Amid a Stoner's Night Dream

Who Doesn't love a bobble-head Shakespeare?
Who Doesn't love a bobble-head Shakespeare? | Source

Aliases and Asses...

Names have been altered to shield the guilty. Not that many need shielding as there’s just the three of us. Me, Bottom, and Puck. My name’s on the story so abjuration is pointless. As such, just two names are being altered: Bottom and Puck’s.

Not that we’re guilty of all that much.

Arguably, a close reading and strict interpretation would suggest a flirtation with technical violations of California’s Uniform Controlled Substance Act.

Specifically speaking, Section 11054 (subsection a) (18); which speaks to the illegal possession, importation, buying, selling, trading, or giving away for the intention of cultivation of psilocybin.

To whit: We’re in possession of psilocybin.

Hallucinatory mushrooms.

To gain compliance with the statute, we decide to eat the mushrooms. It’s only right and it’s the law. For those who’ve never consumed hallucinatory mushrooms—they taste like ass.

This is our tale...


Who knew?
Who knew? | Source
But I don't have a jet ski...I have Mushrooms...
But I don't have a jet ski...I have Mushrooms... | Source
Shakespeare the Musical...?
Shakespeare the Musical...? | Source
This Doesn't look good...
This Doesn't look good... | Source
Neither does this...
Neither does this... | Source
They just seem to be more gentle than bears and wolves...
They just seem to be more gentle than bears and wolves... | Source
Are you fucking kidding me?
Are you fucking kidding me? | Source

Happy Campers...

The need to get away saw us loading the car and heading for the forests of Northern California. A long holiday weekend was pressing down hard and our prior decision to make no decisions had left us in a lurch as regards viable options this late in the game.

By the calendar it’s America’s 229th birthday. Fourth of July weekend. Hot weather and clear skies are in the forecast and once we’re driving we realize that our plan wasn’t, particularly, an original one.

“Who knew people camped on the fourth of July?” Grouses Puck.

“I’m taking notes for next year.” I assure her.

We’d already driven past our first few options and had been disappointed by the results.

A local reservoir overflowed with motor homes, motor boats, recreational vehicles, and rednecks. A scenic stretch of river had been stretched remarkably thin with tents, tee-pees, and day hikers who were enjoying the scenery.

Like a wayward bombing crew, whose primary and secondary targets are obscured by cloud cover, we have no idea where to drop our payload. We press on, however. For the war effort.

“How now, spirit, whither wander you?” Puck inquires of Bottom who is doing the driving.

He promptly responds. “Over hill, over dale, thorough bush, thorough brier, over park, over pale, thorough flood, thorough fire, I do wander everywhere.”

Yeah, they’re drama nerds.

“So, um...Shakespeare?” I interrupt from the back seat before the cast has a chance to launch into the next soliloquy.

“Yes.” Replies Bottom. “Act Two, Scene One from A Mid-Summer’s Night Dream--.”

I interrupt again.

“Yes, I know that.”

I hadn’t actually known that. At least not all the details like the name of the play, the act, or the scene. I could tell from the flowery talk that it was Shakespeare though.

“It’s not a musical is it?” I ask warily. They’re aware of my aversion to musicals.

Puck fills in those holes that comprise my knowledge of Shakespeare. “Shakespeare didn’t do musicals.”

“Strike one up for the Bard.” I respond relieved. “I was just wondering if the tires can handle going over pale and through dale to get to the land of milk and honey.”

My knowledge of Shakespeare isn’t the only thing filled with holes. The road’s a mess. Asphalt had long since been replaced by gravel which quickly transitioned into crushed gravel before turning to dirt. By the time we got to it, it was regurgitated dirt.

As our camping options dwindled, so too, obviously, had the maintenance budget for the county roads we’d been traversing.

Bottom downshifts and spins the steering wheel as the front, passenger-side, tire pancakes into a rut which occasions the oil pan to meet Mother Earth with a resounding clatter. Something similar happens to the back of my head with the car roof as I realize that my seatbelt fastener’s only for show.

In response to his ministrations; the ageing car lurches to the left and howls back at the branches scraping alongside while rattling in protest against what’s, obviously, a breach of the Point A to Point B nature of their relationship. All the while its’ backside fish-tails sassily down the road.

Over the radio, the Grateful Dead exhorts us to Keep on Trucking...

“Oh sure, the tires should be fine.” Bottom assures me. “I’m more concerned with never finding a place to camp and dying in these woods.”

“Also a concern.” I concur musingly as I rub the back of my head.

I’m not really an outdoorsy kind of guy. I imagine our scattered bones being ravaged by wolves, bears, and caribou.

“It’s good to have options.” Opines Puck cheerfully.

“I would go with caribou—“I say before a shrieking sound interrupts my attempts to explain my reasoning.

The sound emanates from somewhere behind the Grateful Dead. Front of the car stuff. Engine stuff.

We clatter to a stop.


This is a wrinkle...
This is a wrinkle... | Source
As good a time as any I suppose...
As good a time as any I suppose... | Source
I Just don't Trust them...
I Just don't Trust them... | Source
Is there a Motel-6 on that map?
Is there a Motel-6 on that map? | Source
Just a random Shakespeare picture...
Just a random Shakespeare picture... | Source
Does Africa have Motel-6s?
Does Africa have Motel-6s? | Source
I knew it...
I knew it... | Source

Disgruntled Car-Campers...

I’m not really a mechanical kind of guy. That said, or perhaps because of that, I’ve had numerous cars break down and, although I’ve no idea how to fix them, I can usually recognize what it sounds like when they break.

Clearly, we broke a belt. Or maybe an axle. Perhaps an engine part? As mentioned, I’m not really a mechanical kind of guy.

Truth is; it could easily be a cadre of turtles, wearing mukluks, and camping in the carburetor for all I knew. I can only assume that carburetor camping turtles, attired in mukluks, would sound a lot like any of those other problems mentioned: a broken belt, a bent axle, or a busted engine part.

I imagine the silky softness (that is) a caribou’s snout, huffing over my bleached bones...

We pile out of the car.

Bottom begins an immediate diagnostic of the vehicle. Puck pulls out a joint and lights it. After assuring an even burn, she hands it off to me. I puff for awhile and in an attempt to sound helpful, pass along some advice with the well-burning weed to Bottom.

“Do you think maybe it could be a cadre of turtles, attired in mukluks, camping in the carburetor?” I ask using my ‘car fixing’ voice. It’s my normal voice but just a little deeper. “I understand these Asian vehicles are susceptible to that type of thing.”

