I was on the phone to Charlie who was working up north at the time when a friend stopped by the house. He was in a very good mood and wanted to go celebrate the very first contract of his new construction company. He had invited everyone he knew that had encouraged him and helped make it happen and needed a designated driver, too. That would be me.
Charlie and I had helped out as much as we could and we were both happy for our friend. Charlie told me to go ahead and go, enjoy myself and tell him all about it later.
A lady friend was living in our basement apartment at the time, so she came along also as it was going to be an enjoyable evening out for everyone. The fact that it was around -40 degrees and heavy ice fog didn’t dim the mood of the celebrants.
I made sure we had enough warm clothing just in case of any problems with the vehicle and we headed over to the Pump House on Chena Pump Road.
This is a nice restaurant (President Reagan ate there) and most of the people invited were already waiting for us to show up. We were seated in the middle of the main dining room and the place was crowded. Just because it was a very cold night didn’t mean people didn’t go out on a Saturday night.
The food was great, drinks flowed freely and everyone was having an entertaining evening but the instigator of our group decided it was too dull. He wanted some dancing and music.
The more he thought about it, the more he wanted to extend the evening and enjoy being entertained. Finally he jumped up on the table and started telling jokes. Several people at other tables started clapping and hooting, encouraging him to greater lengths. He did a few dance steps but no one would get up on the table with him to dance.
He finally couldn’t think of any more stories or jokes to tell and decided to ask the growing audience if anyone there had ever seen a one eared elephant. No one had.
He pulled one front pocket of his jeans out and fanned the material out nicely, then started to unbutton his pants.
Several of us managed to get him down off the table and hustled out the door as management was on the phone even as we bundled him out the door.
The slap of the freezing night air hit him like an actual slap to the face as we stuffed him into his winter coat and then into the pickup. He tried to convince us he could drive but we overruled that immediately and he gave in.
The backseat was full of tools and winter gear, so all three of us had to squish together in the front seat.
I only had to pull over once for him to hurl and we were almost to my house, when the flashing red lights appeared behind us. I pulled over immediately.
The Officer was very nice, but there was a tail light out on the pickup. He got a recap of the entire evening from my passengers, he asked if he should follow us home and assist us into the house. I told him I thought we could get in the house okay, but I would appreciate him following us in the heavy ice fog with the back light out.
We made it home okay and the officer was kind enough to wait until we were in the house before he pulled away.