- Nov2/08 07:41:21
This is a story I wrote for myself after an acid trip. enjoy!!
By: Andrew Lyman
Did you ever realize you can see into a
post office break room from your balcony? I noticed the light on and
was curious. "I wonder what's in that room." I noticed mugs
hanging on the wall. I thought, "Hm, that's kinna weird. what
sort of a post office just has mugs hanging on a pegboard like that?"
There was a person in the room. He had been hidden from view. As he
walked towards the door, I noticed some lockers next to it. And
that's when I realized it must be a break room. Then I thought, "Hmm,
that's kinna weird that your break room faces an apartment complex.
It's like they never get a break, or some privacy." My thoughts
here strayed to doing drugs in such a break room, where everyone in
the apartment complex could see you. It wouldn't be a good idea. You
couldn't get any privacy in a break room like that. Of course you
wouldn't really do drugs in the break room. It's a bad idea no matter
WHAT your job is. We don't even really need to go into how important
a job in the postal system is. They definitely test you for drugs,
and if you ever get caught with any, you're gonna be fired.
At this point I stopped thinking about the break room and found my car. I was on the way to the super market, you see. I got in the car and turned the key. Backing up was a little weird, but I was sober enough to drive. I wasn't feeling it really anymore. my pupils weren't even dilated anymore, but it's always interesting driving a car for the first time after a trip like that. I made certain I wasn't going to hit anything as I backed up. Like, I wasn't going to back into the car behind me, or I wasn't going to nick the car beside me as I turned to get out of the parking space. I was very careful. I decided I was sober enough to take the highway this time.
Last time I drove to the supermarket after an acid trip, I was definitely still feeling it a lot. I was incredibly paranoid while on the road. I took the back way along Moorhead. The drive just down Moorhead seemed to take an eternity. I kept thinking I was driving too fast or there was another another car behind me. I remember being especially paranoid when I passed a car coming the other way. It wasn't a very pleasant trip at that point. I was nervous as all hell. I thought the drive would never end. It was another eternity before I finally got to the end of Moorhead and turned onto Baseline to get to the King Soopers.
I didn't go to the nearer one because they were still doing construction at night, and that store was closed after 10pm. I remember that we walked there in the earlier evening when we were first starting our trip. We were disappointed to see it closed, but we went to the nearby gas station on the way back. Addy was with us. I got a very interesting looking energy drink. The can had a lot of artwork on it. I was looking forward to looking at all the intricacies of that can during the full swing of my trip. When I did, it was every bit as awesome as I was hoping it would be. I kept finding new things on it. A girl wearing a leather jacket and cutoff shorts. There was a mushroom cloud. There was a small black sheep. I just kept finding more and more to the artwork on this can
I recall at the gas station when we got it that Addy was tripping with us. You kept insisting that you didn't feel anything and were fine. You do that a lot. Addy got a sandwich. his total rang up at $4.20. I remember hearing the guy behind the counter say "That'll be four twenty." and having to stifle my snickering. You did a better job of it. Of course you heard it, too. You always notice shit like that. If it has to do with weed, you hear it, whether or not it really has to do with weed. Every time we are playing poker someone invariably mentions to word "pot," as in "family pot" or "pot odds," and you always hear it as if the word "pot" had been replaced with the word "weed." At the gas station you did a lot better job at stifling your laughter than I did. Eventually, the clerk noticed my smirk and realized what he had said. He smiled and snickered with us. He was a cool guy. He definitely knew we were on something. One can only presume, given the circumstances, that he thought we were just stoned. It's freaking Boulder though. Everyone gets stoned here, or at least knows someone personally who does.
That reminds me, did I ever tell you about my dad's pipe? Okay so during my childhood I remember occasionally seeing this wooden pipe around. I disregarded it, though. It was my father's pipe from his younger days when he used to smoke, and he didn't anymore. That's all I thought. Of course as I grew older, I learned my dad was quite a pothead. Eventually, like at a Halloween party or something, I saw the pipe again. It was a familiar object from my childhood and I instantly recognized it. However, now I knew about my dad's pothead status. I turned to my dad, holding the pipe. "This has NEVER been used to smoke tobacco, has it?"
