Guest Blogger Floyd Masterson: A DC Virgin pops his cherry
V Note: Last weekend, Jack Serpentine and I entertained our friend and Kansas native Floyd Masterson. Here is day one:
After several days of recuperation, I've undertaken the incredibly taxing task of recounting the events that occurred during the days of July 13-17, which I spent in Washington, D.C. Here is, to the best of my alchohol-addled recollection, what transpired.
Day 1: A DC Virgin pops his cherry, Cowboy Boots, A Rebel Yell, Strawberry Clouds
My flight left Kansas City in the early evening. I'd managed to pack everything I'd need into one carry-on bag: several changes of clothes, a Vonnegut novel, a digital camera with a fresh set of batteries, four packs of Marlboro cigarettes. An elderly foreign woman sat next to me on the crowded flight. We never spoke.
Two hours later, we were landing in Washington. I managed to catch a fleeting glimpse of the Capitol building and the Washington Monument out my window. Here I was, in the American tribute to Rome, the Capitol of all things mighty and rich. Here we go.
I met Serpentine outside my terminal. He was dressed smartly in a black suit with the obligatory red power tie. He spread his arms as I approached.
"Welcome to our nation's capitol," he said with smirk.
"We had a meeting on the Hill with the veterans committee," he replied. "By the end, there was only one Senator left."
"Why do our elected officials hate the troops?"
He took me up the escalator to the train. I was itching for a lighter, which I'd turned over to security before boarding in Kansas City. Our train arrived before I could find a fellow smoker, and we found seats near the door.
Serpentine and I discussed the issues of the day, lamenting the rapidly escalating conflict between Israel and Lebanon, the shoddy treatment of our combat veterans, the overall sorry state of our nation. I felt like a Washingtonian already.
I noticed a few glares from a guy sitting across the aisle. He had short blonde hair, young face, blue button-up with a white collar, dark slacks...and cowboy boots. Fucking cowboy boots. I was quickly reminded that this town was run by Texans. I felt like stirring the pot.
"If these ass clowns in Congress gave a shit about the veterans, they wouldn't be cutting their goddam benefits while making them veterans in the first place," I said loudly, hoping for some reaction from the booted young buck. I was disappointed. As I'd soon learn from more time spent in the swamp, nobody around here really gave a fuck what you were talking about. People minded their own business. Good for them. It was refreshing, honestly.
We made one change, and got off at the Dupont Circle exit. I quickly learned that the right side of the escalator is for riders, the left side is for climbers. I think there may be some kind of half-assed metaphor there, but I'll let it pass. I've still got a lot left to write, and my bottle's not getting emptier by the minute.
Serpentine and V have regaled me with stories about the beauty of the Dupont area, and I wasn't disappointed. Coffee shops, art and record stores, patios with small gardens, decorative fences. Despite the horrifying rent, it seemed like a great place to call home. While Serpentine was guiding me to their place, V had run to the liquor store to pick up a handle of the much-hyped Rebel Yell bourbon whiskey.
Soon V's friend Kat came over, we ate some delicious pizza (Alberto's? Whatever it was, it was a tremendous value - about $4 for a huge slice), allowed a short rest for digestion, then dipped into the booze.
Despite my protests, V and Serpentine persuaded me to don a pair of jeans (from March through October I refuse to wear long pants), and we began our march to the bars.
I can't remember the name of the first bar we went to (V NOTE: Local 16). It was a classy enough place, with a sparsely furnished upstairs area, and a plush bar downstairs next to which we found four chairs near the corner. Small talk ensued; I quickly downed two double whiskey and cokes.
Kat lamented her unfortunate nickname of "Fat Kat" despite her petite stature; apparently another girl named Kat was anorexic and was thusly labeled "Skinny Kat". I reassured Kat that she wasn't fat, and in fact Fat Kat was an enviable nickname, and I that wished my nickname was FatCat. "How you livin', FatCat?" Serpentine yelled. "Livin' large, Jack, you know that!" I bellowed in reply. See, it'd be a cool nickname. Especially if, like Kat, you weren't really fat.
Kat soon left to be replaced by KassyK, whose blog name I recognized from comments made on this website. Naturally, it didn't take long for the discussion to turn towards the merits of astrology. Serpentine quickly made the poignant statement: "Astrology is great, except that the stars don't determine your personality." The conversation deteriorated from there.
After three double whiskey-and-cokes, I recieved my tab. "Holy Christ!" I exclaimed as my eyes laid sight to the ungodly fee. $36 for three drinks? What sort of depraved hellhole had I descended into where your common barkeep charges a drinking man $40 for a slight buzz? Much thanks to V for picking up the charges, which I fear I have yet to fully repay.
After gathering my wits from the unholy shock of Washington drinking costs, V, Serpentine, and KassyK set out in search of another drinking hole. After a short walk, we found a corner bar with an Indian motif that seemed suitable for the occasion. We settled in to the unnaturally low couch next to an equally depressed table, ready to resume our respites.
Serpentine ordered our table a hookah filled with the finest strawberry tobacco as well as a round of drinks. KassyK, being the unbelievably classy chick that I'd expected to meet in D.C., offered up some quality pharmaceuticals that induced qualities of relaxation from their imbibers. Of course, I quickly obliged, and tossed two of the diamond pills into my mouth. V indulged as well, and soon was so relaxed that she fell asleep in her seat as we muttered nonsense to each other through clouds of strawberry smoke. (For anybody of substance and responsibility reading this, the pills consumed were completely legal, and were taken from KassyK without her consent. In fact, I stole them and forced V to take one. And nobody likes a narc.)
Regrettably, KassyK was unable to join us for the rest of weekend, as she had prior commitments in a foreign city. We said our good-byes, and trekked home. I was supplied a pillow, blanket, sofa (about six inches short to fit my 6'4 frame), and the remote control to fab digital cable, which I fumbled with for several minutes until passing out. V and Serpentine had to work the next morning, and I had full slate ahead as well. Tomorrow I would tour the Mall.