After two consecutive years of ending work Christmas parties in a pool of my own piss and puke, I’d earned a reputation for being a bit of a wildman at Bauer Media. Alright, maybe not a wildman, more like a pisshead, but it was a reputation I planned to uphold when 2012 finished and we all celebrated at the Beresford Hotel in the slovenly suburb of Surry Hills.
There was a gangster theme, so I got into the spirit of things by dressing as a Chinaman, because we all know most Chinamen are criminals. Well, at least I was dressed as a Chinaman, until a fat girl stole my hat and walked off with it on her meaty head. I was scared she’d eat me if I went after it, so I just pretended I was one of the very, very rare Chinamen who walk around hatless.
It was a swanky party. The food was delicious, the alcohol did its job and the women were almost wearing expensive designer dresses. We rocked and rolled, and I even told a former Australian Idol finalist to get fucked (I’m sure I broke his heart).
We pub crawled for a few hours until the lovely Tongan gentlemen who guard the doors of Sydney’s pubs stopped letting us in, and I remember getting lost in a dead-end street on my way back to my ritzy hotel.. I must’ve sat at the end of it for half an hour, crying drunkenly to myself as I tried to work out how to get out of this street, before realising that I could simply walk back the way I’d come from.
I eventually made it back to my glamorous accommodation, a rat-infested backpackers lodge in the centre of Sydney called, quite appropriately, The Maze. This place had corridors heading every which way and was set over a number of floors and half-floors, and when I bumbled inside I immediately realised I wouldn’t be able to find my way to my room. I found some sort of lounge room, and lay down on a couch that was surely stained with the semen of a million filthy Pommy backpackers, and passed out (after pissing my pants, of course).
There was a deep, rhythmic throbbing in my head when I opened my bleary eyes the next morning, but it wasn’t just the hangover. There was a skinny, hairy man with a happy face and no shirt, setting a metre from my head and playing a Jack Johnson song on a big set of bongo drums. When he saw I was a wake, he gave me a big smile and played the bongos louder. Ever tap of his stupid hands sent shockwaves through my battered brain.
“I bring to you the music of a new dawn,” the filthy hippie chirped, and started wiggling his head around merrily. I wasn’t feeling too merry, so I waited till the room stopped spinning and got to my feet. I shuffled uneasily over to him and snatched the bongos out of his hand, but the idiot kept looking up at me.
“Please, play me some music from your soul,” he yodelled. What came out of my mouth wasn’t from my soul, it was from my guts, because I flipped the hippie’s bongos over and chundered all inside them, filling the drums to the brim. Then I handed them back to old mate, who looked at me as if I’d just kicked his dog, and sashayed out the door.
I obviously didn’t learn my lesson, because the next year I booked into The Maze again.It’s the cheapest accommodation in Sydney, and my desire to save a few bucks beat my desire to have a bedroom I’d actually be able to find and sleep in. The day started early, with my big, burly, ex-bikie boss pouring goon down the gullet of everyone in the office, and the boozing just got harder from then on. After six hours on the piss, I was smashed by the time we actually got to Darling Harbour, and started double-fisting
women wines as soon as I stepped inside. I was a fucking grog monster, cracking onto sheilas and telling the higher-ups at the company how to run the place, so it shouldn’t have come as any surprise when I got booted before 8pm for being too ratshit.
I was surprised, though, because I told a few people to go fuck themselves as two Maori gentlemen with heads like bedpans dragged me off into the night and threw me in a puddle. I don’t really know what happened after that, because the next four hours are a complete blank. I’d like to think I had a whirlwind relationship with an attractive French tourist, but it’s more likely that I sat in a gutter and cried to myself. Such is life.
The next thing I knew, I was stripped down to my undies and sobbing in a hallway at The Maze, because I’d somehow left my room and couldn’t find it again. As far as I can tell, I’d gone back to pass out, woken up for a piss (my brother doesn’t have this problem, because he always takes a piss bottle with him when he stays in such establishments. He’s all class), gone to the toilet, and walked back the wrong way. In my confused state I’d been unable to retrace my steps, and so opted to have a sook in public like a child.
Luckily, an Italian man with a large nose and a mop of hair found me, and was kind enough to lead me back to my room. When we got there, I was so happy that I gave him a cuddle, and the Italian held me just a little too tightly.
“You want Antonio to tuck you in?” he said with a wink, and I wiped away a tear and shook my head.
“Antonio say tuck you in, what he mean is make love to you in way only Italian man can.” I floundered to my feet and kicked the door closed, then pushed a cupboard against it so the deranged lothario couldn’t get inside and fuck me in my sleep.
I felt like a half-digested prawn cocktail when I left my room the next day, and embarrassed to see Antonia sitting near the front desk as I checked out. He just gave me a sad, hurt expression as I passed, and then I walked out of his life forever.