Steel Notes Magazine December 2016 - Page 128

Steel Notes Magazine December 2016 too straight, too establishment. Of course my reasoning for this was often ridiculous. I remember that they would brush their teeth every night before going to bed. I thought this was somehow not cool. Like they were still doing the bidding of their parents, otherwise why would you brush your teeth at night as well as in the morning? Don’t ask me what I was thinking. I brushed my teeth, but only in the morning. Like I said, I was nuts and this just confirms it. Now I often brush my teeth three times a day and floss religiously. This straightness, squareness or ordinariness was evident in other ways, too, and that was the cause of the distance between us. The closeness was the exact opposite. As cool as I was, or thought I was, and I was a totally irresponsible drug addict, a lot of the other travelers, from other countries, were just too cool or trying to be too cool. They didn’t talk, not about themselves, their families, their thoughts, dreams, nothing. These uncool Americans were real. When I arrived in Goa I had what was left of that kilo of grass that I’d bought down in Kerala. But I didn’t really like it that much. The hash available in Goa was much better. There was a young Indian woman in Goa that used to make cakes and sell them for a few rupees, and I had her bake up some of the grass, which was some pretty potent pastry. I decided to sell the remainder of the grass to a French hippie and his girlfriend who wanted it. After the transaction was complete he asked me if I was really Abbie Hoffman. I think it was a combination of the scars from my motorcycle accident being fresher and more obvious then they are now, plus the fact that I did resemble Hoffman somewhat, and that he was on the run from the law and had supposedly had plastic surgery. I assured my French friends that I wasn’t, but I don’t think they believed me. They may still be telling the story of how they bought marijuana from Abbie Hoffman in India. I remember Scottish Steve and his girlfriend, Glenda. The Indian police would sometimes come to the beach and hassle people who were sunbathing nude. One time they started warning Steve to put on his clothes or they would arrest him. He started in on them, saying, in his thick Scottish accent, “Oh no, the shame of it, I can’t take it; I’m going to kill myself; I’ll drown myself.” And with that outburst Steve, who was more than six-feet tall, ran to the shoreline, fell to his knees, and placed his nose and mouth in the few inches of water lapping the shore, all the time screaming, “This is it, I can’t stand the shame!” The craziest part was the police reaction. They grabbed him gently by the shoulders, trying to lift his face out of the water, saying, “Oh no, sahib, please don’t be doing such a thing,” and basically pampering Steve, who agreed to forgo suicide if they would just leave him alone. While the Indian police would sometimes hassle us for nudity, the Indian tourist industry would take middleclass Indian gentlemen down to gawk. On one such occasion there were a couple of Indian men enjoying the view when one of the tribe, a very attractive and also muscular German girl, got up from the sand, completely naked, walked over to the Indian men, picked one of them up and lifted him above her head like a barbell. She then walked over to the shoreline and tossed him into the sea. His extreme embarrassment was both painful and hilarious to watch. There was really a community at the beach. We came from all over the world, England, Scotland, Ireland, Ger- 128 Steel Notes Magazine