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  • Smoking Pot and Watching 1970’s Sci-Fi With My Brother

    On the fateful date of September 8th I received a text message from my brother that requested we watch the movie “Zardoz” together. And I quote, “Don’t look it up on Wikipedia. It has to be seen to be believed. I feel in my Hungarian heart that we need to experience this movie. It will be like when I introduced you to marijuana, because I bet you will start leading seminars on it.”

    When a sibling makes a request of another sibling with this magnitude of importance, the appeal must be granted. This is the duty of the sibling bond. When one sibling insists the other watch 1970’s science fiction, the other sibling MUST comply. It is the only way.

    The next order of importance was when this screening should take place. According to my brother, “one cannot watch Zardoz under times of stress,” so we had to plan it perfectly. This event could not be rushed, nor could it be put off for too long. I then received a text that read, “I want it to be sheer insane joy for you, so my gut tells me we should do the screening to celebrate the autumnal equinox.” So I of course honored my brother’s pagan instincts, and we gathered on Sunday evening to watch Zardoz.

    At this point you might be wondering to yourself, “Toni, what the dick is Zardoz?” Let me tell you, I too had that same question! Yet since I had sworn off any Wikipedia interference, my knowledge of Zardoz was probably as vast as yours. Meaning, I had no fucking clue what Zardoz was.

    Upon my brother’s arrival, we debated whether or not smoking weed was a good ritual to introduce us to this sacred ceremony.

    My Brother: Maybe we don’t do the weed, because Zardoz is a trip in and of itself.

    Again, I complied, since my brother is the Zardoz aficionado. We started the movie and the first image was a man’s floating head cloaked in a strange cloth hat. As his decapitated head drifted across the screen, I realized that his beard and mustache had been drawn on his face with what seemed to be… a Bic pen.

    Toni: I think we are going to have to smoke some pot after all.

    This was the first “pause” of many that was to take place during the viewing of Zardoz. We momentarily stopped the movie and each took a hit of weed. Since we are both sensitive souls, we had to be careful not to smoke too much, which would surely sour the Zardoz. Even though you have to be high to watch Zardoz, you don’t want to be too high.

    The next 105 minutes of the movie extended to about 200 minutes because we had to pause and discuss so many things. I mean, you can’t get high and watch post-apocalyptic sci-fi from 40 YEARS AGO and not have a LOT to deliberate over.

    I can’t say that I totally know what was going on the ENTIRE time of that movie, but this is the general gist of what we discussed.

    The movie is essentially about over population and the destruction of the planet through mindless breeding and overconsumption of resources. My brother and I both agreed this message is just as relevant today as it was in 1974. In the first shot of the movie with the floating head, said head talks directly to the audience – implying that you too, the watcher, are part of the problem. So don’t watch this movie feeling exempt.

    Once we were about 3 minutes into Zardoz, I realized that I had missed a line of dialogue, but could not rewind the movie with the remote I had on my phone. I am not that good at Apple TV, and don’t actually know how to rewind, only pause. This led us to the philosophical realization that this moment of not being able to rewind the movie was just like life. We can’t go backwards in time, we can only pause something to slow down the present. The more present you are, the more you can delay the progression of a fast forward future.

    We then sat and looked at the paused picture for about 3- 6 minutes. A floating head stared back at us. Oh – not the same floating head mind you…. A different one. This one was made of stone. I mean, what kind of movie would Zardoz be with just ONE floating head.

    We watched about 4 more consecutive minutes, then had to pause it again. This time was because we had to read the writing on the wall. Literally. The main character was in a room, and behind him, written on the wall, was writing. It read, “in this secret room from the past, I seek the future.”

    It was at this moment that my brother and I realized that maybe Zardoz is as profound as Stanley Kubrick’s “The Shining.” After all, John Boorman wrote, directed, and produced the movie, so everything we were seeing was EXACTLY his vision. Boorman wasn’t compromising on anything. This was the movie he wanted us to see. When people in the boardroom asked John, “Does the main character Zed played by Sean Connery HAVE to wear underwear and knee high boots as a costume?” Boorman said, “Hell yes he does. You are going to look at Sean Connery in red panties and hooker boots the ENTIRE film, and you are going to like it.”

