beer soaked hair & freedom

c h i l i f e s t | 2014

This story.. Dear, god. You cannot proceed without tossing all judgement aside.

Each spring there is a good ole rootin’ tootin’, pew pew-in’, beer slingin’ time in College Station, Texas. It is called Chilifest. I went to school at Oklahoma State and my junior year of college I lived on Gray Street. We had some rowdy neighbors who were all from Texas. In February or so, they started talking to us about this thing called Chilifest.

At the time, I had already committed to a Spring Break in Panama City Beach, Florida. I was a lowly waitress and money was hard to come by so I couldn’t give the boys a yes or no. I talked to my roommate, Cheyenne, and my new best friend- Dallas. We decided to throw all caution to the wind and go.

Dallas and I have this extreme urge to save money in any way possible. However, we fail. Every. Single. Time. So for this trip, our genius idea was to sleep in my car. Let it be known that I drive an Altima Coupe. My vehicle can fit approximately two throw pillows and a toaster. So why did we think this was going to work? I have no idea. Cheyenne was sweet on one of the neighbor boys so we already knew that she wouldn’t be shacking with us. All we knew is that we were going to make this trip dirt cheap. We stayed at my parents house the night before we made the trip because it shaved off an extra two and half hours. We woke up and started the long road trip.

The drive down was pretty uneventful. We mostly listened to music and talked shit about other people. Our first stop once we arrived was at the liquor store. We each purchased a champagne bottle.

“The party never ends, mom”

We giggled and chugged our hot bubbly on the way to the festival. Whenever we pulled into the campgrounds it was a shit show. People were already stumbling around. We parked the car and started to play catch up.

When you walk into the concert area you notice that the ground is damp and mushy. This is because people like to hold their beers above their head and sling it around. Why? I don’t know. I thought it seemed pretty dumb. How dare you waste alcohol. We walked through the area to find our “team”. There is no end goal to this festival or if there was, I didn’t know. We all wore matching t-shirts and stuffed our faces with barbeque while sitting on a pyramid of Natty Light boxes. The bbq was hella spicey, but fuck it. I was on vacation and I was hungry. I would follow each bite with a big swig of that tasteless beverage.

The night passed by quickly. Dallas and I stumbled around laughing and flirting with all of the surrounding boys. We tried to sneak into the sorority tents. You see, Dallas used to be a Phi Mu and she tried to teach me the handshake or whatever those communists do to prove that they are one in the same. We were midway through our official entrance exam and… IT FUCKING HIT ME. My stomach was in knots. I felt as if I was going to die. From the deep abyss of hell something was coming alive in my digestive track. I needed a bathroom and I needed one quick. Dallas was like “Noo. You’re fine. Quit being a little bitch. Just hold it.” I couldn’t. I grabbed Dallas by the wrist and I forcibly pulled her with me to the porta potty line. She’s behind me whining about how close we were to getting in. I fucked it all up. Such a little baby back bitch needing to go to the bathroom. Ugh. How dare I? All the while, I am standing in line trying to talk to myself off the ledge. I’m literally thinking “It’s okay, Alex.” “You’ll be alright.” “Just hold it.” “It’ll be over shortly.” “You’re okay.” I’m just standing there staring at this one particular blade of grass trying to hold my shit together. HOW ARE THESE PEOPLE STILL IN THE GODDAMN BATHROOM? What are they doing? They have to be having sex. I cannot deal. Then I feel the need to let out a little toot. Just a small one. Surely nothing can go wrong, right? So I concentrate really hard to only relieve the pressure in my stomach by a small fraction. BAD IDEA. Bad fucking idea. I regretted that action immediately. It was more. I shit myself. Oh my god. OH MY god. What the fuck am I supposed to do? Finally the couple comes out of the blue cube smiling smugly. I practically heisman those hoes out of the way and I force Dallas to come in with me. “Why? Ugh, Alex. It’s so small. I don’t even have to go!” We step into that foul smelling box and I shine my phone light on the inside of my pants. Dallas is like “Eww. It smells bad. Why are you shinING THE LIGHT OHMYGOD. YOU shit YOURSELF! HAHAHAHAHAHAHHA” And I’m sitting there- yes sitting. At that point, why would I hover above the disease infested toilet seat when my life was over? Luckily, it was very little, but still. Then out of nowhere I feel this warm liquid running down my right leg and into my green converse. I shine my light on Dallas. She is peeing in the urinal area. Except she isn’t making any of it go down the drain. She is peeing directly on me. Great. Spec-fucking-tacular. Dallas walks and I slosh back to the car and I stripped down right there and I just launched those shorts into the night. Never to be seen again.