“Heroes in a half shell!” Puck calls out.

Bottom accepts the joint but rejects my advice while chuckling at the shout-out to the bravery of ninja turtles. He doesn’t let my ruminations slow him down, however, in the actual finding of the problem.

“Turns out, those were floor mats causing that problem.” He informs me from behind a wreath of smoke while continuing his search.

“Well, that’s a relief.” I say.

My attention moves to the possibility that lizards are maybe clogging up the fuel lines. I can’t seem to shake the feeling that the problem is somehow reptile-related.

We’re equidistant between nowhere and next to nowhere. For those familiar with the area, it’s in the middle of nowhere. We found ourselves at the vast epicenter of a Venn diagram of nowhere-ness.

“Could we be more not near anything?” I ask while watching a lizard skitter out from under a nearby bush.

Puck coughs out her response along with a big hit of smoke, “Yeah. We could be in Tulare, California.”

I take the joint along with this heartening news. I also take a bit of back spray from the cough.

She’s correct of course.

For those who’ve never been, Tulare is located in the Central Valley of California. The Central Valley is widely considered the armpit of California and Tulare is the unattractive, festering mole in that armpit. I take solace in the comparison.

The lizard takes solace in the shade of a tire. Near the gas tank. I monitor (the) lizard’s activity to gauge his intentions.

As Bottom continues to move around the car, the lizard exhibits signs of obvious guilt and anxiety. My suspicions are heightened.

Puck pulls out a forestry map which clearly indicates that the road we’re on had ended about five miles earlier. Our part of the map is depicted as they depicted Africa prior to The Age of Discovery...an indistinct coastline with empty spaces crowding the interior.

We need to find a water source and a place to start a legal fire. That’s our only requirement for finding a campsite. Water, fire, and no assholes nearby, of course. There’s nothing worse than having to deal with an asshole, that you can’t see, when you’re thirsty.

The lizard moves to the inside of the tire. I adjust my position so I can continue watching him.

“Shouldn’t we be following north facing fungus on trees that face south as the crow flies?” I reason. “You know, to find water and frogs and such?”

Directions have never been my forte.

I note the precise moment the mental flash invades her cerebral cortex. That moment when she realizes, with near certainty, that if left to my own devices I would probably die out here.

Attempts to clarify my meaning, by flapping my fingers in a winged motion, don’t seem to help.

I look down. The lizard’s gone. Shit.

Bottom sticks his head out from under the wheel well. “Found the problem!”

He holds up the rock that had lodged up into the wheel well. It’s as big as a baby’s head. I feel vindicated in my lizard focus. Lizards like sitting on rocks. As Bottom did the majority of the leg-work, we reward him with the remainder of the joint.


Mount Rainier...I don't think we were ever near here...still...pretty...
Mount Rainier...I don't think we were ever near here...still...pretty... | Source
At long last...
At long last... | Source
Fancy camper...
Fancy camper... | Source
Just looking for a little privacy is all...
Just looking for a little privacy is all... | Source
Rome?  Piece of cake...
Rome? Piece of cake... | Source
Busy, busy, busy...
Busy, busy, busy... | Source

As Good a Setting as Any...

An hour later we rolled into a clearing deep within the heart of the Stanislaus National Forest. A sign announces the location as California’s Bear Valley. It’s beautiful. The valley I mean...the sign’s pretty nice too.

Situated at about seven thousand feet, the valley offers a panoramic view of the upper montane alpine landscape. Vast stands of western junipers, various species of pines, and red firs spread out in a majestic arc before us.

Attached to the bottom of the sign is a smaller sign signaling a campsite three miles down a dubious looking road.

I note the obvious, “I don’t like the idea of an entire valley comprised of bears.”

“They do make nice signs though.” Counters Bottom. We all murmur our admiration for the skilled craftsmanship of the local Ursus americanus community.

Lacking any other option, we head down the road. In terms of the Forest Service issued road map, I estimated our current position to be somewhere near Zambia.

The campground’s charming and lightly populated. Only two of the available six spots are occupied with each campsite offering a picnic table and fire pit as amenities to the weary traveler.

Of our neighbors, the first campsite proves a boisterous affair of perhaps two dozen souls arrayed around a half a dozen tents. The adults are drinking and carousing while kids scamper in and out of nearby trees and bushes.

The other camp appears a more permanent affair. A 5th-wheel dominates a campsite that’s ordered with military precision. Symmetrical white stones line the path to the trailer and also serve as an honor guard circling the flag pole. An American flag greets us with a listless wave as a light breeze moves through the campgrounds.

Utilizing the public urinal doctrine of space and separation, we set-up camp as far away from both of them as we can.

In terms of putting together a campsite, Bottom and Puck have mad skills. Within fifteen minutes of arrival, the camp was taking shape and they had already assembled their tent, shade structure, shower tent, and a barbeque.

I, on the other hand, have used those fifteen minutes in an attempt to extricate my borrowed tent from its’ protective bag. That bag’s ripped in several places and so is the tent. Also, I’ve nearly impaled myself on what might be the tent pole labeled (4E) in the unhelpful directions.

I’m not really a coordinated kind of guy.

As my idea of ‘roughing it’ is a Motel-6 without Cable-TV, I’m heavily reliant upon Bottom and Puck for materials and expertise. I feel bad for ripping the shit out of their tent.

“You ripped the shit out of my tent.” Complains Bottom as he and Puck walk up.

I look up from the tangle of ripped fabric, bent poles, and incomprehensible directions. The rest of the camp’s fully assembled and ready for the party to begin. They were now organizing a wood gathering mission.

I was coming to the conclusion that these two could easily have knocked Rome out in a day.

“I do feel bad for ripping the shit out of your tent.” I admit.

They immediately take charge over the confusion that I’d made of the thirty-square feet of nylon and mesh. Like a finely honed machine, they move over the chaos with insect-like determination. It may have been my imagination but I believe that they were making clicking sounds.


This is nice...
This is nice... | Source
Sniff'n around...
Sniff'n around... | Source
Kind of like this...
Kind of like this... | Source
The sign mentioned Bears...?
The sign mentioned Bears...? | Source
Varmints and such...
Varmints and such... | Source
B-24 from the Fifteenth Air force...
B-24 from the Fifteenth Air force... | Source
Operation Tidal Wave...
Operation Tidal Wave... | Source
A journal you say...?
A journal you say...? | Source
Bandwagon Jumping...
Bandwagon Jumping... | Source

Chillin...BBQ’ing...and Billy...

