Last night my friend Mick and I tried to walk into a White Castle.
We are in Louisville visiting our girlfriends.
It was around midnight.
The dining area of the White Castle was closed, but the drive-thru was open.
So we stood in line at the drive thru between a Dodge Neon and a sports car with a bra.
There's a Curb Your Enthusiasm episode about this.
In the episode, Larry is refused service at a Jack-In-The-Box because he is not in a vehicle.
In 1994, I also tried this tactic at a Del Taco in Palm Desert, California.
I was denied tacos for the same reasons.
Knowing this, we decided to stand in line anyway.
After all it was January.
The drive-thru speaker box ignored our salutations.
Meanwhile, another man and woman on foot stood in line behind the car with the bra.
We tried a few more hellos to no avail, and decided to just order at the window.
The Dodge Neon's order was taking forever.
The driver had turned off the engine.
The car with the bra drove up to our heels.
"Did you place your order?" I asked.
"Yeah," he said. "Maybe you guys aren't heavy enough."
I took the compliment.
Our fellow drive-thru pedestrians were also having trouble at the speaker box.
"Did you order?" they asked us.
"No we're going to try the window," we explained as the Neon pulled away.
"Let's be nice," I suggested to Mick, who took the lead.
The teller was laid back.
"I'm not supposed to take walk up orders, but what do you guys need?"
Mick turned on his native Kentucky charm for the White Castle teller.
We needed a crave case.
That's 30 sliders in a box.
A coffin of grey steamed "meat".
We were bringing them back to Freddie's, a bar that never closes.
That's where our friends and girlfriends were.
"You need 30 burgers?"
He paused for dramatic effect.
(The White Castle was on Broadway)
Mick handed him a 20 and we stepped aside.
It was 12:15.
"Did you get to order?" our fellow drive-thru pedestrians probed.
"They'll do it reluctantly," said Mick.
The car with the bra got his food and split.
Thanks to our heroic efforts, our fellow pedestrians were also able to order their food.
They paid and stood a safe distance from us.
A car full of well-dressed, middle-aged black women pulled up.
They pointed at us and laughed.
We began laughing, too.
A woman in the backseat rolled down her window.
"What are you laughing at?!" she joked.
"What are you laughing at?!" we retorted.
The car let out a collective howl and the woman rolled up the window.
Our fellow drive-thru pedestrians were laughing, too.
A woman in the front seat rolled down her window.
"Why didn't you order inside?"
We explained that the inside was closed.
"We had to go through the drive-thru as civilians," I said.
The car laughed again and rolled up the window.
Our fellow pedestrians were now laughing at us.
"Are you guys high?" they asked.
"No, we're drunk."
They seemed disappointed.
A long line had formed.
While the women waited for extra straws and condiments, they continued to roll down their windows to laugh at us.
It was 12:20.
It was cold.
Mick and I were being heckled at a White Castle drive-thru in Louisville, Kentucky.
Like a couple of lost dunk tank clowns.
The women got their extras and one of them waved goodbye.
Our fellow drive-thru pedestrians got their food and wished us luck.
"I can't feel my feet," said Mick.
It was 12:30.
We had been standing outside for half and hour.
Mick's girlfriend Jennifer texted.
"Are you guys okay?"
Lauren texted me, too, but I didn't know that.
Finally, the big bag of boxed "meat" was ready.
Mick awkwardly retrieved it while pinned between the drive-thru window and a mini-van of humorless passengers.
We shivered through the ten minute walk back to Freddie's.
Our girlfriends were happy to see us because we weren't dead.
"That was a long trip to the ATM," Jennifer pointed out.
Mick and I had made the decision to get White Castle en route from the ATM, and hadn't bothered to tell anyone else.
"But we got White Castle!" I said Santa Clumsily.
Jennifer is a vegetarian.
Lauren is not, but thinks White Castle tastes like dead buttholes.
My words, not hers.
"Did you get my text?" Lauren asked.
"No," I said.
I checked my phone to see that Lauren had in fact texted me.
"Oh," I noticed.
"Are you okay?" it said.
"Yes, we're okay," I said live and in person. "We got White Castle!"
Someone played crickets on the jukebox.
Only a handful of our friends had lingered.
Mick and I wolfed down a few sliders.
John joined us.
Steve considered, but only ate the pickles that I had removed from my sliders.
"I can't do it," he said, and left soon after.
We ended up giving half the sliders to the bartender.
"I'm sure somebody'll eat these."
The jukebox returned to bad music.
Glee Journey and Will Smith's daughter.
Knob Creek helped burn the White Castle off of my esophagus.
Things are bound to get better.
Verdict for the Rest of 2011: Win