    The point is that Boorman vetted every decision in the making of Zarodoz. So my brother and I figured we could make an entire documentary breaking down all the political, social, and Meta commentary just like in that documentary “Room 237.” Even though I was only 7 minutes in, I knew Zardoz was that deep. As my brother said, “Boorman is sucking the Kubrick marrow.”

    About 13 minutes in, we had to pause yet again because my brother got inspired. He then went on a 17-minute diatribe about the current geo political landscape, the future of secret societies, the potential of a transparent government, yet somehow then brought it all back to an analysis of self and his own personal evolution.

    It was pretty impressive.

    We then got really into the narrative of the movie and talked less. The basic lesson I learned was that the global elite might very likely sequester themselves from poverty and extreme environmental catastrophes. They will quarantine themselves in a fabricated utopia, where they fancy themselves the custodians of high culture. They will then become immortal, because that’s what rich people do.

    Yet this landscape will forever be fundamentally flawed, because human nature is. Despite having eternity, their minds will still be confined. The common assumption in life is that our bodies are limited, and our minds are boundless. But Zardoz reminds us how it is our bodies that are actually limitless, and our minds limited.

    Stress is what ages us. It is the mind that kills us. The body is immortal and could defy all physics if only the mind could conceive it. As the protagonist played by Sean Connery said, “I see nothing inside except my own perplexity. Knowledge isn’t enough.”

    Zardoz also planted the seed that maybe all war is simply entertainment for the rich. They don’t see the people fighting as actual people, but a subspecies of lower importance. Much how we see animals. We avoid projecting our human feelings onto them, for it’s just a bull for Christ’s sake. It doesn’t feel how I feel, so let’s enjoy watching it fight till the death.

    The other lesson of Zardoz is how when you have nothing but time, time means nothing. Yet the boredom will pollute you.

    When my brother left that night he said to me, “you are probably thinking ‘why Zardoz, why now?” And he was right. I was thinking that, and I bet you are too!

    zardoz

    zardoz022005

    September 21, 2015 • Birth • Views: 3215

  • Harvard Professors and Hospitals Do NOT Mix

    When I was 15 years old, you could say I was kind of a nightmare. Not that I was a rude withdrawn teen, just the kind that would steal all your liquor and fill it with water/juice. My parents seriously had a dinner party where they poured everyone cocktails that ended up being “water and tonics” and “apple juice on the rocks.”

    I liked to tinker with mind-altering substances okay?!

    Soooo one fateful Friday, my friends and I came back to my house after school, and decided it was a good time to get fucked up. It was 4 in the afternoon after all. We took some shots, and then had the grand idea of smoking weed – but we didn’t have an apparatus or rolling papers.

    Because we went to private school and were really smart, we problem solved this dire drawback, and realized we could make a pipe out of an apple. I know. Pretty genius. My friend Lila went to work on this task, but since we were already pretty wasted, she ended up slicing her finger.

    My initial reaction was “she’s fine, let’s move on.” Partly because I didn’t want to get in trouble for my friend hurting herself at my house, and partly because we still had weed to smoke. My other friend Marla however did not agree. She was using paper towels to physically hold Lila’s finger on, and insisted we go to the hospital. I resisted. You see, I was raised by WASPs, so we didn’t do things like admit pain or decapitated limbs.

    Marla was relentless and eventually I gave in. So us five drunken high school girls put on our winter coats, and started walking to Mass General Hospital. On our way, as Marla was still holding Lila’s finger on, we ran into my Dad on the street. I did my best not to slur my words.

    Toni: Oh hi Dad. We are just going to the hospital because Lila cut her finger. Shouldn’t take too long. Umm… do you want to come?
    My Dad: No I do not! I fell on the subway steps and hurt my hands! Look!!

    My dad then showed us all the palms of his hands. They were a little pink, and still had gravel on them, but not bleeding. It’s not like… ohhh I don’t know… he had almost cut his finger off and needed to go to the hospital.

    Toni: Okay. Well see you later.

