Mastodon Weekend: Devoted to devolution

It was a cold rain by the time I fell asleep Saturday night. By Sunday afternoon, half-dollar sized flakes were dropping from the sky with nothing resembling grace. It was a wet, sloppy snow with green lightning behind it and thunder as its exclamation point. The lights flickered, the satellite TV took a nap, and the snow piled up inch after inch. The wind screamed me to sleep and I collapsed into dreams of what it might have felt like to die in the last ice age, failed in evolution, and frozen in time.

I was tired.

This cannot be a full accounting, because if I revealed it all, I would surely get two or three people arrested, get several folks in dutch with their wives, and put myself in a position to embarrass myself more than I already have. Suffice it say, we had fun, and much of it was unexpected. These are just a couple highlights.


We called it Mastodon Weekend only because it needed a name and G-Rob likes to point out how we are lumbering oafs. It’s a fair statement.

It was supposed to begin Thursday night, but Al and my brother Dr. Jeff ended up with early arrivals. Even then, the plan was for a low key evening–a pint at Connolly’s and call it a night. Then T showed up and said, “Come on! Rock show.”

I knew Motley Crue was in town, but I had no intention of paying good money to see them. Buoyed by T’s youthful spirit, though, we rose up from our wooden seats at the Irish pub and said, “Well, if we can get some cheap tickets, we’ll go.”

It wasn’t half an hour later that we were drinking overpriced beers in the upper bowl of the Bi-Lo Center. The show was about what you’d expect. Old rockers trying to rock and sounding like old rockers, but hey, “rock show.”

The opening band was striking the stage when we saw a commotion in the section next to ours. Sure enough, ’twas a drunken redneck fight. Remarkable, I thought, was how big it got so fast. More remarkable still was the person flying through the air and over three rows of seats before crashing head first into the seat back of the fourth row down. Most remarkable was that the in-flight victim was a woman and the person who had pushed her was a man…a man who was about to get his ass kicked by an angry mob.

Police, EMS workers, blood, bruises and beer. Just like any Wednesday night. The Bi-Lo Center made the decision to shut off all beer sales at the beginning of the show. So, like any rock star, I drank Diet Pepsi while Vince Neil sang Live Wire.


Our dinner Thursday night cost $650. BG had shown up and we needed proper food. I went back to Devereaux’s for the second time in two months. We behaved ourselves for the most part, if you do not take into account that among our group we managed to consume nearly every kind of meat known to man (not to mention some Pear Cider sorbet for BadBlood).

BG had told the waiter to surprise him with dinner. As long as mushrooms weren’t involved, BG was up for it. BG ended up with scallops as a starter and the 48-hour short rib for dinner. The water described the 48-hour bath in some degree of water Celsius.

“Wait, wait. Don’t give me Celsius,” BG said. “We are at war, sir!”

BG credited Stephen Colbert with the line, but I was still laughing too loudly to care whether he’d lifted the joke. If Dane Cook can do it every night, I’ll let BG slide on his sous vide short rib gag. Still one of the funnier things I heard all weekend.

Or maybe you had to be there.


Later that evening (back at the Irish pub, of course), Al and I spotted three rickshaw drivers. They weren’t doing anything except waiting for a fare. By this point, our party had six people in it. You do the math. If you have never run a Rickshaw Relay, you haven’t lived.

There are videos to be found of the beginning and end, but the best of all is somewhere with my brother. That video contains the first of a few injuries suffered during the weekend.

That is to say, if you have never seen a 240 pound man fly out of a rickshaw and face-first toward pavement, this video is something you will want to watch.


At one point Friday, most of the group went off to collect $2 bills for the second out of three times on the weekend. G-Rob, my brother and I met Iggy at a random roadhouse in Taylors. A few quotes from our time at The Stallion.

  • Dr Jeff: “I’m pretty sure the smell of Pine Sol is being used to cover up the smell of murder.”
  • Dr Jeff again: “Two of six shots of Grand Marnier just had to be returned…. because there were bugs floating in them.”
  • Unattributed, only because I can’t remember who said it following a 30-minute conversation on Keynesian economics, “That was probably the most intelligent conversation that will ever be had in this bar.”
  • ***

    A lot more happened, but from there my recall is not what I would like it to be, and frankly, I’d rather just not discuss the last hour of Saturday night, thanks.

    You might find some more accounts at the following blogs. For now, I’m going to let Mastodon Weekend turn into a memory and get back to the business of being better.

    Al Cant’ Hang
    Gambling Blues
    Doc Chako
    Big Pirate
    Special K

    Brad Willis

    Brad Willis is a writer based in Greenville, South Carolina. Willis spent a decade as an award-winning broadcast journalist. He has worked as a freelance writer, columnist, and professional blogger since 2005. He has also served as a commentator and guest on a wide variety of television, radio, and internet shows.

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    5 Responses

    1. shep says:

      240# its only 230# with that Dr Jeff told me “if it still hurts in a week,get an x-ray” i just hope i don’t get a bill.
      what a great weekend!!!!!!!!!

    2. iggy says:

      i get to claim that unattributed quote, damnit. and i’m still curious about what that place looked like at midnight on a friday evening.

      there was a downstairs dance hall, after all.

      epic weekend.

    3. wolverine says:

      This was a wonderful weekend due to you poker degenerates I hope that one day I will be in Vegas with all of you… you are a great bunch of individuals and I look forward to getting to know you better than I already do… As for Lee Jones I hope to pick your brain for all the knowledge that is in there if we meet again, i did not realize that that was you,i wish i would have talked to you more.

    4. T says:

      CRUE! Rock On! _|..|

    1. March 3, 2010

      […] Last year, we had no plan and ended up seeing Motley Crue for no other reason than they were playing down the street. […]