Barbri gave us an encyclopedia of review books. I couldn't fit all of these in my duffel bag, but Monday morning I gave it a shot and got in about a half dozen--as if I was finally going to crack them open in the 24 hours before the bar exam. I took a trip to Albany, which required a stopover in Penn Station (great pizza), and tried to suck up all those little niceties of NY law on the way. At the Albany train station I remembered that I had no place to stay in Albany. So opened the laptop and googled "Albany hotel."
JAY: So when you told me you didn't have a hotel room, I thought, I should be supportive. But really, I was thinking: 'What a fucking idiot.'
SCOTT: Yeah, I know.
JAY: No, seriously. I thought, Jesus Christ, what a moron. And then I felt strangely secure, because I was suddenly sure that no matter how bad I screw up in life, you will always make me look like the responsible one.
SCOTT: That's enough.
JAY: You had like two months! What the hell did you think was going to happen when you went up there? Idiot! You're an idiot! Scott equals idiot!
Two hours later I found a place--apparently once a year the entirety of Albany is rented out so 4,000 law students can take the Bar exam. I ended up in a surrounding suburb named Schodak, a twenty dollar cab ride away. Schodak, so far as I can tell, consists entirely of the Roadside Inn, a Burger King, and the sign that says "Welcome to Schodak." I scored the last room at said inn, a corner affair which I was puzzled to discover had a jacuzzi shaped like a heart.
The first night was fun. Desperate to get to sleep, knowing I had a not unimportant exam in 9 hours, I kicked off early. Turned out the honeymoon suite AC didn't work. Luckily, there was a window. Luckily, it had a screen. Unfortunately, the screen had a big gash in it, and, also problematic, Schodak turned out to be where mosquitoes spend the summer.
Throughout the evening, I opened and closed the window, trying to decide whether the bloodsuckers or the sweltering heat was worse. Inspiration struck! I had a refrigerator, and it was significantly larger than my head. I yanked out the grills, threw in my pillow, pulled the bedspreads onto the floor--I slept in the fridge.
After twenty minutes or so, it started to chug and whine. Take that, Roadside Inn. Also, the next morning I sat waiting for the taxi clutching my Exam Ticket in a vice-grip--somehow I managed to lose it on the way to the Albany Law School. No problem. What was a problem was the phenomenally beautiful girl taking the exam in the same classroom as me--yet somehow I managed to concentrate on the exam most of the time.
Anywho, a pack of cigarettes, a bunch of coffee, alcohol, and six conversations with cabbies later, I was on a train back home. Picked up the new Harry Potter book in Penn Station and instantly lost myself in it. Got back to DC around 5--and Jay and I drank a bunch and went to see DIE HARD.
The next day, I had a 6 AM flight out to Chicago. I missed that--who could have known? (I was up late into the evening reading about Voldemort and the gang--incidentally, I have for quite some time associated the Mason family with the Weasleys. My mental image of Molly Weasley has and always will be none other than Denise Mason). Bumped to a later flight, took that, and got into Chicago at 10 AM CST. I probably should have left immediately, but I ended up sitting in the baggage claim for two hours reading the Rowling book--finished... cried a bit, you know... then rented my first car ever, and sped in the direction of Racine, WI.
This being me, I got lost a lot, but finally managed to find the hotel, pick up Joey, get to the rehearsal just in time to learn how to be a groomsman, again.
You know how weddings go. A day later, Nick was married, we were all dancing in a room in the Marriot--actually, only the Masons and friends were dancing; the bride's side sat and eyed us suspiciously. The wedding party sat up front on the dais, and the bartender said we alone were entitled to free alcohol, which I can only suppose was an attempt to make us nice and amusing for all the folks watching us.
We didn't disappoint. I don't remember what I said, but I do recall making Megan laugh until she spit a cloud of champagne in my hair.
Lots of fun, lots of tears, so much caring.
And I love you all so much.
After the fourth Scotch, I agreed to drive some other groomsmen down to Chicago for the evening and to the airport at five in the morning. After we were all sobered up, say about 1, we headed down to Chicago.
Got back to DC at noon. I slept 16 hours. I've been cleaning all day.