    My dad continued on his way, and we inebriated girls continued on ours. You see, my dad is a Harvard Professor who is AMAZING at all things intellectual, but just is not interested in most things human. Like dealing with hurt teenagers who need medical attention. Anything that takes him away from his cerebral pursuits is major anxiety for him. Plus, he had fallen and hurt his hands remember!! He had to recover from that.

    We finally got to the hospital, and I was starting to panic a little. I really wanted Lila to be okay because I really didn’t want to get in trouble. I rushed over to the front desk to talk to the receptionist.

    Toni: My friend needs help!
    Receptionist: What seems to be the problem?
    Toni: She’s almost cut her finger off…
    Receptionist: Did she hurt her eye or her ear?
    Toni: What? No…
    Receptionist: Well, this is Mass EYE and EAR.
    Toni: It’s not “Mass Eye, Ear and Finger?”
    Receptionist: Afraid not. You’re going to have to go to Mass GENERAL, which is further down the road.

    Eventually we got to the RIGHT hospital, and Lila was taken by the doctor to get checked out. As we are waiting for her to return, Lila’s parents showed up, as did my dad. We sat in silence. Lila’s parents were furious at me for feeding their daughter alcohol and allowing her to get hurt. I was freaking out wondering if my dad had found the apple, weed, and bloody knife we had left on the kitchen counter. And my dad was livid because now he was at the hospital out of his Catholic guilt, and wanted to be home working while not thinking about his sore hands.

    In the end it turns out I was totally wrong, Marla was right, and Lila needed 20 stitches to keep her finger attached to her hand.

    This is my Dad… and this pretty much sums up his essence.

    PS yes he is in a bubble bath

    dad in the bath

    September 9, 2015 • Old School Stories • Views: 1188

  • Getting Stoned and Being All One with The Universe

    Last week was a meteor shower. Since I live in the country, I had to make the effort to appreciate that biological phenomenon and shit. If I didn’t get all up in that stargazing, then what the hell is the point of being here? Part of living in nature is getting down with it…. Aww yeah.

    Wednesday was the pinnacle of this celestial occurrence, and I decided I would take it seriously. I woke up in the middle of the night, brought a blanket out into a dewy field, and watched the comets fly for 3 hours. I mused about the meaning of my existence, contemplated the future of humanity, marveled at the beauty of our boundless skyward landscape, and prayed that my future would be spiritually fulfilling.

    There was something so awakening about allowing the stardust to pour over me, and surrendering to the mysteries of the space. I felt so at peace with the unknown. I allowed myself to melt into the dark matter, and revel in the expansiveness.

    The next night my friend was visiting, and she suggested we smoke pot before looking at the stars. Now I haven’t been stoned in a few months because I have been so busy working and stressing out, so the thought of puffing on some weed was a pretty damn good idea. Yet every time I take breaks from being high, I get a little tentative, and fear I will get TOO high.

    But that doesn’t stop me!!

    Soooooo…. I took one small hit, and was totally fine. A half hour later, I took another. All good. Nothing unexpected. No big deal. Just two girls appreciating the beauty of all things while staring at balls of light while they fly through the sky.

    So I did what any normal person would do. Took one more HUGE hit!

    I knew I was in trouble, but I was trying to be chill, so I didn’t mention anything. I lay back down, looked at the sky, and tried to play it cool. Then all of a sudden I could see the stars moving towards the right, and feel as the earth rotated to the left.

    Toni: Dude. I can seriously feel the earth spinning on its axis, and floating through space.
    My Friend: It’s like I’m on acid right now.
    Toni: I think I’m gonna barf. I’m too aware of the earth moving, and it’s going so fast!!!! I’m super dizzy! We have to get off this ride!!!

    I was official wayyyyy to high.

    We started walking back to my house, and even though I was really trying to keep it together, I was also totally losing it.

    Toni: Dude, smoking made me too open. I don’t think I can handle being connected to all things right now. I don’t want to be a conduit for the eternal bonds of molecules. I can’t be a vessel for the cosmos to pass through. I have to go eat a bunch of chocolate, dull my senses, and just be a normal person who isn’t one with the universe.

    meteor-blog

    August 17, 2015 • Adventures, Musings • Views: 954

  • Real Life Instagram

    We all know that we create personas on social media. Usually we broadcast the best parts of our lives, but never really the shitty, mundane, or unflattering.

