Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Gutterglory & Gut Glory

My senior year at UNC, I realized that I needed to take one physical education class or else I wouldn't graduate. Yikes. I had taken an 8am aerobics class my freshman year and I knew that I didn't want to do anything like that ever again. Who wants to work out that early in the morning? As a college student, I sure didn't. During my senior year, the only time I worked up a sweat was dancing all night long at a local rave somewhere.

Anyway, there were stories about an easy PE class that didn't require any physical exertion or sweat and even allowed SMOKE BREAKS. (I am so glad that I grew up in this state.) I needed to take that class. It was bowling. It was hard as hell to get in the class because everyone else at UNC wanted an easy PE class, too. I took a gamble my final semester of college by signing up knowing that there was a great chance that I would be rejected. Thank god I made it into the class.

Bowling met on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons around 3:30 or so, which was great, because it allowed me, some of my classmates and a huge group of friends to go to Papagayo's for margarita pitchers before class. So not only did we get smoke breaks, we went to class tipsy on margaritas.

Our instructor was cute, but he wore those god-awful, tight, polyester coach shorts. Ew. But he was cool. Well, at least he didn't seem to mind or notice the margaritas on our breath. He encouraged us to do midnight bowling (bowling with the lights off)... which is always fun when you're a little tipsy. We had ridiculously easy multiple-choice tests, like how many pins are there in a frame? He didn't grade us on our bowling scores or number of strikes or technique really... if he did, I would've flunked. I never even broke a 100 in my bowling class. But I did make an A.

UNC offered its final bowling classes this past Spring semester. The student union's bowling alley is now closed and the university plans to turn that space into offices.

In March of this year, I joined a bowling league. I became part of a super team with some guys who are bigger music geeks than I am... I love it. They came up with the brilliant name Gutterglory, a nod to the now defunct indie rock band, Butterglory. The day before Gutterglory's first game, I fell and sprained/fractured my ankle. Luckily, the boys were able to find a last minute sub, who's been covering my slot since April. But last night, I was back in action! We got beat by the other team 2 out of our 3 games. But the one game that we won, I bowled a 120!!!! My cute, polyester-shorts-wearing, bowling instructor would be proud.

I wanted to celebrate my incredibly high score, so my teammate, Mark and I headed over to the Federal to meet up with some of the other bowlers. After a couple beers, Mark, who was starved suggested that we drive over to Cook-Out to get a burger and a milkshake. I was a little hesitant because for one, it was 12:30 at night and two, I am not a fan of fast food burgers. But he said that they had really good milkshakes. Let's go!!

As we were driving, Mark was telling me about Cook-Out's seasonal WATERMELON MILKSHAKES. Oh. My. God. We pulled up to the lighted menu board and then everything after that was a big blur. Before I could blink, we were driving away with two bacon cheeseburgers with grilled onions and two watermelon milkshakes. Mark and I sat at my kitchen table and enjoyed an incredible, late-night, gluttonous meal. The burger was really great for fast food. It was a decent thickness and rather juicy and had a good meaty flavor. The bacon on it ROCKED.

Oooooohh. But that milkshake. It was incredible. The watermelon chunks were so large that they kept clogging my straw. You couldn't help but use a spoon. I was afraid that the creaminess of the milkshake would overpower the sometimes delicate taste of the watermelon. But that was not the case at all. It was great. They had a gazillion milkshake flavors on that menu board, but the watermelon will only last another month or so.

I think that a late-night trip to Cook-Out might be mandatory for all future bowling nights.


christa said...

i cannot believe you've never been to cook out before. that just seems impossible.

next time get the burger platter. for your two sides get corn dog & chicken nuggets.


Anonymous said...

I have never been to Cook-Out before either, but now I NEED TO GO.

For my 2nd PE class at UNC I took self-defense. It was fun and actually useful, although I'm not sure if I remember how to kick a guy in the nuts anymore. I might need a refresher.

And then there was the swimming test . . . oh god. I mean, it wasn't hard or anything, but it was an ordeal nonetheless.

Charlotte said...

Oh yes. Go to Cook-Out and get a watermelon milkshake. It was divine.

I was exempt from the swimming test at UNC... I think because I had some sort of lifeguard certification. I think that the university has dropped that swimming requirement now.

Maggie said...

Mark is a FOOD GOD. I kneel to his encyclopedic knowledge of lunch spots, his clout with the wait staff at Akashi, his talent for drinking & holding forth, & his appreciation for Meaty Things. The only other person in Mark's league is his cohort Ron. The rest of us are amateurs.

Phil said...

I looove Cook Out, which I also discovered only recently (2005). Un/fortunately, my new meat-reduction plan doesn't include me going there for the formerly usual burger. But now that I know about the watermelon shake, maybe I can go for that and some fries.

Mark said...

Aw shucks Maggie, you're making me blush. I can't take credit for finding cookout, just merely passing on information from my more informed friends. I do have a love for all things watermelon both real and artificial.

Charlotte, you can definitely count me in for a cookout run after burning all those calories on the bowling lanes - at least for the month of August.

Charlotte said...

Yay Mark!!!! I am looking forward to it! You'll need to inform me of the other good eats around here. Hey, what do you know about Raleigh's Roast Grill?

Mark said...

Absolutely nothing, but I like roast (as in pot) and I like just about anything grilled, so lets go!

Elrond Hubbard said...

Dude, you ain't been to Cook Out before? Aside from echoing all these other comments of disbelief and also of support for Cook Out, I'd just like to point out how avant-garde that right-window drive through lane is. Or is it post-modern? Maybe just modernist. Like, if, in a classical sense, drive through windows were all for the left window . . . then a modernist came along and said "who says all drive through windows have to be for the left window," and made one for the right window. Okay, so maybe it's just modernist. Plus, from the left-window drive through lane, there's an escape lane diagonally cutting across to the right-window drive-through lane , so if you're in the left-window drive through lane and you realize the right-window drive through lane has fewer cars in it, you can still change your mind. I like a second chance like that. Just because I can, I always take the right-window drive through lane and then lean way across to get my order from the attendant.

Also, you're reminding me, I should do a Hee Haw post.

Well. Cool blog. I clicked over at random from Idiom.

Charlotte said...

Yes, the lanes at Cook-Out were confusing. Mark and I went through the right-window lane and it felt so weird. But once I got my watermelon milkshake, I felt better.

I might have to do a Cook-Out run today at lunch.

You should do a post about Hee Haw. I LOVED that show when I was little.

Gye Greene said...

A swimming test for graduating college? Weirdness.

Milkshakes are my big weakness. I had to switch to Coke-flavored slushies, though: swapping the fat for sugar.


Ron said...

Roast Grill Rocks! Good wienies, great room.

Come on down for an encased meats tour of the Capital City any time. There's Cloo's, Snoopy's, Brat's @ Ron's place and the tubular meats sampler @ J.Betski's. If you're still hungry after that, there's the taco wagons by the Disco Rodeo.

Charlotte said...


Yes, there was a swimming requirement at UNC to graduate. The story is that there was a big donor who lost a loved one due to a drowning. The stipulation for the donor's gift was that UNC had to make sure that each student could swim prior to graduation. But I think they lifted that requirement now.

Charlotte said...

Oh, I am really excited about Roast Grill, now. I have got to go!!!