Our camp chairs are deployed around a crackling fire and, with cold beers in hand, a growing sense of contentment settles in upon our little group.

I’m so relaxed, I feel as if I’d popped an Ex-Lax. I hadn’t of course. That would be an unnecessary complication, in the woods, just prior to taking hallucinatory mushrooms.

It was moving on late afternoon when the first emissaries from the other campsites came sniffing around.

First to arrive was a small group from the boisterous camp. Two adults and three children wandered over towards us after using the community spigot that comprised the campground’s sole water source.

In deference to the children, we hide the pipe and the open bag of marijuana.

Pleasantries are exchanged and the three of us breathe a sigh of relief after they leave. It’s not that we’re anti-social as a rule; it’s just that we don’t want to encourage anyone to come back around once we’ve eaten the mushrooms.

Some insanity is best not witnessed by strangers.

Soon after, the other occupant of the camp comes shambling over. He’s old. Somewhere in his eighties, maybe.

In deference to the old man, we hide the pipe and the open bag of marijuana.

Unfortunately, the thick aromatic smoke chooses to stick around for the meeting with the octogenarian. There’s never a stiff breeze around when you need one.

The walk over had greatly winded him and he’s gasping for breath. As his gasps are being conducted in the middle of our stagnant cloud of marijuana smoke, the old guy is set to get one hell of a contact high.

The three of us exchange worried glances.

He’s dressed in a khaki jump suit with a nylon gun belt cinched around his protruding stomach. The holster’s empty. Perched precariously upon his head is a ball cap that’s emblazed with a patch from the 304th Heavy Bombardment Wing. Sweat streams down his face from under the bill of the cap.

“Well, hello folks!” He manages to wheeze out after a bit. “Welcome to the campgrounds. My name’s Billy and I am the unofficial caretaker of this place!”

Puck vocalizes for the group. “Hi Billy! How does one become an unofficial caretaker of such a beautiful place?”

Billy’s answering laugh is a wet, squishy, sounding affair.

“By surviving sweet cheeks! By surviving! My wife and I would camp here all summer for...O’gosh...I reckon thirty-six years now. My Mable, she passed a couple years back, she did.”

“I’m very sorry to hear that.” I immediately commiserate before asking, “So the sign out on the road mentioned bears?”

Puck and Bottom cast disapproving looks my way over my short circuiting of the social niceties.

Billy’s quick to put me at ease, however. “We got bears but they’re up higher than us. Mostly we see deer and varmints here ‘bouts.”

I discreetly survey those tree branches that are up higher than us. Billy begins to openly survey the still wafting marijuana smoke that’s in front of him.

The three of us exchange worried glances.

“The 304th Heavy Bombardment Wing?” I get his attention by referencing his ball cap. “Was that part of the Eighth Air Force based in England?”

It’s as if I’d turned a light on behind the old veteran’s eyes. He appraises me openly before snorting derisively.

“Fifteenth Air Force out of Italy.” He corrects proudly.

The Fifteenth was a strategic force tasked with destroying vital Axis infrastructure in Southern Europe. Flying B-17s and B-24s, it performed admirably throughout the eighteen-months of its existence; but, was perhaps most famous for actions against the German oilfields of Rumania.

“Did you bomb the Ploesti oilfields?” I ask eagerly.

As a lover of history with a fascination for all things World War Two, I revel in the stories of the old-timers I have come across. Billy would be my third bomber pilot and the first to have flown those famous missions known as Operation Tidal Wave.

“We bombed the crap out of them sonny!”

“Fucking awesome.” I murmur in awe.

Bottom and Puck stand up and shift positions so as to direct Billy’s focus away from the (still) standing illicit smoke. I follow suit as I continue to engage Billy.

“Do you think maybe I could ask you some questions about your experiences before we leave?” I ask politely before qualifying, “Obviously, only if you would feel comfortable doing that.”

Not all of our veterans are comfortable discussing those things they did in the service of our country.

Billy looks down at his feet while hitching his thumb into his sans gun belt. The previous six decades seem to slip off and I envision him as a young man relaxing on the beaches of the Adriatic Sea in between flying harrowing missions against Nazi steel and oppression.

“I can do you one better.” He confides. “I kept a journal that you can read if you like.”

An historian’s wet dream.

“Here? Really? You have it here?” I ask surprised.

Billy nods. “I got it up in my trailer. You gotta be careful with it though.”

I assure him that I will treat it like the Crowned jewels if he were willing to make it available to me. With these assurances in hand, he advises me to come around in the morning. We bid him adieu and he begins the walk back to his trailer.

“Are you guys thinking what I’m thinking?” Inquires Bottom in a low voice after Billy rounds the bend. His answer is provided by our blank stares so he elucidates. “I’m betting that Mable is probably buried somewhere in these woods.”

Puck and I groan.

“Well I’m thinking it now, thanks.” I tell him as I jump onboard his morbid bandwagon.


Mushies...they're the reason for the season...
Mushies...they're the reason for the season... | Source
We need this...and this...
We need this...and this... | Source
So what you're saying is...we have just one stem?
So what you're saying is...we have just one stem? | Source
Scientific Method...
Scientific Method... | Source

The Trip Begins...

The dilemma is obvious. How does one impart the experience of a hallucinatory mushroom trip to the uninitiated when, if you have consumed them properly, you are far too fucked up to give a comprehensive accounting of your actions?

The philosophy of K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple Stoner) applies.

In general, prior to launching into your mental voyage of self discovery, you want to make sure you have all of your ducks are in a row. Ideally you have a babysitter or two. We didn’t. As such, we’re forced to rely on prior planning.

We’re assuring that all the things we will need to stay alive are readily available and accessible. It’s not anything dramatic: water, cigarettes, more water, weed, several lighters, orange juice, and other sundry items. Once things get rolling, the less required higher, focused, thinking the better.

In addition to the physical, a certain mental girding is required as well.

There are certain realities that apply to ANY hallucinatory trip; primarily speaking, a lot of the shit you tend to see and hear are probably not even real. It’s rather the point of the exercise. Still, you would be surprised by the number of trippers who forget that fact halfway through the flight.

(That’s the expressed reason why they don’t allow tripped out maniacs in the emergency exit row of airplanes).