We stayed for a little bit longer, but we couldn’t find Cheyenne and we were sort of ready to go to sleep. We decided that we would drive back into town to find the darkest and least crowded hotel parking lot. This was so nobody would be able to see that we were actually sleeping in the car. I guess the thought of potentially getting raped and assaulted didn’t cross our minds. After we parked we both needed to use the restroom. So we get out and squat behind the car using one hand to balance on the bumper and were facing each other. Just doing a little chit chatting about how crazy this trip has already been.. Peeing away. Then a truck comes around the corner shining its headlights right on Dallas’ backside. I do the double bounce to dry off then pull my pants up and hop back in the car. All I hear is “OH NOOO. Oh my god. No” Dallas finally gets back in the car and breathlessly says “We’ve gotta go. We. Have. Got. To. GO.” I’m just sitting there puzzled. “Why? Did they see you peeing? Dude, it’s Chilifest. I’m sure they have seen worse.” She looks me dead in the soul and says, “I pooped. They saw me pooping.” I start drooling because I am laughing so goddamn hard. I put the car in reverse and back out from our parking spot- running over her turds in the process. Then we leave that parking lot like we just stole the car.

We go to the nearest gas station to clean up. Afterwards, we search the city for the second darkest parking lot. We find a spot and we fall asleep not speaking to each other. The night had already been too much. Around 4:30am or so, we wake up. Both of us need to pee again. She assures me that it is just a number one and not a number two. So she gets out first and pees in front of the car. She ends up using her sweatpants to wipe herself then gets back into the car. I get out and I squat and balance on my front right tire and the pick up next to us front left. As I pee, I let out the biggest fart. Like, ricocheted off the concrete at sonic speed. Dallas laughs. I laugh. I get back into the car and we both lay back down to fall asleep. Dallas turns to say something to me and that’s when she notices something in the truck next to us. It’s a guy with the light from his phone shining on his face. SWEET BABY JESUS. We start laughing and I start the car. Abort! Abort! We had to get out of there. No way. He saw Dallas wipe herself with her pants and heard my record breaking fart. We speed out of lot number two.

We drive to a Denny’s and as we sat there in our filth, I called my dad crying. “Dad. Please. I just need money for a hotel. We’re not going to make it. We aren’t as tough as we thought we were. Please. Please. Please, dad.” My dad ended up depositing exactly $150 into my account and told me not to call him again for the rest of the weekend unless I was dying. We start calling hotels. They’re all booked. Every one of them within a 60 mile radius. Although, there was one suite available for the night. It was exactly $6 more than we could afford. We wipe our tears off with the baby wipes we had left and decided to go have breakfast. We sat in Denny’s- me eating a turkey melt and Dallas eating a grandslam special- until the sun came up. Whenever we could finally see in the daylight we noticed a La Quinta near the back parking lot. We drove to a parking spot and passed out for the next 4 hours. After we finally wake up, we drive around town looking for the nicest hotel. Once we find it, we park by the pool area and wait for somebody to come out of the door. After making our way in we shimmied to the locker room area. We wash the shame, piss, and shit off our bodies in the small sinks. We looked good all things considering. It was in that moment that I realized I could survive if I ever became homeless. Not very good, but I could make it. Dallas and I had lunch at some restaurant where we asked about the drink specials and still ended up not getting the best deal. As usual. Then we made our way back to the festival.

As we were walking in with our five liters of Franzia, the workers stop us to let us know that we cannot take it in. So, what did we do? Give up? Just hand it over and make our way into the festival? Nope. Momma didn’t raise no bitch. We took the bag out of the box and walked over to a security cart to sit on the back and drink as much as we possibly could.

Bae, Dallas, and I (btw, I lost that headband)

After we finished off about two liters of regret, I started to pour a smidge out on to the ground. Dallas started yelling at me, but I had a plan. I went into the porta potty and laid down as flat as I could. I pulled the spout part through my sports bra to hook it and I tucked the rest of the bag into my shorts. I walked out and Dallas was thrilled. As we made our way into the grounds she was slapping my belly yelling, “I SLAPPA DA BAG” and we made it through. Either they didn’t give a shit or I was extremely sly. We made our way through the crowd to see the Turnpike Troubadours? Maybe? I honestly don’t remember who it was. We were giving out bag slaps like we were fucking Oprah. Then I catch a glimpse of this guy standing next to me. Low and behold, it is Tyler P. - a kid I went to high school with. Everyone in a four person circle were taking pulls from our Franzia and that was about the time I blacked out. The last thing I remember was standing with my hands up next to Tyler and Dallas listening to a cover and singing “Sitting at a bar on the inside, waiting for my ride on the outside..” Then bam. Nothing. Straight auto-pilot, Alex.

I have no recollection of the events that followed. Only hearsay. Dallas has a video of her following me around and pushing me down. Cheyenne paid for gas with her debit card and apparently I yelled at her saying that she now owed the government money. Then she and Dallas left me in the car with the windows cracked and ate at On The Border. Bitches. The first thing I do remember was waking up in the backseat of my car in a hotel parking lot. I guess somewhere along the way we met up with the neighbors and they let us stay in their hotel room. I was finally able to take a proper shower and lay down. This is also the time that I learned the importance of zippy pockets. My jacket pocket was vibrating. I reach over and pull out not only my phone, but Tyler’s phone and all of my identification. Zippy pockets save lives.

We woke up the next day and made our way back to civilization through the rain. We made it back to Stillwater never to return again.

A. Mill

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