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December 29, 2009

Owl Meat's Tipsy Tuesdays: New Year's Eve horror stories

new year's octopusIn today's column, Owl Meat Gravy is dead on the mark. High expectations and beaucoup booze can -- and often do -- spell disaster. And few holidays have such high expectations as New Year's Eve. Take it away, Mr. Gravy:

There is something about New Year's Eve that attracts disaster like gravity loves anvils.

It's not impossible to have a good time on New Year's Eve, but you have a better chance of funning it up on any given Thursday.

Why not think of New Year's Eve as an ironic funeral for the year that was? Bury last year's missteps and misfortunes in a reckless haze of low expectations and random mayhem. ...

I recommend abandoning the good intentions of fools and amateurs and going full gonzo for this arbitrary calendar reboot. Do you think Charles Bukowski ever went to a plastic cup beer bash at Power Plant Live?

Another possibility is to blow it out the night before with people you actually like and spend New Year's Eve hung-over playing board games and quaffing the coif of the schnauzer that bit you.

The countdown to the end of the calendar year doesn't do much for me. Nothing much changes except that I write the wrong year on checks for three months.

First dates are Satan's jack-in-the-box. A first date on New Year's Eve is like bungee jumping into the foamy maws of Cerberus. Why not front-load your relationship with drunkenness and emotional shrapnel? If you can survive that, you were meant for each other.

A few years ago I was drinking and debating the end of the world with a beautiful Jehovah's Witness on New Year's Eve. Pamphlets and shots. Now that's a party. I stupidly honored my promise to go out with my friends and abandoned her. The evening ended with my friend's wife blubbering that she was afraid that her husband was cheating on her and that I was a bad influence because I was single. Ugh.

new year's eveI went to New York one year, because my über-Midwest girlfriend wanted to see the ball drop in Times Square. We broke up by 9 p.m. and I drank the mini-bar. Woo hoo.

Another girlfriend took me to Deep Creek Lake for New Year's. Skiing and all that. It rained the whole time and I spent beaucoup time with her sub-awesome Frostburg State friends. Her friend broke up with her boyfriend and spent the night in our room. Woo minus hoo.

I saw a story on the news about people having New Year's Eve swine flu parties. People intentionally spread the swine flu in its current state to prevent beinng infected with a more dangerous future mutation. Idjits.

My best New Year's Eve was in Dubrovnik, Croatia. I was drinking rakia in the bar near my unheated rented room. Rakia is a local spirit that tastes like brandy made from straw, goat sweat, and despair.

A wedding party swooped in, had a round of drinks and whooshed on to their next stop with me in tow. I don't know if this is a Croatian tradition, but I had big time fun. With zero Croatian language skills my understanding came from rakia. We also drank a lot of Coke mixed with a blunt earthy local red wine – surprisingly not horrible.

You can't plan a night like I had in Dubrovnik and that's the point. Real fun comes when you least expect it. The best you can do is be available and open to anything, have low expectations and ride any wave of chaos.

The lesson here? Giving in to the moment, Jägermeister and eschatology banter beats hanging out with married people every time.

You won't see me at any high-priced events or places with covers, but look for me wherever Sardonic is spoken and rakia is served. Have a chaotic New Year's Eve, Midnight Sunners and please share your New Year's stories.


(Getty Images)

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 11:00 AM | | Comments (21)
Categories: Owl Meat's Tipsy Tuesdays


Ah yes, the "single friend is a bad influence" phenomenon. Listen, if your husband can't go out for a burger and a couple beers with one of his buddies without picking up girls, then the marriage has problems. If he cannot go out without you THINKING that's what will happen, then your marriage has problems. Don't blame the single guy who wants to hang out with his friend and get him out of the house and away from the kids for a few hours. I haven't experienced this too much myself, but definitely have seen it repeated many times with other friends.

Married guy did leave his wife and new born child a few years later. I dumped him as a friend long before that. He was a jerk. If you think your marriage is in trouble, which I guess she did, don't push for the baby and the house. It's a bad move. Wow, I really shouldn't be giving marriage advice.

I shouldn't give marriage advice either, but if the marriage is so weak that a guy cannot hang out with his single friends for fear of him leaving, well, then I would guess it would end up happening eventually regardless. And if not, I'm not sure that level of distrust is healthy in a relationship. Entertaining column, anyway. New Year's Eve is always amateur hour... and I'm an old pro at drinking too much and making an ass of myself.

Excellent column!
I have to agree that New Year's Eve is a bad first date and add to that Valentine's Day. Such high expectations and pretty hard to repeat a great date, if the date is in fact great, the following year.

Worst NYE? The only time I've ever thrown up from drinking (the night of, hangover chucks are a different beast)... Senior year of college, I got some bad news regarding a boy I liked and a close friend (as I chased him around the bar to kiss at midnight, natch)and promptly attempted to drink my feelings away with Long Island Iced Teas.

Best? Rooftop party at our house in Upper Fells Point. An amazing mishmash of different groups of friends showed up and we almost collapsed the deck when we all piled up for the countdown and Inner Harbor fireworks. Awesome.