I pull out my contribution to the camping trip: The bag of mushies. It’s one of those heavy duty freezer bags that once held two ounces of freshly harvested psilocybin when I’d purchased it ten months earlier for the amazing price of eighty dollars.

Bottom notices the move and calls out, “There’s fungus among us!”

“Shout out to audio hallucinations!” Puck shouts out to audio hallucinations.

For his part, audio hallucination doesn’t acknowledge the praise. At least, not that we heard.

Psychedelically speaking, the previous ten months had been pretty active.

That fact is reflected by the single remaining stem that is sitting in the corner of the outsized bag. About the size of a fat person’s thumb, it’s a lonely sentinel which has been tasked with delivering the three of us to the “other” side.

“That’s what you have left?” Exclaims Puck disappointed.

Bottom looks on with doubt as I pull the scrappy little spore out of the bag.

I make my case...

“I understand that it doesn’t look like much but, as you know, at the VERY end of every bag of hallucinogens, magical elves sprinkle magical dust on whatever’s left and that makes it way more potent than normal.”

“I was unaware of that fact.” Bottom puts forth charitably.

“Bullshit!” Puck, uncharitably, calls out bullshit.

“No, no, no!” I say to Puck before turning my attention to Bottom and allaying his doubts. “Yes, yes, yes, it’s very well documented.”

“Documented by whom?” Demands the disbelieving Puck as she takes the stem from my hand to examine it.

“I believe the Keeblers did extensive beta testing in the late 70s.” I posit formally before continuing, “Of course, all the pioneering work was done by Santa’s elves back in the 20s and 30’s.”

“Santa does keep good scientific records.” Bottom grudgingly admits as Puck breaks the stem into three equal parts.

We consume the mushrooms. They taste like ass...


Tick-tock...
Tick-tock... | Source
Air museum...
Air museum... | Source
A B-24 hit by Flak...
A B-24 hit by Flak... | Source
The Silver Star...
The Silver Star... | Source
I gots to go...
I gots to go... | Source

There are Certain Givens...

We’re rushing to complete those things needing completion prior to the onset of spore-inspired madness. It’s a race against time.

Now that we’re committed, we have about forty minutes to get our shit together. That’s generally the time it takes between consumption, ingestion, and launch mode.

We need to eat. Riding a mushroom trip on an empty stomach is tantamount to inviting stomach bile to a bar mitzvah ...in short, it ruins the party.

Bottom’s already grilling salmon steaks and Puck’s chopping up vegetables. Dinner would be ready in about fifteen minutes. It’s been my experience that once the trip starts tripping; food is the last thing on your mind.

I take the thermos to the water spigot and replenish our supplies. After securing the lid, I notice Billy waving at me from the steps of his 5th-wheel. He beckons me over.

“Hey Billy, what’s up?” I ask after putting the thermos down on his stoop.

Billy starts moving up his steps as he tosses his words over his shoulder, “I thought I would give you that journal now. Come on in.”

Actually, having the journal in my possession right now was the last thing I wanted. It was too important to put in the hands of someone who’s on the launching pad of a mushroom trip.

I would probably be unable to explain this fact to Billy without explaining why, however. I feared that if I did try and explain it; he probably wouldn’t let me read it. He appeared old school.

I resolved to collect the document and secure it in a safe place until sanity revisits me in the morning.

The interior of the trailer is a shrine to his World War Two service. Pictures and paintings of B-24 Liberators line the walls and vie with squadron pictures and unit citations for primacy of place in the cramped space.

As Billy rummages through his old foot locker, I examine the exhibits of this unlikely museum in the middle of the woods.

Billy was actually Captain William R. Lowery. He was a bombardier and a recipient of our nation’s third highest honor, The Silver Star. Billy was a fucking bad ass.

I look up to see the cracked leather volume gripped in Billy’s gnarled hands.

“Is the day you earned the Silver Star in there?” I ask with a nod towards the book.

“May 14, 1944.”

Solemnly, I take the book from him.

That’s when the first giggle slips out. Oh shit. I look at my watch. Seven minutes. The mushrooms had arrived early. I was suddenly very aware of how enclosed and warm it was in there. Another giggle.

Things were deteriorating.

“Are you OK?” Billy asks me.

I couldn’t figure out why he was asking me that question from under water at the end of a long tunnel, but I knew I had to respond. It was important to stay focused and sound reassuring. That was the posture I wanted to strike...focused and reassuring.

“I have to go.” I blurt before giggling again. I abruptly remember the reassuring part, “I will take very good care of this for you Billy.”

Suddenly, the trailer door opens and Bottom sticks his head in. “Hey, sorry to interrupt but dinner is ready.”

“THANK GOD!” I say before adding for Billy’s benefit, “I’m really hungry.”

I bolt for the door.


Like a Mo-Frak'n Sledgehammer...
Like a Mo-Frak'n Sledgehammer... | Source

Nature is Trippy...

The fresh air helps. Not a lot. This was unprecedented. Generally speaking you have an ease in period before the trip begins any serious shit. This one had arrived full force and on an express train. Bottom and I compare notes on the walk back to our camp.

“Are you tripping balls?” I ask as I stumble down the path with Billy’s book clutched to my chest. Bottom had grabbed our thermos and appeared to be having difficulties navigating as well.

“Fucker hit like a sledgehammer.” He confirms.

“Puck too?” I ask.

He nods in the affirmative before indicating the book. “Is that the journal?”

I welcome the scrutiny. “Yeah and you have to make sure I put it in my tent before I do anything at all!”

We enter the camp to find Puck tying neon glow sticks to her belt loops. Distracted by the illumination, I move towards the pretty lights before being stopped by Bottom.

“Wait. You have to put that book in your tent.” He advises me.

I’m chagrined. “Right, right, right.”

When I rejoin them, Puck hands me two glow sticks and an apology. I tie the glow-sticks to my belt to afford a way of tracking my movements in the dark.

“I’m a believer of the magical properties of elf dust on the bottom of mushroom bags.” She proselytizes.

“I don’t think he got out.” I share my suspicions.

“Who didn’t get out?” Bottom seeks clarification.

“The elf that sprinkled the mushrooms.” I elaborate.

Puck, the vegetarian, is appalled. “You mean?”

“Yes. I think we ate elf meat.” I confirm.

It was the only thing that made sense from a scientific point of view.

The hours take wing on the strength of the hallucinatory mushrooms and time flies by. Varied images, sounds, and smells cavort with our senses and pull our attentions in conflicting directions.

It was a real fun night.

