The wedding destination was at Sunday River in Maine. Most people assumed it’s because the couple loves skiing but I think that in a small way, it’s a return favor on the groom’s part to me. At a house-party, a stranger went up to my friend Hurley, who happens to be albino, and said “You get struck my lightning?” That comment was pretty much justification for homicide in my eyes. I immediately got up and found a bat and asked Hurley if it was OK to hit him (I think it’s only proper to ask somebody if you can, in fact, defend their honor with a weapon). The good-natured Hurls said “no” but I think that he wanted to repay me for the noble gesture by having his wedding day at a top-of-the-line hot tub location. It was nothing short of majestic.
I contemplated leaving the wedding early to go to the hot tub but realized that would tie the time I missed Father’s Day for the grimiest thing I’ve ever done. I just couldn’t do it. I waited for the morning after which proved to be a blessing in disguise. See, I forgot that for non-drinkers like myself, the day after a wedding may be the best day of all. When you wake up, you quickly realize that if the world were to be attacked, you’d be the leader of the whole pack. Everybody else is a zombie, hungover, and ready to die. There’s a certain power that comes with that–knowing that your mental clarity could potentially save everyone. 10 hours prior, I was the wondering if vodka would help my dance moves. But suddenly, I’m thankful because I’m the most alert and productive person on the planet. It’s one of the perks of being an alumni of drinking camp.
I woke up at 7 AM like it was Christmas Day, 1987. I NEVER wake up that early so I can only assume my mind and body knew it was hours away from a chlorine fix. I got breakfast by myself (girlfriend was one of those zombies aforementioned) and saw that nobody from the wedding was at the restaurant. Again, the power of productivity was really going to my head. The simple fact that I was eating solid food while everyone else slept made me want to go door-to-door yelling The Soak Is Coming like Paul Revere. The hot tub didn’t open til 10 AM which, I’m sorry, is complete horseshit. It’s horseshit because they have the audacity to send the cleaning lady to our door at 8 AM but you can’t staff a person to open the hot tub?
Has every cleaning-person had a bad experience of not knocking loud enough and walking in on something horrific? Why do they knock so loud and why is every interaction I have with them fueled with angst? Maybe they have a training where they show a video to all the staff on what happens if you don’t knock with authority. The cleaning lady actress strolls in and sees a room full of naked people in blindfolds masturbating to an episode of Charles in Charge. I don’t know, it’s gotta be something real bad. And how awkward is it to yell to someone “NO, YOU CAN’T CLEAN MY ROOM FOR FREE!” They must feel like real assholes getting rejected for offering to clean a room. I should really introduce Debbie the cleaning lady to Stan over at Time Warner. I think they’d hit it off.
Back to the soak. An absolute delight. Second time I’ve had the experience of the in-to-outdoor entrance where you go through those plastic things that they have at car-washes. You feel like a real somebody when you enter a heated pool that way. I imagine WWE wrestlers and strippers feel the same wave excitement as they peel back the curtains and make their way to the stage.
The scenery of this soak was easily #1 all-time. You literally are 10 yards from the mountain where skiers ascend to the top on the chair-lift, looking down at you. It’s probably the only situation you can find yourself in life where you are BELOW someone and yet, feel so ABOVE them. If that sounds pretentious, it should. They look down with such envy. How do I know this? Because I was that skier. I remember a ski trip years back, looking at that hot tub and thinking: Man, that is some soak down there! And here I was–the sober superhero of the whole resort– submersed in a tub of bliss. Jets, I finally made it.
But I think now, a few days later, about my good friend Matthew McConaughey from Angels in the Outfield, and what he said at the Oscars about being a better person.
20 year-old Scott would say, I want to be at the Sunday River hot tub when I’m 25. But now that that’s been done, I ask myself, where does 30 year old Scott want to be. And I say, I want to be speedo-deep in some hot springs. I really like the sound of hot springs but know nothing about them. Do they get over 100 degrees? Is hot magma heating up the water? That sounds dangerous and I like it. There’s a profound freedom in not fearing death. Because death by lava in a hot tub isn’t really dying. It would be the best send-off since the ending of Big Fish.