The summer of 1998 was a glorious time. I was 17, playing bass in a band called Cradleskin, had no girlfriend (not by choice), and life was care free.
Cradleskin had been booked to appear at a gig at a fantastically depressing venue called The Buffalo Bistro in our home town of Queanbeyan, NSW. Queanbeyan is a quaint little town just outside of Canberra that still thinks it's the 1920's. We played our gig without incident, and to a record crowd of 10 people, but it was after the gig that things became interesting.
Being a classy establishment, everyone was blind drunk. Everything was going fine until two guys started arguing over a pack of cigarettes next to me. Guy A was accusing Guy B of stealing his smokes. Guy B was adamant that he didn't steal them. Suddenly Guy A hit Guy B in the temple. Guy B fell, hit his head on the corner of some bricks, and fell to the ground in a pool of blood.
Everyone was in shock. Guy A had done a runner. At that moment a guy walks out of the bar, looks down at Guy B, yells "HE'S DEAD!" then walked back inside to buy another beer. Someone called the police causing a panic. Most of us were under age. Being Queanbeyan, they didn't send police. They sent the riot squad. We were running through backstreets pretending to be army men trying to escape enemy territory. I never found out what happened to Guy B. But it proves that cigarettes can be hazardous to your health, but alcohol can help you have a great time.