It was the year of 1995, but perhaps it was 1996 as well. I was nineteen or twenty. A friend of ours, we shall just call her "Our Friend" for the purposes of our story, began to invite us all over for "Super Sunday Stoner Breakfast" in the basement apartment of her parent's house. "Our Friend's" basement was a finished kitchenette. Most of us were between our late-teens to our early twenties, and without any real responsibilities to speak of.
At the time I was working the midnight shift sorting packages in Addison, IL for UPS. I had recently started taking classes in the afternoon at DeVry Technical Institute for an associate's degree in Electronics Technology. Saturday nights and Sunday nights were my evenings off work from UPS. Every Saturday some friends and I would go to Chicago to a Rave party, they being the new thing to do. We would stay out all night long in some warehouse or roller rink on the west side or south side of the city, dancing to house and techno music in front of huge sound systems and getting high on herbal energy supplements and weed. Personally, I never got into Ecstacy, but that is beyond the point.
On Sunday, after sleeping the morning away (which was normal because I worked nights), I would make the call to see if "Super Sunday Stoner Breakfast" was going on that afternoon and make more calls to co-ordinate rides over to "Our Friend's" house.
Usually by two in the afternoon, we all had arrived and then made lists to get the needed supplies.
One group would make a trip to Mr. Z Supermarket in Lombard, IL to get the food. This trip was often taken in my Ford Taurus Station wagon. The typical grocery list might comprise of,
2 Dozen Eggs
2 lb. Bacon
2 sausage rolls (the kind that you slice up into patties)
1 box pancake mix
1 bottle of vegetable oil
2 gallons of milk
2 boxes of butter (8 sticks)
1 bottle of maple syrup
1 roll of ready-to make croissants
2 rolls of ready to make buttermilk biscuits
1 large red bell pepper
1 large green bell pepper
2 large onions
1 large bag of Tater Tots
1 large bag of pre-shredded hash brown potatoes
1 small bag of ground coffee
2 packages of Matt's Chocolate Chip Cookies
Another group, including a person of over 21, would drive out onto Roosevelt Road in Lombard to Foremost Liquors. Now, remember this is the mid-nineties, the Microbrewery revolution had come to suburban Chicago only a few years previous. Foremost Liquors was THE place to find the latest hip new brew!
1 thirty-pack of the cheapest Beer (Huber, Old Milwaukee, ect...)
2-3 twelve-packs of "premium" name brand beer (Miller, Budweiser, ect...)
3-4 six-packs of "microbrew" beer (Bells, Anchor, whatever catches the eye...)
1-2 four-packs of Guinness 16-oz draught cans (the kind with the ball in it)
1 thumb-handled large bottle of moderately cheap California red wine
1 755Ml bottle of Bourbon or Scotch depending on the mood.
Somebody would make a connection to get some good buds. Don't mean to boast too much, now, but our group of friends were privy to a large network of quality merchandise. This was also the period that black sticky balls of opium were plentiful too!
1/4 Oz. Marijuana, of the highest quality available.
Maybeee something else? A little sumthin', sumthin'?
By Four in the afternoon, at the latest, we were all back downstairs in "Our Friend's" kitchenette; drinking beer, smoking weed and cooking up the food. Any thing that required baking was started first. As all the food was cooked, it went into the warm oven.
As the basement fills with the most savory aromas of breakfast fare, a random individual is tasked with the responsibility of banker. This person would then calculate the totals from the receipts divide by the number of people and force everyone to put into their share.
Our menu varied, but usually consisted of typical breakfast fare:
Eggs over easy
the road goes on forever
but the party never ends.
There was only one deadline for all this: the food had to be all cooked in time for The Simpsons
. That's it. Six O’clock and we all sat with our breakfast, eating and drinking, and smoking, and watching The Simpsons.
Usually we stayed over at "Our Friend's" place until maybe nine or so and then would disperse so that those who work during the day could get to bed.
I live a sober life now, but I always look back with great fondness to these Sundays that we spent at "Our Friend's" place. Take away the drugs and the booze and the gluttony and what remains is among the best things in life: coming together with friends over home-cooked food. If I had to do it all over again, I would not change a thing.