Chapter 77: “Smash or Get Smashed”
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This particular apartment was filled with many unsavory moments but also featured some of the best in entertainment; from the first time I watched Tenacious D in the Pick of Destiny or the original Indiana Jones trilogy or finally giving football a chance. But nothing was more epic in terms of amusing memories than the long-awaited release of Super Smash Bros. Brawl.
Our friend, Mike (who worked with us at EMMC and lived next door) would constantly come over and play Melee in anticipation of the newest game in the series. We had become fast friends, and he was one of the biggest reasons why I began to enjoy football.
My Smash Bros. fervor reached a point where I had mapped out the route to the mall to reach Gamestop in the fastest time possible during the game’s midnight release. Luckily, most of that planning had already been completed due to my mad dash for a Wii preorder.
Mike and I headed over to the mall at 11 AM. Here, we chatted with the dozens of other Smash fans who were also hotly anticipating the release. Nintendo had partnered with Gamestop to hold local tournaments that would funnel into larger area competitions and finally, into a Nationwide winner. I contemplated it for a second but knew that the tournament would take away from our precious game time. We grabbed our copy as soon as possible and headed back home to begin our “schooling.”
Mike, Kyle, Travis, and I played until the sun came up. Well, Travis played a few matches then hit the bed; this wasn’t his type of game. The next victim to fall to Mr. Sandman was Kyle, who drove home around 5 AM and finally, Mike walked home around six. I continued to play for a few more hours working my way through the story mode, The Subspace Emissary, so I could unlock all of the characters. I only had five left to acquire but had to crash. I woke up several hours later and went back at it. Mike and Kyle came over again, and we kept the game going.
Luckily, my Wii had no issue reading the first Dual-layered Wii disc even though that was a known issue that many people were experiencing.
Later that afternoon, however, I quickly realized that I might not have avoided the issue as my Wii flashed to display: “The system files are corrupted, please refer to the Wii Operations Manual for help troubleshooting.” My heart dropped. Did that mean that all of my time in the game (and everything else) was gone?!
I called Nintendo’s customer service line, and they advised that I send the Wii and the game back to them via FedEx. I inquired about the issue with my memory, and they said it shouldn’t be an issue and not to worry. So, I printed the label (for which Nintendo paid), and FedEx even came to pick it up from my apartment and everything.
I got the system back the next week and cautiously plugged it in. I hesitated to turn it back on for fear that I had lost my data, but once I did, the system turned on without a hitch. My gaming obsession could continue!
Our apartment continued to prove itself memorable over the next few months. We resumed our partying only this time, I also participated. It was nice to be one of the irresponsible ones that could scatter if the cops ever showed up again. At least now, we knew not to invite people we didn’t know.
One issue we did encounter at this apartment was our shower drain, which was one of the slowest in recorded history. One day, after months of shallow puddles under our feet, I had had enough. I unscrewed the cover and began to pick the clogged drain with a screwdriver. There was definitely something there, but I couldn’t get it all out. So in a moment of frustration, I took our plunger to the obstruction. I pumped away at it, and finally, the mass came up and out. It was a concoction of a wad of hair mixed with some conspicuous white jelly-like substance strewn throughout. I marveled at the sheer amount of junk that was blocking the drain just out of the light’s reach. I kept fishing out lock and lock of wet hair and tossing it to the side of the shower.
Once I got dressed, I asked everyone else to come see why our showers were involuntarily baths and Shawn and Travis were disgusted. I, on the other hand, was always fascinated by the gross and unusual. Near the end, the amount of hair and junk was larger than my clenched fist. Still, even after this alarming amount of relief, the water continued to trickle down the stubborn drain.
I had asked Steve if there was an issue for the previous tenants and the only bit of helpful information he offered during that exchange was that the last three tenants were all female and that explained the long, spaghetti-like hair.
Speaking of Steve, he continually hit on us, proudly. He didn’t care who had heard it, even offering to suck our dicks in front of Kyle. But when he saw Kyle, he had a special glint in his eye; he was smitten. We told Steve that we’re likely going to look for bigger apartments to accommodate Kyle in our group. This excited him, and he vowed that we could have the apartment next door when it opened up in August.
It was a great deal and even featured an extra bedroom. We told Steve that we would take it if that were a possibility. He nearly creamed his jeans right then and there, staring at Kyle as he exited the apartment.
And finally, the other most memorable moment of this apartment was when I almost got laid again. We all went out with our usual group to Benjamin’s, and on this night, there was this woman who was giving me that look. You know, that look. Our group had collectively spent the night talking to her as she hovered around us, hoping to chat with me.
She was fairly cute, and I wasn’t the only one who had thought so. In fact, our friend, Mamrie, had read this woman wrong and thought she was a lesbian. Mamrie had a penchant for getting rather drunk each night we went out, and when this other woman and I were ready to leave together, Mamrie came over to talk to me.
“You need to leave. Now. She’s mine.”
“No, she’s straight, and she’s into me.”
“Uh, no. You Neeeed to leave. Hmph!”
No matter how much our entire posse told Mamrie that this woman was straight, she wouldn’t hear it. We parted ways, and I could sense that she was still angry with me.
We headed back to my apartment and immediately began to make out. I was totally into it. Our hands wandered to all the right places, and we moved to the empty living room. It was then that I realized that I didn’t have any condoms.
I began to worry, fearful of contracting any sexually transmitted diseases, and my… “excitement” began to droop. This often happened when I was nervous. After a few false starts, I knew I couldn’t go along with such a risky maneuver. I really didn’t know this person or how often they committed such promiscuous acts. My mind raced with all of the possibilities that could drastically affect my already-diminished health, and it wasn’t going to happen.
I felt terrible; like she might have thought it was her fault, but this was all on me. She eventually got a cab and went home. I was never a Casanova by any means, but this was rather embarrassing.
What’s worse is this is the night I lost my Sony Cybershot camera… God damn it.
Oh well, the apartment was once again free of women… except Megan.
This is an ongoing story of my personal battle with Cancer. My hope is that it helps others who are currently experiencing their own battles (whether it be for themselves or a loved one) or to help with early detection.
The way I’m doing it is terrifying for a writer. I’m writing a publically available first-draft outline for an eventual book, chapter by chapter in weekly form. The only reason I’m doing it this way is to get the story out as soon as possible for someone out there who needs a survivor to visit them during their own treatment. If you’re reading this and need someone to talk to, tweet at me and I’ll give you a call. No questions asked. This story is for you and I’ll help any way that I can.
Stay tuned, as I will be posting a new chapter every Monday until the story is complete.
And remember if you experience any Anemic symptoms– get checked for Leukemia as well.