I refuse to acknowledge anything Christmas-related until after my Thanksgiving meal is fully digested. That said, since it’s past that self-imposed deadline, I present to you the earliest of Christmas presents because I know it’s what you want.
YUP. BOURBON BOYS PART II. You’re welcome already. And just in case you’re new – read part one first.
You know the drill though. Here’s a timeline of my day, or as close to one I can get. Only this time the times really might be wrong because there was a lot more drinking involved (on their part, not mine), therefore I had to do a bit more paying attention as well as keep on queueing up “Shots” by LMFAO so they knew it was time to take their next shot.
Anyways, here we go…
7:15 a.m. I wake up. On a Saturday. Am I really doing this again? Do I have time to stop on the way over there and get some caffeine?
7:45 a.m. I leave my apartment to meet up with the guys at Mom and Dad’s. Dad said to be there before 8 a.m. or he’d get anxious.
7:59 a.m. I arrive at their house. I am nothing if not efficient.
8:03 a.m. Rachel hears there are doughnuts outside and decides to investigate.
8:05 a.m. Uncle Chuck, who has brought a cooler full of Jell-O shots this time around, hands Rachel a few of them to “save for later.”
8:07 a.m. I silently make a note of how full that cooler is now and bet that it will be empty by 3 p.m.
8:09 a.m. I remind them that I don’t carry Ibuprofen and all of them either pull a bottle of it out of their pocket or tell me it’s somewhere in the van already.
8:12 a.m. Everbody’s at the house and accounted for, except for Ethan and Uncle Garr who we have to pick up on the way.
8:14 a.m. I am a pro at backing this van out of driveways and parking spaces.
8:21 a.m. I am not yet a pro at pulling into parking spaces. My parking job at the Kroger where we pick the rest of the guys up ain’t great.
8:24 a.m. Uncle Tony and Uncle Chuck go into Kroger to buy Bloody Mary mix. We have no vodka. They just wanna drink it by itself. Isn’t it just V8 then?
8:25 a.m. Oh they’re also using it to make “Red Beer” which makes me scared.
8:27 a.m. I notice the last remaining pay phone in the world to my right. Seriously, I didn’t think those existed anymore. How much do they cost these days?
8:28 a.m. Aaaaaaaaaand someone’s making it a call on it. What?!?
8:34 a.m. Everyone’s got their drinks made and a Jell-O shot in hand. They have been warned that they have to do a shot before we leave the parking lot.
8:35 a.m. They’re trying to figure out their seats and I’ve got a new co-pilot this time around – Uncle Garr – which is good because maybe I’ll hear him talk this time. (SPOILER ALERT: He talked. A lot.)
8:40 a.m. “Should we count off?” “Yeah.” “One.” “No, Garr’s one.” “Oh, one.” “Two, three, four….” Silence. “Oh, eight!” “Wait a minute..six.” “Five.” “Seven.” “Eight.”
8:41 a.m. Shots shots shots shots shots shots shots! One down. Well, eight, technically. Some Jell-O shots, some bourbon. Look out.
8:43 a.m. Here we go.
8:46 a.m. I turn on my new favorite song.
9:04 a.m. Another shot. Yep. It’s gonna be that kind of day.
9:23 a.m. We get to Jim Beam. “Should we take another shot?” “Yeah. Put the song on.”
9:24 a.m. Shots shots shots shots shots shots!
9:26 a.m. As they’re getting out of the car, Uncle Donnie says to be careful on the van step, it’s greasy or something like it’s got Armorall on it.
9:27 a.m. Uncle Tony gets out of the van and says “Whoa, be careful on that step, it’s greasy. It must have Armorall on it or something.” Because he did not notice that Uncle Donnie had said it, one minute and two feet in front of him. He and Dad have the same brain.
9:28 a.m. A couple of them have beers to finish before we go in and they discuss the joys of beer drinking. Chuck: “Everything is good with beer. Hell, a bowl of ice cream is good with a beer.”