When the crash came, it came swiftly. It was still dark when I stumbled to my borrowed tent to sleep off the remaining effect of the drug. Sleep comes in fits and starts as it does with mind altering drugs. The still active mind wars with the body’s exhaustion. My eyes flutter like an Oriental fan dancer.

When they open again it’s light outside. Dawn had clocked in to work and was sitting at her desk. I’m not sure what woke me; the light or the subtle movement I could discern through the gapping hole I’d ripped in the side of the tent.

Not fifty feet away stand three deer. A mom and two babies...fawns I believed they’re called. I’m not really sure. I’m not really an outdoorsy kind of guy. They’re beautiful though. I hold perfectly still as I watch them nibbling at the hard scrabble grass that glistens with morning dew.

After a time they pass out of view. I continue to lay there wondering if sleep was going to make a reappearance. Like a dead-beat dad...sleep had taken a powder.

I pull out Billy’s book and open it to May 14, 1944. I begin reading...

“We were very close behind the second flight of three ships. As their bombs were dropping, we were on our run in. As the first ships approached their target we could see heavy ground fire coming from the German 88s...”


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Comments 86 comments

billybuc profile image

billybuc 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

Absolutely hilarious! I have been on several of those adventures back when I was drinking. Never again!


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Hey Billy!

Dang my friend...you are quick! That said, it was a PIPO kind of evening...lol. Have a great day and thank you for stopping by!

Thomas


Sunshine625 profile image

Sunshine625 4 years ago from Orlando, FL

Thomas,

It's because of this adventure and every hub you've created that you deserve the Hubbie for "Class Clown" I voted for you, it was automatic. I didn't even need to think hard (thank you for that.)

Keep on hubbing my clown of a friend :)


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Linda!

Thank you! I actually once won the "Class clown" award in 6th grade. I believe they present the second award as the "Class Clown w/Clusters" ...you can imagine my excitement!

I got my 1 year accolade yesterday so...I guess I'll keep Hubbing! It's pretty fun...

Thanks!

Thomas


Sunshine625 profile image

Sunshine625 4 years ago from Orlando, FL

That's another reason you should get the Hubbie Award, you are the best of the best Class Clown! Your writing is filled with wit and humor. Awesome! Congrats on your one year accolade!!! :)


Deborah Brooks profile image

Deborah Brooks 4 years ago from Brownsville,TX

what an adventure.. lol.. so funny,, I agree with sunshine you deserve a award for this.. fantastic.. what a story

Debbie


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ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Linda,

Thanks for the posting on FB! Yeah...who ever thought I'd make a year, huh? Here's to more yearly accolades!

Thomas


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Deborah,

It WAS a crazy adventure...thank YOU for coming along with me! I'm so glad you liked it.

Have a great day!

Thomas


jhamann profile image

jhamann 4 years ago from Reno NV

Be back at around 2:00pm to sprint into the finish zone. Then and only then will I leave a comment worthy of such memories. Jamie


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Hey Jamie,

I look forward to reading that worthy comment!

Take care,

Thomas


jhamann profile image

jhamann 4 years ago from Reno NV

The bastards kept me busy until now. Anyways, awesome, what a great STORY.

Hey, was that journal describing the same business that was going on in Catch-22, tip of Italy stuff.

Jamie


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Jamie,

Billy's journal would have closely approximated Heller's Catch-22 on a couple of levels (i.e. the Army Air Corp in Italy).

It also differs in a couple of ways...I believe in the story they flew B-25 Mitchell's which were a medium bomber whereas, Billy was flying the big-boys (for Europe) B-17s and B-24s. The other difference was that Billy clearly relished his service time while Heller's protagonist was hankering to get the hell out!

I'm glad you liked the story!

Thomas


Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 4 years ago from North Carolina

The only thing worse than breaking down in the middle of nowhere with carnivorous caribou roaming around is having an engine crisis in downtown Atlanta at 2:00 a.m. with @#%#@ all about in the shadows. Loved it Thomas--a nifty combo of Burning Man and maybe On the Road. As possibly some interest to you concerning WW2-- had an uncle in the 45 Thunderbird who was the lone survivor of a squad shot down by snipers on the Rhine. He took a bullet through both legs, was captured and nearly starved in the stalag. Those guys are leaving us fast now so it was great to see Billy included herein. Up and ping, ping, ping my friend.


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Alastar,

Most interesting about your uncle. The 45 I.D. was a famed unit and i certainly would have enjoyed chatting him up about his experience (he would have been my first P.O.W.)

You are absolutely correct my friend...the old guys are slipping away entirely to quickly. You can imagine how thrilled I was coming across all that history in the middle of nowhere...lol!

Glad you liked this offering and (essentially) my tribute to Billy!

Thomas


Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 4 years ago from North Carolina

my bad Thomas- it was the 42nd rainbow not 45 thunder- he was the kind of person that was loved and respected by all- never had a bad word to say about anyone-ever. Believe the squad was wiped out and he wounded and captured during the Germans Operation Northwind.


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Alastar,

lol...well the Rainbow is pretty damned storied too! Talk about worst than bad luck...being taken out in the LAST part of the LAST German offensive!

Your past tense would suggest he passed? I'm sorry to hear that. It's been about six years since this story occurred and I often wonder if Billy is still with us up there. I hope so.

Thank you for visiting this story my good friend! Ain't it like 4 in the morning in your neck of the woods? What are you doing up??

Thomas


Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 4 years ago from North Carolina

Thats right Thomas, it was about their last major offensive in the west, hadn't thought of that. And he passed 6 years ago - insomnia strikes on occasion ol boy and check your Google A to see how long the N.C. one stayed on your great story!


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 4 years ago from New York

This was hysterical. There really isn't much else I can say without going into a two page diagnostic essay! I voted this up, funny, awesome, and interesting, oh and shared!


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Alastar,

I know well the concept of insomnia. I guess your R.E.M. loss is my Google analytic gain...lol! Thanks for your great comments my fine friend!

Thomas


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ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

tillsontitan,

I almost never ask that people complete a two page diagnostic essay over my crap so I'm just really glad you liked it and nothing else is required! Thank you for the read, comment, votes, and share!

Take care,

Thomas


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

What a trip!


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Susan,

It was a trip and a half. Still, it was waaaay better than going to downtown Reno and watching the 10-minute fireworks show. I'm glad you were able to come along!

Thomas


RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

Thomas you tried to slip this by me! lol Oh my goodness - Keebler's and I cant believe you guys ate Elf meat. Unbelieveable!

hella funny - up and all that! You are so good at writing funny stuff - that is really hard to do - I laughed all the way through!


