There is little doubt that the down-home, deep-fried goodness of the Cherry Creek Village Inn (222 Columbine Street) saved several members of the Institute of Drinking Studies the other night. The cholesterol shoved down our gullets at a rapid rate was the only reason any of us even had the opportunity to have a hangover the next day. It's well documented in medical literature that fried eggs, fried potatoes, fried bacon and fried coffee go a long way toward preventing multiple organ failure and/or waking up with an ice pick in your head.
Earlier that evening, the Institute had convened at the home of the Liaison for Redneck Relations and his angelic wife to celebrate my impending nuptials. Feeling cataclysmic guilt over not being able to attend the actual event, they'd suffered a momentary lapse in judgment and invited over a bunch of guys who can't be trusted with an empty gun. Not that we didn't perform a useful community service as we liquored up: Two of the kids there for the barbecue portion of the festivities got lessons in tapping a keg, then serving from it. We here at the Institute are all about helping our progeny gain crucial life skills.
With plenty of beers on board, we left to check out some local folk dancing. The obligatory strip-club visit is the only part of the wedding activities for which the groom absolutely must show up on time. It's also a great way to discover the secret animals in the group. The already married guys sat right up on sniffers' row and didn't leave their seats all night. In fact, one married member -- who looks like a cross between Doogie Howser, MD, and Napoleon Dynamite -- made it clear that a healthy sexual appetite does not die with marriage, offering a lengthy discourse on the virtues of girl-on-girl action. The Redneck sat back and hurled dollar bills over my shoulder, ensuring my constant entertainment. The Southern Representative did his bit, too, presenting a wonderful gift in the form of a statuesque blonde we dubbed the Valkyrie.
222 Columbine Street
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The Texan Representative got a few of us into the VIP Lounge (the club insisted it was not an appropriate venue for a dozen-member quorum), where we fell in love with a buxom bartendress who wouldn't give us her real name but was kind enough to provide an excellent photo of herself that we could send to the Head of Sleeper Drunks, who was stuck working. Meanwhile, the Head of Pathologic Drinking worked out some package deals, including one that involved two girls and the bachelor on stage at the end of the night.
But I couldn't wait that long for my big moment; I just had to get in the spotlight earlier. So I did. When they asked for three volunteers, I bounded up and parked my butt in a chair while the guy who'd gotten there just before me stood wondering what the hell had happened. Apparently, the fun-loving folks at this club decided to pull a switcheroo and had the two other guys give the girls lap dances -- and not very impressive ones, by all reports. I wouldn't know, because I had a pair of legs wrapped around my head and couldn't see. I returned to the stage at the end of the night with the Valkyrie and another girl who didn't like me but was part of the package deal. Suffice it to say that these women have a lot to learn about inflicting discipline on drunk guys.
From that high point, we quickly plummeted back to earth as we left the club. While half of our group went off in a cab, the rest of us sat on the curb while we tried to secure a ride. "Stop loitering," a parking lot attendant warned. So the Redneck called his saint of a wife at 2:30 a.m., telling her how wrong it was to get "thrown out of a parking lot when Oz didn't even get us thrown out of the bar" and that if we wanted a free ride home, "a cop would be sure to oblige us." She ended up driving over and taking us to the Village Inn for medical treatment -- or, as the Redneck noted, great drunk food to "get your fat on."
And so she, and the Village Inn, saved our lives. They have a lot to answer for.