‘Brother Ted’s ‘Meth’-odist Revelation’, from ‘Brother Ted And The Twelve Tweekederos. ROUGH DRAFT, chapter study

It was the Summer of 1986. I had just graduated High School in Springfield, Oregon, and was spending part of my Summer before leaving for the Army the next fall, with my Older half-brother, Ted. He and his mom shared a pretty nice condo, at “The Lakes”, in Stockton, California.. Her dad, Was a pretty well off wool trader, and she was in the Real Estate game. Ted’s grandad had even set him up in the wool trading business.

Five years older than me, but 3 inches shorter, and 50 pounds lighter than me, Big brother was kind of a joke between us…. He had to quit bullying and picking on me, at least physically, by the time I was in 6th grade, as that was when he ceased to be bigger than me.

But we had a fairly good relationship. I still looked up to him, and he still tried to look out for me.

We had taken his boat out on the San Joaquin River Deltas, for 4th of July weekend. We had partied all night the night before, bar, and island hopping, until damn near dawn. Liquor and cocaine, was the order of the day. Even though I was only 18, I had no trouble drinking on the islands. I was sporting that stubble look that George Michael made so famous.

Ted was also, overflowing with cocaine all weekend, so, a 12 year old tipping with cocaine probably would have gotten served that weekend, stubble be damned.

Turns out, Ted’s wool trading business, necessitated numerous cross country trips to the South, Carolinas, Georgia, Florida, to make wool purchases, and assess futures values, etc. It also put him on the proverbial Cocaine expressway, or wholesale Loading dock for the late 80’s, interstate 95. Being a partier, with an excuse to travel cross country, by car for business, well, he was soon buying cocaine wholesale in florida, on his way back West, multiple times per year.

Danny was with us, Ted’s best friend. he was funny, and he couldn’t quit giving Ted shit for being smaller than his littl brother. I finally had to point out that he, was smaller than me too, to get poor Ted off the hook. Ted was smart, and savvy… but truth be told, a llittle shy(cocaine kingpin notwithstanding), and not the quickest at the insult game. Danny, however, was a master, and seemingly, had spent their friendship being the comic relief, to my oh so serious brother.

We had all crashed out at around dawn, in various parts of the boat. It was an open boat, but wasn’t exactly small. as such we were sleeping on the various cushions. Around 2 in the afternoon, I heard crashing about and cursing, over the calm lapping of the waves, nudging the boat.

Ted obviously woke up first and was already rooting around looking for more coke, you could hear the muttering. Danny was damn near comotose. he had been cold the previous night and was all bundled up in a hoodie and the the only blanket on the boat. all you could see was his face sticking out, just nose and glasses. I remember mocking him numerous times throught the night/morning,, for being cold. I was an Oregon boy though… cold was relative…

As I said, Ted was rifling around, trying to find some more coke. We had been going through it like vacuum cleaners all night the night before, and he was starting to freak out that we had used it all up(we hadn’t. He had just hid(lost) a big chunk of it, precisely so he wouldn’t lose it in our travels, so well, he couldnt find it that morning.

But he was starting to freak out and was now searching Danny and I’s stuff, our clothes, our backpacks. He was starting to think someone took it. So he gets thru to my bag. Apologizing, but still searching it.

I had only got there to Stockton two or three days before, and had shuttled between my gramma’s place and Ted’s place the first couple nights I was there. As such, I still hadn’t unpacked really, had pretty much every thing with me on the boat. didnt really want to leave all my luggage sitting in my brothers car in a Marina parking lot for three days.. it was Stockton after all! So, having traveled light, I had brought everything, both bags, with me.

Now, as I said, I had just graduated high school, a few weeks before. Having growing up in Eugene/Springfield, Oregon and being knee deep in the drug scene of Lane County, I had recieved a few non conventional graduation presents. Many of my friends had dropped out, went on to work, or dealing,or both. As I was pretty notorious, most were surprised that I had actually graduated.

One of those gifts came from just such a group of friends. It was a big bag of uncut ‘biker meth’. this was damn near straight from the cook, uncut, unstepped on, to damn potent to be on the streets kind of meth. In fact, I was admonished repeatedly that i had to cut that shit with something before I used any of it.

Too damn potent to be on the streets kind of meth

Now I was no stranger to Meth, I understood what these warnings meant, and fully intended to comply.

I had my own ” Oh crap that was too much meth, I will go mad without sleep” kind of experience with meth long before, and wasnt keen on repeating the experience.

