This week on the Adult Video News award-winning (pending), JTrain Podcast, I was informed about a new college gag called The QB Sneak. It has other names: The Half Back Sneak, The Fullback Dive, Tom Brady Up The Middle. And the basic premise is that at some point in the night, you slip a Xanax into a friend’s drink. If anyone has ever drank on Xanax, you just got some chills. I know I did when I heard about this “joke.” I actually had a flashback. I took Xanax and drank on it. And oh man, what a blast! First I drank. Then I don’t remember a single thing. What a fun night! I woke up the next morning only wearing a hooded sweatshirt. No pants, no underwear, just my personal impersonation of Winnie the Pooh if he were walking out to a prize fight. But that’s not even the worst part about mixing Xanax and alcohol. The worst part is the unknown. Who did I see? What did I say? Where did I go? Did I tell everyone what I really think about them and their girlfriend and their ugly parents? So many questions unanswered. And who do you ask? Your friends were drunk too. They were too worried about themselves to care about your night. Sometimes you’ll spend a day wondering, sometimes a week. But at least I walked away knowing I did that to myself. Lesson learned. I’ll be better. I’ll come back.
And that’s why I don’t really get the “joke.” Where’s the punchline? So you slip some Xanax in your buddy’s drink. Then you tell a few people. Then he gets the same drunk he’d get any other night. Then he wakes up wondering if he told a girl the exact size of his not so big penis. Who thinks this is hilarious? Your friend doesn’t even have a fun story to tell about his night. Just darkness, the unknown, and the anxiety that he was his worst self. This isn’t a joke as much as it’s what people without personalities do to act like they have a personality. Here’s a thing people have told me is funny. I’ll do it and now it’s something I can tell people I did, so that they know I’m a funny person. Except, they didn’t have to tell a joke or a story or even just be a normal person. They just slipped a pill into a handle or a drink and now they aren’t just some faceless guy at the party. They have their story, friend be damned.
It’s the real issue with pranks in general. They start at a simple place. I’m sure this happened once and it got some sort of laugh amongst friends. Then the guy who got “sneaked” did it back to the guy who got him. Then another fraternity heard about it and they decided to up the ante and put those pills in a whole bottle of vodka. I’ve seen this dynamic before. At tailgates, people used to do something called “High Low.” Some call it “Table Topping.” A guy would crouch behind another guy and his buddy would push that guy over his crouched friend. The guy would spill his beer and land on his back. Fine enough. Boys will be boys. Then everyone was high-lowing. You literally couldn’t walk through the tailgate. Everyone would lean against cars and when they’d try to get beers they’d kick behind them like a horse to ward off crouchers. Looking back, it’s funny because it was ridiculous, but it also ruined the tailgate. We did more horse kicking than talking to each other and chicks. But High Lows went on for a while until one day someone said, “Screw finding a friend, I’m going to form tackle that guy out of nowhere.” The first form tackle got some big “Ohs.” The fifth one made girls stop showing up. The sixth one gave a guy a concussion. The seventh one made me kind of hate certain people.
Pranks are like climbing a rock face without a rope. There’s a point where you’re so high up that the only way to see the bottom is to carefully climb back down or fall down the whole thing. More often than not, we fall. I see it happening with the QB sneak. Maybe you’ll get your friend and someone will think it’s funny and it will end. But, a more likely scenario, is that you get your friend and then he tries to get you back. So he puts a couple of pills into a handle of vodka. That vodka gets out into the party. Everyone is drinking from it. Everyone blacks out. Everyone wakes up. A guy wonders how he ended up in just a sweatshirt. A girl wonders why she’s in bed with seven of her girlfriends and which one paid for the pizza. A pledge hopes he didn’t say something awful to one of the brothers. A girl wakes up next to a guy wondering who he is and what happened the night before. A guy hopes he didn’t become his worst self with that girl. A smaller girl with parents and friends and siblings and a future doesn’t wake up at all. She doesn’t even get to wonder. She doesn’t even get to be better. I’m sure everyone thinks that “joke” is hilarious..
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