#1 DENIM AND DOPE
I picked the classroom chair farthest from the teacher and next to the window. Semester final exams, ninth grade, piece of cake. One hour of filling out the test, then an hour sewing.
Sewing? I brought my project, a denim jacket with a marijuana leaf on the back. Three shades of green; hunter green, moss green and blue-green threads. I was halfway finished. Everyone, including the teacher were reading (teach had a paperback novel) with heads bent. No one noticed or cared.
Which was good because I had to sit casually but carefully so as not to disturb the three-finger lid tucked into my blue jeans just behind the belt.
Piece of cake.
#2 VIETNAM GIFT
In the book Miss Hippie In Mississippi, I mentioned only once a woman named Jean Goodwin who became mom's drinking buddy. Jean visited frequently and they sat and drank and talked about God knows what, then drank some more.
A divorcee, Jean began bringing her new boyfriend Jack with her. A Vietnam Vet, he was quiet and I could not 'read' him so felt a bit wary.
One evening after Jean and Jack settled in mom's room with drinks, Jack said to me, "We got you a little present" and held out a small box with a necklace in it. All excited, I showed it to Mom. She thought it very nice gesture. Jack lowered his voice, "there's more to it in the bottom," then winked.
"Thank you, its lovely" I said and disappeared back into my room, to enjoy a powerful doobie.
Too powerful it turned out, for late that night, I thought I was having a heart attack. I didn't but it was a panicky close call. It had additional ingredients besides pot.
#3 PSYCHEDELIC PEACE PIPE
She had always knocked first, always. Mom was respectful of my space ... until this day.
I had just finished packing the bowl of my new glass, multi-colored pipe, and lit it up.The door opened and there was Mom. No knock, no warning, I'm caught like a deer in the headlights.
"What's that?" she asked.
"A pipe" I answered.
"what's in it?"
"What are you doing with it?"
I opted for blunt, "I'm smoking it."
She went to bed and slept the rest of the day.
We did eventually come to some agreement, she had alcohol and I had pot. An uneasy truce.
#4 MAKES NO SENSIMILLA
Unlike backstage at the Orpheum Theater Grateful Dead show, this joint did not come with a warning.
Billy was visiting us in Carmel and brought his own smoke. I guess Dad's homegrown was too weak.
And once again, I thought I could handle it.
This marijuana is nicknamed 'senseless' for good reason. After only 2 hits, I could not have uttered a complete sentence if my life depended on it.
I had a new found respect and understanding of Dad's closet-grown variety.