My Favorite Mormon

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Jun 6th, 2006
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What’s worse than hanging out with a bunch of drunks? Hanging out with a bunch of drunks when you, yourself are NOT drunk. Or so I thought.

During the early days of Infinite Technologies we used to spend a lot of time at trade shows, and a lot of those shows were in Dallas. This was before Las Vegas became the “stand in a booth for eight hours” capital of the universe, and frankly, Dallas was often way more fun. You had to look for trouble in Dallas, rather than simply ordering it from room service.

One trip we met up with a dapper young man named Rodney. Rodney and Brett had worked together for years doing the e-mail thing so naturally Brett invited him to dinner with our crew. “Dinner” as it was called, consisted of eating something quickly to stave off blackouts and then proceeding to drink stupidly until either a cab was called or an arrest report filed. This is all well and good except that Rodney was (and I assume still is) a devout Mormon … and a damn good sport.

In Dallas we usually found ourselves at a place called Dick’s Last Resort. Dick’s boasted an impressive beer list, decent food, and wait staff who viewed dumping a full ashtray on the floor as “exceptional customer service”. Our drink of choice was, well, anything really, but we did have a deep love for Mamba Malt Liquor which came in a handy pint bottle and would truly improve your mood if you could keep it down. We drank Mambas … lots of em … and Rodney sipped 7-up.

As was usually the case, we drank too much and instantly reverted to the Cro-Magnon era. Rodney, hung in there … laughing at our jokes, adding to the conversation, and matching us 7-UP for Mamba the whole way. At the end of the night we poured ourselves into cabs, went back to the hotel and prepared to sweat and stagger through another day in the tradeshow booth, or as we called it “the thing that delayed the drinking”.

We were certain that Rodney had been polite, hung out, experienced what a mess we could become and would never, ever accept another invitation to hang out with us. We were very, very wrong. The next night, and for every night thereafter, we went out to guzzle silly quantities of beer and Rodney was right there. He seemed to really enjoy our company, and possibly the free entertainment, and he never once looked like he wasn’t having a good time.

We don’t do the trade show circuit anymore and Rodney lives in the mountains with his, get this – 13 children (probably had two or three more in the time it took me to write this). Maybe one day I’ll find myself on a bender with the Tabernacle Choir, and maybe I’ll make a friend or two, but Rodney will always be my favorite Mormon. (Don’t be sad Joe … second is good too).

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