You are too kind various commenters. Thank you. I'm so glad Sam used my photoshopped image of sad Baby New Year and Terror Octo-TV. Creating the artwork is the most fun of doing this column sometimes.

As for NYE, I will be picking up my special lady (you know who you are CylonGurl3221) for our first date in a Hummer limo, with a dozen red roses, a bottle of Asti Spumanti Rose, and a special poem I wrote. No pressure, it's all cool. Just, when you meet my mother pretend like we've been dating for six months, you're Albanian/Irish, and your name is Natasha.

Last NYE 2 friends and I went out in Fed Hill and got pretty banged up - we decided to keep it low key, but you know what happens after shots. So, the one friend went home around 1 and the other friend and I caught a cab to her place on 101 Wells (it was cold, we were drunk and lazy). So, when we get there I notice the meter wasn't running on the cab. I asked the cabbie why and he said it was broken. Always skeptical of Baltimore cabbies, I told him it's against the law to pick up people in a cab with a broken meter (because apparently I know the law so well when I'm drunk). He told me to pay $10 or he'd call the cops. We argued some more and finally my friend urged me to just pay. So, I threw him $5, I got out of the cab, my friend did as well, however, I guess I pissed off the cabbie so much that he pulled off while my friend was stepping out of the cab. She kind of spun out of the cab and started crying that her foot was run over. Like screaming. I guess the cabbie heard this, so stopped briefly (like 10 ft away) and I had a chance to memorize his cab #. He pulled away and never looked back. I called 911. Cops never arrived. And to boot, cabs are free on NYE. I'm staying in this year.

Owl Meat GalaDudeSeriouslyNotDesperateBeCoolHeyComeBackILoveYouWhatsYourName? -- I'LL BE READY AT 8! I'll be tweeting about our date the entire night, hope that is ok with you!

Super duper, CylonGurl. My manservant Bertram will be tweeting my end of it. I will be too busy basking in your glow and writing sonnets to you. I hope you like Cambodian hot pockets.

Owl Meat GurlCrush -- Forget all the fancy stuff! All I want is you and a case of Natty Boh's. Our love will keep us warm.

Worst NYE ever?? Had to be when 2000 rung in. What a complete bunch of B f'ing S Y2K turned out to be. Completely ruined the rest of my year. I carefully planned out how to take advantage of all the "chaos" that was going to bring the end of the world...but guess what....maxing my credit cards and waiting for the balances to dissappear didnt go well, sitting at the atm at midnight waiting for the cash to just come gushing out didn't happen, my attempts to loot the local 7/11 was met with much force and no additonal looters,, that new years sucked and the assh*les who convinced me to do it all should be shot, or at least have to eat at the Mcdonald's on Baltimore street across from the sun building...

Ouch, JTN. I've been in plenty of cabs where they didn't turn on the meter. Plus some with a driver that didn't match the photo ID. In either case it's Pay What You Want fare. I always pay a fair but not generous amount.

Wow, it mut be hell to be a cab driver on NYE, not that it sees fun at any other time.

The best New Year's Eve is rollin' slo & fruity in my ride, y'all. Touch the rainbow sedan of awesomeness.

Sounds good Future Mrs. Owl Meat. I won't drink that stuff, but I do like a cheap date. The money I save will keep me warm if you don't.

Hey Monkey, I had a GREAT time on Y2K. Know why? Homemade meth and my band of enforcers VigilanteY2K. Maybe you were one of the potential looters that we beat the crap out of. Remember five guys in red berets pummeling you with whiffle ball bats? Yeah, that was us.

Voodo...I don't remember that...I do remember screaming at the atm machine " dispense cash, dispense cash", but the f'ing thing just didnt do anything..christ that machine was smarter than like the whole technology community which expected it to just f'ing start throwing up the machine was as dumb as a baltimore city mayor....anywhoo, needless to say, i dont celerate new years unless the potential to pillage becomes greater than 50%

BTW..the mcdonalds on baltimore street across from the sun building has a special...get in line, wait for about 35 minutes when no one is in line ahead of you, get to the counter person, and if you speak some sort of jive/yo language, you can order and pay won't get your food but thats baltimore.

See you in line Thursday night at Power Plant live waiting to get tickets to the BIG NYE bonanza..hahaha

Now if i can just put this e in the field below

Hey Monkey, maybe it was mad about the redundancy of "atm machine". Feel free to pillage at will this NYE. I only practice vigilante-ism in my own home now.

Voodoo...maybe we should hang ...I'm baking cookies and sacrificing a pigeon I caught yesterday to my giant Kirk Cameron blow up doll.

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot
In the days of auld lang syne?

For auld lang syne, my dear,
For auld lang syne,
We'll take a cup of kindness yet,
For auld lang syne.

happy new year, owl meat gravy.

You start a conversation you can't even finish it.
You're talking a lot, but you're not saying anything.
When I have nothing to say, my lips are sealed.
Say something once, why say it again?

NYE make me want to go all Dexter on people.

I was all Dexter too. I just kept repeating, "Remember the code Remember the code."

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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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