I'm quickly greeted by faces new and old and have just enough time to shower and change before people start rolling in like Kramer on Seinfeld. Everyone who walks in feels like they own the place as they obviously spend a significant amount of time there. I tried out some absinthe that one of the roommates had and it was a relatively benign event as I didn't really feel anything other than a bad tasting drink!
The housemates are extremely accommodating and after a few games of beer pong everyone is ushered (not to be confused with urshered) out to an underground club called MJQ's. This is the sort of club that has a little something for everyone as there are three different rooms with three different scenes: hip hop, rock and techno. 3 or 4 hours of crazy dancing later and we all head home for the night, but not before Chris, Kevin, Kyrsten and I manage to wake up Kyrsten's roommate several times. I get home and fall asleep with a large smile on my face.
Sunday is a lazy day full of football and couch time. We rehash the crazy night before and Kevin admits that he "was pretty sure that he was just jumping up and down for a while on the dance floor". The day takes a turn for the best when we motivate to hit up a $10 all-you-can-eat dinner at Twist, a surefire crowd pleaser!
We decide to hit up the bowling alley and besides the emergence of Jorge, who you will undoubtedly grow familiar with along my travels (thanks Karoline!), and the appearance of Jasmine from Aladdin who was in the lane next to us, we keep the night relatively low key in anticipation of the New Years' Eve to come. I have my first real encounter with the new Nintendo Wii as Kevin and I keep Rachel and Chris awake with our sporadic moments of brilliant shot making in Tiger Woods' golf game. Good times were had by all.
Monday was everything we thought it could be and much more! Kevin and I hit up the mall to rent some tuxes for the big night and despite a limited selection, we found a few gems on the various manikins as you can see in the pics.
The big night, dubbed Prom 2008, started at Atlanta Fish Market. Upon realizing that Chris and Bryan knew the manager, we were escorted to our table and promptly brought a complementary bottle of champagne! This was only to be surpassed by our surprise when we got the check that read $0.00!!! Great start. Making it back to "The Mansion" we loaded everyone into the 18-person stretch hummer and took off like an injured young fawn who's been nursed back to health and is finally going to be released back into the wilderness.
Our crew once again owned the dance floor, although Carly was later quoted as saying, "there was a point where we were all just running around in circles out there!"
As midnight approached, I found myself without anyone to steal a kiss from so I just kept dancing the night away. 10, 9, 8, 7, wait... someone grabs me. I turn around and realize that I've just been snagged by a cute tall blond girl that I had my eye on earlier but had yet to talk to. I don't know her name or anything about her. 6, 5, 4... she introduces herself, but I don't hear what she says over the noise so let's just call her Ariel (keeping with the Disney theme). 3, 2, 1... my name is Mat. Midnight... she leans in, I turn to give her my cheek (Come on, I just met her!), but she turns my head back and plants a big one on me! I don't complain!!! Ariel has to go get another drink and we never talk again although I see her a few other times over the course of the night. The night ends with an elongated limo ride around Atlanta, before Carter decides that he is Wulfgang Puck and burns bacon and eggs at 4 am.
Tuesday is perfectly lazy until our crew rolls up to Taryn and her boyfriend Joe's house for a sweet home cooked meal. Chicken stuffed with spinach, pasta, and salad. AMAZING! Enough to make me jealous of Joe... We all play board games while watching some football before crashing early. The board game of choice was Battle of the Sexes: a guys vs. girls trivia game that was quite informative if not comical! Which guys actually knew that nail polish stops a run in stockings? And are there any girls (or guys for that matter) that can actually name all the parts of a fishing rod? The guys wind up winning, but not by much!
I got to see and say good bye to almost all of my friends in Atlanta, while having an absolute blast. I also learned that I won't be able to live like I did over the last five days while on the road as I easily gained 10 lbs, slept later than ever, and am dead tired!
"On a scale of one to ten, I heart you" - Kyrsten (a.k.a. Kyrten)
"I'm pretty sure that I was just jumping up and down for a while on the dance floor last night" - Kevin
"There was a point where we were all just running around in circles out there!" - Carly
"I wanna live in a world where... (insert just about anything here)" - Everyone from Superbad
"Maybe it's something cool I don't even know about yet" - Me
"Borba, the skin enhancing water drink???" - Clayton
Tuning into any one of the various hip hop radio stations as I drive past spaghetti junction (where I-85 crosses I-285 just north of Atlanta) I start to feel the vibe that is Hotlanta, or maybe you prefer the dirty south. Ludacris, Outkast, JD and Ursher are all played before I find myself parked in front of Chris and Bryan's (college roommates) house. (Side note: by house, I mean mansion as they have joined up with three other guys to rent a sweet house in the middle of Buckhead's most affluent neighborhood.) Between last night's nostalgia and having not been in ATL for over 2 years, after having gone to college here, I start to get déjà vu left and right.