Now that marijuana is ostensibly legal most everywhere, and stensibly legal in Colorado, it seems quaint to think back to the sneaking and code words and blowing one-hitter smoke into exhaust fans. Nowadays you walk down the street and get a whiff of smoke from houses, cars, daycares. I guess They’re allowing us a little salve for the pain They caused when They crashed the economy. You know Those guys? They’re the ones who really run the country, the Ones who get rich off a rigged system and ruin shit for everyone else. Those motherfuckers.
Anyway, here’s the next part of the memoir:
When I look back, I wonder at my petty and mean business acumen, my instinct to make money off people who had no thought about money. Today, I am completely lacking in guile and I sometimes feel neutered by my honesty. Life in Twelve Step programs ruins dishonesty for people whose first instinct is to lie, cheat, and steal. But, healthy honesty has saved my life and I can now move toward death in a slow peaceful descent rather than on a rollercoaster.
Do I sound a little bitter? Writing and recalling my days as a budding, opportunistic, and anything-goes pot dealer has opened a spigot of impure but tasty juice that leaves me edgy and restless. In short, I miss being an asshole. Oh, it comes out from time to time. After all, I am in a relationship (on again, off again, limbo right now). But, as I write, I miss the charge, the certainty, and most importantly, the lack of regret. I really miss the lack of regret. Too much empathy does not get it done in the 21st century USA.
So, after landing in Denver, I went with Kyle to smoke some pot in Boulder.
Of course, it was super sticky and super dank and I wanted to know where it came from. We smoked some and sat back in the upstairs living room of this massive Victorian. “My sister lives downstairs,” Kyle said. “My parents actually bought this place so we could live here. This was Mork and Mindy’s house.”
So, Nanoo Nanoo. I had heard of such things and, back East, it was very common for parents to buy cars for their kids. But a house? “What do your parents do?”
Kyle exhaled a long plume of pot smoke so I couldn’t tell if there was a sigh there. “He’s into drilling, natural gas extraction. He rapes the planet to get rich.”
“So this place here is the fruits of his planet rape?”
Kyle laughed, “Dude, I gotta use that one. Next Thanksgiving, at the dinner table.”
“Yeah, “ I said. “At grace. And thank you Jesus for this food, the fruits of our planet rape.”
We laughed about the rape of our planet.
Someone was coming up the stairs. “That’ll be Sissy,” Kyle said.
And Sissy’s friend.
At first glance, she was not much to look at. Rosy cheeks, shortish, and almost plump, (she would become very plump in middle age. I checked on Facebook). Almost milk-maidish or peasant-like. But she had a gleam in her eye, a troublemaker with something loose and wanton in the way she moved. She looked at people frankly, daring them to say something or do something for her amusement. Her name was Camille.
“Not Cammy,” she said. “Got that?”
“No problem, Not Cammy,” I said from a stoned place a hundred miles from where I sat.
“Now get us high,” she said and sat down next to me, moving me over with a swing of her hip. Did I mention wanton? That was the first word that popped into my head. Not sure I even knew what it meant.
“If I could bring this pot back East I could sell the shit out of it. We smoke dirt out there.”
“Why would you want to commodify something so beautiful,” Camille said. She pulled a massive bong hit. Nice lungs.
“Camille is taking some class about the commodification of culture,” Sissy said.
“Who are you, anyway,” Camille asked me.
“Jason. From the plane.”
“We sat together on the flight,” Kyle said. He packed another hit and handed it to Sissy.
“So, he picked you up? On the plane? You guys didn’t do it in the bathroom, did you?”
“It wasn’t like that,” I said, too quickly.
“So, a culture commidifier and a homophobe,” Camille mocked. I could feel the armor of my self-consciousness rising. I wanted to withdraw inside that armor, shut it down. Pot was never my favorite. Too much meaning.
“Fuck off,” I managed.
Camille punched my arm. “Don’t be sensitive,” she said. “You’ll learn that I’m never serious. Except when I am.”
“Oh, Shazbut,” I thought (or should have thought). I had already fallen for her.