    So this is my “real life Instagram” for last weekend. It’s not that glamorous. But it’s what happened.

    1) This one is The Munch Yelling at me because the iPad was buffering.

    RLB1

    2) These are my legs from far away

    RLB2

    3) These are my legs up close

    RLB3

    4) This is me cleaning Munch’s feet because she asked me too… the power dynamics are pretty clear.

    RLB4

    5) This is me being all one with the animals and shit. Or goats are just eating my shorts.

    RLB5

    6) This is Munch jumping, and my double chin.

    RLB6

    7) This is me on top of a mountain. But rather than enjoying the epic view, I spent the whole time trying to unclog my pipe to smoke weed. Said pipe was clogged because I had rammed a stick in it, with the purpose of unclogging it, and the stick got stuck. My solution you may ask? To shove more sticks in.

    RLB7

    June 3, 2015 • Adventures, Musings • Views: 1323

  • Not My Proudest Moment

    Lately I’ve been feeling overwhelmed by life. My plates too full, and I’ve been on the grind – burning the candle at both ends because I’m busy as a beaver that doesn’t even have time to get waxed. Frowny face.

    When things get hectic, I tend to get in this manic state of rushing through life trying to get everything done. This chaotic energy makes it impossible to relax when it’s finally time to unwind at night. Rather than doing what normal people do… ie sleep… I stare at the ceiling sweating while wondering if my life will ever have any meaning. It’s not as peaceful as it sounds.

    The other night I was particularly anxious and thought, “Hey, maybe if I smoked some pot I would loosen up.” Because that is what grown ups do with their feelings – stuff them deeper inside so they eventually get colon cancer.

    I took a few hits and settled in to watch an old Saturday Night Live (when it was good) and within 20 minutes my body started to liquefy. My cells were so relieved to not be drowning in floods of stress hormones that all systems shut down.

    I was suddenly so tired my eyelids officially protested opening. My lashes clasped together like multi-racial hands in the face of a police barricade at a political rally. So I decided to concede to my body’s desires, and get up to go to bed.

    I stumbled into the kitchen to turn off the lights and then suddenly remembered I had cheesy crackers – THAT ARE FUCKING DELICIOUS WHEN YOU ARE STONED. Yet as much as I wanted to satisfy my munchies and mow down, my eyes still refused to open.

    So I did want any responsible adult would do. I ate an entire box of cheesy crackers standing up with my eyes closed.

    (Good thing I didn’t see the bag of cookies… or I would still be standing there eating those too)

    cheesy-crackers-blog-(i)

    May 27, 2015 • Adventures, Musings • Views: 1413

  • Getting High On Weed and Processing Death Is Maybe Not The Best Idea

    I started smoking weed when I was 14 years old. It was a fateful Thursday evening. My older brother was hanging out with two girls, and they figured that if I was ever going to get high, the first time should be in a safe environment. I got off the phone, took a few hits, then went back upstairs and got back on the phone. I talked a on the phone a LOT in the 8th grade.

    Looking back on it, I am really grateful to my brother and these two vixens for giving me this life experience. As a young girl, you want to be careful about who are with when partaking in mind-altering substances. Let’s face it; I was the kind of teenager that was going to get into that stuff. This way I knew what was going on, what to expect, and would less likely lose my shit with the wrong people in the wrong situation.

    My best friend Bitty and I had previously made an oath that we would NEVER smoke pot EVER. Probably because we were 13 at the time, and had both suffered through D.A.R.E lectures at school. Can I just say that “daring” kids to not do drugs is probably the least effective psychological strategy of all time.

    When I finally saw Bitty, I admitted what happened.

    Toni: Bitty… I smoked pot with my brother.
    Bitty: So did I. Do you know where we can get some?

    That summer Bitty and I smoked a lot of weed together. In the years to come, I smoked a lot of weed. A Lot. So much weed I can’t remember how much – which is par for the course I guess.

    When Bitty died in 2000 I had to take a break from smoking pot. This loss was so intense, that I was unable to add another texture to it. I knew pot would not help numb my reaction, but actually intensify it. It would be like putting a magnifying glass up to my broken heart, and burning it with the sun. It was all my mind could think about. I was too afraid of being high, and having to face all the pain. I couldn’t make sense of her death. The irreversible and final nature of it was killing me. I felt so helpless that I couldn’t go back in time and stop it from happening.

