Turn yourself in, turn society upside down | AspenTimes.com

Turn yourself in, turn society upside down

Michael Cleverly

Things are just getting back to abnormal here in Woody Creek. I’m reading again, picking up where I left off a couple of weeks ago when events conspired to channel my focus elsewhere. I was halfway through the Swimsuit issue. I’m glad to be back to my research. Immersing oneself in a worthy project is always good catharsis. In the spirit of worthy projects, my friend Coyote called the other morning with a scheme to honor the fallen. He called it “Turn Yourself in Day” and it went something like this. On a specific day and time every pot-smoker in America would head down to the nearest police station and turn him or herself in (signed, notarized confession optional). Admitted drug felons all, these umpteen millions of people would create an unprecedented logjam. Forget the obvious cop-shops and municipal buildings – every aspect of American civilization and culture would come to a screeching halt because of the vast numbers of quiet pot-smokers. Hospitals, schools, banks and head shops would shut down for lack of employees, armies would stop marching, racers would stop running. Businesses would have no customers, no employees. The Republican nightmare come true, their worst fears confirmed.As the boys at the Tavern were kicking around the permutations for domestic chaos, it was pointed out that world chaos was also inevitable. Sure the United States is the main cog in the world economic engine, but it’s much simpler than that. World air traffic would be paralyzed. The number of aircraft required to transport millions of Americans to Syria to be tortured would make it impossible for any other sort of travel to proceed for a long time. No zipping off to Hawaii, probably no airmail.While I personally think that all this is a good idea, I have to feel a little guilty because I don’t actually use the stuff. That’s right – with all of my evil habits and vices, I’m afraid that pot doesn’t happen to be one of them. So, with half the population over in Syria being tortured, and I guess, the other half of the population over there doing the torturing, that leaves me here all alone, in an American wasteland. Maybe some of the felons will leave their stuff lying around. It might be a good opportunity to try it again, for free; it’s been a long time since college. The last time I had an opportunity for a free score was in front of Hunter’s house a couple of summers ago. A young fan had made a pilgrimage to Woody Creek in a less-than-lucid state of mind. The guy had driven his car clean off the road on a sunny afternoon, directly across from Hunter’s. He was still sitting in the driver’s seat. Owl Farm had called Tex and myself for security, to establish a perimeter. The young fella wasn’t very coherent; the interior of his car looked like the inside of Ibbotson’s brain. It was a catastrophe, a mess; there was crap everywhere.I was doing my best to chill the kid out, reason with him, when someone came out of the house and told me that the authorities had been called. Good – I changed course, announced to the kid the cops were on their way and proceeded to explain that it was different around here. The sheriff’s guys want to help, do the right thing; it’s not about seeing how many people they can arrest. At that point I looked and far down the road saw a cruiser approaching. I told the kid that these guys were friends. In the interest of everybody’s safety, if he had any weapons in the vehicle he’d better chuck them out the window right now, and if he had any drugs he’d better give them to me. I guess it’s all for the best. Nothing was forthcoming, either out the window, or in my pocket. If he’d had drugs they clearly weren’t having a positive effect. So much for freebies. I do think that this “Turn Yourself in Day” is a good idea. The stoners get a little conscience-clearing trip abroad, the Republicans get to work on their Taser skills, and people like me get to rifle through the detritus they leave behind. I once asked Hunter if he minded my occasionally using his name in this column. I resisted the temptation to point out how fast and loose he plays his friends’ names in his ESPN column. He said he didn’t mind as long as I didn’t make a career of it. I told him that if I thought for a second that I could make a career out of it I wouldn’t have asked.


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