that damn full moon
· 10 February 2006 ·

This is your Portland friend with an embarassing story that will be somewhat engrained in my mind for life. Yesterday i got back from school at about 5 pm and said to my housemate Ze, ‘dude, look at that full moon, crazy shit is gonna happen’. “whatever” he disregarded with disamusement. It’s true, i had no faith that anything of the ‘crazy’ sort would materialize. This would be considered a class A jinx.

After the first half bottle of wine i shared, i went to play rehearsal a little buzzed, left giggling to grab a guiness from the am/pm, met up with Ze and some girlies at their house for some margaritas, very light on the tequila and proceeded to go out to the Twilight Room bar.

Now there is something you must understand, this is thursday, I in no way was planning to get ‘crunk’ as those wisemen say. But friends, crunk is JUST what i got. After meeting some old friends from years before offering me pitchers of cold refreshin’ pabst, the fuzzy eyes picked up more lint as the night moved along. After a few more friends showed up equally excited to help my night along with those amber waves of grain, the memory fades.

i shake my head now.

As i sat in the back of the police car, my hands cuffed together in a dull pain, i couldn’t help but wonder how it was that i got here and what i had done. I struggled to reach for the door handle looking for the door lock to get out.

“Patrick you dumbass, why would they put the door lock in the backseat?”
“good point”, drunken Patrick answered back. The police man in the front seat answered the rest of my questions “no, you’re not being arrested, you’re just being taken into detox to sleep it off, we found you curled up in the fetal posistion”
wow? really, i wouldn’t put it past me, i do have a narcolepsy problem after much imbibement as many of you have discovered.

“dude!! wait, just, ow! stop” a familiar voice spurted out as his slid into the hard plastic seat next to me. “ZE! hahah”, we look at each other and laughed “dude! they got you too?” “yeah! we’re going to de-tox man!” I exclaimed with amazement. we then proceeded to give a handcuffed hi-five behind our backs to each other at the delighted amusment of the police officer “You guys know each other?” ‘yeah we’re housemates!”

well as we drove further and further from the bar, the lights blurring past, Ze proceeded to chronically freak out that we were being arrested, to which i tried to calm him down to realization. “hey can you take a right on the offramp, that’s where our house is” i asked harmlessly. no response. oh yeah, we’re being taken to the de-tox thing.

We arrived at the Hooper 24 hour detoxification center on Burnside, were unhandcuffed, our possesions taken (wallets, shoes, watches) and placed in the triangular dimly lit concrete room of warmth and stale vomit. Wow, i thought, this is weird.
i asked through the plexiglass window, “hey how long are we in here for? ”, “about 5 hours till you sleep it off.”
whoa! , i walked to the sticky ‘bathroom’ for some water and it was too hot for consumption, so i asked the officials. “sure you can have some water, would you like some crackers?” YEAH!! “how about some soup?” ARE YOU SERIOUS!? “yeah, here you go”
I was handed two hot cups of minestrone soup and a whole rack of saltines. Me and Ze inhale the food with undbridled joy “This is AWESOME!!!” agreed. and about every 30 minutes, a new person, very drunk, would enter the room for more entertainment. The smelly sleep talking bum, the breakdancing black dude in adidas, the tourist on his first night in Portland and of course the mumbling regulars who know the soup routine and are happy to be fed after so long.
eventually i tire out from moonwalking in my socks and fall asleep next to ZE, the smoothe heated concrete floor is like a dream that leads to dreams.

“get up, it’s time to leave”
oh shit? really?...i get up, put on my shirt (a makeshift pillow) and head out into the lobby and collect my belongings and my shoes in a sealed plastic bag (they must have stunk pretty bad) and am literally pushed out into the parking lot without my shoes on yet. jeez. that’s rude i think, placing my watch back on my sore wrist. hmm, 5:30 in the morning. well now what? the wind begins to whip around me, a slight eastern glow comes from beyond the city and the big yellow moon sinks below the St.John’s bridge. What about Ze? i wait a few minutes then knock on the brown metal door. The two desk attendants cast me an angry side check, “what?!”, “um, when is my friend coming out?” “in about 3 hours!” they whip back. “well can i wait for him inside?” i propose, “NO! you have to leave, go!” i startle back, shaken by the harsh reality of her belted out words. “jeez, all I did was get drunk.”

so i stuff my hands in my pocket and walk the cold sepia streets back to my house from the downtown area. this is gonna be a LONG walk. according to it is was about 5 miles back to my house. well, i guess i’ll be able to catch up with my ” this book will change your life” before breakfast goal.
shit it’s cold. the moon set and the sun rose and i cursed the man, the system, everything that could have possibly conspired to put me in this posisition. except the yummy beer.

Suddenly i thought back to the film ‘Buffalo 66”. Not only was HE denied access back into the jail to use the bathroom upon release but he was also pissed at everyone and caused a fight in the bathroom. I now perfectly understood his rage and thanked myself for this ridiculous experience that might help to keep me out of…some degree, of trouble.

so, the lesson learned: 1.Watch your alcohol consumption

2. Always be respectful to officers of the law 3. NEVER underestimate the power of a full moon.

Written by Patrick Holahan


  1. Philip Ashlock    Feb 11, 08:06 AM    #