Recalling those 'Animal House' road trips

Published: Wednesday, April 17, 2013 at 04:48 PM.

But any port in a storm, so there were other party options closer than the beach. Right down the road in Raleigh, Jim Thornton’s Dancehall was known for having great entertainment.

The little town of Faison attracted students from all over to its weekly shindigs held in a pickle factory. "Hattie and the Blue Notes" were my favorite headliners. It cost a dollar for the night, and the admission on my hand saying "DILL" took a few days to disappear. They used very good ink.

Durham had a very cool place under a street. In homage to Duke’s law school, it was called the "Null & Void." It was always packed. I think their motto was, "if it’s wide enough for 100 people, it’s deep enough for 200."

I pledged a real "Animal House." My fraternity was the only one I could afford but turned out to be an absolute blast.

Our house was old and rickety. When we had parties, the floors would often sag. I became pretty expert at moving car jacks around for instant repairs while band and dancers thumped above my head.

In later years, I realized the thing could’ve collapsed on me in a heartbeat, but at the time it didn’t enter my mind. Again ahead of my time, I was one of the original "Expendables."

Every now and then right out of the blue, the term "road trip" might find its way into our conversations and we’d take off, sometimes to Atlantic Beach. Going through Havelock, I’d hide in the "crash position" until we cleared the town as to avoid being found out by my parents.

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