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Kelly,

And as it turns out...elf meat also tastes like ass! Not only did I slip this by you...I hereby dedicate it to you! You have to have a giggle or two when dealing with SILs and whatnot!

I'm pleased that you are pleased!

Thomas


cclitgirl profile image

cclitgirl 4 years ago from Western NC

Oh, this is freaking hilarious!! Turtles, neon belts, Venn diagrams stuck in the middle of nowhere...You remind me of the author who wrote the book, "Everything Is Illuminated." You need to write a book...wait...you're on HP...you might have done that already. Hehe. Next time you go camping, can I be on the roster? LOL.


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Cyndi...

Well of course you can be on the roster for the next camping trip! Um...do you have a tent I can borrow?

Turtles, glow sticks, and Venn diagrams...these are the components of a successful camping trip! I'm very glad you liked it and thanks for suggesting writing a book...I would be lying if I said I hadn't thought about it.

"Everything Is Illuminated" hella, hella rocked! That's an awesome compliment. Thank you very much!

Thomas


Puck 4 years ago

I never doubted the elf meat. never.


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Puck!!!

Welcome to my humble hub my friend!

Indeed, I do understand that you were an early adapter to the "elf meat" doctrine ...alas...narrative need demanded that someone be in opposition...that narrative need became you. So yeah, we should go camping again. Can I borrow a tent?

Thomas


CriticalMessage profile image

CriticalMessage 4 years ago from Chicagoland, Illinois

Yep, I am pretty sure that we had camped out in the same parking lots somewhere, everywhere.... lol


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ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Critical Message,

lol...yes...there is a universal truth to what you say. I am quite sure we camped out in similar parking lots somewhere, everywhere!

Thank you for stopping by and and taking a look at this and leaving a great comment!

Thomas


Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 4 years ago from North Carolina

Ye mid-summer nights stoner dream is shared Thomas! To risque for the HP followers? nah, they're smart and open-minded grown-ups.


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Alastar,

I believe this can be shared on Hubpages although it may be more appropriate after prime-time. Not that I am (generally speaking) all that appropriate!

Thanks for sharing my good friend!

Thomas


alocsin profile image

alocsin 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

What a wild and wonderful adventure. Being able to read this saves me the trouble of getting stoned to have the same fun. Voting this Up and Interesting.


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

alocsin,

To paraphrase Hunter S. Thompson... "I certainly don't advocate illegal drug use but it's always worked for me!" LoL...I'm glad you were able to go camping vicariously through us!

Thanks for stopping by and saying hi my friend!

Thomas


RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

It means so much more to me than that! I actually came to get another giggle:)


barbergirl28 profile image

barbergirl28 4 years ago from Hemet, Ca

I can tell that you must have done your research on this article... I did however read off some parts to my husband - particularly about how they taste like ass.. personally, I wouldn't know. I have neither tasted ass or fungi of that sort. However, I do know funny... and I laughed! Funny stuff man!


CriticalMessage profile image

CriticalMessage 4 years ago from Chicagoland, Illinois

puff puff pass....


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Kelly,

I'm actually having a special on giggles! Feel free to fill your whole cart! I learned a new word today...pablum...the context is obvious...lol.

Thomas


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Stacy,

As you know...I'm a professional...gotta do the research otherwise people would just think I'm crazy! Ahhh...the taste of ass... the ass-tasting continuum would include super-model ass on the one end...and plumber's ass on the other. Mushies would probably fall closer to the rotor-rooter side of things.

I'm glad you liked it and thank you for sharing!

Thomas


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Critical,

puff, puff, pass...


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 4 years ago from Toronto, Canada

“Shouldn’t we be following north facing fungus on trees that face south as the crow flies?” - When lost, just go right. It's the right thing to do, in my opinion.

"As my idea of ‘roughing it’ is a Motel-6 without Cable-TV" - I think You're ready for the Survival show.

"There’s never a stiff breeze around when you need one." - I can so agree with this one. Or when You don't need a breeze because You're trying to light your joint with the last match - the wind never stops ... luck of the stoner ...

“Did you bomb the Ploesti oilfields?” - That's my homeland You guys were talking about ... Ploiesti is about an hour away from Bucharest, where I was born and raised. Now, where can I find the guy that was bombing us? LOL

“We bombed the crap out of them sonny!” - Ya! Fun and games let me tell You ... My grandparents had some stories ...

"We consume the mushrooms. They taste like ass..." - Most people say that but I am not sure if that is correct because that would involve a lot of people tasting ... You know what lol.

That was a fun read. I've had countless such adventures and I can always appreciate the tales of others who survived lol Mushrooms and the forest are a great combination, for those who have the will to open doors of perception.

Thanks for the write.

Cheers!


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Mr. Happy,

I gotta say, your comment made me hella happy. It sounds as if you have traveled some of the paths I have, as indicated, by your knowledge of stiff breezes and last matches and the symbioses of mushrooms and forests.

I am very glad to make you acquaintance!

In my quest for info on all things World War Two...I would love to hear your grandparents stories. Tell them sorry about the bombs and shit.

Take care and thanks for leaving such a kick-ass comment!

Thomas


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

Hi, I wondered what you were going to say when you went to billys place and got the journal! phew that was close! lol! so you had a great trip?! sorry, couldn't resist! great read and so funny!


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Nell,

I liked Billy a lot and I totally thought I would have more time before...you know...things started picking up...lol. I spent several hours with him (later) over the course of the weekend talking. I believe those years he spent in Europe were quite possibly the high point of his life. He truly came alive while we talked.

Ahh...It was a great trip with great friends on a great trip! Thank you so much for stopping by and saying hi...I greatly appreciate it!

Thomas


epigramman profile image

epigramman 4 years ago

.....Thomas, I so do look up to you, and your unique writing style is beyond compare giving you bragging rights as being a total original.

I just said that to another 'young' lady who is a true original too - her initials being ...... Miss B. I will send her a link of this hub ......

so you are in fine fine company Mister T.

I will post this creative beauty of yours to my FB group Let's just talk music or cinema - madly and gladly - loudly and proudly . Thank you for letting me make you one of my heroes here at the Hub and sending good thoughts and warm wishes from lake erie time ontario canada 3:55pm


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Epigramman,

I am always more than honored when I can entice you into one of my silly hubs...lol! Your kind words are a balm against the notion that sometimes I think my writing is just TOO weird!

