If it’s brown, don’t drink it down
Jemma Jacob's entry in the Scaryduck "Make Mrs Duck Laugh" competition, which won second prize. Enjoy.
1995, what a year. Oasis were asking morning glory what the story was, Take That took it and went ( I finally discovered god when that little miracle happened) and gcses were something I had to worry about next year. I was but a slip of a girl, a mere 15 years old and I had a party to go to. A real one. No parental units whatsoever, all the alcohol I could possibly want to regurgitate four and a half hours later, and a dj. A proper bloke with all the latest vinyl, not someone’s dad with a few copies of Now 35, and a shaking Stevens record.
Life is pretty crap when you're 15, hormones have invited themselves to stay for a good few years and your acne is the only thing you can rely on being there for you. So when we heard about Liz’s party, well what can I say, I was ecstatic, jubilant, down right near to pissing myself with the sheer excitement of it all.
The Aged ‘P’s gave to go ahead for me to go and get totally trashed. Strictly speaking wasn’t quite how they put it; it was more along the lines of ‘ yes you can go to Sarah’s house to sleep over on Friday’. Sarah’s house, party 10 miles away, they sound kinda similar…
I had decided that I was going to lose a couple of pounds for this party. The problem was that a: I need to lose a couple of stone realistically and b: I had approximately a day to do it in. So in my infinite wisdom, which as you know teenagers are blessed with in abundance, I decided that I just wouldn’t eat. Hell if it worked for Ally Mcbeal it was damn sure gonna work for me. So I didn’t let a morsel pass my lips (apart from one chocolate éclair that my dear old gran had brought. I couldn’t go and upset her by refusing such a kind offer.)
Now my mate Sarah had met this rather nice bloke called Nick. He was a little older than us, 22 to be precise. But I would like to point out here that Sarah was a little older than me, 16. Didn’t want you to alert the authorities about some old bloke picking up 15 year olds and taking them to parties. I digress…
So, Nick, who was doing very well in his job (his dad was loaded) turned up at Sarah’s house. I was dropped off at Sarah’s as not to have my cover blown. He swings into the drive in a blue Subaru Imprezza. Oooh I hear you cry (well most of you, any that aren’t impressed are just masking your jealousy). Lovely motor. So off we go to the party.
When we get there the party is in full swing. As we walk through the door, some girl who I vaguely recognise come bounding towards us, arms outstretched and says ‘ so pleased you guys came!’ and then like a intoxicated tigger bounced off into the night. ‘who the fuck was that?’ I ask, ‘That,’ says Sarah ‘ is Claire’ I ponder this for a moment then ask ‘ who or more to the point what is ‘Claire?’
‘It’s the girl who’s party it is stupid! Stop being a prat and get inside, I need to find a bedroom’ So off we go. Sarah is immediately dragged off upstairs by the increasingly horny Nick, (Sarah’s mum and dad were strict Catholics and thought for years that Sarah and Nick spent the time in her bedroom praying and reading the bible. Any loud repetitive banging’s they put down to vigorous Hail Marys). So I’m left to find the drinks cabinet and drink my weight in alcohol. Great!
If you can cast your mind back to earlier, you will recall that I hadn’t eaten. Nothing at all. Unfortunately nobody, not careers advisers, teachers, policemen, doctors or even my own dear parents had told me that alcohol on an empty stomach will have a far greater effect on your system. A far far greater effect. The other contributing factors to the events that unfortunately followed were: I was a girl, I was not used to alcohol, and I had only eaten an éclair in the last 24 hours. If I could have placed a bet I would have backed the horse called ‘Chunder' …
I decided that in honour of my favourite movie (It has changed now , but please be kind I was only 15 and unaware of the cinematic triumphs yet to come) COCKTAIL. Superb idea. I got a group of us, the inebriated tigger from earlier, a girl that used to smell of tcp, and some bloke called Stanley. I kid you not, I heard later that he sued his parents for emotional and physical cruelty. Not from them you understand but the kids in the school that made his life hell for 4 years.
So me, tigger, tcp and Stanley grabbed it all and headed for the kitchen. I shall now list the drinks that we found that evening: vodka, rum tequila, whisky, calvados, that blue stuff, sherry, sorry fortified wine (there you go Brussels happy now?) and the remnants of something that looked like and smelt like antifreeze. It was in a clear bottle with no label. That should have been a bit of a warning but who was I to argue? We found a vase and poured the entire contents, removing the flowers first, of the bottles in to it. It resembled the colour of mud. Foul smelling mud. GREAT. We added some coke, we weren’t going to drink it straight - even we weren’t that stupid.
So, after adding one of those small cans that you get from Woolworth’s we got four glasses and filled each one. Then we downed it. As we all discover later on in life alcohol doesn’t get you pissed immediately, however being only 15 and unaware of the delayed effect we were all feeling pretty cheated by the fact that we all knew where we were, who we were and that we could still see. So we had another glass. And another. By this point however, TCP girl was looking a little green and muttered about going out side for some fresh air. I didn’t see here again that night, apparently they found her in the shed at the bottom of the garden two days later. So it's me Stanley and Tigger, we have another glass. Now I was beginning to feel , peaky shall we say. I suddenly realised that I could see three of everything. This was GREAT. In a nauseating, room spinning kinda way. Oh dear I think I needed to sit down. No, I definitely needed to sit down. Stumbling through the living room I came to and abrupt end as I fell face first into the carpet. To be more accurate I stopped in a room full of drunken teenagers, opened my mouth and covered the living room carpet in a very attractive shade of brown. Everywhere. Then fell face first into it.
The rest I’m afraid is unknown to me. Friends have tried to fill in the blanks but to no avail.
The next thing I remember is waking up. I can see white light all around me. OH MY GOD I'm DEAD, I've really blown it this time. There were so many things that I wanted to do, to see! Now I’ll never get the chance! Then things become a little clearer, and I see a figure, its it God? Is it an angel sent to tell me that its ok, its not my time and that I would live again? Was I having one of those ‘near death’ experiences? In a way I was, because you see, the angel/God/holybeing that homed in to view wasn’t a holy entity at all, it was my mum, closely followed by my incredibly angry, so angry he couldn’t speak let alone breathe, Dad. All of a sudden death seemed like a really good choice, compared to facing my parents. I still have the scars to prove it. How my dad didn’t kill me is one of life’s mysteries.