War stories are drinkin' stories that supposedly aggrandize or romanticize or minimize alcoholism. We're not supposed to tell them, but I'm far from that kind of thinking so here goes one of mine. I'm not trying to live 100% by the book (the blue one). I hoped to make recovery a little bit lighter through poking fun of myself and the culture of recovery. If I can't have fun, I'm just not gonna do it is what I've learned. This is the first story of my "WAR STORIES" series.
MEETING KINKY FRIEDMAN, WRITER OF "KILL TWO BIRDS AND GET STONED" ON COKE.
I was travelling to Austin, Texas with the Salt Lake SLAM team with the full intention of performing some of my own poems. I wasn't on the team...I had made it past two rounds in the try-outs and got so drunk in between that I never showed up for the last round. I was invited as a dishonorary guest and because the guy renting the RV had a hard on for me. I, unfortunately, had a hard on for Nate who was invited as kind of the equivalent of a poetry rodeo clown. At the time I was working for a popular hotel chain and ended up staying at a much nicer hotel than any of the actual real poets which caused some contention (along with the fact that I was bloody drunk off of bloody Mary's the whole 23 hour trip). The hotel had a bar and some other features that I can't quite recall.
One night Nate and I had jumped ship on the SLAM tour and gone out to drink along sixth street. On the way home we were approached by a guy named Ian who offered us some drugs and to take us up to the twentieth floor of the office building where he worked. Evidentally the place he worked at was an architectural firm with tiny model buildings that we used to snort lines off of with what seemed like a never ending bag.
Nate, Ian and I stayed up all night on the balcony ad-libing lyrics and making up horrible Irish diddy's. When the sun came up we went to a Starbucks to sit drunk, high and stoned on the outside patio and sip lattes. Then Ian started telling us about 9/11 and how he saw the towers go down. He also said that he would love to see Nate and I make love to eachother (which we hadn't even done yet) and we both looked at eachother a little freaked out and "No". That's when I got up to refill my coffee and saw the news inside. They were with a guy in black who I didn't recognize (although I had read his book --- which was like a 200 page war story) and I asked him if he was Johnny Cash.
So somewhere out there is video footage of me with runny mascara, high AF shaking Kinky Friedman's hand on the news and asking if he is Johnny Cash.