However, knowing the law the way I did, i figured I didn’t need to cut it before I got to traveling interstate. No point getting busted for two or three times as much dope! So I still hadnt cut it, still had it allin one baggy….. when Ted found it…

Now Ted , though five years older than me, did NOT have my experience with Meth. Nothing substantial. Not that he was square, far from it. Cocaine being king, and cheap to him, this guy did it by the suitcase full. as I said, he had risen to a kind of wholesaler level, when it came to that fabulous powder. He and his prep school friends had been very astute, about making it worth their while. while doing enough to fund narco states themselves!

Combine this with the meth in the Bay Area being of pretty poor quality, on the whole, he just wasn’t into it. Not a very prep school thing to get into, when there are such glamorous options.

On the other hand, just a little way up Interstate 5, Meth had been undergoing a quiet metamorphopsis. In the quiet, remoteness of Oregon’s Forests, meth was being produced that, even cut for the public, was like nothing anywhere else in the world.

Coke couldn’t even really get a market share in Oregon sure it was there, but not all that prevalent. You could get it, but why spend the money, unless you were showing off?

.These Oregon bikers and chemists were making Meth with such legs, that lasted so long, that Coke was a waste, simply on the bang for your buck analysis…. coke was 10 times as expensive, and worked one tenth as long. No Brainer, at least when it came to middle and lower class folks. Keep in mind, Crack was only just emerging, on the East Coast. Hadn’t really’ Gone West’, yet.

All that being said, back to the story…

Ted got into my bags, and having forgotten my meth, having really never equated them at all, I was assuring him there was no way I hd any of his coke in my bag. he wouldn’t, there wasn’t any. As I said before, ted had simply hid it from himself too well.

However, in his searching, he ran across my bundle, my generous bag of meth.

On not too close inspection, especially in larger quantities, sufficiently camouflaged for transport, the two substances can indeed be mistaken for one another, especially if the package isn’t opened. add to that the early hour, our coke binge addled brains, and I suppose it is not surprising that upon finding it, Ted assumed it was coke. he had no reason to believe otherwise,. Again, i hadn’t been exactly forthcoming about meth, in the previous few days.

Further, as I had not had any coke of my own previously that weekend, it was only logical for him to assume, that any coke I might have, would in all likelihood have come from him.

Ted, convinced he had busted me, was ranting about it being his coke, that he was gonna be damned if his brother stole from him..

Now i was trying o explain, trying to tell him it wasnt coke, but he wasnt having it

just got smug, told meto quit lying, he wasnt that mad, really, he was glad there was om left

i was still trying to explain, as he pouredout some of the powdery edges, floating in the bab. poured quite a pile on the mirror he hadon the seat of the boat.

i am Still insisting, that he not do it, its a mistake, but danny doesnt believe me either, and he is blocking me from reaching Ted to stop him.

snort that big greasy, fat, chunky line he THINKS is cocaine….

Now, I don’t want him dumping the whole bag on the ground, and being on a boat, I cant really just use brute force to get by Danny, so I watch, seemingly in slow motion, as Ted, rolls up a hundred dollar bill, and goes into snort that big greasy, fat, chunky line he THINKS is cocaine….

I swear I am saying don’t do it, in slow motion, like in a sports replay…

but he leans in and does it

then squeaks a little, tiny, almost whimpering, squeaks. Then he snorts….

That scream that says there is a blow torch in your nose

and then he stood up straight, like the crack of a whip! I mean he shot up, ramrod, finishing school, stnd at attention straight… his whole face was watering, eyes watering, nose dripping, slack jawed and drooling, for about two, maybe three seconds, before he let out ahowl… a primal scream.

That scream that says there is a blow torch in your nose. A little demon, has some how gotten in your nose, and is blow torching your nostrils. that flame is shooting towards your brain… and your brain aint ready

Especially, since Ted thought he was getting cocaine. He had never done meth, had no idea of it’s potency, no idea how much stronger it was than cocaine… and, as a pretty heavy cocaine user, thinking he had found some cocaine I had been holding out on him with, he put down really big, fat, lines… “how dare you hold out on me,when I was being so free with you”, kinda of retribution lines.

So, probably at least 10 times the amount he should have used for a first time using something… even more so, since what I had, was not street level ready… it needed to be stepped on at least once, before I would even use it… that was why I hadn’t got into the shit in the first place. Hadn’t gotten around to asking my big brother to get me some cut for my dope… yah, how do you start that conversation? ‘Hey Bro, front me some cut”

.. as far as I knew, he was anti meth, so I hadn’t broached the subject in the first three days in town… what with it having be dominated by family picnics and gramma time.

