EXPERIENCE TRUE PSYCHEDELIC TRIPS!
Mind-Blower #21 – late 1970
“PRETTY COOL POT RETURNS!”
So, 00individual is in the after-throes of Mind-Blower #1 at the most free-wheeling period of his Sex, Drugs and Rock ‘n’ Roll days.
At 19, 00individual stashed some cash, quit his art department job, was living out of his suitcase, and going hot and heavy with one of the two Stone sisters (no, really, 00individual does not kid about things like this) and was enjoying a night with friends at her second story apartment a couple miles from the beach.
We all decided to smoke a joint laced with PCP, the good stuff, one of the early fun strains, (before it was popularly known as “Angel Dust” and then the inferior quality “Rocket Fuel”) that 00individual had acquired from the good Doctor Dean before he left for Hawaii.
This Pretty Cool Pot could get you crazy lit with one good hit – it was seriously wicked fun – so passed around between TFS, Rick, Krik, the Stone sisters and 00individual with two maybe three hits a piece, we were all in a Wonderland. A place of bizarre sight, echoey sound, malleable tactile surfaces, cartoonish distortions, epiphanies, and much laughter, fun and some trippy ethereal hallucinations – real Lewis Carroll down-the-rabbit-hole Alice stuff, like; “I can’t go back to yesterday because I was a different person then.” .
From out of the blue, and I mean for a moment or so everything was blue, came the needle touchdown sound onto vinyl with the anticipatory pause before the sounds of Quicksilver’s “Fresh Air” began.
This Album Track Gem was a very popular FM-aired track back then and was a little over five minutes long – but on PCP the time stretched out to what seemed like, forever.
A non-laced joint was rolled and passed around as Fresh Air played.
Unfortunately, the Stone sisters’ mother lived in the apartment directly below and due to apartment etiquette she became embarrassed and upset over the music, merriment and “Fresh Air” emanating from her daughter’s apartment and began knocking on the front door.
One of the sisters peeked out the window and said the “mom” word and just like a bunch of kids in a Monty Python skit everyone ran to the kitchenette and hid, or so they thought – the kitchenette cupboard/bar barely blocked their heads but their waist to neck bodies could be seen in plain sight. 00individual appreciated the ridiculous humor in that.
Then as karma would have it, 00individual opened the door – and for the next few minutes there was an angry woman’s face floating in front of 00individual’s face speaking a language that was not understandable and her face would change like a funhouse mirror distortion.
00individual knew that she never really approved of him seeing her daughter, can’t blame her, he was the epitome of a Druggie Hippie Adventurer, but a responsible druggie, engaged in an average psychedelic culture/generation clash – a therapeutic rant to be karmically-endured until she finished, left and shut the door.
00individual does not remember responding using words spoken aloud in regard to whatever she said – this must be what dogs experience when being reprimanded; they know that the person is angry with them, and for something they did, they’re just too interested in that strange smell at the back fence to connect to whatever, wait, why are you angry with me again? That.
Everyone slowly emerged from their kitchen “hiding place” and started quietly laughing. We weren’t so stoned that we didn’t know what just took place, it was the context of being so stoned that just flipped the whole scene into another flat-out psychedelic real life movie weird experience of the type that tended to happen when one was psychedelically-stoned.
People, let it be told, 00individual admits to shining the light on the good and bizarre times, as they were the most fun and memorable; but that doesn’t mean that there wasn’t a responsible “job” that came along with taking any mind-altering psychedelic drugs, natural or otherwise.
Our group could really handle their drugs, and the job was to hold on to your over-mind’s reality tether, but at the same time allowing oneself to explore the moment to the fullest.
Drugs, especially psychedelics, were not for those who became easily paranoid. Paranoia was justifiable in a cautionary mode – not as a life-style.
00inidivdual will also admit that there were plenty of times where he felt pushed to the limits of known sanity within terrifying incidents and even feeling at death’s door – but even in those most crucial states, 00individual had his own Psychedelic Jiminy Cricket that would yell in his ear, “Maintain, its only the drug.”
It was getting dark and we all sat down and lit up a bowl of Marijuana – but out of everything that had just happened, the really strange thing was that Fresh Air was still playing!
However, . . . some turntables had a tractable arm that stabilized stacked LPs on the spindle/record changer; if the stabilizer arm was left in the outside-the-disc-area position, then the needle/stylus arm would automatically restart, but not at the beginning, but about mid-way into the LP.
This would account for the seemingly endless Fresh Air ambiance of the Hippie Funhouse of Pretty Cool Pot.
This Album Track Gem, “Fresh Air“, had the obvious double meaning of nature’s revitalizing lungful hit of air and of course the benefits of a lungful hit of Marijuana which obviously resonated within the Culture.
It had a uniquely invigorating laid-back quality that really caught fire with all members jammin’ to near jazz fusion levels and Valenti’s “distinct” vocals were perfect for this song, which led many sing-along choruses.
Quicksilver’s Just For Love album was well received, and their December follow-up hit and Album Track Gem: “What About Me” from the album of the same name, brought a “Fresh Air” feeling into the dramatic common-sense socio-political subjects of the day with the same stoned-but-controlled delivery of “Fresh Air’.
And then there was timing, 1970 was pivotal to 00individual and the Culture, Society and the World at Large, as the screws were tightening all around as evil upped its game.
The Spirit of the song’s lyrics were zeitgeist-relevant in 1970, but the whole feel of the song can be very relevant to many individuals and groups over the past four decades.
Unfortunately,the atmosphere is far more oppressive and dangerous today than back when we thought we had it bad. Evil was still on a learning curve – today it is a perfected science.
So, know that the sentiment behind “What’ya gonna do ’bout me?” is not a plaintive cry for help; but a rebellious cry in defiance.
. . . and if you enjoyed this post, catch the same gang on another night –
with a monster among us:
“Psychedelic Jiminy Cricket with Reefer Umbrella” copyright 2014 00individual TLL
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