Boots On The Ground: A Vacation Before The Camera Goes Up The Arse

Beerguyrob

Beerguyrob

A Canadian man-child of indeterminate age, he stays young by selling alcohol at sporting events and yelling at the patrons he serves. Their rage nourishes his soul, and their tips pay for his numerous trips to various sporting events.
Beerguyrob

So, on November 17th, I was supposed to undergo my second colonoscopy in two months.

Because of a previous bout of kidney failure – involving a viral infection, 40 lost pounds, and organ function bad enough to be considered for a transplant – I have been on a five-year cycle of scopes since I was 35. Also, in the past 5 years I’ve had four rectal abscesses removed, proof that the universe will get you back for all the gay jokes you tell in your teens.

I originally had a colonoscopy done on October 12th, and they removed another fistula (basically, a pre-abscess). But they couldn’t complete the procedure because my internal organs had “shifted”, and the doctor was concerned that the sharp corner from my sigmoid colon to the large intestine would result in the scope tearing the walls of one of the two, and thus I have to go to a “specialist’s specialist” to have the procedure completed. The date for that procedure was November 17th. So far, no one’s seen fit to hang me upside-down like Batman to see if that will aid the process.

My organs will feel better, and I’ll know what Trent Green is thinking.

Coincidentally, my lovely wife said she needed one more trip outside business in order to make sure she kept her airline status for 2018. Looking at the map, we had to find 3000 miles (1500 each way), a non-stop flight, and a city of reasonable amenities to make a weekend journey enjoyable. From Vancouver, those cities were:

  • Chicago
  • Dallas
  • Detroit
  • Houston
  • New York
  • Montreal
  • Toronto

Next came looking into what attractions might be available for enjoyment that weekend.

  • Chicago – Bears vs Packers; Blackhawks vs Hurricanes
  • Dallas – Mavericks vs Cavs
  • Detroit – Lions vs Browns; Red Wings vs Blue Jackets
  • Houston – Rockets vs Grizzlies
  • New York – Rangers vs Oilers; various Broadway plays
  • Montreal – Habs vs Sabres
  • Toronto – nothing

That narrowed the list from seven to three – Chicago, Detroit & New York. A few quick clicks on Ticketmaster & Stubhub made the decision for us:


We landed late-Friday November 10, so all that was expected was to find the hotel. I let my wife pick the hotel; she chose The Silversmith Hotel. She liked the pictures of the rooms; I liked the central location between Soldier Field & the United Center.

  

Neither of us knew the L was right outside the fucking window.

    

Luckily, we ended up on the other side of the building, so that wasn’t a sleep impediment. So, after a nice meal & round of shuffleboard in the “Game Room” of the Chicago Athletic Association,

  

and a trip to the roof for the view,

  

it was off to bed, with adventure on board the next day.


I awoke to discover Saturday the 11th was going to be an “adventure” called “shopping”. My lovely wife works in business, so the ability to try on suits in a big city wasn’t lost on her. I work with drop-outs; as long as I’m wearing pants & a collared shirt I’m practically overdressed.

It’s a Magnificent Mile of shopping!

Luckily, I could count on commerce to provide me with the distractions I needed, nicely dressed up as “art galleries”.

There was Dr. Seuss,

  

  

and there was Charlie Brown.

    

  

So I could be left in the grown-up equivalent of the IKEA ball pit while my wife went through the self-loathing exercise of trying on clothes. It was cheaper than filling me with beer.


Sunday.

I put on my finest jeans & we proceeded to make towards Soldier Field, a nice half-hour walk from the hotel. Plus, after a breakfast of the delicious chilaquiles at the The Gage,

  

I was ready for a nice stroll. “Perfect for burning off beers,” I thought to myself. The rain & cold had other ideas.

The walk to Soldier Field was uneventful. Just a pleasant walk down Michigan Avenue in the rain, like the song that’s never been written,

and then around the Field Museum & up to the entry. Our seats – not bad

Fifth row of the fourth deck on the west side of the stadium. Close enough to see the heat when the players are barfed out the Bears bear’s mouth.

The game itself was – as you saw – a numbing affair. We had a semi-excellent view of the fumble-cum-touchback.

