Infectious LSD

Mark Weber & his 1963 Volks van ---- at Studio 400 1/2 ---- Upland, California -- 1972

Mark Weber & his 1963 Volks van —- at Studio 400 1/2 —- Upland, California — 1972

INFECTIOUS LSD

We jacked up the Karmann Ghia
but forgot to block the rear tires
so that after we got the flat off,
of course, parked in the grass
it just slumped over, bent hell
out of the jack mount —-

We might have had a chance but Mickey had got
in on the other side thinking we were going somewhere —-

Do you remember how cosmically funny everything was
when you were on LSD?

And how nearly impossible it was to function
in the “real world” —-

Near midnight and the world had a glow
the beautiful Shane in a gossamer muslin paisley dress
long iridescent dark hair flowing to mid-thigh
quietly staring at the sky, says something
about how the moon abides . . . .

Mickey sitting in there staring straight out the windshield
completely bonkers
we explained as delicately as possible that
we were not going anywhere
and please get the fuck out and help —-

Jacked that Ghia up a second time, but
damned if we didn’t forget AGAIN to block the tires
and down it went, axle to the grass, all over like a rerun ———

That called for a fresh round of beers.
And a doobie.

Luckily, there were six or seven of us stoners hanging around
who could lift the Ghia while someone shoved a block
of wood under it, providing nobody started laughing,
which
was impossible —-
interconnecting gears, cellular reincarnations, whirling
lug wrench mandala, atomized lug nuts, disintegrating
pulsing purest weight of this car whose metal was once
500 miles into the center of the Earth —–
I can’t imagine anyone was going anywhere —-
telepathic awareness:
someone had merely noticed that Tuna’s Ghia had a flat,
marooned on a sea of grass,
so, we were pitching in to help, such as it was, stoned
to the gills, infinitesimal, embryonic, liquid, lifting and hoisting,
Then somebody’d yell, “What the fuck, there’s spiders
all over this spare! And why is that one staring at me!”
and we’d fall out, all over again ——

Reminds me of the time Kurt bought a letterpress and these
things are huge, made out of iron —
we took the mattress out of
my VW van and went out to this old farmer’s place
to fetch the thing, two carloads of us longhairs stoned on LSD and
wine —-
we got the giant side wheel off, then started to drag this monster
out of the barn, but, when we pulled it away from the barn wall,
the barn started to list and we all ran outside and
damned if that barn didn’t fall over —-

That letterpress had been holding the barn up!

The farmer looked aggrieved and said, “Gee, if I knew that
was gonna happen I wouldnta sold it to yew”
We were barely keeping our composure, little splurps of laughter
escaping from our clenched lips, until one of us jokers
broke loose, and we were howling, so that we’d have to take turns
consoling the farmer while endeavoring to keep a straight face
as he yammer’d about the mess, “Golly, what am I gonna do, that’s
my barn?”
Which would engender another burst of laughter, holding our
stomachs, truly feeling sorry for the farmer, but gawd damn this
is funny, we’d be hiding behind the van trying to get control
of ourselves, JW was having a spasm, and Borego was wheezing,
I’d be gathering myself together so I could go relieve B.Rian (aka Brian, my
little brother) who was explaining to the farmer that
the foundation timbers must have rotted, and I’d lose it, again, and
have to retreat back behind the van where Kurt was gasping for air, we
could hear Johnny say, “Wow, man, sorry about your barn,”
which only made matters worse, only to be topped
by the hapless farmer saying, “Maybe you boys could come back someday
and help me stand my barn?”
Is he serious? Us?
What’s he smokin’?
Can we have some?

Eucalyptus leaves floating slowly through the afternoon breeze
Crows with glistening black sonic feathers
Rows and rows of citrus groves pulsing
Hereafter nothing would be the same

Alas,
we got what we came for,
loaded up, apologized one more time, even if it wasn’t exactly
any fault of ours, so much is fate
so much is change
this cosmic barn gone in the ever-crumbling cosmic scheme of things

Mark Weber 8-10oct2o14

B.Rian in his auto shop ------ Upland, California ---- late 1970s ---- photo by his  brother Mark Weber

B.Rian in his auto shop —— Upland, California —- late 1970s —- photo by his brother Mark Weber

Still Life w/ flutes, guitar, bongos & bananas by Mark Weber -- 1977, Upland CA

Still Life w/ flutes, guitar, bongos & bananas by Mark Weber — 1977, Upland CA

Shane ---- late 1970s ---- Upland, California ---- photo by Mark Weber

Shane —- late 1970s —- Upland, California —- photo by Mark Weber

Mickey Kazinski -------- Claremont, California ----- 1977  ---- photo by Mark Weber ---- I've lost  touch with Mickey over the years . . . .  He was the guy that dubbed Brad "Tuna" now that I  think of it . . . . .

Mickey Kazinski ——– Claremont, California —– 1977 —- photo by Mark Weber —- I’ve lost touch with Mickey over the years . . . . He was the guy that dubbed Brad “Tuna” now that I think of it . . . . .