I look forward to meeting your friend Miss B and reading her material as I too enjoy originality!

Thank you for the visit, (awesome as hell) comment, and the share!

Thomas


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

Thomas, Mister C sent me the link to your work of art and I consider it so on many levels. Your writing is extraordinary and though I don't say this often, you have a vocabulary that rivals the best. Your style is flawless; comedy, message, meaning all neatly wrapped up in a controlled yet laid back package. I'll take your words for the mushroom experience, as I see things in a kaleidoscope of colors in my unadulterated state and I'm afraid I'd be blinded by the light under the influence.

My bro is a professor of microbiology at UC, Davis and I couldn't help but wonder if you were near the green spaces he raves about in Davis. Thanks for the fantastic journey, Thomas. I almost stopped reading this when I got worried the old man's book might end up in the campfire. All's well that ends well. Awesome.


epigramman profile image

epigramman 4 years ago

....that was Miss B ......by the way ..... lol


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

hi Amy,

Both you and Colin are far too kind and I greatly appreciate it! This one was somewhat difficult because although it was a story about illegal drug use...I also wanted to make it something more than that as well! The ability to see a kaleidoscope of colors (au natural) is awesome and I certainly wouldn't wish to advocate blindness in technicolor.

Davis (a great little town, btw) is about two hours west of me and yes...me and your bro have probably been playing in the same woods on occasion!

I'm glad that I was able to establish enough dramatic suspense whereby you were left with he fear that I was going to accidentally incinerate poor Billy's book...that was my fear as well. I'm also glad you kept reading to see that I kept my shit together...lol!

It's very nice to meet you!

Thomas

PS...@ Colin...thanks for introducing me to Miss B!!


TToombs08 profile image

TToombs08 4 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

Thomas...lmao! My ex-bf was from Visalia and dragged me to Tulare. I am surprised you lived. :) A very magical and entertaining romp...I'm so glad the caribou didn't find you, you would have been toast. :)


midget38 profile image

midget38 4 years ago from Singapore

LOL,LOL. The typical trip I'd expect from Bottom and Puck! Glad you survived the adventure......and didn't become a caribou target!! All my votes, Thomas, and sharing!


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Terrye,

I have to assume that the fact that he dragged you to Tulare is the reason why he is an ex? I HAVE noticed a correlation, however, between those people who have been to Tulare are typically "dragged" there by some other person. Hmmm...?

I have to thank you my friend...you went on a reading frenzy of my silly crap. I hope you are all right...

Thomas


TToombs08 profile image

TToombs08 4 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

Thomas, I tried to make it through all of your hubs last night, but it was a monumental task and I am afraid I was not up to the challenge. I will, however, endeavor to do better in my next attempt to summit the grand "Mount ThoughtSandwiches." Next time, I'll pack an overnight bag. :)

Being dragged to Tulare was the straw that broke the moose's back, I'm afraid. :) I'm happier for it, so things worked out in the end. *whew*


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Terrye,

Damn girl...that must be your tough Alaskan constitution...I don't even like reading all my stuff in a single sitting and I have an emotional attachment to some of them..lol. Remember...pace yourself...

Good thing you lost the dead weight of the Tulare dragger...you are WAY better than that!

Thomas


TToombs08 profile image

TToombs08 4 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

I'm a glutton for punishment, Thomas! :) hehehe kidding, I find your novellas entertaining. :)


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Midget,

I must say Bottom and Puck are two of my most favorite Shakespeare characters and camping characters! I'm glad you enjoyed this and...oh yes...I outwitted the caribou!

Thank you for saying hi!

Thomas


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Terrye...

I've heard that about you. Bahaha...Novellas...lol!

Thomas


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA

Oh, my, now that was a TRIP in more ways than one. I loved the photos and their captions, too. And I want a bobble head Shakespeare!!!


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Vicki,

Don't ask me why...but I always took you for a bobble-head Shakespeare kind of girl! Thank you for coming on this "trip" with me and I'm glad you enjoyed it! Come back anytime (that would be what's known as a flashback!) :)

Thanks,

Thomas


TToombs08 profile image

TToombs08 4 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

LIES! They are all lies, I tell you! :) Not a shred of truth in any of it!


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Terrye...

Oh well...if they are lies...I will start using a pencil (rather than my typical sharpie) when I continue to write these things on public bathroom walls. You know...just saying...

Thanks for stopping by dear-ums!

Thomas


TToombs08 profile image

TToombs08 4 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

lmao @ Thomas. Never fear, I shall continue to post artful pose of thee on the walls of ladies rooms across the country. :)


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Terrye,

Interesting that...despite that recent judge's ruling, court order, and restraining order...I too do the majority of my work in the ladies room...see you in the stall by the wall!

Thomas


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 4 years ago from Baltimore, MD

How did I miss this hub? Wow, I feel like a loser. I hope you can forgive me. As usual, awesome and disturbing all rolled into one. Thank you for making my Sunday a little brighter. :-)


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 4 years ago from Baltimore, MD

P.S. That bobblehead Shakespeare doll is freaking me out a little.


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Jeannie!!

My favorite Baltimore-based Hubber-ette! There is absolutely no need for forgiveness and, as such, I will not be doing that! You are welcome for making your Sunday a little brighter and you have more than re-payed me with your kind words. I'm glad you liked it!

Thomas

PS....The bobblehead Shakespeare doll is SUPPOSED to freak you out a little.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

So, your "Thomas,"......glad to know your name. Your hubber name only makes me hungry and I need no encouragement.

I am sorry (for myself) that I have not discovered you before this. I have read some very funny stuff here, to be sure....but you are positively Prime. I've had a lifelong love affair with comedy......just believe me, I know it well. I don't necessarily Do it well, but it's just one of "those" things....Ya know, like knowing beauty when you see it even if you're ugly as crap?....yeah, you know what I mean.

Even your pictures with comments cracked me up.......that takes genius. Well, you're stuck with me now. Up & shared


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

hi "effer"!

I am Thomas but that is because nobody else wants to be...It's my lot in life. I'm very grateful to Nell for publishing her hub about funny hubbers...that's how I found out about you! Like you, I too have had a life long love of comedy ...I do know what you mean as I am ugly as crap!

I'm very glad you liked this (odd) little piece of literature...it was a story that HAD to get out...lol!

Thank you for stopping by and uplifting my day with your kind words!

