The house an older one in the downtown had a front door which when opened looked directly at a stairway to the second floor. To the right was a living room. Continuing through this you got into a short pantry which led to the kitchen covering the back of the house and sort of under that big staircase down the middle. If you kept going you got into the formal dining room opposite the living room and back from there to the foyer at the front door.
This house like a lot of the others had seen better days and was now rented out to Brock students. One of the renters was rower and so we found the final party of the year at this house. It was also 1971 and it was the party where we started the tradition of bringing Jereboams of champagne to the party. FOr those who have never had the pleasure a Jereboam is the equivalent of 4 regular bottles of wine. They are cumbersome and hard to handle especially as you get near the bottom. I don’t know why cause they are a lot lighter then than when you start drinking but I can attest that it is nearly impossible to pour out the last couple of glasses without spilling.
Many of us at the time had abad habit of consuming perhaps a bit too much of anything in a bit too little time. It was 1971 and alcohol was not the only party drug we were using. Mostly booze and pot but there was a lot of other chemicals available. Some of them cooked up in the chem and bio labs at the school but most purchased from other suppliers.
At this particular party we had already been treated to the sight of one man showing up there to try to get his wife, who had been rowing with the crew all season, to leave the party and go home with him. When she had refused they had a fight in the middle of the living room which ended with him taking off his ring and throwing it at her, declaring the marriage over. The dozen or so of us who had been in the room and witnessed the whole thing stood, applauded, and began calling “author, author”. The husband rather than taking a bow or introducing the author stomped back out of the house and the party. The wife later went to bed with the boyfriend she had picked up in the crew that year and in fact it was the end of the marriage. Not to worry however her new BF moved with her to Toronto the next year and supported her while she went to law school, became a lawyer then left him too. SHe seemed to have a hard time making up her mind about men.
As the party continued however we had other problems. Crazy Pete, one of those who from time to time consumed too much fun decided that after one particular pill he had tried that flying out of the second story bedroom window would be a suitable end to the evening. It took a few of us some time to persuade him not to do that. Pete was quite strong and could be quite stubborn when he fixed on an idea like this.
After he seemed to be settling down however those of us who had stayed with him to be sure he didn’t hurt himself were alerted to another problem.
Pete who was then lying half on half off a bed sat up suddenly and announced he was going to puke. None of us wanted him to do that but again he could be quite stubborn and so we instead tried to get him up and into the bathroom.
The bathroom was just across the hall from the bed room but unfortunately it was in use. With Pete outside the door starting to heave someone else thought we should get him out of the house. We started him down the stairs where if he had just gone straight ahead he’d have got out the door in no time and could relieve himself on the lawn. Pete for some reason however tacked hard aport into the living room where several people were dancing to a record playing on the turntable ( youngsters here can ask their parents about this). It was here that the first of the wet heaves came over him and he deposited this right on top of the record player which started to lag and skip through the mess which was now dripping off the record onto the player. Pete continued with urging from all the people there to look for the outside but actually kept going the wrong way into the kitchen, through the dining room leaving his calling cards in both rooms as he staggered and wretched along. As he cam towards the front door a second time someone managed to get it open in front of him and he made it out to the front lawn.
Bent over a bush there he continued gasping and heaving but too virtually no effect. Whatever had been bothering him had already vacated and was left all through the downstairs of the house.
Later in the same party there was a cigar but crushed out on my head which I thought quite rude and later one of the girls was found in the back of one of the coaches cars in a somewhat undressed condition. This was really not very good since it was the last weekend in October and quite chilly out. She could have caught a nasty cold but luckily came through it all ok.
The party was the talk of our quite small University for most of the next week but like everything else time moves on and soon everyone had other things to think about. These are the same people who the university are asking back this year although I have to say I doubt we’ll have quite the same energy or desire to consume large quantities of recreational supplements. We may have to find a couple of Jereboams to share out however.