Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Hedonism II – New Year’s 2010



Recently, I returned from my annual week-long vacation to Hedonism II in Negril, Jamaica where I celebrate New Year’s Eve.  This year, traveling down there was a bit dicey due to the fact that a blizzard hit New York City on the day that I was scheduled to leave.  Fortunately for me, I left in the morning and the snow didn’t start until early afternoon, so I was able to escape the city with a couple of hours to spare before The Big Apple got pounded.

First of all, I never consider myself to be lucky, but after this trip, I feel like I should buy a ticket for the Mega Millions lottery simply because of the fact that I was incredibly fortunate to have slipped out of here just a couple of hours before The Big Boxing Day Blizzard of 2010 hit NYC. After my arrival, I heard that there were a few people who were supposed to make the trip, but were either considerably delayed or wound up skipping it altogether and hoping their Trip Insurance would recover their costs. Initial reports on Monday were that some folks in the Northeast were told that they would not be able to get a flight down until Friday (!), but I heard of a couple that was supposed to fly on Monday stayed at the airport and wound up getting a flight 3AM Wednesday morning. I suppose you could say they were The Lucky Ones ...

My first night there, I was incredibly hungry. I had a small breakfast on the morning flight to MBJ, but missed lunch because I didn't check-in until 3PM (too tired to go to the beach grill), so I rested for a while and planned to be first on line for dinner that evening. So, I went to the Menu Board in the main dining room to see what was up for that night. Here is what I saw:




Now, I ask you:

Am I misreading this or does it say that dinner is from 10PM until 10PM? Apparently, cost-cutting at Hedo has gotten so bad that they don't want you to go back for seconds. And don't even THINK about getting dessert ...

Like last year, a number of people from The Fluffernutters group were in attendance -- their banner hung near the lobby.

There was also a group called The Bare Bottom Bunch. I'm not familiar with them but I'm given to understand that they were a group of New Year's regulars who are refugees from Hedo III that had to perform an Exodus to Hedo II to continue their tradition.

As a result, there were many new (and, in some cases, younger) faces at the resort this year. They had two events that I know of that were open to the public, but I have no idea what or how many private members-only events they held.

On Wednesday night, they held a Foam Party in the disco. The Foam Party was open to members of their group only from 10P-10:30, after which, it was open to everyone. The idea behind The Foam Party was that a contraption would shoot soap suds on everyone. The problem, however, was that the machine being used didn't shoot out much foam -- so, instead of everyone being buried up to their shoulders in soap suds, they barely had their ankles covered.

The next morning, they had a cruise that was open to all, but after the misfire from the night before, I decided to pass.


On Tuesday afternoon, a couple I’ve known from the Internet arrived; this was the first time I had ever met either one of them in person.

She was able to find me in my spot behind the hot tub without any problem.

And in my introduction to him, I will never forget his first words to me. They were something along the lines of, "GIT YER COTTON-PICKIN' HANDS OFFA MY WIFE, GODAMMIT!".

The next morning at breakfast in the main dining room, he and I had a good laugh over all of this, at which point he then shoved my head into a waffle iron where I incurred severe burns about my face and neck.

Good times with newly-minted friends.

You can't beat 'em with a whisk even if you tried.

My fondest memory of the trip, however, was the daily afternoon poolside game of "Horny Drunken Gynecologist" I played with her after he passed out drunk on schedule. For once, that speculum I pack for my trip every year finally came in handy.

Rick from Arizona was also there.

You do know Rick from Arizona, don't you?

Or perhaps you know him better as Mr. Rippin’ & Tearin’ ?

A number of years ago on one of my New Year's Eve trips to Hedo, I met Rick; he's a guy who is very outgoing and friendly and participates in many activities during his vacation.

Last year, there was a video posted of him during a Memorial Day weekend trip, and I think that there may have even been a link to it on Denny Pasternak's site, The video went viral and he wound up with getting quite a good deal of notoriety as a result.

Tuesday morning at breakfast, Rick came over to the table where a number of us were eating and displayed his "outrage" over the fact that some company was exploiting his 15 minutes (or more) of fame by selling t-shirts with his likeness on the front, with the caption, "Rippin' & Tearin' "; he gladly showed us one of the actual t-shirts -- which appeared that he himself owned -- so we would know what to look out for.

Since he claimed he was not getting paid for this, he swore that he was going to sue the company over their indiscretion as they did not license his permission through him to sell these shirts. Later that very night after dinner, there was a men's dancing competition in which Rick was a participant; needless to say, while he was on stage during the competition, he wore that exact same t-shirt.

For those of you who may have never seen the video in question, here it is. Meet Rick from Arizona:

Regarding The Piano Bar ...

When I first arrived, the piano had been moved out of its usual spot, which had been covered by curtains (to fix a leak?).  The piano was placed just to the window side of that big screen projection TV (which I guess they use for Karaoke -- I never go in there those nights). Didn't leave too much room for people to sit around the piano, so the energy level was rather low. Completely threw off the whole experience.

By New Year's Day, the curtain had been taken down and the piano moved back to its original place, thankfully.

That was the first really good night at the piano bar. I'm not a major advocate of feng shui , but I do have to say that the entire mood, energy and chemistry in The Piano Bar drastically improved once the piano went back into the pit.

As far as bar service was concerned, I found it to be consistently excellent at all locations for the entire length of my stay.  

At the nude beach bar, Scumba was particularly well-trained in that he quickly learned what I was drinking and always had one ready for me as soon as I approached the bar.  At one point, he was pouring some guy a drink, then saw me come up and (without asking) automatically started pouring mine, too, because he knew exactly what I was going to ask for.  The other guy got excited and started yelling, "Hey! What are you doing?  I didn't ask for one of those!" -- then Scumba had to explain to him that the other drink was for me, not him.

For quite some time now, there have been reports circulating about some kind of undercover drug sting intended to find hotel employees who were dealing illicit narcotics to guests in order to supplement their income.  However, I personally did not hear any details about this.  As far as what the resort was like with this going on, I found that the usual people who have tried to sell to me in the past either weren't interested in any of that kind of activity during my stay or they were simply nowhere to be found at any point during that week (if you know what I mean).

Having said that, though, there were a couple of guests who are New Year’s Eve regulars I know to have been well - supplied throughout the week. Where they made their purchases (or from whom), however, I have no idea.  One guest’s report was that she heard some employees were fired, but could not supply their names. However, normally the interactions would be happening on the beach - but this time, she went to her usual guy that hooks her up, and he told her that he would send his friend to her, which he did - but she had to meet him somewhere very discreet.

Here’s the dinner menu from New Year’s Eve:




The lobster tails were a little disappointing this year. They ranged from undercooked -- my friend said they seemed boiled then quickly thrown on the grill for only a minute or so -- to very chewy, with the texture of a mealy apple. Also, the melted butter was a little too thick -- seemed to almost look like mustard. I tried a few of them in the hope that I'd finally find a winner among the bunch, but no such luck. I didn't try much else from the menu, so I can't really comment on the other items.

Finally, here's the countdown to midnight at New Year's Eve. Two things to note from the video:

1. Premature Ejaculation: They released the balloons DURING the countdown, instead of releasing them after the countdown as they were *supposed* to do

2. Special Guest Star:  Near the end of the clip, A Very Special Guest offers you a wish for a good 2011.