Eventually, we leave. It's about twelve thirty, which isn't too late, but four hours of the Sports Bar has ended the night. Still, we're a bit hungry, so we head to the 24 Hour McDonalds in Parramatta. I've given up on keeping any kind of respect for myself by going to places I like and, in a rare choice, D. and I decide to actually go into the McDonalds. If you've never been to Parramatta Maccas at midnight, you're missing the crowd of scum and shit that linger in the parking lot waiting for their virginity to expire, the continual line of semi drunk people heading in, and the fact that no one cleans inside. Upon entering, I was greeted with the vision of dozens of empty tables, each of them with brown take away backs and wrappers lingering in the middle like the people sitting there had suddenly been hypnotised and turned into the unhappy Mcdonalds staff working there.
Still, if you don't do these things every now and then, you'll forget why you're avoiding them. Besides, we'd already parked the car and entered. There was no going back.
D. got served before me and so he picked the table area. It was round a corner, and when I turned it, I heard him saying, "--He's big and mean looking so you might not want that."
That means he's talking about me. I say, "What?" cause I'm in full charge of my wit.
"They want a ride to the train station," D. says, pointing to the table in front of him.
It was filled with three teenagers. Disturbingly young teenagers. Two girls and a boy, and if any of them were older than fourteen, then this post is being written by Zombie Jesus. The leader girl (there's always one) told me she was fifteen, but that was obviously a lie. I mean, some strange guy asks you your age, you respond by upping it a few years. At any rate, when these three saw me, the boy and the other girl started saying, "No, it's cool. We'll walk. Do you know the way to the station?"
"What?" I say again, still impossibly witty.
"They want a ride," D. says. "It's your car, man. I told them I can't help them. I'm too drunk for this."
The 'I'm too drunk' defense. It always comes out when a morally dubious choice of life comes up. Previous, I'm sure he was telling me how he was going to go back home and work, which suggests that D. wasn't that drunk. Still, who wants the responsibility of making the decision to allow three teenagers into your car at midnight. Something goes wrong and you're all fucked up. As Girl Two explains the con of the situation loudly, "They're going to kidnap us and rape us!"
Evidently, you can say any old shit in Parramatta McDonalds and not cause anyone to turn their head.
I say, "Look, the station is up the road. Just keep going straight."
Girl One asks, "Is it walkable?"
"It'll take about half an hour."
For some reason, that doesn't strike her as an appealing idea. D. thinks it's because people are lazy. I suspect it's because walking up the middle of Parramatta at midnight, past all the bars and clubs and through the empty alleys to the station don't exactly fill people with joy. Still, I'm all about passing the responsibility to other people. So I start looking around the McDonalds for someone respectable.
Girl One, perhaps suspecting my wish to palm them off, says, "We asked some other guys for a ride, but they told us they'd only give us a ride if we came them blowjobs."
Not one of the people in McDonalds looks trustworthy enough to hold my burger. Damn this natural distrust of people. Dimly, I'm aware of the three teenagers asking each other if the guys are still out there, and the boy and girl arguing that they should just walk to the station. Girl One has pretty much latched onto me and my car and she's not letting that go. She tells her friends to walk 'cause she's getting a ride. Did I agree? Did those words actually emerge? I'm sure they didn't. Girl Two says we're going to rape them, which sounds like a reasonable fear. I'm mean and scary looking. They make prison movies about guys like me.
But of course, I'm there with D.
They make romantic comedies about guys like him.
Obviously, he's the weak link in my plan to shunt responsibility off onto some other poor fuck.
Then, people from a wedding enter. They have girls with them. Fucking A! The girl two latches onto this as a sign that these well dressed people will not kidnap and rape them, and so the two girls begin working on one of the guys. They ask if he's been to a wedding. I bless their ability to state the obvious.
Girl Two says, "We need a ride to the station, can you give us one?"
"Oh, man, I'm too drunk to give anyone a ride," he says. He looks at me and points. "Why don't you get those guys to help you, they look cool."
You. Fucking. Cunt.
That was it. Girl One brought the others to the idea, though I refused to assure Girl Two that I wasn't going to kidnap and rape her. The boy had said nothing, so who knew what he thought. He started telling some story about Girl One doing bad things with boys, but she shut him up and I simply didn't care. If only I was drunk, then I could avoid this whole situation. Still, what the fuck was I to do? Leave them in McDonalds for some other shit ride to come along, or just give them the fucking lift and end my misery of their company?
When D. and I left McDonalds, we had a trail of teenagers behind us. No one said a word about it. They jumped in the car and I drove them to the station.
It took five minutes.