I learned early in life that future scenarios I dreamed up for myself rarely lived up to my self induced hype. So as soon as I had done enough in my life to have created a backlog of memories, I began to look back at what I had experienced instead of trying to worry an unfathomable future into existence.
My trolling past escapades and misdeeds has only become more important now that I am an old fart. And though I have been tempted to use rose colored glasses to interpret my ealier years, I have also tried to remember the oops parts of my life as objectively as possible. Remember fondly but don't gloss it over to hide the many instants of stupidity that were the root causes of said memories.
I garner more enjoyment from recalling those moments when I was performing less than even I expected. Some make me laugh. Some make me shake my head. And some of my less than stellar moments on the planet make me cringe when I pull them up for perusal. Arguably though, many of my favorite blasts from my past are those moments when I was caught being stupid. Funny now. And often, even funnier then.
I was living off campus in a small brand new rented townhouse with Bean and BeBop in the fall of 1971. The semester was winding down and Christmas was just around the corner. My mom decided she was going to leave Maine and take a road trip to the Washington, DC area to visit my brother D and friends from her past. After a few days down there socializing, she would swing by Towson to pick me up to go home for Christmas.
In the meantime and actually backing up some, I had met George a few months earlier. George was the perfect connection for me and my crew of pot head friends. We no longer had to suffer paying retail prices or suffer the all too frequent dry spells when smoking seeds and stems was all there was. We could score by the pound and become a mini-cog in the bigger cogs of George's burgeoning pot dealing enterprise.
The usual plan was to buy a pound of pot, break it down into enough ounces to recoup our investment and then split what was left. But since my roomates and I did not want to go home for Christmas without a decent stash to see us through until the second semester started in a few weeks, we decided to just split up the pound and take out what we considered enough for ourselves and then stash the rest in the freezer for when we came back from Christmas break.
It was late morning on the day before my mom was to pick me up to go home to Maine. I scooted down to East Baltimore, hooked up with George and then scooted back to the townhouse. As was our habit, after I dumped the brick of pot on the kitchen table, the three of us tore into it to clean out the more obnoxious roughage and waste. This time George was absolutely right. We had only a small pile of sticks,stems and loose seeds left when we were done. This was a definite step up from the usual commercial pot he sold.
I had just brought out the triple beam scale to weigh up ounces when the door knocker loudly announced someone's wish to get our attention. I can remember the instant gut wrenching panic I felt. I looked at the pound of pot spread out on the table, then looked at each one of my roomates. I could tell they were not happy either. BeBop hightailed it upstairs and Bean just looked at me with an odd look on his face. We began pointing at each other and silently mouthing at each other, "You get the door". Neither one of us was very eager to see who was there. What seemed an eternity passed and then came another knock.
Now, this new cheaply built townhouse we had rented was all hat and no cattle. It had the facade of class but the soul of a double wide on the outskirts of town. One of the pretensions was a mail slot on the door set up higher than usual like it's height indicated only classy people lived here. It was a convenient addition in that it allowed us to flip it open to see who was wisihng to come in. Since I was closest to the door and had resigned myself to being hauled off in handcuffs, I went to the door and flipped up the mail slot cover.
My mom was not a tall woman, maybe a couple of inches over five feet. So when I flipped open that mail slot lid, the annoyed face of Mom was glaring right at me. I dropped the slot cover back down and looked at Bean. A new kind of panic set in. Through the still closed door came a muffled mom voice, "Goddammit Mike, are you going to open the door?"
Bean smiled. It was instantly funny to him. I was not so sure myself but went ahead and opened the door.
The previous year was my freshman year. Mom delivered me and a crammed footlocker to West Hall, a dorm on the Towson State campus. The was a mix up somewhere and the guy checking people in showed no Michael Macrum was supposed to be rooming in his dorm. I was not on his list. I went back to the car and told Mom. Two hours later, I was in my new digs in West Hall after several bureaucratic asses had been knawed raw by Jane Macrum. She raised so much Hell, someone gave her a nickname. She became know as Mrs.Cannon, a reference to a TV show highlighting the crime stopping antics of a bad ass private detective.
When I opened the door, I prepared myself for the full on assault of Mrs. Cannon. I was not disappointed. Bean's smile quickly turned to one of fear as Mom came in swinging a serious attitude.
She started out berating me for not opening the door on command and then she noticed the pot on the table. That stopped her cold. Silently she looked at the pot, then looked at me and turned her evil eyes on Bean. It is funny watching a six foot four man crumble into something sad and pitiful.
"So now you are selling drugs, huh?"
I could not look her in the eye. I knew there was nothing I could say. The evidence was right there.
"Ah, .... Well yeah Mom. I guess I am. But, .... but only to friends." That last part died hard as she aimed a withering stare at me. An uneasy silence descended. For several moments Bean and I stared at the floor and Mom tried to burn us out of our shoes with her eyes.
In an attempt to break the serious mood, I spoke up. "You are a day early Mom. You weren't supposed to be here until tomorrow. I haven't even packed."
Mom looked at the pot on the table and said, "Not packed? Well that's obivious." She turned back to me and said, "I am going to a motel, I'll call with the number after I check in. Be ready to go tomorrow at 7:00 AM. And leave that crap here. I don't want it in my house."
And that was the end of it. At least it was the end of it until the next morning and the silence of the first two hundred miles had worn off. I was then treated to seven hours of every lecture and disappointment in me she could come up with. Getting arrested might have been easier to take.
Keep it 'tween the ditches ............................................