  

I expected it to be Bears ball on the one-yard line. The guys behind me – well-accented, long-time season-ticket holders – predicted a touchdown. No one expected something worse than “Touchdown Seahawks”; the actual call caused the guys behind me to lose their fucking minds, and they left at halftime due to their “disgust” with the “corruption” of the NFL. [Mind you, these same guys were also upset at the late arrival of the flyover, then upset that it wasn’t a plane, and also upset they were only Apache helicopters. So, whatever]

A miserable game ended with a Packers victory, and everyone left seemed relieved that they could finally leave a game the cost involved obligated them to stay through the end of. How wet?

That wet. My hair reverted to its “Wet Hitler” look. Also, because I am an idiot, I only brought one pair of jeans to Chicago, which meant I had to spend an hour blowdrying them once we got back to the hotel, before we left for Event #2.

  

We were staying at Madison & Wabash, so it was a quick 15 minute bus ride straight there. I’ve never been to a Blackhawks game in Chicago. (I have seen them kick Vancouver’s playoff ass many a time, however.) The House That Jordan Built is also an excellent venue for hockey.

    

If you ever want to learn about the almost 40-year gap between titles, have a brief read at Deadspin’s obit for former owner Bill Wirtz, a man so reviled he was booed during his on-ice memorial, and then read about how he refused to lift the local blackout during his lifetime.

Anyway, the game experience. I knew about the anthem singing, but the player intros – to paraphrase Big Daddy Drew – also make you want to run through a goddamned wall.

The actual game was a throwback to the 1980s.

  

It ended 7-5 Devils, despite the Hawks ending the first up 4-2. The arena had plenty of non-Bud Light options, and I stuck with the Goose Island Four Star Pils I’d been drinking the whole weekend.


The next day, we were due to fly home at 7:30PM, so we had the ability to take advantage of the sights & sites. Since it was two blocks away, we settled on the Chicago Art Institute.

Of course, I got my Monet on,

  

checked out the Rodan exhibit,

    

and got lost in A Sunday on La Grande Jatte

Y’know, as one does.

They also had a fantastic special exhibit on the propaganda of the Soviet revolution.

The exhibit focused on how the Soviets used all forms of media to promote their cause, and made history try to catch up to their vision. For a history major like me, that shit is gold.

My wife caught me playing “need it, need it, got it,…” with the posters.

    

Then, after a few hours acquiring “museum back”, we flew home.

We flew down on Air Canada, and got everything included. We flew home on United, and were invited to repeatedly fuck ourselves. United did that stupid thing where they say you can’t access the in-flight entertainment on their app, but you’re welcome to pay $7.99 for DirectTV access for the flight. Luckily, the guy in front of me paid, and then watched the Panthers-Dolphins game in its entirety, so I missed nothing except the Open Thread, which was a shame because no one around me wanted to exchange dick jokes.

Wednesday morning, 24 hours before I’m supposed to start the Dulcolaxing, I get a phone call saying the procedure has been cancelled due to physician illness. Well, I guess so, since I don’t want him sneezing while progressing the camera up-inside me. Last time I heard an “oops” in an operating theatre I had to spend the night due to them lacerating my renal artery while doing the biopsy. I’m now rebooked for December 8th, so the day before I’ll be doing to the shitter what the Japanese did to Pearl Harbor.

To sum up: it’s good fun to go watch sporting events in other cities. I highly recommend it. Culture is where you find it. Oh, and maybe lay off the gay jokes; karma will eventually circle around, and medical butt stuff isn’t nearly as much fun as Brazzers makes it out to be.

Beerguyrob
Beerguyrob
A Canadian man-child of indeterminate age, he stays young by selling alcohol at sporting events and yelling at the patrons he serves. Their rage nourishes his soul, and their tips pay for his numerous trips to various sporting events.
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Brick Meathook
Brick Meathook

This was great!

Romonobyl

Lived just outside of Chicago as a kid. Loved going up there for various reasons, mainly museums, shopping and a few Cubs games. Wrigley Field is iconic, but tiny. As far as a fan experience, it’s hard to beat an NHL game, especially the Blackhawks. Breaks my heart that the city has gone so deep in the shitter lately.
I’m in my early 50’s and already been ‘scoped thrice down south, courtesy of a family history laden with rampant polyps. Nothing close to the shit (phrasing?) you gotta deal with.
Good luck and stay on top of this health shit, and do try to avoid Chicago in the winter if you have to make the trip again, makes Canadia look like Barbados.

