Tea in England

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I have been on the hunt for grass for months now. Too long have I gotten inappropriately drunk at the British pubs. Too long have I sadly looked up the stoner tag on Tumblr.

tea

My interest is that of the connoisseur. I wanted to compare what the Brits were smoking to that of highly superior Colorado weed. I was wrong. My tolerance had dropped drastically, rendering any sense of superiority I had born meaningless.

I hounded after my few acquaintances in England. One girl, an American I know, lives in a flat with British types that rage, as far I can surmise. They have a history of throwing lemons and melons out of the window, on the kitchen floor, it sounds like a good time. They go into their bathroom and turn the shower on and light up a j, to diffuse the smoke in the steam. They practice some strange rite of passage known as a “windmill”, where they take a long drag, hold it, and spin in circles till they’re deliriously dizzy. This also sounds like fun.

I asked my flatmates. They knew nothing.

I finally got an invite to a flat party in my complex. They were pre-drinking before going to the club, which I was not into. I shared the remnants of a bottle of Jack with a friend, and hung out on the balcony. A Brit poked fun at my less than admirable roll-up cig, and then offered to roll me one. In seconds he transformed the paper, the filter, and the tobacco into a splinter-sized stick. All around me I could smell the earthy scent of cannabis. A woman gave her joint to the man that I was talking to and went inside. I asked for some puffs, which he obliged me. It was at that party that I met my last hook-up, a man with long curly ginger hair. We chatted about Burroughs and dabs.

Several weeks later, I invited him out for a couple of drinks. We went out to a couple of pubs, drinking an unsteady line of double gin and tonics. We discussed Burroughs and Ginsberg and Stephen King and Lovecraft and Arthur Machen. We talked about the legalization in Colorado. Eventually we landed at a place called the Mischief. And then he invited me to come back to his place to … (wait for it) SMOKE.

We got to the flat. In his room he had stacks upon stacks of books. He showed me that he was currently reading The Doors of Perception and I knew he was a homie. Other indicators included the Fear and Loathing and the Dark Side of the Moon posters. He had the first pipe with resin in it that I had seen in months. He had run out of tobacco, so I had popped back into my flat to retrieve my own. He had said he was bad at rolling, but the spliff he produced was long and magnificent. Because I had seen the coppers with their silly hats walking around, I kept lighting cigarettes to hid the scent, but he seemed unfazed. Before long, I was very high. The kind where your thoughts are speeding through your skull too fast to register, where your head disconnects from your body and your legs start buzzing. It was after I had said “Poetry should be ephemeral” and before he had gotten the wine that I started feeling sick. I ran to the women’s toilet and cleaned up after myself. The toilet was broken, which gave me painful paranoia. I went back into the kitchen and we sat at the table, both of our heads in our hands. I said that I thought I should call it a night. It was as I was saying good night that vomit again filled my throat and I  ran to the men’s bathroom and again emptied my stomach. I embarrassingly wished him a good night again.

At home I lay on the bed and tried to keep the room from spinning, with a shitty sitcom from Netflix playing to an unwatching audience.

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Tales from a Boulder 7/11

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I recently quit working for 7-11 to make a little money for my time abroad. It was the first job that I had had with giant corporation (other than a job with a university bookstore, which is a different kind of corporation), but that wasn’t the problem. The managers of the place were a really nice couple who were pretty lenient on the rules of the corporation.

The thing that I quickly realized is that people are straight-up shitty to cashiers. It didn’t help that addictions and sometimes very large amounts of money were at stake. During one of my first days there, a man got irrationally angry at me for asking him to repeat which scratch ticket he wanted. The same thing happened with cigarettes, chew, coffee.

Even people buying Zig-Zag wraps were sometimes shitty. This one guy came in for some watermelon wraps. It was one of my first days, and I hadn’t sold one of those yet. I start looking for it, and he yells at me “LEFT!” and “DOWN!”. It was ironic that someone buying a blunt wrap had so little chill. Anyways, I found it, and scanned the bar code. When you scan a tobacco product into the system, it immediately asks for an ID. I was feeling a little spite-y, and it wasn’t too unreasonable to ask him for some ID, so I did. He got all in a huff and started spouting some nonsense about “I’ve come in here every day!” even though I had never sold anything to him before. He finally gave it to me, and I put in his birthday, and I put the card on the counter. Then he got so mad because “I handed you the card, you hand it back!”. It was satisfying to wish him a nice day, though, as he huffed out the door.

Given the store was in Boulder, it isn’t much of a surprise that there were characters. There was the Boulder-every-mom who always came in with her kid and always looked critically at the price of her smoothie, even though I learned how to put in after the first week.

There was the woman who couldn’t decide how many goddamn hot dogs she wanted. I call this event the Great Hotdog Fiasco of 2015. I hated this stupid woman from the moment she mouthed her stupid infantile voice. She came in and ordered a hot dog. Then for two. No, wait, no, one. Yeah. No. Three. Four? No, definitely three. By the time I had gotten the hot dogs ready, I had thrown the fourth away, because there’s nothing to be done with a pre-made hot dog if you can’t sell it. All this while, the woman had been standing beside me at the grill. When I threw it away, she pathetically patted at the cover of it and was whining, “He threw my hot dog away, he threw it away.” Finally the crisis was sorted out.

There was a guy who always offered to come back and buy me “something pretty if I win” the Lotto.

There was the homeless man who asked for a light from me. He was cool.

There was the man who taught me what the Boulder mating call is. (Hint: its tapping the edge of your credit card on the table. Get it? Coke.)

There was the time I’m pretty sure I smoked the stuff of someone’s cokerette from the ash tray outside because I was craving and I’m living that grunge life.

There was the wheelchair-bound man with the motorcycle helmet who always mumbled his order of cigarettes, even though I know for certain he was able to communicate.

There was the man who called us to ask how much a grape-flavored blunt cost and came in with a bunch of pennies. He was a sketchy dude.

There was the old lesbian couple that was addicted to PowerBall. There was also the cute lesbian couple that was living in a truck and ordered a pizza (the pizza of 7/11 is shit, in case you were wondering) and bought some slices of cheese and asked us to shred them and put them on the pizza. She told me it was their idea of a nice date nowadays.

I was surprised one day to hear the damn binging sound of the door opening and a white woman flamboyantly exclaiming “Hola!” to the general room. She wandered around and bought several items and set them down on the counter. I reached for one and she gesticulated madly. “Sorry, germaphobe.” She asked me to shoot the items with the scanner instead, which I did. She then asked for a bag, and I moved to apply the bag fee before she screamed, “Wait, no!” and then apologized “Sorry, control freak.” The shirtless dreaded construction man who had already paid looked at me and said, “Wow, you must see everything, huh?”