Christened with Champagne (Literally)

What better symbolism for welcoming a new year? A quiet, local celebration turns into an eruption of sticky carbonation and dripping symbolism.


We decided on a quiet, local celebration this year. Economy, weather, my old age. All were factors in this decision. My girlfriend teamed up with our friend, musician David Ribyat to plan everything. It would have all the makings of a perfect party. Great friends, finger food, booze, booze, booze and a large TV to watch the ball drop. Then, it happened.

I was handed a bottle at two minutes to midnight (that alone should have alerted me that something big was about to happen). I waited until the last ten seconds to open it. At that moment, as I called out across the room for everyone to get their glasses ready, a violent eruption of sticky, cheap, carbonated wine dowsed me. Not just me. The wall, ceiling and those standing near me. It seemed that I was the victim of a shaken bottle of bubbly.

As the room filled with the usual hugs and kisses, cheers and well wishes, I stood still, drenched and angry. Many thoughts ran thru my head. Not the least of which was thank God I know how to open a bottle of champagne. The cork–which could have shattered my glasses and caused permanent eye damage–was held securely in my right hand. As my anger subsided, another thought emerged.

I realized just how a fitting passage into the new year this was. 2009 was one of those years that needed to be over. Nothing was really right about it. It felt as though my life was stuck in a stalemate. Its end was more anxiously anticipated than any other in recent memory. The year needed to be washed away.

And then suddenly, here comes the hand of some other-worldly power to smack me upside my apathy, quite literally christening this new year. Everything came to a crawl. The searing heat boiling in me. The dripping stickiness of the champagne from my clothes, face and hair oozing before falling. The splashes of it on the floor echoing in my head. The celebration around me suspended in a dream state.

Eventually, the slowmotion reverted back normal speed and by two minutes past midnight, I was back in the party. The laughter no longer stabbed me but rather tickled. I was able to smile with everyone again and see that this was indeed the best way for the transition of years to happen.

I’d like to thank whoever shook that bottle. Whether purposeful or accidental, the results were exactly as they should have been. I’ve been bathed and change is coming now sooner than ever. More on that later.


Click for more photos

For the time being, I happily returned to drinking my whiskey from an old Muppets in Space jelly jar (featuring Grover). Happy New Year!

Check out the photos from last night. By the way, I know there are photos of the soaked me. If I get them, I’ll post them.

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One Response to “Christened with Champagne (Literally)”

  1. David R
    01/05/10 at 6:32 pm #

    I enjoyed your writing.

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