He shook his head, "No. no it hasn't."
I wasn't surprised at all.
So the last time I drove after getting high with you, the closer King Soopers was closed, so I took the back way and went to the other one. Well this time the construction was finished it wasn't closed, but I was still heading towards the other, further away one. I didn't realize this until after I was already on the highway.
"Huh," I thought, "I suppose I seek that which is familiar. But wait. last time I took the back road not the highway."
I didn't think about it much after that. I got to the store and parked, and then walked out into the store. I'd decided during the drive there that the first thing I should do once I got there was go to the ATM and see how much money I had on my debit card. I punched in my PIN and hit the button next to "balance inquiry." It printed out a receipt with my available balance on it. I was distressed. It said "0.00."
I thought "well fuck. I'm in the store already, and I don't have any money to buy anything with."
I wished you were there. I could have borrowed some money from you. Then I remembered the $10 you gave me early in the trip.
We went to the gas station to get energy drinks and fags. I expected you to get some also, but then you decided not to after I had already asked for a pack of Blacks.
"Alright," I said, "but you're paying for half of this one."
Sure enough, you smoked my fags. I kept asking you for money for the half a pack, but both of us kept forgetting about it before you gave it to me. Eventually, you had one and needed a lighter.
"Dude, do you have a lighter?" you asked.
"You can't use it until you pay."
"No. you have to pay me first."
"fine." You got up to go get your wallet. I'm sure it was not a straight path to get it and come back. Surely, you got distracted by things along the way, but you did return with it. I urged you again to pay and you started looking through your wallet. "Hmm well how much is good?" you asked.
"I dunno. five bucks oughtta be fine" I responded.
"Well lesse. I got a couple ones, and I have a ten. could you break--"
"You can just give me that."
"Just give me the ten dollars and I'll give you the light"
You held up the ten bucks "wait what?"
"Okay, now I give you the pubes, and you give me the twenty bucks." I said, referencing south park. Addy laughed.
"Wait why ten dollars?"
"Well think about how many of my cigarettes you have smoked before. Surely it has added up."
"Oh, well, okay I guess." you gave me the ten dollars.
"Okay let me get that light for you."
"Oh no, I have my own lighter."
"I have a light." You used it to light the fag.
"Then why did you give me the ten dollars?! I was sort of using my lighter as a bargaining chip to get this money from you. But I suppose it isn't much of a bargaining chip if you have one anyways. But then you gave me the money anyways! I was like 'wait what'?" I waved the pack of fags at Addy. "I just got Kevin to pay me ten dollars for these . . . and not even all of them! Kevin just paid ten dollars for just a couple fags."
"No, dude, I was paying you back for all the ones I've bummed in the past, dude."
"Dude, I was just saying that so you would give it to me."
"Well, no. Past debts man. I was paying you back."
I shrugged it off.
So I did have money after all. I was relieved. I wondered what to get. I eventually decided to get the first thing I saw, which happened to be a Tombstone pizza. I wondered if I should get the supreme I saw first, or maybe to go with just pepperoni in case you wanted a slice. I remembered before I left I asked you if you wanted anything after you refused to come with me, saying it was "a little too much right now." You had said you were fine. I resolved to get the supreme. I knew you wouldn't want a slice. You don't like green peppers. I remember you telling me that your mother is the same way. Something about the taste neither of you can stand. I love them, though. I went with the supreme pizza. Then I thought about getting a drink. The pizza was about $3. That was about a third of my available money. I thought it weird that that was 33.333 repeating percent. A third of that is 11.111 repeating. I didn't feel like equating what a third of that was, but I knew it would just keep going on. no matter how many thirds you go into, every number will be repeating forever, just like those Mandelbrot Sets we were looking at.
I was on the computer and you were tripping with your eyes closed on your bed. I don't even remember what we were talking about, but you suddenly said "Dude, I'm seeing like Mandelbrot sets."
I looked at you. " . . . what?"
"What the hell is that?"
You got a little excited. "Oh you haven't seen it?"
" . . . no"
"Okay, here. Go to Wikipedia. . . . Yeah yeah there."
"Okay . . . " I replied, wondering what you were showing me.