    After a few months, I eventually started “partying” again. I was 20, in college, and being totally sober was just as alienating as my constant crying. I had to shut off the part of me that was so deeply connected to the sadness in order to relate to other people. No one knew how to be around me when everything would make me weep.

    Mourning is a life long process. You never truly get over the death of a loved one – but you live with it in a new way. You learn to obsess less, and eventually disconnect from being able to access your feelings about it – at least some of the time. I always knew I was miserable she was no longer with me, but I couldn’t always feel just how distraught I was. There was so long that I mourned Bitty, that when I started to mourn her less, I missed the mourning just as much as I missed the person. The lamenting kept me connected to her.

    Now that 15 years have passed, it’s almost like I have gotten used to her being gone. I of course wish this wasn’t true, but the acceptance has settled in. I live ½ a mile from Bitty’s grave, and visit her weekly. Yet even though there are these rituals where I am reminded of her death, I usually don’t attach to it. It just is this thing that is.

    Last Friday was her birthday, and I wanted to visit her grave, and smoke a joint with her. Now let me add here, that I stopped smoking in 2008 and didn’t get high at all until a few months ago. I am obviously not the pothead of my past, so the few times I do smoke, I have been very carefully to only be very sparing. One hit, and that’s it.

    Yet at this point, I was feeling like my brain had gotten used to weed, and there wasn’t any real threat to my bugging out or losing my mind. So I took maybe 3 hits with Bitty, and then had a plan to celebrate her birthday by going out to dinner and seeing some live music.

    As I was leaving, I started to wonder if she felt it when people visited her grave. Did her soul, or spirit-body get an extra zap? Was there a specific comfort to knowing that someone was paying physical tribute to the place her ashes were buried?

    I got in the passenger seat of the car, and as soon as we starting driving I realized, “holy fuck… I am way too high.”

    I was suddenly transported into a Twilight Zone of distortion. It was one of those moments when the reality I knew, and the reality I was experiencing, were so distinctly different that my brain almost busted a fuse. Nothing was making sense. It was a really dark foggy night, and looking out the window, nothing felt familiar. The outside world was totally foreign, and my inside world was completely melting.

    I was also having a forceful physical reaction where I felt like my body could not contain all the feelings I was feeling. It was this profound buzzing that almost felt like an anxiety attack, but not as painful. It was as if I was channeling too much emotion for one skin sack to hold in.

    I kept trying to return to my breath. During those long inhales I was okay, but as as soon as I let it go, I would lose it again.

    Toni: Uhhhh there is no way I can be in public right now, and I’m pretty sure I have to go home now.

    The drive home we listened to Jimmy Hendrix, and I tried desperately to bring myself back to a place that I could control. All I could say was “I’m just feeling too many feelings.” Yet the second we pulled into my driveway, it was over, and I spent the next 2 hours eating.

    Okay there are a few possibilities about what happened that night. The first, and most obvious, was that I got too high.

    Yet I think something else was going on. Weed opens you up in a specific and unique way. I think because I was at Bitty’s grave, I was hypertensive to the energies at play. One being my own feelings about her death, and the emotions I have learned to enclose in order to survive. The bodily sensations I experienced were like I was releasing all I hold onto in order to function.

    The other energy I felt was tapping into the human part of Bitty. Not her higher-self that exists through infinite space and time while floating through the quantum muiltiverse on a bed of vibrating strings, but the human part of her that actually still exists underneath the earth – and still has feelings about her own death.

    Ultimately the whole night felt like a gift even though it was intense. There is something freeing about losing your mind, heart, and spirit and then having to find it again.

    (Here we are, 14 and fearless…)
    bitty-blog-(i)

    April 15, 2015 • Adventures, Musings, Old School Stories • Views: 1121

  • Can Grown Ups Still be Wild and Free?