So now he knows, he knows that wasn’t coke. Now he knows I was telling the truth… and is semi crying as he tries to describe the burning, and i am trying to explain how much shit he actually just did,without freaking him out, about how much shit he did1 quite the tightrope to walk, let me tell you.

I am just starting to get this point across, when some of that drain, moved down those passages to the throat, burning the nostrils again, seting the throat a’fire, and propelling ted into some obligitory screaming about the fire in his face. Then he went stiff again, he got ramrod straight again. This time, unfortunately, his feet pushed against the slanted floor of the boat, causing it to rock, just a little…

no splashing, just straight to the bottom like a lump of limestone.

Just a little, but just enough to, topple Ted, right out of the boat, and into the river. It was literally like a statue, toppling off the boat, even the entry, no splashing, just straight to the bottom like a lump of limestone.

That didnt last, but it sure was eery to see…. but as I said it didn’t last, he popped right up, sputtering and screaming a new.

We were right in to get him, and since the water wasn’t but 4 or 5 feet deep, he wasn’t hurt, but you wouldn’t know it to hear him. he was damn near speaking, and sometimes, shrieking in tongues… he was shivering, and once we got him in the boat again, he wouldn’t stop pacing and postulating. He looked like a soaking wet young Einstein , if he were spun out of his gourd.

———————–

So I tried to again explain that he had done a shit load, that what he had got into needed to be cut first, that this was lab grade, not street grade shit. that I wasn’t really sure how bad this could be, that, i had never done that much at once. Hell, I had never seen that much done, not at once anyway.

But that just took him off on another tangent

It was bad. He started going on about how he had had no idea, never thought meth was worth a shit, throw in a litle maniacal laughing, stir, you get the idea. He went on, like he was lecturing, that it totally made sense now… the stuff he had got before, the couple times he tried speed, had been stepped the fuck up on, that henever got the real taste.

It was about here, where he started having a debate with himself, analyzing the pros and cons of Cocaine vs Methamphetamine

Now, as I am sure you can imagine, Ted wasn’t exactly quiet about all of this. In fact, he was drawing some uncomfortable attention of some of the hundreds of other boaters out there. Danny and I noticed this, and decided pretty much simultaneously that it was time to get the boat off the water, and ted on dry land.

we both quietly started to pack it up to leave, while nodding and answering the still pacing, though much more elegantly, I must admit, Ted. He of course, was still going a mile a minute , about the cost benefit ratio of Meth Vs Coke.

Unfortunately, we woke him from his thought bubble, when we started up the boat..

still going a mile a minute , about the cost benefit ratio of Meth Vs Coke

Yup… Crazy Ogre Ted chose this moment, to make his first ever appearance, courtesy of, no doubt, our subject matter, Methamphetamine.

I, had never seen crazy Ogre Ted before, that is for sure! I am his brother, his little brother, the breaker of toys and teller of Mom, little brother, and I had never seen it.

He was howling about not going until he said it was time to go! How it was his boat, and started tearing through his bags at the back of the boat, emerging with a pistol, just as I was getting to pull out from the dock, in spite of his objections.

I turn around and am telling him, to sit down, we need to go,yadayadayada, ya know, that screaming over each other that brothers can do, spittle flying, arms flailing, necks bulging that kind of argument… he was adamant, I wasn’t budging. I had control of the boat, and we were leaving.

he had been too damn outrageous, i reasoned. People on other boats had already been watching his bizarre behavior. Now, that we were shouting at each other, it was that much more imperative that we get going.

This was before the days of cell phones really. Oh, the occasional brick phone was seen about, but all boaters had radios, and I just new the calls were being made to the Sheriffs Patrol and we needed to go.

That… is when he pulled the trigger

Not once

Three times, in rapid succession.

BANG! BANG! BANG!

Luckily, at least for me, he had fired into the air… (it was like the old days, when he was a teen and I a pre-teen, when somebody, usually somebodies young uncle, or older primo, fired off a couple rounds, to break up a fight before the cops got there, and people got in real trouble. ya know, back when we fought with clubs and knives, before everybody had guns.)

Unluckily, for him….. I was ready for him, so just as he smugly looked at me, after his volley, i punched the throttle on the boat, and dumped him right back off the boat. Not nearly as gracefully as before, but a second baptism all the same. Luckily, the pistol skittered harmlessy across the bottom of the boat, Ted having dropped it in his desperate grasping to stay on board. stopping immediately, and trying to stay mad enough at him tonot start laughing at him, Danny and i both told him to get in the damn boat,we were leaving.

