Bishop Takes Night: Check!

July 4, 2017 at 11:59 am (Cosmic Encounters, Waxing Nostalgic)

Portland Waterfront Blues Festival

I am a Portlander through and through. Though I was raised in Sandy, Oregon I was born in Portland, and the minute I was allowed to ride the bus by myself I was all over the city, investigating, pretending to be a cop or a criminal or wherever my imagination (and TriMet) would take me. Much like these days, I’d rather be out walking around, soaking up atmosphere and enjoying my weird city.

Back then, there was a thing called Neighborfair. It was an end-of-summer day-long concert, and a good reason to load up on cheap wine and head for the park. When I heard there was going to be a blues festival?

I was down there waiting when the opening act took the stage.

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My Civic Doody

June 30, 2017 at 10:30 am (Cosmic Encounters, Cussed Dumbers)

Every two years, near Mizelle’s birthday, I get called for jury duty. It’s that time again.

I tried to get out of it in previous years, but they are tenacious. (“Okay, then when can you serve…?”) Jury duty fell on my days off, so might as well get it over with.

At the same time, Dizzy was leaving town, and needed a cat-sitter. Since Naomi and I get along famously, (and I get along with Dizzy okay) she asked if I would peek in on kitty, make sure she’s fed, didn’t poop in the sink, etc…

For my troubles? Use of a downtown loft…

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Out In The Country

May 31, 2017 at 11:17 am (Cosmic Encounters, On the road again..., Sweet sticky things)

After a fifty-hour work week, lots of work drama, and a phone that won’t stop ringing, I needed a respite.

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The Devil’s Music

May 9, 2017 at 6:55 pm (Cosmic Encounters, Waxing Nostalgic)

My mother was a religious nut, to cut to the chase. She’d find the devil in the damnedest places.

Most frequently in my record albums.

There were a few records that scared me. Black Sabbath, Alice Cooper and Slayer all gave me varying stages of the willies, whether because of religious paranoia or because I was psychedelically impaired to the point of nonsense. (With Slayer, it wasn’t the devil but rowdy skinheads that I feared.) As to the devil, Black Sabbath was the closest to me actually believing they’d signed a contract with the Devil hisself. A lot of coincidental occurrences (and that I’d happened to be reading Anton Szandor LaVey) inspired me to give away all my Sabbath albums. I gave them to my ex-wife. Sorry Satan, she’s your problem now.

The theme to The Exorcist was not written for the movie, it was a piece created by a 19-year-old wunderkind named Mike Oldfield. It fit the movie so well, mixed with the hype of the day, that it scared my twelve-year-old ass shitless.

I would listen to it on an antique radio in the garage, watching the bats flying around the streetlight. Over time it became a piece of music, and once I realized Satan wasn’t coming for my soul, I bought the album and have had it in various forms since.

The above piece is the only time I’ve seen it attempted live. Enjoy…

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Erectile Dysfunction

April 29, 2017 at 12:20 pm (Cosmic Encounters, Cussed Dumbers, Sweet sticky things)

Lunch Buddy

I’ve been keeping a low profile, trying to work as much as possible without burning out, and trying to stay upbeat in dark times. Talk about easier said than done.

Eva Braun has been treating me well, schedulewise. I did a full week’s residency at the Nightclub Store, much to the chagrin of the thievin’ locals who come by, peek in the window, see it’s not someone who treats the job like they’re being paid to play games on their phone for eight hours, slump their shoulders and move on. I let them in if they behave, unless they are infamous or I have had specific issues with them. I am a motherfuckin’ elephant when it’s a personal transgression. “I can hold my breath for a long time.”

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Closing My Third Eye

March 29, 2017 at 4:20 am (Cosmic Encounters, Sweet sticky things)

So many things we’ve known all our lives are going away. Some of it is evolution. Some is common sense. Or, in the situation of weed and the counter-culture, you become obsolete.

Who’da thunk potheads would become a recognized, respected, government-regulated bunch of tax-paying citizens? (I didn’t, in my lifetime.) Even more so, who would think that such government approval would cause things like head shops to fall by the way-side?

