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People of the Times

Jim Lacy

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I caught Ralph sneaking around the cabins next to his place on Ute Avenue and shooting at our dog, Nadine, with his pellet rifle. He hit me with a ricochet, and I walked over and told him to put his gun away and leave the dogs alone. He told me that if dogs had any worth, they would be food for humans. And if that was the case, he could buy pills containing essence of dog and would take the pills daily. He then took me inside his pad and showed me his stockpile of nourishment. On a table in his place, there were maybe 50 to 75 bottles of pills. They were vitamins, minerals, and food supplements and substitutes. One bottle held pills that, according to Ralph, contained the equivalent of one package of yogurt per pill. There were also pills of spinach, beets, and most fruits and vegetables. He said he took about 30 pills each day and that saved him the time he would otherwise spend shopping, cooking and eating. He said it left him more time to concentrate on picking up tourist “chippies and cha-chas.” I told him I would look for dog pills and went back home. This was in the summer of 1974.

– Jim Lacy, in collaboration with the Aspen Historical Society