Entheogens… steal your face

I’m freshly inspired tonight. I’ve found some more of my people.

It’s not always easy living day-by-day the abstinent way, but sad to say back in the day I had more than my fair share. Now I have to pay attention to my health. So I miss some of the best parties. Still, it’s not all about the parties. Mark Morford recently wrote about the sixties counter-culture (via Annie):

Of course, true hippie values mean you’re not really supposed to care about or attach to any of this, you don’t give a damn for the hollow ego stroke of being right all along, for slapping the culture upside the head and saying, See? Do you see? It was never about the long hair and the folk music and Woodstock and taking so much acid you see Jesus and Shiva and Buddha tongue kissing in a hammock on the Dog Star, nimrods.

It was, always and forever, about connectedness. It was about how we are all in this together. It was about resisting the status quo and fighting tyrannical corporate/political power and it was about opening your consciousness and seeing new possibilities of how we can all live with something resembling actual respect for the planet, for alternative cultures, for each other. You know, all that typical hippie crap no one believes in anymore. Right?

On the other hand Paul Krassner once said, “If you can remember the sixties, you weren’t there.” Or maybe that was some other guy….

And there was Bruce at the River invoking the Europe ’72 Grateful Dead album, and Annie with a clip of “He’s Gone” from Copenhagen, and there’s Pig Pen on stage, and I understand one of my favorite writers will be in Copenhagen soon, talking perhaps on “mortality and a sense of humor,” and of course Henry died this week.

Henry was no hippie. Henry was a classical scholar and a fine bureaucrat. But I’m sure he would have appreciated the synchronicity I’m experiencing this evening, and my sense that changes are afoot and there are better times ahead.

Meantime, why not click on the picture of God’s Rottweiler over there in the sidebar and see how he stepped on his own dick this week trying to justify five hundred years of genocidal oppression of indigenous peoples in the western hemisphere. Henry, that link’s for you.

Posted in buh bye, Creative Arts, Dogs, Farm Almanac, Journalism, Nature, People
11 comments on “Entheogens… steal your face
  1. Annie says:

    Thanks for the linkage!

  2. Bruce says:

    was this before or after I posted about Green Teams, which is also synchronistic with the Morford piece?

  3. Zo says:

    Frank! I didn’t realize until just this moment that I have been awarded the Good Blogkeeping Seal, or is it a Certificate, of Incivility!

    I mean, the highly sought-after Seal! What an honor. First, I want to thank all the little people, without whom.

  4. Tom Shugart says:

    Screw clicking on the Rottweiler. I’m hittin the video. Frank, you old devil. You sure know how to stroke the nostalgia buttons. That early Dead video made my day.

    You were out here, weren’t you, back in the days of the old Fillmore upstairs over Boas Pontiac–with the Hell’s Angels providing security and the Airplane frequently teaming up with Jerry, PigPen, Bob et al?

    Of course, as Krassner (or whomever) points out, your memory of same may be a bit blotted out . Mine should be, given the ingested substances, but those evenings were too riveting to ever forget. It wasn’t about being stoned. As Morford is so right in pointing out, it was the connectedness.

    I wonder, if the internet had been around in those days, would we have had the passion for the connections that we formed at those affairs?

  5. fp says:

    Oh yes. I was there. The Matrix, Keystone Korner, Great American Music Hall, Keystone Berkeley, Freight and Salvage, Winterland, The Fillmore, Longshoreman’s hall, Bill Graham running around as self important as Dave Winer… remember The Family Dog out by Playland at the beach? I think that’s where I heard the Dead live for the first time. The places that are escaping my memory are the little jazz clubs in the Sunset where you could hear people like McCoy Tyner and/or Bobby Hutcherson, the places in Marin like the Sweetwater… there was a pool hall in San Rafael that was close to dangerous when I lived there but had gone totally upscale by the nineties when I returned for a visit. What was its name I wonder?

    When I lived on Frederick Street there was a little coffee qua sandwich shop down around the corner on Cole where Elvin Bishop and his ilk would set up to play on any old evening. Can’t remember the name of the place but I could find it for sure.

    Those were good times and if we had the web then, we’d still have had the good times, I’m convinced of it.

  6. Tom Shugart says:

    Boy, Frank, you just about covered ’em all! I think I may have done permanent damage to my eardrums at the Matrix–the place where I heard the Airplane for the first time, with the singer who preceded Grace Slick. I can’t remember her name, but she’s sort of the Pete Best of female rock singers.

    The only name of those jazz clubs that comes back to me is the Both/And. Like a lot of folks, I got so wrapped up in the rock scene that my jazz fervor began to taper off.

    It makes me laugh to think of a dangerous bar in Marin. These days that’s a non sequitur. Can’t help you out on that one. The place on Cole I totally missed out on. I guess you were more plugged in than I was.

  7. It was a good time to be young in the Bay Area. rents were affordable, nightlife was all around… I got there a few years after the wave crested in the summer of 1967, but that’s me. I’ve always been a little slow on the uptake.

    That place on Cole was like a hundred little corner dives in that era of whole grain sandwiches with avocado, tomatoes and sprouts. In 1971 I lived near the corner of California and Divisadero. There was a little coffee shop on the corner. Five or six years later I was listening to live music there. Those places were always turning over… Kulcha!

    That place in San Rafael was on 4th street toward the freeway, not far from the GG Transit bus stop. There was a time when that part of San Rafael was a mixed working class neighborhood. before they paved it with gold, I guess.

  8. annie says:

    Wow, your memories take me back, Frank.
    I was born and raised in the city-my ‘hood was North Beach/Telegraph Hill, mostly. But my dad spent a few of the good years in the Haight. The city was something special. I caught shows primarily at Winterland, Berkeley Community Theatre, The Keystone(s), and so on.
    What’s weird is, I recall the pool hall in what was then the seedy part of San Rafael. It was on the corner, and had big glass windows…? I lived in S.R. for a time in 79-80. Lived just up from downtown above Mission San Rafael. A different place, then. (Like most of this state!)

  9. hannah says:

    No, no, no, Frank…Bill Graham was not self-important….he was a tragic figure and much of the scene would not have happened without him. I knoweth of what I speak, having lived in his house (Masada) and all.
    But—thanks for the memories….

  10. Hannah, he may not have been self-important, but he SEEMED self-important, often blustering around shouting at people and behaving willfully. I didn’t know him at all, just observed some of that apparently rude and overly assertive behavior in public.

    Annie, while you were in San Rafael I was in San Anselmo in a little house on Scenic up the hill from Center Boulevard. The Dead did a benefit concert for the Fairfax/San Anselmo Children’s Center around then. It was a great concert but it was time-boxed… only a few hours of music, two short sets. It’s one of the few concerts in my recollection where they seemed to be “working” rather than playing. I think it might have been because they were TOO close to home.

  11. Tom Shugart says:

    I’m on Hannah’s side on this one. A friend of mine was one of Graham’s top executives (after the early days when Graham’s operations morphed into a large enterprise). He would say exactly what Hannah says. Anyway, I’m posting my take on it in my blog today.

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