9:29 a.m. Somebody pours out the rest of what’s in their cup and Ethan yells about it. Ethan is now the Pour Patrol.
9:31 a.m. We go in to get signed up for the tour. The girls at the check-in desk are grumbling because they actually have to do work. SORRY I’M NOT SORRY YOU HAVE TO DO YOUR JOB.
9:34 a.m. Everybody’s passport is stamped and we’re joining up with a group of people and going into an old house. In the process of the stamping, Chuckie tells the girls that we already hit the other three distilleries we got stamps from this morning.
9:37 a.m. We get a chance to look around before the movie starts. There’s always a movie.
9:39 a.m. Over here there’s the world’s smallest working distillery. It was out the World’s Fair and if turned on and running can make a gallon of moonshine. Seriously. Matt takes a look and contemplates how he can build one in his
9:42 a.m. Eth and I read about what the distillery was like in the 30s and before and after prohibition. If I could go back in any time to live, it’d be then. I’d want to be a mob wife. Ethan: “Me too.” Me: “You’d want to be a mob wife?” Him: “Yep.”
9:45 a.m. We see this ridiculously large pipe. Eth looks at it and says “Why is the shaft so long?” Me: “Seriously? That’s what she said.”
9:50 a.m. Damn this tour guide is peppy. Too peppy. It’s early. Calm it down.
9:55 a.m. She explains why all the trees around are black – because of the vapors the bourbon gives off. The eight amateur horticulturists I brought with me are glad that mystery has been solved. Not what they thought.
10 a.m. Most of this tour is outside. What’s that about? It’s November. Also, she keeps pointing out things that will be finished and be better next year. Dammit. We came a year too early.
10:04 a.m. She’s making a lot of corny jokes. I have not laughed yet. But I’m also not three shots in like the rest of my group.
10:07 a.m. I laugh, because they’re talking about bungs again.
10:13 a.m. A lady from Michigan asks if we get snow here. Is she serious? No, you’re the only state that gets snow. Here it’s just like Florida.
10:17 a.m. We do the tasting, I don’t partake until I hear there’s one that tastes like black cherry.
10:20 a.m. What she neglected to say was yes it tastes like black cherry for about 3 seconds. Then it tastes like the cough syrup I take when I have bronchitis.
10:35 a.m. We’re back in the van.
10:36 a.m. Shot shots shots shots shots shots!
10:39 a.m. We start our drive to Maker’s Mark. The playlist I made is a success. They hear Toby Keith’s “Red Solo Cup” for the first time and immediately become fans.
10:43 a.m. We’ve listened to just about every song on the playlist, there’s only 11, so I’m not sure what we’re going to do when it’s over.
10:50 a.m. I put Uncle Garr in charge of the music. He plays “Single Ladies.”
10:53 a.m. Uncle Garr is no longer in charge of music.
11:04 a.m. WHERE IN THE BLOODY HELL ARE WE? This road keeps getting smaller and smaller, but oh, wait, there’s a sign for a wedding, made on cardboard with white spray paint. It says “Weddin.” No “g.” We are in BFE.
11:05 a.m. We contemplate becoming wedding crashers. I need a drink.
11:07 a.m. We realize we’ve passed our turn and we were supposed to turn by the wedding sign..we’re probably gonna be wedding crashers after all.
11:11 a.m. We are at a stop sign and pretty sure the wedding is to the right. Because there’s another sign. It says “Wedding.” And we are now putting the van in park because there is a cemetery to our right as well. And all the headstones in there say Hagan. WHAT THE HELL??
11:14 a.m. The Hagan boys get their picture taken in the cemetery. Well. It’s like the annex of the cemetery. And they wonder why the Hagans have been sequestered to this part of the grounds when everyone else is over there. Also, several of them have to pee.
