The Usual

Today while hanging out at the Broadway Pizza Bar with some of the guys (Armando, Lucas, Roger, and then Joe) I got to thinking about what our “usual spots” are. I mean you see it all the time in teen movies. The gang of kids always has a spot where they frequent more than others, be it a fast food joint or other establishment. So I presented the question, “When in 30 years you look back on your life, specifically to Senior year, what places stand out as the “usual” hangout place (other than someone’s house)?” I know for me the Broadway Pizza Bar stands out as one. Alas, it’s not the cheapest place we chill but it holds perhaps the most significance. The Dead Poet’s Society was founded there by crazed hobos  who yelled “Pow!” and “Beer and Cigarettes!”, Danielle worked there, we’ve had cast parties there with a million people who formed the Colonies and England and reenacted the Revolutionary War, etc. A truly memorable hang out spot Downtown with the Coliseum only a few short blocks away.

Another that comes to mind is the AMF Bowling Lanes in Kissimmee. This spot became a truly frequented place thanks to the numerous free passes (for up to 10 people) I would get in the mail. With a deal like that we always took advantage. Unique and somewhat bizarre about this place is that Armando, the usual nucleus of the group, has never been present with us. It’s usually Lucas, David, Roger, Joe, myself, Josh, Luis, Paul, Jonathon, and Zack. Not surprisingly EVERY time we’ve been we’ve created the best memories for ourselves. From Joe and I getting frustrated from a string of gutter balls to Roger and I flirting with Crystal and Moriah (who have coincidentally bumped into us there?) One of the best memories was Roger and I playing air hockey and hitting the puck so hard it literally flew across the room and outta sight (a retrieving worker was somewhat pissed). With that said we’ve always broken the punching back machine. Not in the alley itself, but outside, we’ve run into raccoons, stray cats, Luis dented the hood of Josh’s car, Josh took a dump of the largest turd I’ve ever seen by a building, shutting off the light to the road sign,  the tattoo parlor, the Russian deli, the over priced Mexican restaurant, and the infamous adult store with the purple haze lighting. Why do I keep going in there?

Good times nonetheless.

But that’s all weekend Friday night type stuff. On the weekends after school you could usually find me at the Taco Bell/ KFC across 192 from Gateway. This was the usual due to it’s proximity to school since we often had rehearsals. As such a different group from the Guys was present. Sean and Jose before they graduated, Roger, Thor, Zack, Armando, Luis, Austin, Amber, etc. There’s really too many to list. Sure, we’d go to BK too but there was something Seinfeld-like about that same booth where we always sat in the Taco Bell/ KFC. I spilled a lot of angst in those leather sits to my amigos along with accidentally hitting Nicole’s chest and getting lost in the woods with Sean. Yes, many many fond and revealing times were spent there.

Of course there are other places like CiCi’s (host to many cast parties, Spirit Night, where we went after a hard day of shooting Flynn Lockwood, and a successful attempt at performance art) and the Coliseum of Comics. Recently it seems like we spend every weekend in there perusing the back issues and new releases of Dark Reign. Yep, we’ve also been to Old Town a few times along with the St. Cloud Dairy Queen, St. Cloud Taco Bell, and even the baseball diamonds. And when all else failed and we didn’t have any backup plans Armando’s or Lucas’ house always did the trick.

This upcoming year in college I want to find “the usual” spot where me and my friends will gravitate to. Perhaps Wackadoo’s, the on campus sports bar? Or the local bowling alley? Or perhaps even the nearest Coliseum of Comics. Yeah, they all sound like the usual spots to me.


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