Bee farm in Alta Loma, California (since incorporated into Rancho Cucamonga) -- this is the landscape  in which that fallen barn was located:  citrus groves surrounded by columns of eucalyptus trees from  Australia planted to act as wind screens against the Santa Ana Winds ---- 1977 probably October ---- photo by Mark Weber

Bee farm in Alta Loma, California (since incorporated into Rancho Cucamonga) — this is the landscape in which that fallen barn was located: citrus groves surrounded by columns of eucalyptus trees from Australia planted to act as wind screens against the Santa Ana Winds —- 1977 probably October —- photo by Mark Weber

Brad Fisher (1952 - 2009)(aka "Tuna" because canned tuna fish was only 30 cents in the early 70s and so Brad ate a lot of tuna) ---- you might think I wrote this poem after looking at this photo, but I didn't even remember this photo until a minute ago ---- gave me goosebumps when I came across it, because that is exact spot where we were jacking up this Karmann Ghia there at Brad's place, around the corner from my old digs ----- photo by Mark Weber ---- 1976, Upland, California

Brad Fisher (1952 – 2009)(aka “Tuna” because canned tuna fish was only 30 cents in the early 70s and so Brad ate a lot of tuna) —- you might think I wrote this poem after looking at this photo, but I didn’t even remember this photo until a minute ago —- gave me goosebumps when I came across it, because that is exact spot where we were jacking up this Karmann Ghia there at Brad’s place, around the corner from my old digs —– photo by Mark Weber —- 1976, Upland, California

13 Comments

  1. In Memory of my old friend & roommate Brad Fisher

    We initially bonded over music. The tribal bonfires of underground radio on the FM dial in the late 60s. The rock music of those years has a special place in my memories. In high school we were the ones who brought our guitars and flutes and bongos to school so we could sit under the trees at lunch and play: We were a small group of maybe 20 in a school of more than 2600 that probably thought of us as the hippies. We were just kids. We had some good times. It still amazes me how brave we were. Just kids but “older then than now” as Dylan pointed out, going against the grain. Brad was intelligent, scientific, pragmatic, and idealistic. Idealism was a condition of youth in those years, most of us never managed to shake it. Not all of us survived the 60s (The Sixties lasted into 1974 or 75 by my reckoning) and drugs, mostly psychotropic drugs, were a part of the scene, and some of us went deep upon that path: jails, hospitals, and death were all in the bargain. Brad contracted Hep C from hypodermic needle use (heroin) in the 70s and it claimed him later.

    I’ll tell more about Brad Fisher in the unfolding of time, he is missed. We lived about 40 minutes east of downtown Los Angeles in the giant sprawl of suburbs — we’d troop around in our vans, go out to concerts all over from Santa Barbara to San Diego. One concert that stands out was at Santa Monica Civic, me, Kenny, and Brad in my parent’s Buick 6 ventured all the way out to Santa Monica beach to see Pink Floyd (during their Umma Gumma tour) and I had enough sense not to take any drugs that night because I was driving. Brad and Kenny took either psilocybin or maybe mushrooms, or mescalin, it wasn’t LSD, it came on slowly and gradually and they became quieter and quieter as we drove through the night.

  2. Umma Gumma . . . good times! Yes, not everyone did/does survive. So just remember what I’m telling you kids, if you do drugs, be prepared to spend a lot of time laughing and having fun with your friends. ZEITGEIST!

  3. DAVID PRINCE LEFT SOME LSD IN MY REFRIDGERATOR. STILL THERE. CALIFORNIA BEAMIN’, THANKS MARK, I SMELL EUCALYPTUS…..DELICIOUS………

  4. Wow, what a weird time it must have been, I think I was around then but not sure why, maybe just so I could check out the brown bears and palm trees dancing on 101 on the way back from the Mission to my County job in LA.

  5. Cuzzin' Patsy aka Lillie White

    October 13, 2014 at 7:56 pm

    Ohhh yes yes yes.. Evocative for sure. I remember laughing ridiculously hard with all the sudden new awareness and epiphany that occurred almost every time. Yes I could have been there – gee, perhaps I was. Who really knows for sure any more? I am beginning to think there must be much more truth to cosmic connections than we remember so far.

    This is so very funny and even deeper and richer now. Through your words I can see the particular kind of daylight that existed there in the 70s. Not sure where it went.. but it was long gone by the time I left in the early 80s. I love this piece.

  6. Been There – Done That!
    wonderful poem Mark
    those were the days

  7. a beauty, for sure…

  8. billy the celloist

    October 15, 2014 at 5:26 am

    got my first acid from Sandy Bull in Boston in 1959..it was made in Switzerland, and he had a lot. When i moved to 3551/2 Bowery and started a 6 month gig at the 5Spot with Jimmy Guiffre, Sandy gave me a bunch of it, but i found it impossible to trip and be in the same room with that clarinet, so i put it away in a drawer. one Monday afternoon, night off ahead, i decided to trip, and invited Zoot Sims, who had been bugging me to try some, to trip with me.

    He told me he had a 2 p.m., so we dropped about 9:30, smokin’ and trippin’ heavy, until around 1 p.m. when i let Zoot out the loft door to walk down the 5 flights and cab it uptown to CBS. i listened to records until the phone rang at about 4:30. It was Zoot, calling from the phone booth across the Bowery and up a block, right in front of Stefan Wolpe’s apartment. “Hey, man, it’s Zoot; i think i’m stuck in the phone booth !”

