Monday, December 5, 2011
Once upon a time, there lived a long-haired hippy named The Mittster. Life was good, pot was tolerated,
and milk, cheese, eggs, coffee, gravy, meat and coffee cake were considered good for you. Cigarettes were OK too as long as you kept it down to a pack a day. Drinking beer in the truck was also tolerated as long as you didn’t miss the bed of the truck while throwing an empty can away and hitting a motorcycle cop hiding in your truck’s blind spot. Hard liquor was good for you, but only if you lived in the Deep South. Northerners were not allowed to drink moonshine because it could turn them gay, which is exactly what happened in San Francisco. At least that is what my grandparents tried to tell me. Did they really think I was that stupid?
Parties were many and loads of fun. You really didn’t have to play any macho head games to see who was the stud of the group. Everyone got the girls, including dorks and nerds! All you had to do was pass the bogambo weed around and everyone turned into Burt Reynolds and Goldie Hawn. Of course, there were the few who indulged in acid and climbed walls while singing “I am the Walrus,” but they came down after a day or two.
Some of our elders accused us of perverting the English language, but to them I said, “Groovy man, I can dig it!” Their reply was always the same. “Disgusting hippies, why don’t you take a bath?” Little did they know that during the week I was a construction worker and made more money than their old asses had ever seen. The terminology for my group was “weekend hippies” and “weekday hard hats.” During the work week we would kick hippy butts, but on the weekend we would transform into the very thing we professed to hate. Secretly we were jealous of their free lifestyles and their half-naked cutie girlfriends. Yes, I have tucked my hair up under my hard hat to keep from getting my butt kicked!
The older generation couldn’t see past Sinatra. Who in the hell wants to look like lop-eared Frank Sinatra, let alone sing like him? At least my parents liked Johnny Cash. His music wasn’t my kind, but anyone who dressed in black couldn’t be all bad. Elvis was cool, but I was getting tired of his music and movies. Then came the Beatles and life became one big party! Then the Stones, and then the new groups were endless for twenty years. That is until Richard M. Nixon – that’s the day the music stopped.
The pendulum started swinging back to the far, far right and, in time, everything became a felony. You could legally drink yourself into a coma, but if you got caught with a seed from some weed you could kiss your butt goodbye. It was prison time and you got to marry some guy named Bubba in a not-so-fun jailhouse ceremony. The powers in government knew we were having way too much fun, and it is not good for slaves to have fun.
God, I miss those days of free living. We weren’t all street hippies panhandling our way through life at the expense of others. Most of us were hardworking stiffs just trying to have a break from the weekly grind. We were polite, grateful, unassuming taxpayers living good lives and obeying the laws that were on the books at the time.
Now, instead of going to the refrigerator to gobble some munchies, I go there knowing I will be lucky if my wife lets me have a stick of celery. The only time I go to a bar is on the way to the restaurant in the back of the building. I have to cross the street so I won’t walk in front of a pastry shop. Don’t ask about parties – the last one I attended was my high school reunion and all I found there were old people.
Who said there can’t be a coven of old hippies somewhere in the world? Please, I am begging you, if anyone knows of an old folks’ hippy coven, call me at 1-800-OLD-FART….
I’m just saying,