Dear Dudefest Forum,
“Hit me in the face right now!” I shouted, practically bouncing on the balls of my feet.
I raised an eyebrow at my friend, a guy who towered probably a foot over me, daring him to back down from the request. He didn’t hesitate at all. I threw back my cheap tequila shot and WHACK. He slapped me across the face. My stinging cheek distracted me from the disgusting liquor I just ingested. I was surrounded by a group of friends, laughing and waiting for the next person to go. Life was good. For now, anyway. This was the last night I ever did a Michigan Shot, and the only night I ever did it in a public place.
The first time I ever saw a Michigan Shot performed, I was terrified. I watched two girls I had recently met basically beat the shit out of each other’s faces at a house party in college and wanted to hide in a corner. These girls, who would talk your ear off about the adorable new cats they just adopted, were standing in the center of a party and wailing on each other like the never-gonna-happen Pacquiao-Mayweather fight. They were not taking it easy at all – they wound up for their slaps like Wile E. Coyote before running off a cliff while the other one gritted her teeth to prepare for what was inevitable.
“What the hell is going on?” I asked a friend. And that was when I learned what a Michigan Shot is.
If you didn’t already figure it out, a Michigan Shot is when you take a shot of some liquor that is best described as "truly horrible" because that’s all you can afford as a poor, desperate college student. Then, instead of using a conventional chaser or just sucking it up like an adult, you have someone slap you as hard as they can as your chaser. ‘Why Michigan?’, you may be wondering. I genuinely have no idea. But I was intrigued, I was scared, and goddammit I wanted someone to slap the shit out of my face immediately.
Up until this night, I had only had maybe two Michigan Shots since the first time I saw them performed. And they were weak because I am a five foot tall girl who would probably be slapped off my feet and across the room if I let someone hit me as hard as my friends did. But you know what changes that reality? Alcohol. Lots and lots of alcohol to cloud your brain! Hooray!
So here I was in a bar not-so-adoringly named The Rat, screaming at my friend to slap me again. We were taking shots of some horrible tequila-like poison and were riding the adrenaline rush that came from losing trivia at another bar. We’re inadequate at shitty upstate New York trivia – slap my fucking face right now!
A circle of maybe eight of us were trading off taking shots and slapping each other, gaining momentum as we went. Suddenly a total killjoy came into the circle – one of the girls who created the Michigan Shot, in fact.
“What the fuck are you guys doing?! Don’t do this in public! You’re slapping each other across the face in a bar. How do you think that really looks?”
I had a drunken out of body experience where I viewed myself from above. Here we were in the dirtiest, skeeziest bar in this small upstate city. A bar where I watched a girl vomit then make out with some guy while dancing with him on top of that vomit. And here my friends and I were slapping each other across the face in front of the bartender while he looked on in horror, trying to hide the liquor so we couldn’t take any more shots and lead to his bar getting shut down for maybe the fifteenth time that year.
She was right – enough was enough. I needed to probably take care of my bruising cheeks anyway. So we left, and I spent a lovely time sleeping in various places outside while trying to find my way home. But that’s a story for another day.
Neco is not a dude. Sorry, everyone.