Such is the case with my favorite surviving head shop, The Third Eye on Hawthorne. All good things must come to an end.

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Sasquatch Approved!

March 23, 2017 at 10:40 am (Cosmic Encounters, Cussed Dumbers, Sweet sticky things)

Holy Cow

Aah, three-day weekend, how you taunt me. When I want you, I can never get you. When I want to immerse myself in work, you are there insisting. When I want to run off with a girl for a couple days? Oh, we can’t spare you…

I’m getting by, still getting used to being alone. This has been one of the easiest breakups ever, maybe because we’ve had so much practice? I am happy for Rain, and she seems happy. I’m supportive of her, and I’m glad someone is there to take care of her. Boy howdy.

But I also have to take care of myself. It would be easy to fall into over-medication, or have a few drinks. That’s not where I’m at. But I still wanted to cut loose. Is there anything left out there, weedwise, that will give me a buzz?

I found something while stocking up on vapor cartridges. I looked at the young budtender and asked, “I have gotten high off spaghetti sauce and chili, but beef jerky? Really?”

“Oh ho ho,” he chuckled wisely. “Look at the numbers, 150 mgs…”

“Seven dollars? I’ll take three.” If they sucked, I was out $20. If good? I have a new bestest friend.

There were eight pieces. They tasted like kippered beef, I had no idea how they got the drug on there, spray? Is this what my lungs look like? (I saw an ad for Motel Hell; human jerky has been on my mind…) I nibbled about a third, fifty milligrams. Repeated later on, it was a nice, even high. I hate having pepperoni breath, and bits of meat in my remaining teeth, but the slow-creeping buzz made up for these inconveniences. I saved a dose for work. Who knows, it may save someone’s life.

Life rolls on. I have been trying to pick up as many hours at work as possible. I chat with Dizzy. I helped Dr T pay his phone bill so I have someone to text randomly. (He was cool without a phone for a week, but apparently I wasn’t. He can catch up with me after payday.)

Festus has disappeared into the country. Maybe he quit paying his cell phone bill, I dunno. He’s quit talking to me.

The other residents of the burned-out hotel will visit, or text. One of the locals called me, all excited about some pills. When I looked up the numbers, it broke his heart. Those aren’t oxys, those are furosemide. AKA water pills. Talk about pissed!

Work has its share of drama. I’m just trying to keep my head low, be useful and productive. I was given yesterday off, freight day. I usually run a till and put stock away; it takes the whole shift but I have most done by lunch. My coworker, at 11 PM last night, was still knee-deep in cardboard, no idea how he was going to get it all done.

Well, I’m not going in early today. I figure I’ll get there about the time they get yesterday’s work done.

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Weedies! Breakfast of Champions

February 21, 2017 at 4:20 pm (Cosmic Encounters)

“Smile!”

After spending the morning doing grown-up stuff, errands, chores, I found myself in need of soda pop and cerebral amusements. While fetching the refreshments, I crossed paths with Sister.

She’s been a constant companion and best friend lately. She’s also been going through a rough time. Losing Sandy the dog and fretting about losing everything else has been weighing on her mind, and she’s been drinking a lot to ease the pain. I would be more upset if I didn’t understand so well. Blues as a lifestyle should only mean music.

I’ve been trying to distract her with Squibbs, but she one-upped me with a heavy duty medicated laffy taffy. I halved it, and have been enjoying my chores a little more. It kicked in, and I felt the urge to smoke a little something. So I took the half-joint of Chem Diesel to the kitchen. “Hey Sis, help me smoke this? It’s what was in that baggie you gave me the other night.”

She gets a lot of roadkill from the hotel, especially Mary Jane’s hand-me-downs. People either forget or don’t want to take their stash home, so they leave it for the maid. The maid (and her dope-fiend brother) thank you very much! This particular half-joint was originally two tight buds in an eighth-sized baggie. After a couple twists in the grinder, it was fluffy and ready to burn. We killed it off, and she pulled out another surprise.

