Almost Killed Jorge
by AK - September 4, 2013
Friday Afternoon Horror Story: The time I could have killed Jorge, and ruined his vacation.
I’m not being humorous.. Nor am I speaking figuratively as if I was really mad at him… I mean I actually, sincerely, literally nearly killed my best buddy and Neil Rogers’ producer, Jorge.
Jorge was someone I kinda looked up to. He was older, had a full-time gig, was very smart, witty, and had a taste for things I hadn’t been exposed a lot to,, He’d lived in Cuba, Montana, was a repo man, carried a pocket lock-picking case, smoked stogies like a 60 year old, had the biggest mullet I’d ever seen, and was the most organized guy in the world. So as a young 23 yr old just getting into the business, being invited to hang out with him was a real gift of sorts. He even tried to expose me to Dungeons and Dragons by inviting me over and letting me participate unsuccessfully in a game with some friends. I didn’t understand it at ALL. Hell, I still don’t get it.
Someone in Jorge’s family had a cabin in the mountains of North Carolina. Cabin.. It’s like a 3 story house cut into the hillside with the top floor overlooking the mountains, valleys and lakes. And when Jorge said he was going on vacation and asked me to go with, I said “Hell fuckin’ yeah!”
Just 2 guys.. Manly men.. Driving into the mountains of North Carolina to go fishin’ and hiking’ and drinkin’ and burnin’.
He scheduled his vacation, and I asked for those 5 days in a row off. As a part timer, I really didn’t get the luxury of either vacation days or determining my schedule, but since Marvin was a buddy too, he permitted it. And the trip was planned. We’d drive up early in the morning getting there early evening. Spend the night, the next 3 days and nights, then drive home; a nice 5 day vacation.
3 days before the trip, my wisdom tooth got impacted and I had it removed. But I was fine. I had a few pills (good for the road trip!) but mostly, it didn’t bother me at all.
The day before the trip, I got a sore throat. Not gonna stop ME!
The morning of, at 5am, on about 4 hours sleep, I head to Jorge’s house in Pembroke Pines, and we load the car with his stuff, and hit I-95 North. And I am PSYCHED!
Jorge has with him a container of cuban coffee, a box of glazed Krispy Kreme doughnuts, and other assorted sticky, sweet things of the green variety, if you know what I’m saying. And I start pounding cuban coffees, stuffing my gullet with about 4 doughnuts, and partaking of “all these things”.. And I’m WIRED on sugar and coffee like you wouldn’t imagine. I hadn’t ever had café cubano, but boy was it strong and sweet and went great with the rest of the stuff I was rapidly imbibing. I was feeling a little warm, but I assumed it was from the hot coffee and not related to the sore throat at all… and I didn’t care… nothing was gonna slow me down at all…
When fishing around in my mouth for donut remains with my tongue I stuck it into the hole left from the wisdom tooth, every synapse in my skull fired off simultaneously, and I took a nap.
Did I mention I was driving?
The next thing I know, Jorge is hovering over me from the passenger seat. We’re on the inside shoulder of I95. And Jorge is screaming at me. “ADAM! HEY! WAKE UP!”
After he’d noticed we were drifting between lanes, with the pedal pressed to the floor, he saw me with my eyes rolled up, convulsing, put it into neutral, grabbed the wheel until we coasted to our resting point. And apparently when you pass out, your body wants to lie down to equalize your blood pressure, and if it cant, you convulse as your body tries desperately to shake you off whatever is keeping you up, like a driver’s seat and steering wheel. I was told it wasn’t pretty…
“Maybe you should drive”
So I got in the passenger seat, tried desperately not to vomit, and drive with Jorge and I headed north in relative silence for a long while. I apologized many many times, explaining about the wisdom teeth, lack of sleep, the cold coming on, the sugar, caffeine and other additives…
When we got to the cabin I was really amazed. The place was beautiful. Sparsely decorated, with lots of wood everywhere… I was also exhausted. So I climbed into the cot on the ground level and told Jorge I really needed to sleep. And in no time at all, I was snoring. Around 3am I woke up shivering uncontrollably.. Partially from being sick, but mostly because it was 40 degrees in the bottom of the house, up against the stone of the mountain… I couldn’t wake Jorge at 3am for blankets.. So I curled in a ball under the thin blanket I had and tried as best I could to shake myself asleep.
The next day, bright and early, Jorge was up, and so was I. He was really excited to show me around, go fishing, take a hike through the most beautiful forrest with the leaves changing colors. There was only one problem.
My spine felt like it had been a glass rod, that had shattered into a hundred shards, and any movement by my legs, hips, arms or neck was insufferably painful. Between the black out convulsions, the fever, the relentless shivering from the cold, I was incapacitated beyond belief.,, but I felt so bad for Jorge and I didn’t want to ruin his vacation so I did the best we could. We stood in the icy river up to our knees and unsuccessfully fished for trout. We hiked through the woods and up hills and down valleys, Jorge waiting patiently for me to catch up. At one point on a darkened trail through the woods we came across a family of deer. As miserable as it was, I was still pretty glad to be there. It was awesome… I only wished I’d felt up to take on this place 100%, and I was operating at about a 15% capacity.
The next day Jorge showed me the Blue Ridge Parkway, the Blue Ridge Mountains, and Grandfather Mountain. He climbed the tower at the top and I took it all in as much as I was able to.
And before we knew it, the vacation was over, and we were driving home.
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