Thomas


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

My pleasure, crazy man.............Just so you know....YOU could easily get away with being ugly as crap.....your humor is all you need to attract whoever you like! As long as you don't make them laugh in bed.......I'm just sayin. Not that I remember that stuff........but knowing me, I would have remembered laughing.........oh, come to think of it....my ex-husband..........No, never mind.

Sorry about your deformity. Keep saving those adsense pennies. There's always plastic surgery.


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Paula,

(taking notes...no laughing in bed...yeah...that DOES make sense...lol) I WILL be saving those adsense pennies...for about 32-months (at this rate) until that exciting $50 payout! Body sculpting will be on me when that happens!

Thomas


Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 4 years ago from North Carolina

Awesomely wicked write, an honor to share. What a talent we fortunate readers have in you, Thomas.


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Alastar,

Thank you for taking this one around for a run in the corral my friend! To answer your question from your hub...I've recently gotten some inspiration for a couple of stories...I plan on fiddling with the words and see what I can come up with. Again...congrats on your 50th...truly an accomplishment!

Thomas


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

Hi Thomas, sorry it took me so long to answer your question on my hub, I just done it now okay?


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

hi Nell,

You hardly owe me an apology my friend. I'm just getting settled in my own-self! I read your comment and would like at this time to issue an apology...I may be badgering you with future questions as I proceed. Sorry...it's just the way I roll!

Have a great night!

Thomas


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 4 years ago from Chicago

What a long strange trip it's been brother! That was a fascinating story and also extremely funny. I enjoyed it immensely. Well done! Thank you.


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

James,

Thank you for coming on this long strange trip with me good sir! I'm very glad you enjoyed it and found it funny (I'm not sure everyone does...lol) Thank you for popping in and saying hi...you are always more than welcome here!

Thomas


Ghost32 4 years ago

ThoughtSandwiches: You're right; I didn't find it funny. But I DID find it fascinating, and have to thank Becky for mentioning you, which reminded me I REALLY needed to get over here and read something of yours even if it does make the Encyclopedia Brittanica look like the Reader's Digest.

My Dad was one of those WWII vets. Not an aviator, but a U.S. Navy aircraft mechanic. He had a ship sunk under him in the Pacific (never did know which ship), survived it (presumably lost a whole lot of shipmates), and came back bedbug-crazy. Told me once that it took him "a lot of cases of whiskey to make the adjustment".

But I do have a mushroom story for ya. Not a great one like yours, and I never did do anything but booze in my day except for once sharing a single joint with 3 other people on Christmas Eve. WILL say that Cheech & Chong tapes are funny as s**t when you're stoned, but the flying out of control backward in the dream state later...didn't care for that so much.

The mushroom story, piddly as it may be: Our friend Tom was a six-five drunken Irishman. Got hold of a monster batch of shrooms one time. Couldn't leave 'em alone, no proper preparation and disciplined ingestion such as you describe here.

One night, already out of it, he took all the rest he had left (still a lot) and decided to make sort of a "mushroom stew" out of them. Long story short, the next morning he went into a full blown grand mal seizure in his studio apartment. My five-foot 92 pound wife, who at that time was a five-foot 92-pound girl still living with a loser from whom she was in the process of being stolen by me, had to save him.

She's seizure prone herself and was the only one on the scene who knew the score. (I wasn't present, my apartment being in another building on the other side of the courtyard.) Other folks were in the room, but just stared at her when she told them what needed doing, so she got her feet against the wall and used her world class athlete strength to roll the big sumbuck over so his tongue was falling out instead of down his own throat.

He survived, though he did end up spending several days in hospital and blaming the rest of us (even including me, a little bit) for his problems. Last we knew, he was still a big drunken Irishman, but hadn't scored any more shrooms.

Voted Up & a Bunch.


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Fred,

It is great to see you my friend! I hope this missive finds you and Pam doing fine! lol...it sounds like the "big drunken Irishman" is the poster child of how not to do mushrooms. Party responsibly is my motto in such situations. He was lucky to have your (future) lady with him to save his big dumb ass.

Kudos to your dad for surviving that big war and doing what he had to do to get over it...and then surviving that! I had an uncle who was in the infantry. He landed on D-day and fought all the way through to Bastogne and was certifiably bat-shit crazy when he got back according to my dad. Sadly, he didn't survive the cases of whiskey and what not that became his constant companion back states side. He passed in the mid-1960s. Sherman was right...war is indeed hell.

Again Fred, it is very good to see you and thank you for putting in the effort to get through this "Encyclopedia Britannica" I had going on here. Believe it or not, good sir, there was a hell of a lot I cut out...lol!

Thomas

PS...thank you Becky for the shout out!


Randy Godwin profile image

Randy Godwin 4 years ago from Southern Georgia

Ah yes, we all have our shroom stories. Some are more "visual" than others. Enjoyed!

SSSSS


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Randy,

Some are certainly more "visual" than others and it always feels like we won the lottery when we get good visuals! I'm glad you enjoyed this and thank you much for taking the time to stop and say hi!

Thomas


cclitgirl profile image

cclitgirl 4 years ago from Western NC

I just had to come back and say, this hub cracks me up every time I read it/think about it. (I *swear* it's not the wine.) Since I read this the first time, camping seriously has a whole new meaning for me. Just thought I'd let you know. Hehehe.


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Cyndi...

I'm honored that I have managed to tilt your entire conception of camping to my way of thinking!! Including you...I now have one adherent! It's the start of a trend my friend....

Thomas


midget38 profile image

midget38 3 years ago from Singapore

A hilarious perspective on camping, Thomas...reminds me of why I never want to go on one with the kids I teach! Thanks for sharing, and I came in to say as well...a very happy birthday!


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 3 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Michelle,

I like to view this as a cautionary tale for those going into the woods. If I can save one teacher and their students from going into the woods...? Thank you for reading and for the happy birthday!

Thomas


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epigramman 3 years ago

...back to revisit a classic and someone who is a true original and marches to the beat of his own funky drummer - and somewhere I saw your hallowed name - so Happy Birthday and Merry Christmas all in one shot - lol - and sending you warm wishes for continued health, happiness and prosperity in the new year - and no one writes like you, believe me - well dat guy on de lake of erie is pretty original too - lol - lake erie time ontario canada 10:34pm


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ThoughtSandwiches 3 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Colin,

Alas my friend, you are the truly original one in this group and it is my pleasure to be a devoted fan! Thank you for the birthday and holiday wishes and please accept mine as well!

Thomas

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