on being toked and stoked

Es­ti­mated reading time is 3 min­utes.

EARLIER THIS YEAR, I re­sponded to a posting on my Face­book page—it was an in­quiry con­cerning my re­puted stoked­ness now that I am legally a se­nior citizen—and in a some­what de­ri­sive tone passed the whole thing off: “I was stoked once, but I forget when.” Alas, that is an in­cor­rect statement.

Oh Hell’s Belles, it’s a damn lie—although not quite in the league of a (shudder) statistic.

The truth, then: it was a Sunday in 1975, in West­port, Con­necticut. It had snowed heavily the night be­fore and I had to get away from my mar­ried room­mates, who were fighting*. Again. So I sought refuge in the only place that was open: the movie theater.

That’s right: there was so much fresh snow on the ground that not even the bars were open on Sunday, the day that bars are most sorely needed!

The the­ater was showing Monty Python And The Holy Grail . . . and I hated Monty Python!!! Damn dumb limeys! Not funny—stupid stupid stupid. (Wink wink, nudge nudge.) But what choice was there?

So, to lessen the stag­gering boredom of the next few hours—and I would prob­ably be spending most of the day there watching the same loath­some film over and over again—I rolled a joint (a nice Aca­pulco Gold, some of the best Cannabis sativa that Mexico had to offer) and sat in the parking lot and smoked it. There were no people in the three other cars in the lot, so I toked away with impunity.

Fi­nally, in I went and was I ever sur­prised! I could feel in­cip­ient stoking during the bloody credits, was taken aback by the clip-clopping co­conuts and the peasant lec­turing the king on class (“we’re an anarcho-syndicated commune”).

Of course, I passed into full­bore stoked­ness during the black knight scene. (“It’s only a flesh wound!”)


I stayed stoked throughout the movie and was still stoked the next day as I walked around saying “Ni!” to all and sundry. But on Tuesday, I had a stoked hang­over, which wasn’t fun I can tell you. I tried the old hair-of-the-dog (playing my roomies’ Monty Python al­bums), but it didn’t work.

I just had to let the stoke wear off.

Now I admit that it was great while it lasted but the hang­over made it all but im­pos­sible to func­tion nor­mally (I had to miss a day at work), so I vowed never to get toked and stoked again.

And I have re­mained faithful to that vow and re­main stoke­less in Seattle . . .


In hind­sight and from a fa­ther’s perspective—something I did not have at the time—I should have res­cued their daughter (the inim­itable Ker­ry­berry) and taken her to the movies with me but then this story would be dif­ferent be­cause there would not have been any toking be­fore the stoking be­cause I would never have lit up in front of a child and without the toking maybe the stoking wouldn’t have hap­pened at all but the berry and I would have prob­ably en­joyed the movie anyway es­pe­cially when she saw the cow being flung over the parapet and we would have ended up get­ting ice cream some­where af­ter­wards even if there was a foot of the damn stuff on the ground and I should end this here so that the berry  can read some­thing about her­self be­fore the day is done . . .



The beau­tiful Ker­ry­berry and her squeeze Tim! (Kerry, you are now a foot­note on your adopted uncle and old babysit­ter’s blog!)




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