The Nader book exposed design flaws in the GM Corvair. He brought upon the end of said sporty vehicle. Mr. My Car Is a Subway Train.....

Harlan Ellison: How many of you out there are alive today because of his kvetching about auto safety that resulted in the redesigning of cars, seat belts, frequent recalls of deathtraps, and consumer protection laws. Truth in packaging. Truth in Lending. Childproof caps on cleansers, drugs, paint thinners.
(Names in this story have been changed)

You know it's going to be an interesting day when a bounty hunter shows up at the house you're partying at.

I was spun out on meth and hanging out with a few friends. Very spun. I was sitting on a couch, holding a pack of playing cards and wearing a pair of glittery red devil horns on my head when the door was finally opened by one of the people I was partying with.

(Who the hell is that?-Oh my gosh I don't know!-I don't want to answer the door- Extremely loud knocking...-Oh my gosh answer it!-Okay...)

Gabe opened the door.

"I'm looking for Jason Renhold," said the tall, intimidating stranger. "Is he here?"

We knew Jason was in a back room, sleeping, but we were still confused as to what was going on. Drug paraphernalia was everywhere. My friend Lauren sat on the floor, dazed, and Gabe was also at a loss for words. The owner of the house was fast asleep in yet another room... should we just let this guy in? Of course not.

No matter. He stepped in anyways and another guy entered behind him, less intimidating. Kinda sweaty. The bounty hunter yelled Jason's name and began searching other rooms. Nervously, I moved from the couch to the chair near Lauren, who had been in the middle of trying to start a movie on the giant TV. Freeway.

The other guy stayed in the room with us, smiling and being very chatty. I pulled off my horns and chilled out a little. This dude seemed higher than the three of us put together.

Eventually the bounty hunter returned with Jason in handcuffs, and they left.

What the hell?

Gabe immediately ran to wake Seth, the houseowner, and told him what happened. Lauren and I backed up his story about this scary man barging in and taking Jason away- his good friend. You can imagine the amount of noise eminating from our mouths- a speeder and two speedettes. Seth quickly got on the computer and after a while figured out what exactly had occurred. Jason had been wanted for a while in another state.

"A bounty hunter!" I exclaimed. "Whoa." I'd never crossed paths with such an individual before.

Lauren and I were calming down but Gabe remained uneasy. He suggested that the three of us should go to his house and hang out. Since I was pretty attracted to Gabe at the time, I had no problem with that. Of course we snorted a few more lines of speed before heading out.

Lauren rode with me and we followed Gabe on a fifteen minute ride to another part of the city. We arrived at his rather sizeable home, and I went ahead and made a phone call to the office where I worked to tell them I wouldn't be in.

I was doing that a lot those days. Gabe proudly showed us his pad, which had a secret passageway, as well as a room upstairs completely filled with record albums. (Gabe was a DJ.) And I mean filled. There was hardly room to walk and the stacks came up to our chests.

Now a room like this could provide hours, or even days, of entertainment for someone strung out like I was. (You have such and such?!-You gotta play them-Oh you have so and so-You gotta play him too!)

Gabe didn't seem to mind as I sifted through the albums, picking out things for him to play. He had turntables set up in a room that opened out onto the downstairs area. He began DJing for this party of two girls, getting lost himself in the enjoyment of his craft as Lauren and I wandered around the house, danced and talked. (I'd managed to pull myself out of the stacks eventually.)

Occasionally he played stuff that I'd chosen. I had pulled a lot of random stuff, and it was a "dance" party after all. Kate Bush and Depeche Mode (at least the album I'd found) weren't real uppers.

But a fave of mine was played a few hours in- Prince's "Erotic City." I shot him a smile from where I was dancing about in the living room.

It wasn't too much later when Gabe and I ended up in his bedroom, flirting with each other as we talked. And talked... Ok so this seemed to go on for a lengthy amount of time, at least longer than I expected before any action finally occured. Just before we undressed though (geez finally), I was suddenly concerned I'd left Lauren to herself for too long and went to check on her. She was fine and seemed to gather what was up with me and Gabe.

Back in his bedroom we stripped and got into bed and... it wasn't that great. Considering the build-up we'd had (I'd known him for several months) and how much he turned me on, I was surprised. But whatayadoo?

A few more lines and then take a shower.

By late-evening the initial high of the day (or three days for me) began to wear down. Gabe was strung-out and grew quieter, and Lauren was mumbling to herself a lot. I knew we needed to leave soon, but a lot of the time when you're spun like that you just find it so hard to make a final exit. From anywhere. It's as if it won't come from your lips- "Okay so we should get going..." So you stay and wait for that high everyone originally had to return. And you wait.

It never arrives. Gabe is talking less and less to the two of us. I'm pretty sure he was counting on a threesome that day, but Lauren wasn't into that sort of thing. I begin going through a stand of cassette tapes Gabe had downstairs next to a large stereo. I was feeling the weirdness of the day, the sheer length of it and all of the activity that had taken place, like a tingling all over my skin. So many different emotions were pressing on me all at once- and I loved it. This high of all these experiences and insane energy was something I craved when I was doing speed back then, and it was something that would eventually only lead to more trouble.

As an addict, I took my time over a number of years before I truly bottomed out.

That evening, before we'd finally left, I came across a cd with a song on it that I just had to play. I danced vigorously to "Damaged" by Plumb, getting lost in the beauty and strange turbidity of the moment. Too lost.


"There are comets
connected to chemicals
that telescope
down our tongues
to burn out against
the air.

I know
we do."

~from Comets, by Richard Brautigan

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