which I will write about later, maybe today, maybe tomorrow.

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The party itself was a blast.  I had a ton o fun, just hanging out, being  loud, boisterous, and generally barking and yelling like I am want to when I let loose a little bit.  There was music, which pleased me by mostly being metal and rock, with a few notable exceptions.  There were beers a plenty, started with a pitcher or two of Bud light and, after agreeing it was piss water changed up to the slightly stronger and darker Yuengling.  There was a shot or two done, I had a Jameson, bought by one of the 814 guys (more about that in a minute), I believe I saw at least one shot of J.D. and one shot of Tequila (neither done by me).

But it was all about the guys, those fine young men who are, like me, out of work today because Sotheby’s isn’t hiring, despite making money hand over fist this year. 

But I digress…

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Without question, the greatest invention in the history of mankind is beer. Oh, I grant you that the wheel was also a fine invention, but the wheel does not go nearly as well with pizza.

Dave Barry

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Arthur, Keegan, Taylor, Dennis and I popped over to a place called “For Pete’s Sake” over on 70th street between York Avenue and First Avenue, right after work, along with two of the Permanent 814 guys.  One of the temps, Gautham(I hope I spelled that right, and if I didn’t I apologize, brother) showed up a half hour later.  But the 7 of us walk in, and there is, at least for me, some momentary confusion. An I am sure it wasn’t just me, because there was a general milling about, the only one who walked in and planted ass was Keegan, who clearly needed a shot, and busted out a shot of J.D. at the bar. 

After about 2 minutes of ” DUH” I said “why don’t we just grab a table?”  Lorenzo, one of the 814 permanents heard me, and we went and grabbed two tables, small yet tall tables, put’em together, and ordered a pitcher, and everyone followed.  $9, not bad I thought, less than a beer at Yankee Stadium.  Bud light was good enough.  Started with 3 glasses, as several of the others had bought there own beers. I bought the first, Lorenzo got the second, and five or six of us(as I recall) took turns buying pitchers after that.

Toasts were bandied about “To The Temps”  “To Us”  with me throwing in my “POG MO THOIN”  Don’t think anyone caught it though, no one asked what it meant, or maybe they didn’t care.  Fine by me.   I’m sure I heard a “Dixon Sucks” once or twice, but from who I do not remember, and it may in fact be my fevered, hung over imagination, playing tricks on me.  🙂

There was a lot of talk of what happens next, Keegan and Taylor told us have small side jobs lined up already, Dennis has been telling everyone for months he’s going to Europe, Arthur is going to visit family in Pennsylvania.  Me, I plan on working with 814, gonna hit the phones and call the people on the list I got, which most of us got.

Dennis and Taylor left fairly early.  Yesterday was Taylor’s mom’s Birthday and he wanted to go visit her and wish her a happy birthday, and Dennis…well is just Dennis.  I don’t remember him having a reason for leaving early but he did.

There was a lot of talk about music.  There was a lot of good music too.  Found out that Lorenzo and I have almost Identical musical tastes.  Most of the music played on the Jukebox…well it wasn’t a jukebox exactly, but the description fits, most of the music played on it was played by us, and I’d toss in money and let him pick a song, he did the same for me, and he did it first as I recall. 

T’was excellent.  Metallica, The Stones, Zep, many good tunes.  Found out that Keegan doesn’t like Zep, and that he thinks Iggy Pop is better.  There was general disagreement about that.  I like Zep better than Iggy, but Keeg’s dislike apparently arises from Robert Plant’s attitude.  I agree there.  Plant turned his back on the harder edged stuff, the bastard.

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Listen to some Zep, enjoy!

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Gautham has very different musical tastes than the rest of us, playing some group 112, and then Tupac.  We giggled at his general lack of knowledge of all things rock, but Brother Gautham is all about hip hop and the “ATL”, and he also thinks that 1987 is the best year ever, since he was born that year.  I remember bits of 87.  Bits. I was drunk that century.  It wasn’t bad, but best ever? Dude… I dunno.  I have nice things to say about 67, as well as 94 (Rangers Stanley cup) and 95 (the year I met my wife), but that’s just me.  🙂

After a great deal of drunken merriment, I spoke to a guy who was hanging with one of the Permanent 814 guys, who also happened to be from 814.  Good guy, his name is Rich, gave me his cell #, we spoke on getting into the union, buying book as it is called, you do need to put money in, for those who do not know.  Gave me some pointers (bought me a shot of Jameson), talked to me about specific people to speak to at specific places.  That is real, good, concrete info that I can and will use.  There are 11 companies that are bullet-pointed on the list, and while I don’t know that I’ll call all 11 tomorrow, a number of them will be getting calls from me.

I hung out til around 8:30… or was it 9?  Dammit I was kinda lit at that point, I don’t exactly remember what time it was, but I said my goodbyes, and made a few of them too brief.  I almost feel the need to apologize to keegan, who was outside having a cigarette when I walked out.  As I recall I simply fist-bumped with him and said “Later”, with maybe some other momentary small talk.  He was busy talking to Rich and one of the other union guys, Julian outside.  I should have hung a few minutes more with him.  Keeg’s a good guy. He deserved to be hired, he deserved better treatment from Sotheby’s, and after seeing him for what may well be the final time in my life, all I can do is fist bump and say later?

Weak.  But he’s a good guy, I’m sure he knows I meant nothing by it. 

Still, all in all I had a fun night, and so, it seemed, did everyone else.  And that’s the important bit, even if I didn’t get all of it down here.  A few of us exchanged numbers, and I know one or two of the guys know about this here Rhino Report, so we can use this as a contact hub if all else fails.  I really do hope I run into these guys again, because they are a good bunch of people, and I’d be proud to work, or just hang with them again.

I have a busy day ahead, have a good one America.

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