    Technically I am wayyyyy far into my adult years, and no longer even considered a “young person” – yet I still don’t identify with my childhood perception of “grown ups.” My image of a real grown up involves helmet hair, pleated pants, and a deep commitment to Charlie Rose. Maybe that’s why I dress like a 12-year old boy that wears hoodies with sweatpants, and still use the word “dude” non-ironically.

    Part of my rebellion is because the conventional “mature” approach to life sometimes feels soul sucking. When people get older, they stop trying new things, and taking risks. They become complacent because they prioritize things like safety and rest.

    Of course this behavior is rooted in rationality. As your body ages, an all nighter will impact you for the next month, and you take longer to heal if you hurt yourself from jumping off a roof onto a trampoline. Yet, to have practical reasons for being responsible doesn’t mean we have to be that way all the time. A part of your spirit dies when you are always thinking of the consequences of your actions. There is something so freeing when you do something that is out of the ordinary and just plain wild. We need moments of madness just as much as we need to consider the impact of our decisions.

    When we are young, we are probably too reckless because we don’t have enough foresight of our impending mortality. But when we get old, we are probably too cautious. If you think about it, we spend most of our lives as adults. If we get to be old, a very small fraction of our existence would have been devoted to childhood, and an even smaller one to the infamous teenage years. That is a LOT of time to be sensible, and not that much time to be impulsive.

    Even though I want sometimes to feel the mental liberty of my younger years, it is hard to get into that headspace. The Jiminy Cricket of my consciousness is too damn loud. “Don’t eat that, Toni, too much sugar will give you a headache. You should probably go home Toni and not get into that pickup truck full of Abercrombie Models – you have to wake up early tomorrow to get all the laundry done.” Maybe what I crave most is the psychic space to scream “YOLO” and do whatever the fuck just because if could be fun!

    Then I had some insight into what could help me be more adventurous – drugs!! Duh!!!

    Not hard-core drugs obvi, I am still too reasonable for that – but taking ONE hit of weed will really bring me to a spontaneous psychic space!!

    So this is what happened. I was going out on Friday night… which was a BIG deal for me because otherwise I would be home staring out the window like a lost kitten. On the way my friend said, “Hey, do you want some pot,” to which I replied, “sure do!”

    While we were driving, I was suddenly brought back to all the times in my life when I was fancy free getting high, driving around, and listening to music. It was sooo fun, and lighthearted. I realized what distinguished those times from, say, driving to the store for some organic chicken broth – was that I was less concerned about anything else but that moment.

    Being stoned makes me more of a witness to my life, rather than a participant. It is like I was watching myself from the outside, and it didn’t occur to me that I would ever have to actually deal with whatever happened next. I didn’t care because everything that second was hilarious. The only thing going on in my mind was, “what is that crazy girl Toni going to do next? Who knows? But I can’t wait to find out!”

    weed-blog-(i)

    March 9, 2015 • Adventures, Musings, Old School Stories • Views: 1038

  • Have You Ever Tried That…. ON WEED?

    I officially began my quest for sobriety in 2006. I was dealing with some health issues at the time, and my neurosurgeon suggested that maybe smoking pot every day, drinking 5 times a week, and dabbling in cocaine perhaps wasn’t the best idea when trying to heal a brain tumor. What a square, am I right?!

    It took about 3 years to get to a point where I fully abstained from everything, and completely committed to a pure life of prioritizing my health. In truth, I am infinitely grateful for this forced period of self-reflection and sobriety. My restrained adult life has had many positive effects. I am more focused and productive. I make better decisions. I know myself in a profound way. I actually face problems rather than avoiding them through substances, and I am way skinnier. I guess getting high and eating cereal with ice cream instead of milk at 12am isn’t the best diet after all. Go figure.

    In my personal experience, one of the best parts about sobriety is that you are less lonely when you are alone because you are more content in your own skin. The worst part, however, is that you are more lonely around other people when everyone else is partaking in some mind-altering material. Yet even though I couldn’t enjoy all the same activities of my past, say staring at a microwave for 3 hours debating pulling a Sylvia Plath because I was coming down off drugs, I had many new ways that I enjoyed spending my time.

