I could have passed out face-down into my blackened rib-eye at Puddin's birthday dinner but I managed to make it through the rest of the night after taking a 15 minute power nap. It was a big night and there was a lot to celebrate. It was Puddin's birthday, it was his girlfriend's last night in town, my team mate Gene just accumulated his 100th career win, and collectively as a team we went 2-1 for the day. After a week of two-a-days with our new strength trainer that we like to call "Major Pain" every one must have been short on sleep.
Shumi, Puddin', Sam and I would find ourselves making a late arrival to another fellow team mates apt. There we would rendezvous with some familiar faces and some that we would later learn were called "slogs" (see "slam hogs"). After ditching the slogs and regrouping we made our way to a lounge that promised free pizzas with every beer... and ski ball! It was definitely an unusual combination. Upon arrival I could immediately recognize the smell of fresh baked pizza dough in the smoke that bellowed from an oven in the back and filled the air throughout the bar. The pizza was "free" and it tasted like it could be, but never the less it was a great deal.
After demolishing the personal sized pizza and a Blue Moon I had to call it a night, realizing that I no longer had enough cash for a cab and I would have to make the hike back home. The walk was long and it was made even longer by my two-avenue detour to McDonald's. I had been craving a cone the whole day. The line was long so I had time to think. I remembered the last time I was craving a McDonald's cone.
It was probably 4 or 5 year's ago at a Wal-Mart. It was the kind of Wal-Mart that had a built-in McDonald's in the front. On the way out I decided to stop for a soft cone. I remember feeling hesitant to buy one because of a previous experience at a McDonald's where they must have had a shortage of vanilla frozen yogurt since the cone they handed me was so small that its peak rivaled a Hershey Kiss. I was next in line and didn't have any time to waste so I ended up ordering the cone. After a short dialogue the woman came back with a gigantic cone that was at least 7 inches high. I was impressed.
I had finally reached the front of the line at the 24 hour McDonald's on Cooper Sq. and St. Mark's. I ordered some food and decided to say the same thing to this woman as I did to the person behind the counter five years ago. She came back with my food then proudly presented me with a cone so large that it made me laugh and other people stare in amazement. It was easily 10 inches high. I balanced my food and drink in one hand and the towering cone in the other as I continued the hike home.