Happy Homecoming Bearkats

Homecoming is a great time of year. The sea of orange blanketing campus, the exciting events put on by various university organizations, and of course, the big tailgating parties. Oh, there’s a football game too.

To say the least, it’s a great week to take it easy and have a great time with friends and fellow Bearkats. With that said, however, it’s also a week in which it’s easy to get a little carried away with just how much fun you have.

Those of you, who, like me, may have graced Shenanigans on Tuesday night, may have been so fortunate as to witness a veritable army of Huntsville Police officers, DPS State Troopers, and TABC agents break up what law enforcement officials generally refer to as an “altercation.”

I don’t know the details, but from what I saw it seemed like there was a rather large fight that broke out in the back of the bar, resulting in the whole place closing down early.

One incident in particular I found quite humorous. I usually sit in the front of the bar near the stage.

It’s a location that’s close enough to the bar and it also offers a great vantage point to observe the main entrance and the stream of women, err, people who walk in and out.

Tuesday though, it was also a great place to watch the night’s events unfold. At about 11:30, a friend (The Houstonians own Joe Buvid) and I witnessed three HPD officers, four state troopers, and two TABC agents run in, flashlights on and hands on their waists.

I felt like I was in a 1930s speakeasy in the middle of a prohibition raid and I was just waiting for Eliot Ness to show up.

But I digress. Soon after the modern day Untouchables rushed in, about five people were escorted out so that they could get a good night’s sleep at the Walker County jail. Most of them went quietly. Most of them.

One young lady had no intention of making it easy for Huntsville’s finest.

The first we saw of her was when she emerged from the crowd in front of the bar at a full, inebriated sprint. She was soon brought down by an HPD officer, who took about three minutes of rolling around on the floor to finally put her in handcuffs.

There’s plenty more of incredibly funny detail that I’m choosing to leave out, mostly because I’d like to keep my job as an editor here at The Houstonian.

On a side note, a big time PAWS UP to not only this officer in particular, but also all of Huntsville’s law enforcement officials for their great work.

Needless to say, she was finally led out and the dancing and drinking carried on, but not for long. Soon after this incident, the bright lights came on and last call was givenabout ten minutes early.

The end result of the night’s events was that the entire bar ended up closing early.

Ok granted, it was only ten minutes early, but I started to think about what might have happened had this occurred on Saturday night, one of the few glorious nights in Huntsville on which the bars stay open until 1 a.m.

On another side note, a major PAWS DOWN to the Huntsville City Council for delaying their vote on the proverbial “2 a.m. Law” on Tuesday night.

Can you imagine if the bar had been shut down at 11:50 on Saturday, over an hour before closing time?

This (finally) brings me to the reason I decided to write this column. I’m sure up until the altercation, the group of people involved, like the rest of us there, were having a great time.

However, as a result of their actions, not only was their night ruined but the rest of us ended up having to leave early without a relaxing final dance or drink.

In short, the actions of a few negatively impacted the many.

This is something we all ought to remember this weekend. This whole week is absolutely supposed to be a great time, and this culminating weekend has the opportunity to hold a great deal of fun and excitement.

But we can’t forget that with this opportunity comes a certain amount of responsibility. I’m not saying don’t go out and get drunk.

What I am saying is that even when inebriated, we ought to still have enough common sense and reasoning to not get too carried away.

If nothing else, remember that everyone else is looking to have a good time too. Keep in mind that if you do get carried away, it might not just be your own night that you’re ruining.

So this weekend, to those of us who are of age, drink up responsibly. To those of you that aren’t, don’t risk getting a homecoming present from HPD, DPS, or TABC. But to all Bearkats, remember that this weekend is for everyone to have fun. Let’s not ruin it.

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