    I never want to go back to the way I was – and in truth, that isn’t even possible. I am not the same person I was in my 20’s. I am stronger, wiser, and did I mention skinnier? I am not looking for the same escape that I was in my past. Even though my life is not perfect, I feel more in control because I have slowed down. When I lived in NYC, I was always on hyper drive… moving forward regardless of logic, not taking the time to question my choices, and always looking for the bigger better deal. Now that I live in the woods with a young child, life is inherently calmer and scheduled – so as a result I am more intentional.

    But you guys………… it has been sooooooooooooooooo long. So crazy long. Like holy crap it has been a long time of not doing anything.

    So I smoked pot. A few times. Not a lot mind you!!!! Just one hit. A micro dose if you will. And let me tell you. It is amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Now remember, it has been YEARS since I have done this, and a lot has changed. For one: eye-phones!! Those things are outrageous!! The last time I smoked, I didn’t’ have the Internet in my hand all the time. Do you get how nutty that is? I felt like the “unfrozen cave man lawyer” – your world frightens and confuses me!!! Being stoned around an iPhone made me realize just how ridiculous it is to climb into a virtual world, and totally disconnect from the actual world around me. I couldn’t even look at that thing without shuddering.

    You know what else has changed? I created a HUMAN BEING!!! Now technically I have known that for 4 1/2 years – but the first time I got stoned, I went up to The Munch’s room and just watched her sleep for an hour. I was like “Who are you?? Where did you come from? And how are you so awesome!!?” It blew my away that I have not only kept Munch alive for this long, but I was actually doing an okay job too! It was like this holy fuck moment were I realized that I am in fact an adult who can take care of another person! WHO KNEW?

    I also did some high yoga – which was maybe the best time of my life. Now I practice yoga a lot, and to be honest, it has become almost unconscious for me. There are these habitual poses that I have done hundreds, if not thousands of times. But doing yoga on weed was like “OMG… down ward dog is the SHIT!!! This feels sooooooooooooo good!! I can’t believe I don’t sleep like this!!!”

    You know what else I did? I ATE!! Do you realize how delicious food is? Have you ever actually tasted rice pudding? I mean really let that sweet vanilla cinnamon goodness penetrate your tongue. FOOD IS SOOOOO GOOD YOU GUYS!! Corn chips?? Those things are unbelievable!! Have you ever had fresh popcorn? I could cry at the thought.

    Can I tell you more thing that I did? I sat! I just sat, gazed at nothing, and thought. I didn’t want to look at my phone, or my computer. I didn’t feel the pressure to be industrious, or work. I just wanted to be, and enjoy my own mind. Do you know how long it has been since I actually just let myself chill? In my youth, I would smoke and do things like paint, create collages, make jewelry, knit… undertakings that had no purpose beyond the enjoyment of crafting. Now almost everything I do is related to my career, business, work or ambition. The mental freedom to just sit without an agenda was so freeing.

    I have to say, my dabbling in weed has been crazy fun – but that is because it is a dabble. The impact is mind-blowing because it is so out of the ordinary. I have to keep it that way. The magic of marijuana is special, and I don’t want to corrupt it ever again. I like that one small toke will catapult me into the time space continuum.

    (There I am at 20… awwwwww so sweet)

    weed-blog-(i2)

    February 11, 2015 • 1st time for everything, Health, Mommyhood, Musings, Old School Stories, Parenting • Views: 1421

  • Why Do People Smoke Weed?

    I used to smoke a lot of pot. When I think about how much money I spent on 1/8ths of weed, I could have easily bought a car. Not like a lotus or anything, but definitely a 2003 Toyota Camry. When I lived in New York City I would call a delivery service that would come to my house – always 2 hours late. The coke guy was there in 15 minutes and sweating profusely, but the marijuana guy would most likely get around to coming between 2-7. This could have been considered annoying if I wasn’t already on the couch playing video games, or watching documentaries about animals communicating telepathically.

    I would then pick out a type of weed from a variety of strands. They had absurd names like “sticky laughy taffy,” “total chronic meltdown” or “paranoid punk rock absolute ganja package.” As far as I knew they were all the same shit, but having the choice made me feel a connoisseur. Ahhh yes sir, I will take the “fuck my mind and erase my face,” today. I would then smell it like a fine wine, and give the nod that I was pleased with my informed decision. “I think this will go great with the cheese sandwich I will be eating in 40 minutes.”