"Okay, now type in MAN"
I typed it into the text box.
I hit the space bar and typed D-E-L.
"No no. one word. MAN-DEL" you corrected me, watching what I was typing.
I corrected it.
"Okay now BROT."
I hit space and B-R-O-T.
"Still one word."
"Okay . . . " I made it one word and hit enter. It didn't pop up with anything.
"And now SET"
I appended S-E-T to the end of Mandelbrot.
"No no. Set is its own word. Mandelbrot," you paused, "Set."
"Alright." I typed it and hit enter. The images that came up were fractals. They were infinitely complex. You could zoom into any detail and it would be infinitely more detailed. It looked just like the sort of psychedelic shit you see on the walls while on acid. "Oh wow! Yeah, I keep seeing shit like this and never knew the word for it."
"Yeah it's like a simple mathematical equation. It will continue forever. Like each section has tons of little sections and you can zoom into them and shit."
"Yeah, these are awesome." you talked a little more about their properties. I don't remember all of what you said. I'm not exactly a math major, so a lot of it I wouldn't get even if I did remember what words you used.
Later, while we were admiring one fractal together, you said, "This is what infinity looks like, dude."
"That's really deep, man. I think that's what life looks like." I was being silly. You know me, I often act silly around people. I try to be cute. But after I said it, I applied what I said and decided I was right, and continued, "Which of course leads one to the obvious conclusion . . . "
"They're both the same thing . . . ?" You asked.
"Life looks like infinity!" I responded, "I mean think about it. Each of those shapes has its own intricacies and all that shit. And so does life: like on and on."
Later we were out in the living room and I suggested we go outside to smoke.
"Okay, dude. But wait. No. There's no smoking in these apartments. If neighbors see, they might say something."
"Dude no one cares." I responded, eager to enjoy the fresh air while slowly poisoning myself.
"Well yeah, but . . . wait no. I just don't think we should."
"Dude no one cares." I repeated, "It's not like you are being loud or anything."
"No. I'm not. I mean sometimes I play guitar with the amp on, but never during indecent hours. like late at night. I never do it then."
"Exactly! You're a good neighbor. So your other neighbors would see you smoking and think 'Huh... he's smoking. But whatever. He's not loud. I don't care'."
"I never use my amp between 9 and 9. would you say those are decent hours?"
"But I mean there's this one place I go with Dan, and it's just awesome. Like here I play quietly, but this building is like . . . well it's sorta dilapidated. I mean it passes the health inspection but only because it doesn't really serve a purpose, you know? But you go in there and there's all sorta of shit in there. Like there's this nursery. And theres this place where like mothers can go get . . . the . . . like cocaine . . . addictive . . . shit . . . drugs. "
"Huh . . . interesting" I said, thinking that it was a crack house or something, and not being surprised by you being in one at all.
"You know, like the drugs that help you? Like to get off cocaine. They can get help there. And then there's a nursery there too. And they're like right there . . . next to each other. And there's like homeless people living there. It's really bizarre."
" . . . and you can play your guitar loudly there?"
"Well hang on! I was getting to the point, I was just going off on a tangent. Like the guy who owns it also owns like some Irish pubs in Denver. And like the Saint Patty's Day thing. Like every year for St Patrick's day, he hosts this thing. And you can just go there, you know? and like . . . "
I interrupted your train of thought at this point. "Now see here's what I'm saying: life has all these intricacies. Do you see? Like you're going on about the owner of this building and he really doesn't play into it at all. Like it's totally unnecessary information. And life has all of these sort of intricacies. Like you could go on to talk about his family life: like his wife and his son. And then maybe he finds out his son is gay. And then you can go into the son's life. Like the guys he has been with. Like that guy he had a fling with in high school, but they don't really talk anymore. Or his current boyfriend. And then you can go into all HIS intricacies. Like other guys he's been with. Like that one kid whose father abused him when he was a child. And then you can go into the FATHER'S intricacies. Like how he never really had a father of his own . . . "
You started snickering.
"Oh, it's nothing. You're just babbling."
"Is there a problem with that?"
"No. It's fun."