11:16 a.m. Uncle Chuck, Uncle Garr and Ethan work on securing their spot on the bus to hell and go pee over by the graveyard. And they’re doing so under a statue of the Virgin Mary they don’t notice until it’s too late. Uncle Donnie doesn’t want to walk that far, so he just pees behind the van. A car might come by. Might, but probably won’t, seriously we could be in another state.
11:18 a.m. A cup falls out of the car while they’re all getting back in. Uncle Tony: “Oh. My Yellow Solo Cup.”
11:19 a.m. “Watch out for that step, it’s got Armorall on it or somethin’.”
11:24 a.m. We finally see Maker’s. I was getting worried.
11:25 a.m. Uncle Garr reminds me that he’s my godfather. I tell him I’ll get him a poster from the movie.
11:27 a.m. I take three Jell-O shots in the parking lot. Just doing what I was told.
11:28 a.m. Uncle Garr is telling Ethan “Look, trees!”
11:29 a.m. Even though he peed like 10 minutes ago, Ethan finds a tree by the parking lot and pees again. A drunk Garr stands a few feet away and talks some more about trees.
11:30 a.m. This chick is taking pictures of her boyfriend in front of this old fire truck. Uncle Chuck decides to get in on that.
11:32 a.m. We learn Chuck’s new friend is named Elan.
11:33 a.m. Yep, still in their pictures.
11:35 a.m. I tell the guys to go up there and I’ll take their pictures. This happens.
11:38 a.m. “Guys? I’m this way.” “Oh.” They all turn around and we get this.
11:39 a.m. A limo pulls up. Uncle Chuck: “Is this the weddin’?”
11:40 a.m. We go in the main house at Maker’s and apparently everyone gets their passports stamped, except me. Since I couldn’t pee outside like everyone else, I had to use indoor plumbing.
11:44 a.m. We meet Aggie, our tour guide for Maker’s. Uncle Chuck is asking her lots of questions and she’s putting up with him. Bless her.
11:45 a.m. Aggie asks where we’re from. We all say Louisville and Chuck says “Wyoming.”
11:47 a.m. ARTSY and whatnot. Kind of.
11:50 a.m. Matt knows the answers to all the questions she’s asking about the distilling process. He’s the MVP of the day.
11:57 a.m. We get to see the vats again. You know, the ones we wanted to spit in last time? Guess what we get to do?
11:59 a.m. Yep. Maker’s wins. They let us stick our fingers in the mash stuff.
12:06 p.m. Tour’s done and now we get to taste stuff. Aggie tells everybody to get ready. Glass in the right hand and glass in the left. Donnie: “That’s the way I usually drink.”
12:07 p.m. This is what I’m doing while they’re drinking. Taking pictures of empty glasses.
12:09 p.m. Everybody seems to be feeling alright, considering how much they’ve already had. It’s lunchtime. But we’ve got dipping to do.
12:11 p.m. Dad SUITS UP.
12:13 p.m. Re-thinking his dipping method.
12:15 p.m. Matt’s up. He’s taking this seriously too. That’s Dad’s bottle on the left, by the way.
12:18 p.m. Eth’s up. And I’m pretty sure this old lady was hitting on him.
12:20 p.m. Success. (With the bottle, not with the old lady.)
12:24 p.m. Time to get back in the van.
12:25 p.m. “Watch out for that step, it’s got some greasy shit on it. Maybe Armorall.”
12:29 p.m. Uncle Tony’s playlist will get us to lunch while my phone charges. Uncle Tony has a lot of Black-Eyed Peas on his iPod.
12:31 p.m. Shots shots shots shots shots shots!
12:33 p.m. Seriously where in the hell are we?
12:38 p.m. There is talk of abandoning lunch until after Heaven Hill. Half the van is in favor, the other half is hungry. All eight are drunk.
12:42 p.m. I pull the van over until they decide what they want to do.
12:50 p.m. Stopping for lunch finally wins. We’re going to go to one of those hole-in-the-wall places we passed on our seemingly 10-hour journey from our first to second stop.
