|At the start of the high school football season in 1995, I had the pleasure of being openly intoxicated for the very first time in my life. It was also the first time that I'd ever tasted a Zima. In hindsight, I'm sure the evening wasn't one of the most graceful of appearances I've ever made, but it was indeed first of many similar ones.
The first game of this particular year was against Clear Lake, a good football program well out of our district. In fact, Clear Lake was (and remains) a good hours drive from Katy.
I had been planning to go to the game with a good friend of mine at the time, Johnny Smith. A few hours before we were going to leave for the game, Johnny got word that someone could make a beer run for us. I'm not certain who actually picked up the alcohol, but I think it may have been another friend of ours named Jason Schrodi, possibly with the help of Bert Gentles. I do know that Johnny and I went over to Bert's house to pick it up. Since I was uncertain of what to get, Bert recommended to me that I get a 6-pack of Zima. Zima had only been around for a year or two at the time, and though it was labeled a ladies drink, it was a pretty good introduction to drinking.
So like any good high school kids, we got two cases of beer (Miller and Zima), got in Johnny's ugly brown Thunderbird, and illegally drove to Clear Lake merrily drinking along the way. The car ride also taught me just how badly alcohol requires one to pee, a legitimate issue when on the highway. To the best of my recollection I drank three Zimas before that game, one at Johnny's house, and two more in the car. By the time we got to the game I definitely remember being pretty hammered.
Other than have a great time in the bleachers, there really wasn't anything of great significance that happened. I ran into dozens of my friends at the game, most of whom were amused and surprised at me being intoxicated. Our team wasn't very good and so it's pretty likely that we didn't win, but I have a funny feeling that was not of great importance to me.
I could really only stand the taste of Zima for a few more weeks. It was sometime around then that I was introduced to the various flavored malts like MD 20/20, Purple Passion, and Boone's Strawberry Wine. Those were the days.