Tuesday, May 5, 2020

The Wilderness Years - Max and Ruby pt. 3

After 13 years of this non-sense the lounge has a history and a life all of it's own. It's a document to a young hood who became a semi-responsible adult (a very debatable statement to this day) who ran the gamut of abusing powders and pills, abusing his liver, irresponsible sexual escapades, a disaster of a relationship, to one day wake up to be to find himself the father of two boyos who have completely changed the way he sees the universe. Needless to say some things don't ever change and while the hero of our story or protagonist or anti-hero or whatever you want to call him, has kicked the dangerous habits to the curb, no more cigarettes, the blow and the pills gone, the drinking non-existent, there is still the ever present beauty of the the organic chemistry of the botanic world. Or a fancy way to say i still love my ganja and mushrooms.

Now drifting back to the days of Max and Ruby i was thinking about Mary Jane. The stripper not the drug, a woman i wrote a post about a decade ago, (2/17/10 if anyone cares to read it). Oddly enough i found dates in that story that pertained to this story because as we all now it's all just one big ever present now, now innit? And so it was that even my creaking old brain got the dates close to exact. The Max and Ruby years were the end of the century/millennium, it too would also not be a very long stint, a little over a year ending late summer 1999, but it would be a productive one mainly meaning that once we got High Strung to calm the fuck down things settled into a nice groove. I usually picked up every week or so and Max did a fine job of holding onto the gear for me knowing that i was the biggest mover he had. Even if he couldn't fill my full order he'd save half a pound for me and explain the shelves would be stocked in the next few days. All in all it was easy.

The aforementioned post was a bit called Morphine and Mary Jane and without rehashing the whole story involved my naive adoration of said stripper over her choice of stripping music (You Look Like Rain by Morphine), seeing the band Morphine shortly before front man, bassist, and genius Mark Sandman died, and copious amounts of mushrooms. If that sounds like a good evening it was, but where did all the mushrooms come from you ask? Well that would be my new best friend at the time Max. Though the Grateful Dead may have been gone in their original form it didn't stop the wealthy white college kids from playing hippie and thus keeping the network of psychedelics flowing through our fair land. If you knew where to look the acid and mushrooms were there for the taking one just had to be plugged in to the right outlet. Max and his posh Uni buddies hailed from an east coast bastion of Deadheadery, so imagine my surprise when one day while i was picking up some weed Max turned and asked, would you be interested in these? He opened a small duffel bag with a few freezer bags of mushrooms, i'm sure he could tell by the grin spreading across my face that the answer was yes and so with a bit of calculation i shorted my normal order just a bit in order to pick up a quarter pound of mushrooms to go with the ganja. The quick math told me that i could move three ounces and keep one for myself and it would be a wash and really? who wouldn't love 28 grams of psychedelic goodness free and clear? roughly speaking of course.

It took exactly two days for me to sell all those boomers and head back over to grab more while also picking up more weed. I got the last quarter pound of mushrooms and once again moved almost all of it in a few days. My head stash was now closer to two ounces of tripping goodness and for the next month or two they became a regular part of not only my diet but also my re-up runs. To say i had more than i knew what to do with would be wrong because i definitely knew what to do with them. I'd be off my tits on a Tuesday afternoon, sitting on the stoop of the 759 while giggling at no one in particular. To sum up these days in a word, the only word that comes to mind is beautiful.

Of course i was well aware of the tenuous situation my current pipeline was in. The fact is that any stray dick and my connection could all go pear-shaped, be it Max's or Ruby happening to find another. They moved from above the pizza shop across town to a bigger place in a quieter neighborhood, albeit a place that necessitated me driving much further and through a certain hood and into a part of town i rarely if ever went. The East End was me barrio and i very rarely ever felt the need to leave it. It had everything i needed so while i was quite pleased with the quality of gear and surprises that sometimes popped up the new commute was a bit concerning. Then again as i rolled around in my $400 Chevy Geo the only attention i'd attract from the cops was if my taillight was out. It never was and i drove like a granny after my pick-up, now forgoing the usual toke that took place between business associates due to my longer drive back. Max seemed to appreciate my caution and now went out of his way to make sure i had what i needed.

It was a fine late spring day when i knocked and went in to pick up. Max and Ruby were in the winding down from a heated debate about a certain band. Lucy being the indie rock girl was championing their excellence while Max, more the Deadhead, just shrugged and said he didn't get what the big deal was about. Suddenly i was thrust in the middle and like the diplomat i am stated that while i enjoyed the band's music i didn't feel they were the second coming as some of the kids seemed to think. It leaned towards Max's point while still giving a nod to Ruby, besides i actually liked the band, but the fact is Max is the one i needed to keep in good graces with. What was not lost on me was the writing, very faintly on the wall, that this relationship was running it's course. Playing house had begun to wear on Max and a week or two later i stopped by to re-up he told me what i already knew. Seemed things weren't going real well between the two and that with the lease being up in about six weeks he was going to head back east. He hadn't told Ruby yet but he wanted to give me a head's up because he knew i'd need to find another connection. He was going to go back to school (you guessed it kids, law school) but High Strung knew i was a top notch professional and was willing to work with me if i wanted to drive across the state to pick shit up. I didn't. The feelers would go back out and in the worst case scenario, if i had to, i'd drive across Pennsyltucky but i knew that the risk factor went up tenfold with that kind of shit.

It was a few weeks later when Max told me the deal was done. Ruby and him had split up and were just playing out the string. She had already moved most of her stuff out and he'd be leaving at the end of the month if not sooner. There would be one more batch coming in and though he was trying to spread it around he wanted to give me first dibs. I placed an order for 2.5-3 pounds. At that point it was the most i'd ever laid out for at one time but i wanted to stock up while i looked for something else. That would buy me a couple weeks or longer if i spread it out. What's that saying about hard work makes your own luck or some such shit?

1 comment:

looby said...

Shit, you're never stable are you? But you can't blame them for a relationship breakup. Still, that was a nice amount to tidy yourself over with :)