    My boyfriend and I would always befriend our weed delivery guys, not out of obligation, but more because we never left our apartment. We were pretty much starving for human contact. We would often offer the guy a bong hit, which he rarely refused. We would get high, laugh for a bit, but then feel increasingly uncomfortable as we thought too much about how everything is actually nothing. There would be a silence that lasted either 3 minutes or 2 hours (it was hard to tell) – yet would eventually get interrupted by the sound of the weed guy’s pager. He would slowly gather his things while mumbling about how he has to hurry to get to the next client, but we all know his real agenda was to get a slice of pizza and stare at a wall.

    Our next plan of action was to deal with the relentless munchies that were upon us. Of course there was the option to go outside and get food, but the thought of interacting with the reality we just smoked away was way too much pressure. I would call the bodega that was ½ a block away, and the lady who owned “Sunny and Annie’s” would always recognize my voice. Every time she answered my “hello” with “yes 190 East 7th street apartment 701 – what kind of cereal you want?”

    I smoked consistently for a decade of my life and never really questioned “why?” Part of my rational was that it helped me sleep at night. I had been an insomniac since childhood, and the weed did assist me in passing the fuck out in front of the TV. Yet that wasn’t the sole reason. Of course weed can be fun, provide an interesting perspective, and provoke insight… but it can also make you lethargic, suspicious, and introverted. There was something profound that I was holding onto beyond “self-medicating” but I wasn’t exactly sure what it was. The classic analysis was that I was running from something, or trying to avoid dealing with existence, but it felt deeper than that. It was giving me something that I needed, even though it was also taking away things I required.

    I stopped smoking pot 6 years ago. I had been trying to quit for 2 years prior (because of my brain tumor), but couldn’t fully commit to abstaining. Then there was one fateful day when I was forced to realize that I had indeed smoked enough. I was at my friend’s house, and she offered me a bong hit. It had been quite some time since I had one of those, yet I went for it anyway because that is how I role. About five minutes later, I was lying on her floor having a full-fledged anxiety attack. I had no idea who I was, or what being “Toni” even meant. I couldn’t remember how to think, what thinking even was, or how on earth I had ever been comfortable thinking at all. I was losing it and started to shake uncontrollably because I was so cold.

    My friend brought me to her bedroom and had my lie down in there. Partly because she was concerned, and partly because she wanted to watch a movie and my moaning was too distracting. I kept shaking and complaining about being freezing. She put two more blankets on me including a heated electric one. I finally relaxed and fell asleep.

    I woke up about an hour later and had some harsh realizations. I had to say to myself “Okay Toni… it is 3:00 in the afternoon and 75 degrees out – but you are under 7 comforters and had to be put to bed like a baby because you got too high.” My friend gave me some apple crisp (which was the best thing I ever tasted) and I decided that maybe it was time to finally call it quits.

    I can’t say I haven’t missed it. I have. But I have been too afraid to smoke because I really didn’t want to bug the fuck out. Yet when I was dealing with all my back pain, a kind friend gave me a weed tincture to deal with the suffering. I was super nervous about giving it a try, but also desperate for some relief. None of my hippy doctors had prescription capabilities to give me the high-grade narcotics I was begging for. I took a tiny sip of the tincture and waited. Was I going to see Jesus? Was I going to lose my mind? I crossed my fingers and hoped for the best.

    Because I took such a micro dose, I didn’t get high… but I did have an epiphany about why people (me) smoke pot. Weed is a plant. It has a personality. An essence. Maybe even a soul. Wait… stay with me now. When you smoke her, it is like inviting someone into your brain to keep you company. She is someone to have a conversation with inside your consciousness. Weed becomes a friend within your own mind who averts you from being alone with your thoughts. She is the antidote for the feeling of solitude that we are born alone and we die alone. She is there with you.

    Maybe you are thinking, “it sounds like you actually did get high as fuck Toni” but whatever. Anyway, I have to run and eat some ice cream on toast.

    (Here is a montage of pictures where I am as high as fuck…)

    why-peeps-smoke-weed-blog-(i)

    October 28, 2014 • Health, Musings, Old School Stories • Views: 2291