Sunday, October 05, 2014

Too Many Daves

A long time ago, I lived next to Dave. This was a monumental experience for me, since I didn't make a practice of learning the names of my fellow apartment dwellers. Not that I wasn't friendly or polite, for the most part, but I was a college kid living in and around a series of other essentially nameless college kids who would become interchangeable over time, so learning their names seemed like an awfully big waste of time. Sharing a name with the guy who lived next door made us practically friends.
My roommate and partner in crime used to invite Dave over for what we suggested was a friendly game of Trivial Pursuit. My roommate and I were every bit as good at this game as Dave insisted that he was. What didn't help was the gin.
The gin was "Real Good" Gin as marked on the bottle. My roommate had taken the trouble to modify the generic Gin that we had purchased for a Saint Patrick's Day party first by adding green food coloring and then scribbling the modifier "real good" on the label just in case anyone asked. As it turns out, the only person who really seemed to enjoy the "Real Good" Gin was Dave. Whatever skills he might have brought to the Trivial Pursuit board were quickly diminished by the glasses of mostly gin (and tonic) that he swilled throughout the exhibition.
What we learned about Dave, aside from his name and abiding affection for generic liquor, was that he had been dumped by his girlfriend. That is how he came to land next door to us. Once he was fully in his cups, Dave would raise his quickly emptying glass and slur, "To Stacey." We also learned that he had moved to Boulder from another college town: Bloomington, Indiana. To hear him tell it, there was no more wretched a hive of scum and villainy outside of Mos Eisley Spaceport. That last bit is giving him more credit than he deserves, since his descriptions and analogies were never quite that colorful. We were made to understand that between Stacey and the torment he suffered in and around the University of Indiana, he had to flee.
And boy howdy, was he glad to have landed next to a couple of square gents such as ourselves. With a bottle of green gin. Somewhere in there, Dave did pass along a few interesting factoids about "Breaking Away," the bike film that was filmed in his hometown, and his deep and abiding respect for John Cougar Mellencamp. That was before the Cougar had been eliminated completely.
Eventually, Dave moved on too. He probably had another college town on his agenda. One with sketchy apartments in which to perch while he sorted out his Midwest dreams. Hopefully it was somewhere with a Trivial Pursuit game and plenty of Real Good Gin.

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