12:55 p.m. Hawk’s Place Family Steakhouse? We’re sold.
12:57 p.m. We park. The sign says ‘Welcome tourist.’ Just one, apparently.
12:58 p.m. We get inside and though they’re open, the owner is annoyed he has customers. Why? Owner (possibly Hawk?): “Well we ain’t got no goddamn cooks. They don’t come in ’til three. I can make you a drink though.”
12:59 p.m. Uncle Chuck volunteers to cook but we decide we’ll check out Cozy’s Cafe across the street. Hopefully they’ve got some GD cooks.
1 p.m. Cozy’s has cooks. We’ve found a place to get lunch.
1:12 p.m. We count off to make sure everyone’s in there. Chuck counts everyone’s number with them and for them in some instances so it really serves no purpose.
1:15 p.m. Uncle Chuck enters to win a gift card to Cozy’s. I don’t think a single one of us could find that place again if our lives depended on it. He’ll probably win.
1:25 p.m. I have a beer. It is delicious.
1:26 p.m. Uncle Chuck and I smoke a cigarette. Meaning he smokes one and the smoke all comes my direction.
1:28 p.m. Uncle Chuck is convinced I smoke all the time, I just hide it.
1:35 p.m. I attempt, for the millionth time during the day to send a text or Tweet. We have no service because we have gone back to the 1800s. That’s what it looks like ’round these parts.
1:40 p.m. We all order. Half the table orders a Cozy Melt. I order a turkey sandwich. Eth orders a Deluxe Burger or something like that. And proceeds to ask for it without pretty much everything that makes it a deluxe. Chuck calls him a pussy.
1:45 p.m. Everyone is either talking or watching the U of L game on the big screen TV. I am starting to get tired on account of the waking up at 7:15 a.m. and try not to think about what my bed feels like.
2:04 p.m. I go to the bathroom at Cozy’s and find out that none of the stalls in the women’s room have doors. I tell Eth about this later and he says “That’s how they are in the men’s.” My reply: “Yeah, well, you don’t pee facing the door.”
2:20 p.m. We’re done with lunch and it’s back to the van for…you guessed it…another shot. But first, we’ve got to figure out where we’re going.
2:40 p.m. Dad says “OK so which way do we need to be going to get to Heaven Hill. It’s closer to Bardstown.” Uncle Garr: “Well, there’s the sun, motherfucker.” And that’s all he needs to say. We decide to go towards the sun.
2:41 p.m. Chuck, as everyone’s getting back in the van: “Watch out, that step’s got Armorall or some shit on it. It’s slick.”
2:54 p.m. Eth starts to worry people are going to get tired. Chuckie: “Nobody goes to sleep or we pour bourbon in their mouth.”
2:58 p.m. Shots shots shots shots shots shots!
3:05 p.m. Uncle Chuck starts talking about the bunghole process they went over again at Maker’s. He says “I want to be a bunghole specialist.”
3:06 p.m. I turn the music up louder so I can’t hear anything else.
3:17 p.m. For every turn I need to take or ramp or whatever, I have 8 dads back there telling me what to do. At one point I had to say “You know, this ain’t my first rodeo.”
3:25 p.m. We’re at Heaven Hill and everybody is either at the peak of their drunk-ness or just past it.
3:27 p.m. I take a Jell-O shot as we pull in. Illegal? Yes. Needed? Yes.
3:33 p.m. The younger contingent of this tour is beat.
3:50 p.m. Our last tour starts with a video, imagine that, in a dark room that reminds me of a planetarium. I fell asleep in the planetarium every time I went in there in college. I subsequently got a C in astronomy.
3:52 p.m. I just about fall asleep during the video. Chuckie and Dad do for real.
3:58 p.m. Time for the walking part of the tour. I just wanna stay in this room and nap.
3:59 p.m. Uncle Tony, Uncle Donnie, Chuckie and Eth get on a trolley. We did not sign up for the trolley tour.
