This is a collection of stories of ridiculous, half-brained, stupid, totally unsane people (including myself) getting themselves into the wackiest situations I can remember. Some of these stories may contain references to alcohol overconsumption, unnecessary violence, nudity, random acts of awesome, and generally deviant behavior. Names have been changed to protect the guilty.
In an effort to mix things up a bit, I’ve lined up a nice little tale that Beaker probably hasn’t heard; we were much too busy making our own mistakes to stop and recount ones from before we met. Prior to becoming friends in 2005 in Louisiana, I was stationed in Korea. So here’s one from my vacation within a vacation. And the backstory might be a bit long, so feel free to grab something to drink.
DO THE BUS-A-BUS
Like I said, I was in South Korea, Seoul to be exact. Man, I never know where to start describing how amazed I was by that city, by the whole country. I think it was around the beginning of 2004, a new guy came to our shop. We ended up calling him Fish.
Fish was a wildcard; in fact, he’s the card a ‘Wildcard’ plays when he wants to knock everyone on their rumps. Really something else. Anyway, he was really cool, and fell in with the rest of the guys (Manny, Garcia, Thayer, Stacy B, Weezy, Fultzy, Bashful, Chuck, Badey, Broad Street Bully, and me) easily.
Side story: A couple days beforehand, I had run into Gonzo, one of my Drill Sergeants from Basic Training three years earlier. He said he remembered me- I like to think he meant it. Big, crazy dude from LA, lots of energy.
I’m pretty sure it was Saturday. Fish, Fultzy and Bashful wanted to go exploring around Seoul, so the four of us hopped on the subway and went; I remember going to Lotte World (a four story shopping mall) and whining about the Clarks Wallabees I wanted costing 180,000 won (about $150). Lord knows how long we went around the city, but made our way back to the sub to go back to post.
We get off at our stop and are heading for street level. There’s a guy coming down the stairs as we’re approaching; he had a green shirt that said something about Kentucky. Fish cracks this ten-gallon smile and yells “heyyyyyy, Kentucky!” And at the same moment the rest of us are wondering if he’s from Kentucky, Fish plants a haymaker dead in that dude’s face. Naptime. WHAT. THE. FUCK. We were all kinds of crazy now, wanting to know why he did that. This crazy asshole says he hates Kentucky.
Fast forward to nighttime. Fultzy, Bashful, Fish and I are gonna go to this bar in the city called the Bald Eagle; for some reason I was told early on it was the spot all the MPs went to, and they fucked with everybody and got away with it. I got a hold of Gonzo, and he met us on the way.
There are front and rear entrances to the Eagle, both up stairs; we go in the front and get to it. The DJ made the super bad mistake of being free to take requests, so you know what I wanna hear? WHAM! and Hall & Oates. They’ve got these hella cheap cocktails at the bar called KGB. I’m not shitting you. They were kinda weak, and they were pink….but they were two bucks a bottle. KGBs, all night!
An hour or two goes by, and we’re all just chilling; but Gonzo came to me with a problem. “You see that guy over there?”, and motions toward this guy stomping around the dance floor to NOFX or Pennywise or whatever it was, obviously WAY past ‘take him home, he’s drunk’ mode. “If he spills his shit on me one more time, I’m gonna fuck his world up”. So I tells him I’ll handle it. And seriously, about a minute later dude bumps into Gonzo again, he’s all over the place. I call over to Fish, and ask about the guy. Fish walks right up to him, puts a finger in dude’s face, and says “You mean THIS guy?”
He didn’t like that, smacked Fish’ hand away. They have some words and *justlikethat* they go toe-to-toe. Pretty quickly they fall over a couch just off the dance floor, Fish first, so he’s on his back, but that has no effect on the beating he’s shelling out.
At some point I sat at the bar, babysitting a KGB and watching the throwdown. I wasn’t looking for a fight; I figured those two would get it handled, story over. But something inside me- the homo sapiens sapiens at the basest levels of my DNA, the primal male beast sensing an impending kill, I’m not sure- told me to get off the wall and participate. So I (this all happened very quickly) silently stood up, finished my drink, walked over to the guy on top of Fish, and started laying bricks into the back of his head. another part of me remembered a skit from a Busta Rhymes song where he got into it with a guy and started kicking his ass, yelling like Dolemite with every blow. My fighting brain must have a sense for flair, cuz that’s what I did. Every time I hit him, it was “yahhh! Yaahhhhh! YYYYAAAAHHHHHHHH!” The guy was already thoroughly whupped by Fish, I suppose I just wanted some too, just a few knocks. Fish pushes dude off him, hops to, and rockets out of that bar so fast I couldn’t believe it. Fultzy and Bashful made a break too, pretty sure Gonzo did also. Not me; I looked around at the people rushing around, slowly walked to the back door, opened it and stepped out of the way of the cops rushing in, and casually went on my way.
I was pretty tired so I went back to the post. Thank goodness, I found Gonzo along the way, hollering at nothing in particular and falling over shrubbery, drooling and slurring and stumbling. I helped him back to his barracks, then headed for mine again. I didn’t catch up with the other guys till the next morning; Fultzy and Bashful went clubbing in Hongdae, and apparently Fish went solo wandering around the camp (at least he wasn’t out in the city), fell in a ditch and passed out. Fucking winners, us.
Saw the drunk guy a couple weeks later, he was okay. good thing our stupidity didn’t land him or anyone else in the hospital.