Overweening Generalist

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

420: A Few Anecdotes About My Favorite Artists and Cannabis

I'll try to make this short, 'cuz I've been taking up too much of your time lately and I don't want ya to feel I ripped you off. Besides, I reward myself for doing a blog post by getting a tad baked. But then again I reward myself with weed after peeing, too...

George Carlin
"Carlin had been smoking 'shit' habitually since he was thirteen years old. 'I'd wake up in the morning and if I couldn't decide whether I wanted to smoke a joint or not, I'd smoke a joint to figure it out,' he once admitted. 'And I stayed high all day long. When people asked me, 'Do you get high to go onstage?' I could never understand the question. I mean, I'd been high since eight that morning. Going onstage had nothing to do with it'"
7 Dirty Words: The Life and Crimes of George Carlin, James Sullivan, p.107

David Bowie
"According to an interview David Bowie gave to Playboy in the mid-seventies, he only got stoned on pot once, when he was turned on by Ronnie Wood and he spent hours staring at the sidewalk having visions. A couple of years later, Bowie was busted, along with Iggy Pop, in Rochester, New York, for possessing several ounces of marijuana...blame it on Iggy."
Everybody Must Get Stoned: Rock Stars On Drugs, R.U. Sirius, p.91

Steve Almond
"I was pushing forty and had smoked the equivalent of a large marijuana tree the previous decade."
Not That You Asked, Almond, p.252

                                      Allen Ginsberg, 1963, 64, or 65. Photo by Benedict 
                                       J. Fernandez

Ezra Pound and Allen Ginsberg
Ginsberg visited Pound in Rapallo, Italy, in the late 1960s. Pound had been profoundly depressed, realizing he'd been an idiot with his antisemitism, and that he'd hurt everyone he loved. Ginsberg told Pound, basically, So you fucked up...you influenced everyone with your aesthetic ideas. At one point Ginsberg talked to Pound about "modern use of drugs as distinct from Twenties opium romanticism." Pound replied, "You know a great deal about the subject."
What Thou Lovest Well Remains: 100 Years of Ezra Pound, ed. Richard Ardinger, p.37

Robert Anton Wilson
"The 'funniest' experiences I've ever had with drugs all involved pot, and none of them seem comic when I try to write them down. Apparently words, which cannot convey 'mystical' experiences, also fail to communicate hilarious drug experiences.

"For instance, a friend and I took a little too much hash one night and both got lost in stoned space. We knew who we were and where we were, but we couldn't remember the last 30 seconds. We spent what seemed like an hour saying things like:

"Jesus, I can't remember what we were talking about."
"What did you just say?"
(Interlude of spasmodic laughter by both of us.)
"I think I'm having a...what? What did you say?"
"I can't remember...What were we trying to remember?"
(More spasms of laughter)
"We're trying to...What are we trying to do?"
As the effect modified with time, we understood what was happening, and one of us described it as "a visit to the islands of micro-amnesia."
Pot Stories For The Soul, edited by Paul Krassner, p.68

Aleister Crowley
"The action of Hashish is as varied as life itself, and seems to be determined almost entirely by the will or the mood of the 'assassin' and that within the hedges of his mental and moral form."
-originally in The Equinox, 1909, found in Orgies of the Hemp Eaters, Hakim Bey and Abel Zug, editors, p.444

William S. Burroughs
"Hashish affects the sense of time so that events, instead of appearing in an orderly structure of past, present and future, take on a simultaneous quality, the past and future contained in the present the moment."
-found in Writing on Drugs, by Sadie Plant, p.152

"Mezz" Mezzrow
"It's a funny thing about marihuana - when you first begin smoking it you see things in a wonderful soothing, easygoing new light. All of a sudden the world is stripped bare of its dirty gray shrouds and becomes one big bellyful of giggles, a spherical laugh, bathed in brilliant, sparkling colours that hit you like a heatwave. Nothing leaves you cold any more; there's a humorous tickle and great meaning in the least little thing, the twitch of somebody's little finger or the click of a beer glass. All your pores open like funnels, your nerve ends stretch their mouths wide, hungry and thirsty for new sights and sounds and sensations; and every sensation, when it comes, is the most exciting one you've ever had. You can't get enough of anything - you want to gobble up the whole goddamned universe just for an appetizer. Them first kicks are a killer, Jim."
-from Really The Blues, 1946, found in Artificial Paradises, ed. by Mike Jay, p.152

Bonus Tracks
1 Minute excerpt from Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story

Dr. Stephen T. Colbert, DFA, "Cheating Death": sun overexposure and pot

"Weed Snobs"

Nancy Grace saying the most idiotic Reefer Madness-level crap about pot

weed porn

                  from Sean Tejaratchi's LiarTown USA site, which always makes me laff 
                  until I have a side-ache


Eric Wagner said...

Another terrific post. I wonder about the next four years. I wonder what legal status pot will have on 4/20/2020.

chas said...

According to David Bowie: An Illustrated Record (Rpy Carr & Charles Shaar Murray) Bowie once said that he wrote all the songs on The Man Who Sold The World over an 8 day hash binge.Does that count?

michael said...

@Eric: According to every poll I've seen CA has the votes to make it legal for recreational use this November. In Sonoma County, there's lots of talk about what the economics will look like: will Philip Morris try to get in? Will the Willie Nelson and Snoop Dogg and I dunno...Bill Maher strains be like Bud/Miller/Coors? Will the towns in the Emerald Triangle in the northernmost part of the state be wiped out economically?

I'm glad people won't be going to prison for trying to grow enough to sell to make their mortgage payment.

@chas: As I relayed that anecdote from RU's book about Bowie, I wondered: did he ever LEARN to be stoned? Because I do think we must learn how to handle it, and many researchers think so too. According to your data, he did. It makes sense too. Thanks!