Night started off real slow. Gave me a chance to check out some bars I normally don't visit.
First trip was to Cowboys East
. Holy crap, was I ever out of my element there! Not a big country fan, and certainly not a fan of this bar. I really can't stand places that pay lots of money and go out of their way to look like a dive bar, and that's what this place was. Plus, the music was awful. Maybe next time I'll wear my big belt buckle from Leadville so I'll have some cred. Spent about half an hour here, and if nothing else I felt a lot better about myself after leaving.
Next we headed downtown to Southside Johnny's
, probably my second least favorite bar in the Springs. What a cesspool that place is. Lots of dumpy mid-50s divorced women wearing way too little clothing, just like it is every other time I've been forced to go there (usually by dumpy mid-50s divorced hashers who end trail there). Ugh. I needed a shower.
Still no calls, it was now about 11:30PM, so we headed down to Gasoline Alley
. Never been here before as it's kinda new. It's sort of the younger rock bar in downtown. Not too shabby, the music was good and the eye candy was all over the place.
Funny thing was happening outside. A group of four high school kids were protesting! Rum Bay
is right next door, so there were A LOT of intoxicated people around. One had a big sign that said, "Gays, fornicators, drunkards, you will not inherit the kingdom of the lord." The other three were reading the bible. I need to start bringing my camera on these nights, the scene was unreal.
Soon after this I called dispatch to make sure he had us on the list. I was told to call another number for dispatch. The new number is run by a retired E-6 supply clerk, who doesn't like me because I have long hair and a Dead sticker on my truck. He doesn't know I served and don't have a very high opinion of retired E-6 pogues
. He chewed me out for a while about calling the wrong number, which I was never told existed. I think he expected me to be scared of him, so I let the awkward silence go on for a bit before I sarcastically said, "I'm sorry, did you just yell at me?" Then he hung up.
But he called back in a few minutes, acted like nothing happened, and told me a drunkard needed a ride from the Golden Bee
. And she was driving a BMW! Woohoo! We roll over to the rich side of town and pick her up. Nice girl, except for the fact that her BMW is one of those station wagon things, and she has Virginia Tech stickers on it. Turns out she was at VT the same time I was at Pitt, so we talk about Michael Vick most of the short drive back to her place. She wasn't too drunk, but she said her husband was a military officer so she didn't want to risk a DUI that could affect his career. Barf.
Next call was to go pick up some drunk GI's in a garage and take them home. Real young, and I find out on the way back they know a hasher friend of mine, who is in the same AF medical unit. So I got some good dirt on her. One of the kids was from Pittsburgh, so we both talked on end, in Pittsburghese, about the greatest city in the world.
Final call of the night is to go grab two more soldiers from downtown. I call one of them when we're in the area and he says he's in a parking garage. We find the garage, but can't find his Saturn. So I call back. I see the back door of a car open and someone falls out. It's our drunks. I get five feet from the car and can smell jager! These two are hammered. It's a short drive to their house and a challenge to keep one awake to give me directions. Finally we make the drop off, and our night is done.
Still haven't developed a very high opinion of the group that does this
. They claim the moral high ground, never missing a chance to tell a tearful story about a close and personal drunk driving death. But they also never miss a chance to ask for money. They are doing this to make a living, despite what they tell anyone who will listen. But that's not a bad thing, I guess, as they are getting a lot of drunk people off the roads. But something stinks about the whole operation, I just can't seem to put my finger on what it is.
For the record, I worked from 10PM until 4:20AM, and made $25 in tips.