Library, Memoir

She finds weed everywhere

Young lady smoking weed

It hasn’t killed my focus…

I sit here in my office typing or sorting or outlining, and the cats jump up and down from my lap, and I rarely think about it. My wife, however, can hardly walk into the kitchen – a hallway away – without stopping and squealing that she cannot and will not stand the smell of that litter box in the office. Mind you, these are her cats, not mine. And she chose where to put the little box, ‘so as not to offend anyone…’ My suggestion is to open the back door and let them live on birds and lizards or feed the hawks, but they are too dear to my wife, and she’s having none of it.

My ’round about point is that I appear to be one of the lucky ones who requires a gross of cow pies to be forklifted into my office before I look up from the screen. My wife is moved by mere molecules of the stuff, which is, of course, what an odor is. My daughter is the same way.


I smell weed

This preamble all leads to weed, the stench of which my daughter smells on every street corner.

We saw the Braves in Atlanta a couple weeks ago, and walking around almost every corner, my daughter said, “I smell weed,” nose and face scrunched.

“You’re thirteen. What do you know?’

Oh, I know,” she says. “ I go to school, and I know plenty about weed…”

Hmm.

But Dad does know about weed. I know all the cool stuff. I know what a four-fingered bag is, and how to load a bong, and can even, well, I used to be able to, roll a joint with one hand. I know I’m smart about all this because my friend says I am though we did wonder recently about what a blunt is? 

Like any smart dad, I asked my daughter.

“My gosh, Dad. Really? What year were you born? What’s a blunt? LOL.”

She never did tell me but just shook her head at how ancient and unknowing I am.

All this weed leads me to more about weed. It’s a gateway drug, after all, and a little leads to a lot.

When I was a strapping young man in high school, weed was something we used for entertainment. We would buy a four-fingered baggy of the good stuff and let everyone know we were smoking it Friday night after the basketball game. It was an event. Any guy could come, but the code was that they had to bring something – a six-pack or half a pint of something brown. Girls got in for free. It was the dawn of feminism and we were forward thinking.

So we got together and passed the mighty bong, and after three or four hits, you felt like you drank three beers.

I hear things have changed.

When we left Atlanta, we stood outside with a young guy waiting for the valet to bring our cars. We kept looking for our Mitsubishi SUV while this guy never looked up from his phone while waiting for his Mercedes convertible. My daughter looks at us and says, you know it already; “I smell weed.”

I laugh but look around anyway because, well, I smell weed. It’s strong, and it’s close. And I see this guy I’ve been talking to, a twenty-something, good lookin’, nicely dressed, Mercedes drivin’ guy, bent over a pipe and hitting it hard. It’s eight o’clock on Sunday morning. What in the world?

Old man talk: how it used to be

We finally clamor into our Mitsubishi and wave goodbye to new friends in their BMWs, Mercedes, and Ferraris, and my wife says she just doesn’t get the weed thing. Mind you, she’s never got any weed thing, and no lit substance save for ash from the BBQ has ever touched her lips.

“Huh?” I respond with sagacity.

“I mean, really,” she says, “It’s Sunday morning. What in the world is so bad on Sunday morning that this guy needs a hit to make through to noon?”

I agree. Weed is meant for a party. An excuse to turn Led Zeppelin up really loud and laugh ’til it hurts. We had secret stashes of the stuff, built by stealing ten bucks off mom’s bedside table and from unwrapping joint leftovers for safekeeping. But I don’t think that’s the case now. I know several kids – working people younger than me – who start each day with a hit or three. One guy I know is a stay-at-home dad and starts his day with a cuppa coffee, news on his iPad, and a stiff draw on his pipe. It’s legal where he lives, and he feels better about it than living on aspirin all day for an aching back. I get it. I’ve known plenty of people whose back aches all day, and they struggle through it or go to the cracker once every couple of weeks for an adjustment. Maybe this is a blessing of legalization?

I ran this by my oldest boy who remembers partying with weed but said he doesn’t know a soul who parties like that anymore. The only people he knows who use it, do so medicinally.

Weird. Being blessed with a strong back, I’ve never felt any need to self-medicate for these things. I liked it better when we turned Zeppelin up to eleven.

All that being said, though, it’s interesting that I only know people who use weed medicinally. That’s exactly what we always said: make it legal and take away its mystique and make it available to anyone, and it won’t be cool anymore. It’s just the stuff the grandpa smokes to ease his back pain after he mows the lawn, and what kid wants to emulate grandpa?

And maybe I’m not that smart about weed and haven’t a clue what I’m talking about. That’s okay. I don’t have much interest in it, but I’m a big fan of laughing…


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