My memory of this particular Omelet Shoppe trip is sketchy. Not because I received any sort of brain damage. And not because there was any wrong doing on my part. But because the night has since reached legendary status.
It started out like any other late night OS visit. A somewhat large group of us took up two or three tables. In my mind, I remember it being mostly guys. In fact, the only girl I remember being there was Amy, who plays a key role in that night’s events.
Unfortunately, we were not the only group to arrive that night. Soon after our arrival, another crew arrived. One that was not so sober. And when I say not so sober, I mean they were really drunk. Really, really drunk.
We, from Bluefield College, were enjoying our various breakfast delights, minding our own business, when one of the drunk guys came over to talk to us. It was a semi-pleasant conversation. Mostly, it involved him asking us if we wanted to go party. Also, he asked if any of us wanted to go get high. Apparently it’s no fun being high or drunk alone, you need to have others with you.
I said that Amy played a key role that night. While most of us humored the unnamed drunk man, she spoke up and spurned his advances on behalf of us all. He returned to his own people. But only briefly.
Within about ten minutes, he was back. With his friends. He started screaming at us. He told us he was crazy, then proceeded to slap himself in the face. So he was getting no argument from me. One of his buddies flipped a plate over at our table. I stress, we hadn’t done anything to provoke this. We hadn’t been rude when they approached the first time. They were just drunk and looking for a fight. I happened to be standing. Actually, I was slightly leaning over one of our tables. When the guy came over and started yelling, I braced myself for a boot to the gut. Then came Gertie.
Gertie came bounding over from the other side of the restaurant yelling, “Hey!” She broke up the would-be brawl and forced the drunk gang to leave. Gertie saved our lives that night. Well, at the very least, she saved us from some level of pain and possibly a night in the Princeton jail.
The whole time, Dereck was ready to pounce. He was waiting for the same thing I was. Later, he told me that if anyone had moved to hit me, he would’ve been all over them. He was so angry, he wasn’t even able to speak to anyone for about the next 12 hours. He wasn’t mad at us. The situation just got him so enraged, he was close to exploding. Still, it meant a lot that he was willing to have my back if things had gotten ugly.
All in all, it was a fun night. I said the night has achieved legendary status. It may not be legendary to you, the reader, but it’s definitely legendary to those of us who survived it.