I have a large scar on my left knee that I blame in equal parts on John Jameson and Dick Van Dyke. It was Mother’s Day 2003 and I walked, unannounced, into the one building on campus where booze was prohibited with a case of beer over my shoulder. This was the student ministers’ residence, and when one of them mentioned something about being a dry dorm, I brushed him aside without missing a beat and headed straight for the staircase.
After a couple hours and more stupid actions – several of us urinating off the ledge of a 6 story building while others held onto our belts stands out in particular – someone mentioned that the 19th century rooftop reminded them of the chimney sweep song from Mary Poppins. Someone else then lamented that they couldn’t click their heels. I offered that I could, and set out to show them.
With a few steps head start I went up and clicked to the left like a pro. My feet came down, I took a step, and I clicked to the right. This time, for whatever reason, my feet decided not to return to their rightful place below my shins, and I landed on my knee. I was too drunk to really feel any pain, but it produced a large gash. When I got back to my dorm in the wee small hours of the morning, I called my girlfriend and convinced her to come over and clean me up by informing her, again and again, that I was “bleeding profusely from the knee.”
I thought of this last night while hanging out with a couple of guys from Stonehill College. I enjoy their company for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that while in their presence I don’t feel quite so old. They got sidetracked into a conversation for which I lacked the context, but then one turned to me and said, “You should definitely come party with us at our Cape house.”
It turns out that at Stonehill during Senior Week the students rent out houses all across the Cape, and then take over a bar a night to party in. My attempt at playing Bert (minus the cockney accent) also took place during our Senior Week, that magical time between finals ending and the rest of our lives beginning where we have nothing to lose and all the beers in the world to drink.
I reach that dreaded milestone birthday this summer, so I’m actually considering taking the guys up on their offer and partying with them as one last hurrah before I join the AARP. Sure I might be seen as the creepy older guy hanging around, but I know all the best bars in the mid-Cape area, and I can still pick up college girls. Maybe if I’m lucky, I can get another scar with a cooler story to go along with it.