Have you ever bonged a beer? The beer bong is a wonderful invention. If you dislike the taste of beer and also don’t like to waste your time chit chatting at parties waiting for the buzz to kick in, then fear no more. There was a time in my life where I was unfamiliar with that MacGyveresqe contraption which employs a funnel, three feet (or sometimes thirty) of tubing and a hose clamp. It’s actually possible to buy a manufactured beer bong off the shelf in towns that you only go to once for Spring Break. Just avoid the pink ones. The best beer bongs are acquired via spare parts by sifting though the garage and under the kitchen sink.
So before we knew of beer bongs, Russ and I went on a road trip with the Widener twins to Bowling Green State University. We met up with our buddy Brett and went to a party at an apartment. While we were all enjoying a few Keystone Light pounders, the host pulled out what I soon found out was a beer bong. He proceeded to fill the funnel end with beer while another partygoer deftly held the tube pinched closed at the other end. The host held the funnel up, the tube went in the second guy’s mouth and chug chug chug… it was gone! Beer one second, no beer in three seconds. Amazing! How does that work? I can imagine Julius Sumner Miller explaining the physics behind the bong:
“I point out that we have a funnel. In addition, there is a plastic tubing of length being one metre. Are you not agreed that these two are connected? Yes. Now supposing we take this 12 ounce cylindrical container of beer. Where is the beer? Where? Yes, here it is. And pour this beer in the funnel. Oh shit, it poured out on the floor of the lab. Goddamn it Mr. Anderson! You were ‘sposed to bend the fucking length of tubing! Fuck!”
(I think we were all waiting for Julius Sumner Miller to snap. I loved the guy.)
A few other people used the bong and I was given the opportunity to try it. Pinch, fill, mouth, release… chug, squirt, choke, beer in nose, gag, chug… It was a lot harder than it looked. This was going to take some practice.
In the background, a soft voice seemed to rise up. “I’d like to try that please,” asked Russ (I think he was raising his hand.) “Sure!”
Pinch, fill, mouth, release… s’gunk. It was gone. I mean, he fucking just downed the thing in a quarter second on his first try. The host was impressed. The crowd roared! Russ was a GOD! He shrugged his shoulders and explained, “I just opened my throat and it went down.” Russ found his purpose in life.
We drank a lot. Russ continued to impress the locals with his bonging prowess. I continued to get beer all over me.
The next day we drove back to Lancaster. We were giddy with excitement about sharing our newly found technology that would make slow beer drinking obsolete. We both had to work that night at the Baskin Robbins. An hour before work, we went into an auto parts store and gathered all the necessary components. We would be the first people in Lancaster to own a bong and share our..“You all gonna make a beer bong?” asked the guy behind the register.
“You know what a beer bong is?”
“Hell, I thought everyone knew what a beer bong was. That’ll be $5.78.”
OK, so we were pretty stupid. Turns out the beer bong had been around a while and we just weren’t invited to the right parties. Still, we had a bong and we were going to practice.
At work, we built the beer bong. We wanted to practice so. we tried bonging water, but it was too plain. We tried bonging coke, but the carbonation almost took Russ out. We then got the bright idea to bong iced coffee. It had some flavor and no one was going to explode from carbonation buildup.
Two pots of coffee later…
Russ and I were vibrating around the store. I could almost scoop the ice cream through sheer willpower. Russ levitated about three feet off the ground in the corner. We’d pee in shifts and speak to each other only through our thoughts.
As we were closing for the night, our buddy Greg arrived. It seemed that a bunch of punk ass kids ganged up on him in the local Kroger’s parking lot. He was able to drive off and was looking for some reinforcements. We were primed to kick some ass. We all jumped into Greg’s car and went back to the Kroger’s, flexing and shouting the whole way.
Sadly for this story, nothing happened. The kids were gone. We ran around in circles for a few minutes and then got breakfast at the Family Restaurant. I remember coming down pretty hard. Not being able to sleep. Night sweats. 24 trips to the bathroom.
The last time I saw that bong was years later at a friend’s apartment. It had tape patching it up and smeared black marker on the funnel. It had a funk that couldn’t be washed out. I think one of the Widener’s cursed it when, while bonging a beer, someone poured a wine cooler in with the beer. I think he puked right back in and up through the bong.