And planning began. Nashville was chosen as somewhat of a midpoint. With Elks being spread out: Michigan, Illinois, Kentucky, New York, Florida, and Colorado. We had business to tend to, so, here we are. The Drunken Elk does Nashville 2019.
psst. click on photos to see the whole thing. word press galleries crop them weird.
Zehd (Kelsey) – Canti (Chris)
Calyso (Michael) – Alisha – Dbutta (Daniel)
Kiv (Melissa) – Gil (Brian) – Squirrel (Ryan) – Ash (Stephen)
Ormuz (Joshua) – Perenze (Rhiannon) – Lumidar (Paul)
Shamwoops (William) – Kristee – Zakimoto (Joshua)
While some of us were in transit to Nashville, whether that be by plane, train, or automobile, we had a particular member who was celebrating something else. Congratulations to Squirrel on graduating High School dude!
In the meantime, Ormuz was driving from Colorado. Zehd and Canti were driving from Michigan. Calyso and Alisha were flying from New York. Calyso and Alisha were the first to arrive and hit the town to sightsee a bit. Ormuz wasn’t too far behind. Once checked into the Sleep Inn, he hit the nearby pubs. The other Elks in town followed suit.
At some point in here, Zehd and Canti picked up Perenze. Lumi took off from Canada. Dbutta left Kentucky. Shamwoops and Kristee left wherever they came from (I legit forget, I’m sorry!), and Gil, Kiv, Squirrel, and Ash departed Tampa. In the distance, you could hear Zehd screaming: “ELKS ASSEMBLEEEEEEE!”. And we did.
Calyso and Dbutta had an awkward exchange. Calyso came from his hotel to the Sleep Inn to find the crew to meet these people, but didn’t want to go into the lobby and have to potentially answer to hotel staff, so he says in discord, and I quote: “I’m creeping by the big sign post”. But Dbutta hadn’t looked at Discord yet. So Caly and Dbutta, unknowingly kept looking at each other awkwardly across the parking lot, until Dbutta uttered a “Caly?”. It was Bromance at first sight. Some Buds were grabbed, an Ormuz and Canti were found and we headed to the pool. Slowly but surely, everyone trickled in/over. Dbutta broke a chair. What was he doing? Sitting. He was also really upset that the pool had prickers and pointy plants sticking through the fence, and to be fair, he’s not wrong. IQ 400 shit right there. At some point I, Caly, got fucking hungry and Doordashed some Krystal (Which is worse than White Castle, sorry) to the pool. Worth. And no, it wasn’t the box truck. I’m not that fat. Kiv, Squirrel, and Ash appeared right before a front desk shift change happened, and the dude told us to scram because the pool was “closed”. Whatever man. This is real internet love. Yeesh. Can’t you tell. I love these people more than you could probably even comprehend.
This is where everyone was supposed to sleep, but here’s what we had: Zehd found Staips, a bunch of people sleeping AND Dbutta not sleeping. Oh, and Ash and Squirrel playing Sekiro. Because who can travel without video games? Right? RIGHT!?
It was an early day for some (Dbutta). Event number one: Renn Faire! We had to get to the Faire by opening because shenanigans were yet to be had. So we mobilized. Bounced down some back roads and to a gorgeous site in the Tennessee countryside. Kiv and Squirrel dressed up! Awesome costumes (and heat tolerance!). We started off by grabbing a stranger to take our photo by an iron dragon statue thing. Kiv’s neat skirt was hidden by the garbage can that we should have moved (smh). But this is us (minus Zaki). Hi! Zaki was in transit. He wasn’t too far behind, so we’ll have him joining us soon.
From here, our fearless leader Zehd led us straight to the games. The most fitting game was first. Shuffleboard with a beer mug! I’m certain that a better name exists than that, but the first time I typed beer, I actually typed beef, so let’s stick with Shuffleboard with a beer mug, because a beef mug doesn’t sound good. Some of us abused the alcohol right off the end, others (only me) couldn’t perform and get it to the end. But Squirrel was able to hit the target and earn a knighting by the queen. The kid can’t even drink. We’re shameful. Bahahaha.
Next: Archery. The bows and arrows sucked, but shieet son, we had fun. Canti got bit, but Sham was a true shaman…er, hunter, and won! Earned a knighting by the queen! We saw a neat looking cannonball game, but there were sharp knives to go throw. Spoiler: most of us were really bad at throwing knives too. So bad in fact that the lady let some of us throw some extra ones out of pity. She was really too nice. Then came the axe throw. Spoiler: Ormuz didn’t hurt himself. The crew faired pretty well here. Somewhere in the middle of this, Caly stopped playing and went and got booze. We are the DRUNKEN Elks after all. The axes were weirdly shaped, but at the very least, Canti, Ormuz, and Sham became semi-professional. I’m sure they could do it again. Nobody hit the bullseye, but if you’re throwing an axe at someone, do you really need to hit them right in the heart to do some damage? I think not.