Romonobyl

Great read BTW, love a good Boots on the Ground.

BrettFavresColonoscopy

Also, great read, VodkaDudeBill! Sorry the Hawks couldn’t win that one for you.

Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Moose -The End Is Well Nigh

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Day before Thanksgiving in Denver; 70 de-fucking-grees.

Low Commander of the Super Soldiers

It’s god damn 90 here in San Diego! What the fuck is this?!

Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Moose -The End Is Well Nigh

What is the average for SD this time of year? 70-75?

laserguru

Actually it’s mid 60’s usually. This is going to be fun as fuck to go home and turn the oven on for a few hours.

Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Moose -The End Is Well Nigh

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Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Moose -The End Is Well Nigh

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BrettFavresColonoscopy

Did someone say my name(sake)?

Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Moose -The End Is Well Nigh

I did not hear “Brett”…..

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Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Moose -The End Is Well Nigh

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ballsofsteelandfury

I would have substituted Mexico City for Detroit on that list. Less chance of being kidnapped for ransom.

blaxabbath

Wait — Beerguyrob is white?

Are all of you guys white (except Don T unless that’s what Puerto Rican-American is)?

Don T

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Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Moose -The End Is Well Nigh

Puerto Rican-ish? It means born on the island, right? Nothing to do with race, in spite of some people in the W.H.

Don T

For me, Puerto Rican, or boricua. I wouldn’t categorize the rest. I’ve met boricuas born here, who’ve never left, who say they’re American first. I don’t judge.

Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Moose -The End Is Well Nigh

Maybe “from there”….. and of course “American” since it is part of the Americas. US citizens too, it is just not treated or thought of that way by many in the US I think, even though, well fuck, it is basic knowledge.

Don T

That nuance, which is correct, is also missed here. When someone says “americano”, you know what is meant. And some folks identify themselves as American as any Wisconsinite. I respect that, and I have a friend who confessed feeling torn whenever the US and PR meet in the Olympics and stuff. And in light of all the boricuas who serve honorably in the US Armed Forces, I’d treat like shit any mainlander who frowns on boricuas identifying as American as barbecue.*

* Actually, a Taíno term.

Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Game Time Decision

I’m more translucent at this point
/sun, what sun?
//outside is scary

Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Moose -The End Is Well Nigh

I am an unhealthy grey; stress anglo grey I guess.

Unsurprised
Unsurprised

I, balls, JustStopDude, and Big Black Richard if he ever stops pedaling through the Cascades naked to comment again aren’t.

Romonobyl

I’m an unhealthy, yet remarkable shade of beige.

Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Moose -The End Is Well Nigh

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Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Moose -The End Is Well Nigh

Well fucking done.

theeWeeBabySeamus

I really enjoyed this.
Nice to have you back BeerCanRoger.

Obligatory…..
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laserguru

Outstanding stuff!

I love the fuck out of Chicago. It’s a top 4 city for me. I have to go back every few years to refresh my Wrigley Field vibe and to visit a Lou Malnatti’s.

monty this seems strange to me

“Perfect for burning off beers,” I thought to myself.

And this is perfect for burning off Bears.
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Low Commander of the Super Soldiers

Soooooo, this means you have time to come to DFO-CON next weekend now…?

Don T

Fantastic stuff! Glad you had a great time. Hope the procedure goes swimmingly, and never Dulcolax alone.
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monty this seems strange to me

My organs will feel better, and I’ll know what Trent Green is thinking.

Will you let Trent know then too?

Unsurprised
Unsurprised

If you ever want to learn about the almost 40-year gap between titles, have a brief read at Deadspin’s obit for former owner Bill Wirtz, a man so reviled he was booed during his on-ice memorial, and then read about how he refused to lift the local blackout during his lifetime.

They have the wrong rotting corpse on display at the Field Museum. Although the janitors have to clean far less body fluids off the mummies than they would off his corpse.

ballsofsteelandfury

This was awesome! I don’t think I’ll ever forget Wet Hitler Hair.

theeWeeBabySeamus

We just didn’t have hair dryers back then. I’m soooorrrryyyy!!!

– E. Braun

Game Time Decision

something, something something, deliveries in the rear, something

/ hope the next exam goes smoothly