By Lauren Featherston

 

Living in Ireland you have more than likely heard of Copperface Jacks at least once. It is notorious for a lot of reasons; the gold cards, the clientele and the fact that most of the people who go there are “on the pull”.

Rewind to a couple of months ago when I finally walked through those doors for the first, and preferably the last time. It was the week of my birthday and I wasn’t too pushed on going out, very unlike me I might add. Debating all week long about what I should do my best friend and I decided we would head out that Thursday.

My best friend, Aoife, was working until 11 so the plan was that we would head out together; cue me pre-drinking while I waited for her to finish. It is safe to say I was fairly drunk upon arriving at Coppers.

After smooth talking our way past the bouncers we headed to the bar and bought ourselves two G&T’s. We were in the bar for approximately a minute and a half before the lads came out of the woodwork. Lurking through the crowd like a lion eyeing his prey we were approached by the man that would cause us such hassle by the end of this night. We will call him Mallow (he was from Mallow, I think?) partially to hide his identity and partially – mostly – because I can’t remember his name.

 

In Mallow’s defence he was actually a nice enough man. He chatted away to us both and continued to buy us drinks all night, which we repeatedly told him not to do. To cut a long story short, myself and Mallow may have kissed once or twice, but we are not going to dwell on this. Instead we will talk about how Aoife drank herself into oblivion, and while I was also drunk I was still the most sober, meaning I was left looking after her.

It had gotten to the point where Mallow was buying us drink, and as soon as he turned around I would put in on a table, knowing I had reached my limit – one more drink and I would have had alcohol poisoning. On the other hand Aoife took it upon herself to drink twice her body weight in alcohol.

Seeing how drunk she was I decided it was time to go. I bid farewell to Mallow and off we went to McDonald’s, at least I thought I bid farewell. Walking up to the road I had realised Mallow had left with us, which was random enough as it is, but I was too busy taking care of Aoife to think about that fact.

Fast forward to Mcdonald’s, I had ordered Aoife her usual – Chicken nuggets, a McCruncher, twisty fries, BBQ dip and a chocolate milkshake- as she waited half asleep on a table nearby. I sat down beside her, and while she ate Mallow began to waffle away. Trying not to be rude I was nodding to his story, occasionally turning around to check on Aoife, only to see she was gone. But don’t worry, she hadn’t gone far, only up to the counter to demand more chicken nuggets.

It was at this point that I decided it was time for a taxi home. I pulled one over and put Aoife in it and went to hop in myself. I turned to say goodbye for the second time and saw Mallow climb into the taxi after me. “We are heading in different directions it probably makes more sense for you to get your own taxi.” Polite but to the point – nicely executed Lauren, or so I thought. He determined that it would make sense for us to share a taxi regardless.

I was tired, and with Aoife literally asleep in the taxi I didn’t have the energy to argue. Off we went to my house first, of course, with him telling me how he is “part of the IRA” the entire time, in an attempt to swoon me. Great idea!

Finally, the taxi pulled up outside my house. I wasn’t sure how much more of that conversation I could take. I hopped out and helped Aoife to the front door, unlocked it and off she trotted up the stairs to bed, blissfully unaware of what I was dealing with and would have to deal with for the next half hour.

I should note that I live with my parents, who were asleep upstairs the entire time. Mallow had jumped out of the taxi himself and walked up to my front door. He told me the taxi driver wouldn’t take him to Terenure, lies. I ran to stop the taxi before he drove off, asking him to take this persistent pest back to his home. No use, he then told me he would get one on the main road after he used my bathroom cause he really needed to go.

I let him use it and waited at the front door, it was when he came downstairs that the usual drama started, asking to stay on the sofa. My answer was repeatedly no, however, like I said he was a persistent pest. Eventually I just told him bluntly, that he wasn’t staying and that I was going to bed. I locked the door, put the alarm on.

Just as I was drifting off I heard a knock on the door. Startled and worried it would wake my parents I ran downstairs. It was Mallow. “I have no money for a taxi, can I just stay here?.” The answer was still no and in an attempt to rid myself of this leech I ran upstairs to check my purse for money. I found €1.60, shocking stuff. No other options left I checked Aoife’s purse. A fiver! €6.60 between the two of us… shameful.

Anyway, I offered him the money and told him which way he could get a taxi. He refused : “no it’s fine I’ll walk home.” Yep, that’s right walk home to Terenure. I just accepted this and for the second time that night left him standing on my porch as I locked the door and went to bed.

 

I was trying to sleep again, exhausted from the events of the night, when my father made his way to my room “Lauren you wanna sort out yer man he’s after knocking into Brian’s house”.

Fecking Mallow. This character was after walking ten feet from my house and knocking into my neighbour’s house at 4am, for reasons unbeknownst to me, was greeted by my neighbour shouting obscenities at him – rightly so. I refused to deal with him which left only one more option.

My dad resolved the whole situation with one phrase shouted from his bedroom window “Pal, the main road is that way, you’ll get a taxi there.”

And that was the last we have seen of Mallow. All this drama I dealt with while Aoife snored away – who, by the way, as it turned out had left her phone in McDonalds in her hunt for more chicken nuggets. Meaning we had to trek in the next day to collect it.

After that night I swore to myself I would never go to Coppers again, and that I would definitely never go to Mallow.

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