A joust is announced (or it’s pre-scheduled, but let me have this one!)! So we make our way to the jousting grounds. But here we find a Slay the Dragon! game. Zehd took this as a personal challenge and she slayed the FUCK out of the dragon
To the joust! Here we get to chill, sit down, drink some more, eat frozen chocolate covered cheesecake, and watch a joust. A WILD ZAKIMOTO APPEARS! We have a guy approach us and ask if we’re a World of Warcraft guild. We are. Welcome to the guild Suldan! Everyone loves when men thrust at each other with long phallic objects, right? Right. So we took to it. The joust began, our Knight was Edward. He wasn’t about cheering. He was about singing. NA-NA-NA-NA NA-NA-NA-NA EDWARD! We sang! The joust was brutal. The games were fair. The scores were close. But ultimately, I believe it was William who won. Our next stop was the free fall carousal or something dangerous. We marched our way over, to find out, that you must be a CHILD to ride. Fine. We had some benches, so a handful of us took this time to relax and chat with our internet, now physical, friends. And not PHYSICAL friends, but physical. 😉 A Gil purchased a sweet dagger for the little one at home. A Shamwoops bought a badass Doomhammer. But the time had come. The meats were calling. We started rolling out for the steakhouse.
Event Two: The Meats
Inspired by Calyso and Canti’s love for each other’s meats. We went to Rodizio Grill, which is a Brazilian Steakhouse. And if you don’t know what that means: Men walk around with meat on swords and offer their meat to you endlessly until you tap out. This was a foreign idea to some, but I think everyone is all about the meats now. I don’t actually know what more to type about the meats. I have to give kudos to Squirrel and Canti for practically not giving up. Dbutta definitely didn’t know what he was getting into and kind of bitched out with meat on his plate. <3
We took an intermission here between meats and the Ghost Tour. A handful of us made our way downtown, walking fast, and we ended up in a coffee shop for a few hours. The others went to sleep some meats off. Or to perform sexual acts on each other (I’M LOOKING AT YOU GIL AND KIV. NO KIDS IN THE ROOM. UH HUH. I HEARD ABOUT SUNDAY!). So we ended up at a place called the Frothing Monkey (Thanks Ash!). We got some drinks: beers, teas, coffees, lattes, some girly drink (Lumi). Lumi was practically hit on by the barista and didn’t get it. Sigh. Someday Lumi will find another cute girl. Maybe he can use his new pickup line: “I have healthcare!” And here we had a great conversation. These people are really friends. How do we know we’re friends? We had at least an hour long conversation about flatulence, and it wasn’t just me it was most, if not all, of us. Time passed by pretty quickly, and our tour time was quickly approaching, so we started heading back down to the starting point for our tour.
Event: Ghost Tour! OoOoOooooOoOOOOooo
We did this really neat ghost tour thing (See here). This was a mixture of historical as well as kind of spooky. Our guide was spectacular. She probably didn’t know what she was getting into, but I feel that she quickly got a grasp for our group and we had a great time. I’m sure we were better and more interested in her stories than the typical drunkards who probably normally do the tour with her! As we became more interested in her stories (and likely more tired!) we mellowed out, but we saw so many cool things! One of the most interesting tidbits was that Church Street turns into Gay Street. Hmmm.
Event: Game Day and Departure!
Sunday, Sunday, Sunday! The gang reserved a conference room in the hotel to chill, play some games, and prepare for the impending travel home Sunday/Monday. Gil and Kiv brought a 300lb copy of Red Dragon Inn which absorbed most of the time of the day. While games were had, Dbutta played some chill jams on his guitar. How Nashville of him ;). Some shade was tossed at Caly as he wasn’t there naming him Biggest Drama Queen, but as stated, he wasn’t there, so that honor was passed to our lovely Kiv<3.
Special Shoutout to Zakimoto for the kickass stationary and stickers. That was super thoughtful and gives me desk swag.
The crew started to disperse on Sunday night, with a select few chilling until Monday. That crew took Lumi to Waffle House, where he didn’t get waffles, he got a grilled cheese of some sort and Dbutta was called an ugly mother fucker by some homeless man. A staple of the South. Hell yeah.
Overall, the whole trip was such a great idea. While we may have all split our separate ways, I think this has brought all of us closer together as friends rather than just people who play games together.
Thank you for everyone, Zehd, Canti, and Kiv especially for pulling this together. I feel like I can speak for everyone when I say that everyone had an amazing time. It was an absolute blast and I don’t think it’ll be the last time we cross paths. I actually think it might be getting close to time to start thinking about next year’s meetup?
I love you all. <3 Caly