Last week I wrote about a ‘50s party. This week, we move forward a decade into the Summer of Love.
I wore a crazy orange shirt with flowers all over it that I bought in London years ago. I wore a bunch of bead necklaces, picked some flowers from the garden to put in the bandanna around my head, and was ready to head out.
Inspired by the Cheech and Chong reunion show I went to recently at the Comedy Store, I had an idea. They once put out an album that had a rolling paper in which to make a giant joint. I didn’t have the album, but I improvised. I grabbed a piece of paper from my printer and went back out to the garden to pick some weeds, which I cut up and rolled inside it. I created a huge joint that stuck out of my front pocket.
I drove to Clairemont thinking that this would be the one time I’d welcome being pulled over by a cop, just to have him ask about the joint.
Daniel, who hosts a lot of theme parties, lives in a neighborhood of three-bedroom, two-bath houses on a cul-de-sac. I parked down the street, and as I was walking up, I met a neighbor named Ben, who told me that these parties don’t get that loud. He also told me that he has five roommates, so I assumed he was used to noise.
There was a five-dollar cover at the door, and as I got ready to pay for my girlfriend and myself, I noticed I was a few bucks shy. She didn’t have her purse with her, so I made the long walk back to my car to get change out of the ashtray.
Inside the house, there were flashing, colorful lights in the living room, a lava lamp in the corner, and a crowd playing Twister.
Most of the crowd was dressed up for the ‘60s theme.
The kitchen was small with a few people talking in there and helping themselves to the chips and booze on the counter.
The back yard was filled with people. One guy was smoking a cigarette and said, “Forget this thing. Let’s smoke what you have in your pocket.” I told him it was just a prop. When I told him what was inside it, he said, “I’m sure we could still smoke it.”
I once read something about how in the ‘60s people tried smoking everything, even banana peels, which is supposedly what inspired the Donovan song “Mellow Yellow.” So, I handed it over and told the guy to have fun with it. Another guy leaned in to me and said, “This is probably how someone discovered you could lick the bottom of a frog and get high.”
It was hysterical watching him try to light it and fit the thing in his mouth. The lighter wasn’t working, so he stuck the giant joint into the blazing fire pit. When he finally got it lit, he took a hit and passed it around.
A few guys had political shirts on. One read “Kennedy — yes. Nixon — no.” A guy in his late 40s started talking to me about politics. It was interesting learning about elections in the ‘60s, but when it came to current politics, I said, “Dude, you’re harshing my mellow.” He looked at me like I was insane.
I overheard a few people talking about what gas prices were back in the ‘60s compared to now. I thought, now there’s a buzz kill.
I went inside and poured myself a Coke. When I returned to the backyard, “superjoint” was half smoked. One guy holding a bottle of bubbles said, “I get the champion blower award. Oh, wait. There might be lots of innuendo if I say that.”
When I saw Daniel come outside, I thought that he had more of a Hawaiian look going than a ‘60s vibe.
I talked to a couple of Latinas from TJ. One of them had something under her shirt, making her appear to be pregnant. She said, “I have twins in here. I’m going to name them Star and Moonchild.” Someone mentioned that a few babies were born at Woodstock, but they didn’t know if the kids were given weird names. Someone said, “It’s weird that a lot of the musicians and celebrities of the ‘60s didn’t give their kids weird names. They were on all those drugs, yet the kids had normal names. Now, celebrities are naming their kids Apple and Pilot Inspektor.”
We talked about weird celebrity-kid names, and Frank Zappa naming his kids Dweezil and Moon Unit came up. Tom Cruise chose one of the more normal-sounding names with “Suri.” A woman added, “I got made fun of all the time for my middle name, and it’s relatively normal. What do you think Bruce Willis and Demi Moore’s kid Rumer did in high school when a guy made out with her over the weekend and the next day said, ‘I was spreading Rumer over the weekend’?” One guy said, “Have you seen her? She’s not that attractive. I doubt she had that problem. Their other kid is named Tellulah. I’m not sure which is worse.” I said, “With a dad like Bruce Willis, nobody probably made fun of those names. I mean, the kids probably saw Die Hard and knew better.”
A tall woman with black hair said, “I always thought that Apple was a cute name, until my brother said, ‘If she’s fat, they’re going to call her the Big Apple.’ That’s when I thought...maybe it’s not the best idea to get creative with a kid’s name.”
An African-American guy told me that Jermaine Jackson named his son Jermajesty. We all laughed for about five minutes. I said, “Well, two things. First, that would actually be a cool name if the kid were a rapper. And second, we’re talking about celebrities. That eliminates Jermaine from this conversation.” I didn’t remember until the next day that Michael Jackson named his son Prince.