Just one more shot and I gotta go …
On my final, fateful night in Aspen, I was summoned to a journalist’s highest calling.
It was the story of a lifetime ” the one that could get me the coveted Pulitzer Prize. I was an intern, and it was the story most vets wished they could pen.
Nah, just kidding. But admit it. You believed me, if only for a brief moment. No, the calling I responded to was much simpler: camaraderie and alcohol.
The Aspen Times offered to celebrate my exodus from the valley with a few drinks at The Cantina. Being a poor 21-year-old who happened to like his co-workers quite a bit, I graciously accepted the offer.
It was one of the best decisions I have ever made.
There I sat with some of my fellow journalists, sipping the delicious Dos Equis on tap. (Does an intern count as a true journalist? Me, I’m 200 miles away from them now. We’ll say it does.)
At that moment, I realized precisely how awesome they all were. I won’t embarrass them in ink, so that they don’t kill me if I ever come crawling back for a job. But let’s just say they’re great storytellers who know how to share a few laughs after work.
That is, until a certain someone started loading me up with shots of tequila. To protect his identity, I won’t reveal who it is. (But he writes for the sports page. His first name rhymes with “tron,” and his last name rhymes with “ballots.”)
“For the intern!” the attractive, blonde waitress declared as she slammed a shot of tequila in front of me. How convenient! No one else had a shot in front of them. Yep. They were just itching to get me tanked.
I think tequila’s rank, but I couldn’t disappoint. Down the hatch, followed by a wedge of lime that didn’t do much to mellow the sting.
It wasn’t long before the aforementioned sportswriter thought it was time I had another. And another. And one more, just for good luck.
“Aw, crap,” I thought. “I have to pack and be out of here tomorrow afternoon.”
Yikes! I’d like to say my last night in Aspen was a memorable one. And I’m sure it would have been ” if I could remember much of it.
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