“You can have the case, I just want one of the joints.”

The Real Deal

The Real Deal

She handed me a small flat container that looked like a Band-Aid tin, only thinner. Its sleek profile would fit nicely into an inside pocket. The strain was Green Crack, a personal favorite. I loves me a sativa-dominant hybrid, and these were gram-sized joints. We’re talking a full trip, with a third of a joint left over for when you wake up. Seattle’s finest.

The Chem Diesel seemed to do the trick. Instead of rushing out into the rain, I got preoccupied with bragging about all the first-class weed I been smoking, and now the rain is gone and the sun has come out. Oh, whoa is me!

So Sister and I are gonna take the train downtown. The new Rolling Stones album is waiting for me at the library, and she has a gift certificate for a local Mexican restaurant. We are thinking of getting taco salads to go. Seems like a good way to kill an afternoon.

Oh, look what time it is! So long, Green Crack. It was your time to go…

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Family Support Group

February 14, 2017 at 11:33 am (Cosmic Encounters, Sweet sticky things)

Baby Loves Me

Baby Loves Me

Tap tap tap. My Sister was knocking.

“Come in.”

She entered my room, pulling on a vapor pen. “I didn’t charge my pen yesterday. If you want to charge this up and take it to work with you…?”

“Sure! Thanks.” She handed me the pen, I took a pull. I felt a wave of warmth sweep over me. “Wow, I felt that!”

I have been experimenting with different strains of weed, and am always open to new ways to get stoned. The orange-tipped pen was different than most; it would not get you high, but you feel it in the body. Only 7% THC, but it packs a walloping 65% CBD. That’s the stuff that makes you not feel your feet.

We discussed aches and pains, the rain must be coming. It’s been sunny and gorgeous of late, but the weatherman says that’s about to change. So do my bones. I inherited red hair and a sense of humor, as well as rheumatoid arthritis. All three are making an appearance this morning.

It’s back to work day. Marcus Annoious has had a stroke, and no one has heard from or about him for several days. We hope he’s going to be okay, but I’m thinking if he was okay he would have called. It’s been several days. Godspeed, buddy.

On the upside, I will get at least three hours overtime this week. (More, if Giggles is his usual late self. Not bitching this week!) After two weeks of hours being cut, I am back to where I won’t sweat making the rent.

Time to make the doughnuts…

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Weekend Blues

February 13, 2017 at 12:32 pm (Cosmic Encounters, Cussed Dumbers)

"Here's Tom with the weather."

“Here’s Tom with the weather.”

“Sunny, with winds 20-30 MPH, temperatures in the 40s.”

It’s a beautiful day in Portland, Oregon. My health is good, attitude partly cloudy. Work has been its usual stress, nothing much to report. The Nightclub Store is quiet, with the hotel closed and the bar being remodeled after the fire. I’ve been doing weekends at the Nightclub Store, with two days at the Waterfront Store filling out the work week. Three-day weekends are great once in a while, but I’d rather be working.

I am getting some housework done.

I was going to spend some time writing today, but it’s so gorgeous outside that I MUST go for a walk. Blue Dream in a jar on the desk, calling… It’s a peppy high, tastes great. I will burn a bit of that, and ride with Sister to work.

She’s been doing better. Realizing it’s not getting better by getting drunk, she’s mellowed out. I stand by her regardless, but I’m letting her know I like her a lot better sober. It took me a long time to realize I’m a jackass when I’m drinking. The last time I drank was a few months after I’d met Rain. “Honey, you smoke all the weed you want, but I don’t like you when you drink.” Those words hung with me. I want my sister to know I will love her either way, but I think it shows that it’s more fun when she’s sober. She’s been seeing a lot of ugly behavior at my work. She finishes at 11 PM, then walks over to where I’m working, and we ride home together. During the hour or so in between, there are a lot of obnoxious drunks to keep happy. She’s getting an education.

Time to get out and smell the roses. And any other flowers that may present themselves…

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