As a loyal Chicagoan I know I’m supposed to hate St. Louis and send my pee down the river and into its mouth, but after visiting my friend Rat there, along with two of our high school friends, Justin and Phil, I gotta say I’m a bit of a convert. Put together, we are the absolute worst. Allow me to explain:
1) We went to theAnheuser-Buschfactory, which was the one thing we did that these guys could tell their girlfriends/wives about because the rest was just drinking. I know, I know—the whole point of anAnheuser-Buschtour is the two free beers at the end, which is why we skipped out of the actual tour after fifteen minutes and just went to get the free beers. Rat, a doctor, filled us in on what we missed.
“These are the Budweiser Clydesdales, which is where the beer comes from. You milk them six times a day. The regular ones make Budweiser, the dark ones make stouts, and the baby horses make Bud Light, the world’s best-selling beer. The reason to take the tour is that you can get a beer fresh from the udder.”
“I just want to stick my face under an udder,” I told him. “That’s freshness.”
“Very crisp,” he agreed. “And refreshing. But it’s frowned upon to drink beer directly from an udder.”
2) We visited the famous St. Louis Arch, which as Phil explained, “Louis and Clark passed through on their way to the Oregon Trail, where they failed to ford a river because their oxen sank. The Arch was actually supposed to be one of two and painted gold courtesy of the McDonald’s corporation, but Joe McDonald ran out of money, and they couldn't afford to build the other until they sold another billion chicken McNuggets.”
3) We spent a lot of time before hitting the town in Rat’s apartment where he has a remote control that not only turns on the TV but also the lights. Justin and I spent most of the weekend inadvertently turning on the lights.
4) Phil and I got in an argument about Facebook’s IPO and stock market valuation. We didn’t have reading glasses to put on because we were in the Budweiser factory drinking our Clydesdale udder juice.
5) We went to a casino and started playing roulette, which didn’t end well. I’m the smartest of all my friends by a factor of about a billion yet make approximately “so f***ing much” less money than them, so after losing only $20 and consistently making less than the $10 bet minimum I was out. The other three yokels were up and down to various degrees until we left, at which point they got bored of standing in line, went back to the table and put all their money on black. The little ball landed on double-zero.
6) Because we are high rollers (see previous point), we played credit card roulette for two meals. This is where you all put your cards in a hat and have the waitress draw one and that person has to pay for the entire meal and drinks. This is how I ended up paying for a $108 lunch and Justin ended up buying a $288 sushi dinner.
7) “What’s the big deal about this Sarkozy guy?” said Justin, while reading the news about the French president while we waited for Rat to take a shower so we could start drinking again. “What’s the big deal about France? I heard they just have holes in France and you have to squat over it and poop into the hole. Obviously you don’t hit the hole all the time so there’s just poop all over the place. Disgusting.”
8) “What are you laughing about?” said Justin.
“Oh, nothing. I just think I’m an awesome writer,” I said after writing down exactly what Justin said without adding any writerly flourish whatsoever.
“You suck, Markley,” he said. “You know something? You’re kind of an asshole.”