  9. wow, Buell, so you must have gotten some of the same batch that Allen Ginsberg had ( ! ) ——- I’ve always thought 1959 very early for LSD availability ——– but, Allen’s poem “Lysergic Acid” (1959) was written under the influence and that poem just slays me: THIS is HOW I’d like to write poems, period! And Allen Ginsberg got there firstest with the mostest, it’s brilliant —- You can find the poem at the back of his KADDISH (City Lights) collection used as filler.

  10. billy the celloist

    October 16, 2014 at 4:46 am

    in the spring of 1961,Tony Scott was playing with a 4tet at The Dom on St.Mark’s Place 4 nights a week; Henry Grimes was on bass; Henry went on a recording session in the afternoon which went overtime (with Sonny Rollins and Don Cherry). he called me from the studio, and i agreed to cover for him. i had just dropped a Sandoz 250…but i needed the $50 Grimes offered… so i arrived at The Dom with my classical bass, a beautiful William Forster, which reputedly had been in the ensemble of the first performance of Handel’s Messiah and many premieres of Haydn symphonies, etc; i had to bring that bass, as i had left my jazz bass at the Dave Garroway show, where i was subbing for Milt Hinton quite often. as i was unpacking, i had that acidpuke…did it behind the piano…and then that unbelievable Sandoz rush ! as we launched into “Ornithology” at 1/4 note=210 or so…which the drummer soon pushed up to 240…no names, please! once again, that clarinet pierced the acid sound barrier, and after a grim dealing with Body and Soul, i’m told i put the Forster on the floor and strolled home to 2nd Ave. at 5th St. when Henry got there an hour later, Tony had put the Forster behind the piano, partially on the acidpuke. Henry called me on his first break (no cell phone !), i did manage to answer the phone and he told me he would bring it over after the gig, which he did. and he, being the soul of kindness that he is, gave me the bread for the gig !! a last good acid story soon…

    for the gig ! he had never tripped, but he completely understood how that clarinet had blown me out of there..without my Forster bass !!

    hour later

  11. I love your poem Mark! Those stories are hilarious – I’d love to hear you reciting them!
    Billy’s Zoot Sims story is so funny!

  12. I can see from his photo and your description that Brad was a dear and unique person.

  13. 8 or 9 THINGS

    1) This poem was a spin-off from another project I’ve been working on about the Sixties, actually a couple projects: Local radio host Scott MacNicholl of the Psychedelic Radio Head Shoppe on KUNM asked if I’d write him a LSD poem (this isn’t it) as well, we co-produced a few shows (on-going) where we pretended we found an old aircheck in the basement from 1969 (I preferred 1967 of 68 but 1969 is a loaded year) and I wrote all the advertising spots (great fun). Also, at the same time Kazzrie Jaxen approached me about doing a concert of Sixties songs and I’d write poem/texts for it. SO, I read a dozen books on the Sixties and stumbled upon a story about the Laguna Pop Festival, of which I had attended (December 1970) and is told in the tremendous book ORANGE SUNSHINE which led to two more books on the history of LSD: THE BROTHERHOOD OF ETERNAL LOVE and STORMING HEAVEN. There are a lot of books on this history! I could still be reading . . . .

    2) I’m not sure we in the Cucamonga/Upland locale were getting Timothy-Leary-grade-LSD judging from his crazy books, sounds like he was climbing through the electrical grids of his brain and getting tangled up with oceans of wires———-

    3) We didn’t (at least, I didn’t) have any overwhelming visions, as in: Seeing spiraling kaleidoscopes and/or demons and such —- I probably only took psychedelics 15 times, tops. Maybe 12 is more realistic —- mostly everything was as explained in the poem, and mostly you had thoughts that encompassed huge swatches of time . . . .

    4) Go to Dino’s blogsite > jadeane.com/blog or just > jadeane.com

    5) See my other LSD poem > http://markweber.free-jazz.net/2014/07/29/the-sixties/

    6) A clue that we were not exactly a total bunch of yahoos is that we were picking up a letterpress — that we eventually made posters for Bobby Bradford’s workshop club The Little Big Horn (I think we mounted one of them at the Bobby Bradford Timeline)

    7) My reference to the tribal bonfires is something I borrowed from legendary Los Angeles deejay Jim Ladd (94.7 KMET) of the early 1970s who speaks of “the electronic campfire” of the glowing radio dial that was “the tribal drum” of that Sixties generation — I don’t remember hearing him talk about the tribal drum on his radio show but it is a frequent refrain in his memoir RADIO WAVES (that The Doctor/Scott MacNicholl dropped on me) I sure wish his book hadn’t bent to the whims of lawyers when he changed the call letters to radio stations and the names of the major players in this very good document, it makes reading too much of a guessing game and a search through foggy memory banks . . . .

    8) I’ve always felt that the movie FORREST GUMP mirrored the Sixties generation path through the 70s & 80s quite faithfully.

    9) . . . . . . .

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