4 p.m. They all get off the trolley.
4:05 p.m. We see a bull made out of barrels, similar to the turkey at Wild Turkey. No one attempts to ride it.
4:08 p.m. Uncle Chuck also tries to convince this tour guide he’s from Wyoming. She believes him. Because she is dumb.
4:13 p.m. Every time the guide finishes she asks if anyone has questions. Before anyone can even attempt to ask, Chuck says “NOPE.” He just wants to get to the tasting.
4:17 p.m. Tour Guide Lady: “We make 83 different bourbons here.” Uncle Chuck: “Do we get to try all 83?”
4:19 p.m. Trivia time. What can you put in barrels to stop a leak? Guesses thrown out (mainly from our group) include: “Maple syrup. Algae. Grass. Duct tape.”
4:20 p.m. The answer is cattails.
4:46 p.m. We are ready for the tasting. I can already tell you what Heaven Hill anything tastes like. Drinking nail polish remover.
4:49 p.m. Chuckie figures out there are weird acoustics in the tasting room, which is a giant barrel. Starts playing games with his voice and trying to freak out the other half of our group, who is sitting on the other side of the room. Proceeds to work successfully about six times.
4:51 p.m. Dad: “Take another picture of me as the Most Interesting Man in the World.”
4:53 p.m. She asks what we taste in the bourbon we just tried. Chuckie: “Vanilla, caramel, wood.” Tour Guide Lady: “Good! You’re right!” Dad, to me: “He’s full of shit, he’s just saying what we know it’s supposed to taste like.” Yep. Chuckie is no bourbon connoisseur. None of our group is.
4:56 p.m. “What about this one, what do you taste in there?” Chuckie: “Tiger lily, dandelion..”
4:59 p.m. Other lady asks if all of us are from here and the lady says “Yeah, but he’s from Wyoming” and points at Uncle Chuck. Since, ya know, he sounds so much like he’s from Wyoming.
5:02 p.m. As we’re leaving, Chuck says “Actually I’m Australian, mate” and attempts an Australian accent.
5:05 p.m. Chuck is still trying the accent which sounds nothing like Australian. It’s more of a mix between a pirate and a Londoner and a Kentucky boy.
5:08 p.m. Last stop, time to get a picture.
5:09 p.m. They’re really particular. Dad wants a warehouse in the background. Chuckie wants to look like Justin Bieber with his hoodie.
5:10 p.m. Pictures are done, let’s go home.
5:13 p.m. Six stamps equals FREE T-SHIRTS, BITCHEZZZZZZZ.
5:16 p.m. Shots shots shots shots shots shots!
5:19 p.m. Guys prepare their drinks for the ride home.
5:20 p.m. They get in the van. Chuck: “Watch out for that Armorall shit all over the step.”
5:24 p.m. Someone says they’re ready to fall asleep. Chuck: “Fall asleep and I’ll beat your ass.”
5:29 p.m. Ethan asks for a beer and is pissed because there are none left in the cooler. Chuck asks for a beer and it magically appears. Ethan is confused.
5:55 p.m. We’re back in the Kroger parking lot, dropping off half our troops. Several are really drunk, the rest I make sure are OK to drive. Drunk Ethan grabs a bag of chips, his go to after excessive amounts of alcohol. That half full bag of chips will be gone in a few.
5:56 p.m. Donnie gets resourceful and grabs a shopping cart to get his stuff back to his car.
6:03 p.m. Uncle Chuck gives me money for putting up with everyone all day while I was the only sober one.
6:05 p.m. I’m handed $5.
6:07 p.m. Garr, Chuck, Donnie and Ethan are headed home on their own. The rest of us take the van back to where we started.
6:25 p.m. We’re done. I am DD no more. Except, wait, they think they want to do another trip of some sort. Maybe Buffalo Trace?
6:26 p.m. They owe me.