In an odd coincidence, received back-to-back e-mails today from Chris and Anthony, my freshman college roommates in Russell Hall A at the University of Delaware. Hadn’t spoken to either in years. Just totally random.
Our room was tiny. T-i-n-y. We were put together until something opened up. Chris was quiet and dour; a nice kid from Long Island who I never fully understood at the time. Anthony was loud and boastful. He was a high school lacrosse star who scored, like, 10 trillion goals back in the day. Both guys drank pretty heavily, and both did well (as I recall) with the women. I fell short on both fronts.
In fact, I never got drunk until early my freshman year. Our dorm had something called an Around the World, where each room hosted a different genre of alcohol. Enough peers said, “Pearl, you’re drinking tonight!” that I drank tonight. I remember downing grain and fruit punch in the room of a tall guy we called “Sambuca.” I did some shots of rum in Scott and Lumpy’s apartment. Julie and Dawn had wine.
Within an hour, my brain started spinning.
Within 1 1/2 hours, I was sitting on someone’s floor, asking girls to rub my head.
Within two hours, I was kneeling before a toilet, puking my brains out. Anthony actually led me there, and held my head above the white bowl. I can still feel the cool water reflecting off my face; can still feel my insides burning like wildfire.
Shortly thereafter, Anthony had his day. He drank too much grape Mad Dog 20/20 and puked all over our student directory. For the remainder of the semester the book was purple and crusty, and sat in the corner of our room.
Chris moved out.