"I made most of that up, of course. I mean I don't know if the building owner's son is gay. Shit, I don't even know if he HAS a son, ya know? But it's all really unnecessary intricacies of life. But you see how life sorta looks like infinity right?"
You continued your story from before my tangent. "So anyways, he hosts this thing and you can just go there. And the music is so loud. Like you can feel the beat. Well, metal doesn't really have a beat per se. It's more like this surge. Like you can just FEEL it. It's just so loud. Every drum has its own speaker. You have to wear earplugs. It can cause hearing damage. Like going just once you're fine. You will just hear ringing in your ears for a couple days. But if you do it, like, ALL THE TIME, then it can cause some pretty serious hearing loss, ya know? We're talking raw power! We're talking noise. Like bass so loud you can feel it vibrating your rib cage. You have to wear ear plugs. It's very loud, and you can just feel this surge going through you like 'weearoosh!' and it fills you. It's unbelievable!"
"Now who is babbling?"
"Whaaat? I can't babble? It's my turn to babble! But I mean this energy just COURSES through you. Oh man you can't miss it!"
"I don't intend to, which reminds me, you need to take me to a concert sometime."
"In good time. In time."
"Let's go out on the porch and smoke!"
I came to the energy drink aisle and tried to decide with drink to get. For a moment I considered getting Bing, the same drink I started the trip with. I decided to go with something different. I noticed a weird can that was skinnier. It was a flavor of Amp I wasn't familiar with: Amp88. The can had a few green vertical stripes down it, through the red 88, and several more silver lines running parallel to those. Then I noticed that near the top of the can it said "Dale Jr. limited edition series: 2 out of 4" I didn't know who Dale Jr. was. I assumed he was a baseball player, given the design of the can. You know I don't follow any sports. I assumed that 88 was his jersey number. I didn't think any more about it and proceeded to the self check-out with my pizza and energy drink, hitting the Spanish start button as always. I slipped in your ten dollar bill and retrieved my change.
As I walked outside to walk back to the car, I noticed a witch walking towards the supermarket. For a moment, I felt bad that I didn't have a costume. it was Halloween and all. The I remembered that my outfit sort of was a costume in and of itself. I had jeans, boots, a dark green tie-dye shirt with wolves drawn on it, a leather jacket, and a bandanna tied around my head. I decided I looked a little like a "rebel without a cause." I hoped the witch liked my non-costume as I walked past her and we smiled at each other. I wished my jeans had tears in them. That would have made the costume complete. I didn't who up at your place wearing a costume, though, so I had no reason to wear torn jeans when I had a clean pair without tears. The torn jeans was just an afterthought that would have made my outfit into a complete costume.
I got in the car and drove back to your place, taking the back way so that I could pass that gas station on Moorhead and Baseline. They sell cloves, and I was hoping to pick up a new pack since we (mostly I) smoked all the ones I'd brought. But alas, they were still closed. It was still early in the morning and the sky was not very bright yet. I figured they would open by the time I finished cooking and eating my pizza, and I could get some fags then. When I got back you were in bed, but were still awake. You were enjoying the pornographic images showing up on your screen saver. The vast majority of the art was by Jeremy Bernal, an artist I am not too fond of. His art is mostly aimed towards straight male audiences. You may have noticed that while my pizza was cooking I kept leaving. I left pretty much every time a Bernal image popped up, which was often. Coming to and going from your room became a little game for me. I kept returning and glancing at the monitor. If it was a Bernal image, I would leave again. If it wasn't, I would sit down and say "I'm back," then once another Bernal image came up I would get back up and say "I'm not back anymore." I kept putting on and taking off my jacket. I wanted to see if you would notice that I kept returning with or without it on. If you did, you didn't say anything. At several points I wrapped your blanket around me and came back in that instead of my jacket. You didn't say anything then either.
I understand that I have been rambling for a good while now and going off on all sorts of tangents. This story doesn't really have an end, you see. Life just keeps going on and we could explore every intricacy for eternity. There's not really a beginning either, for that same reason. Everything is all connected. Life is just like those Mandelbrot Set pictures you showed me. The close you zoom in, the more complex it gets, and it just keeps on going forever and ever.