He stood there, chest deep in the river screaming, while we growled at him to get the fuck in the boat, we were leaving! seriously, we had to go now! Firing off a gun Middle of the day?, Danny had retrieved the pistol, and while Ted continued to slog back to the boat yelling non stop. I motioned to Danny to give me the pistol. Danny, looked at me like he was going to argue, but only for the briefest of seconds, as I had given him the stink eye, and a neck flex, with my impatient hand gesture, implying his delay was ridiculous, Gimme the fucking pistol!

being the snotty younger brother, you know I jolted the boat forward a couple of times, before i let ted get back in the boat. But , seriously we needed to get this boat docked, and get ghost from the Marina, before the cops on wheels arrived. Time really was of the essence. he was still mad, but he quit arguing, after chasing the boat for 50 yards, hving run out of breath, and given the meth, I imagine his heart felt like it was racing lightning bolts…

Luckily for us, no one had called the deputies before the gunshots, because, we were able to get the boat back to it’s slip at the marina, get ourselves to the car, and out of the marina parking lot before sherrifs vehicles arrived. I have no doubt they were coming, in fact we were pretty sure we saw them approaching the marina, across one of those huge Stockton Ag fields or rail yards. They were approaching from the opposite direction we were buggin out in, and never really saw us, nor woud have had an idea we had been at the marina fi they had.

Still, as you can imagine, Ted, seeing the fuzz of in the distance, and knowing in all likelihood were looking for us, was promptly introduced to a rather negative side effect for the spun out on meth.

Throw a big greazy line of ‘fuck you this is meth’ on top of that happy little bonfire,

PARANOIA! Yeah, Ted was naturally a little paranoid to begin with., being a fairly successful, mid level coke dealer didn’t cause that paranoia to diminish, right? right.

Throw a big greazy line of ‘fuck you this is meth’ on top of that happy little bonfire, and you get the joyful parade that is paranoid psychosis…

In the back seat of a cutlass, middle of the afternoon, driving right across a commercial center of town, in Stockton, Ca, USA… hoooray!!

I can only imagine what the other drivers were thinking, with me wrestling with Ted in the backseat, Danny driving, while thoroughly freaking out in his own right!! It was here, hat Danny, so eloquently, yet shrilly predicted the future, when he said, “You have created a freakin Monster here, I hope you know that! I have seen his cokehead crazy, and this is a whole new level man!’

I couldn’t believe, that as the ‘kid’ of the bunch, i was the only one operating with at least half a brain at this point!

You have created a freakin’ monster here, I hope you know that!

We did, however, finally get back to Danny’s place. we figured there was no way we were gonna explain this shit to Ted’s mom, on the off chance she make an appearance at home, so taking Ted home was out of the question.

Danny had his own little bungalow, or casita, behind his aunt and uncles house, it had belonged to his abuela. It was tiny, but it was privacy. His aunt and uncle, or tia y tio, whatever, did’t nose into Danny’s business much, mainly, because compared to their own kids, Danny was an Angel. He had gone to Prep school with Ted. He had a good job, going to college, played the role quite well. He was an absolute Prep School Coke Whore, but compared to his gang bangin cousins…. you know… he could hide his indiscretions in plain sight.

—————————–

We get Ted into Danny’s place, then, to assuage the paranoid android, I drive his car round back of the house, and cover the car with a tarp. That done, I hurry back in to assess whatever damage Ted might be doing, only to find him sitting, almost zen-like, on the floor, but still talking like a college lecture ran at just a tad bit faster speed than normal… not the chipmunks, but maybe an Air Force pilot wacked out on pure oxygen, that kinda fast.

If his heart was going to explode, it had had it’s chance.

By now,we were closing in on two and a half, maybe three hours since Ted’s mega dose of methamphetamine had occured, and I was coming to that, relieved, realization, that hey, he aint died yet.. been a few hours.. that means, he aint gonna die! he may not quit talking like wacked out professor for a day or so, but he aint gonna die.

If his heart was going to explode, it had had it’s chance.

He was gonna make it… we were gonna make it,ie, not gonna goto jail for killing my brother. the relief was palpable.

In fact, so relieved were we, that I was about to prove, that my earlier statement, about operating with half a brain, was only barely true. I was still the most rational of the three, but i as about to prove that I was only barely so.

You see, after such an adventure…… I myself needed a pick me up, and, I reasoned, so did Danny… we figured, if ted was gonna be up for at least another day, we needed to keep up with him.

So I put on my super stupid hat, got some cut from Danny..so we could, ostensibly, do it right this time.. lol

Got my dope simmered down to human level consumption… and he three of us spent the next four days, wired to the gills, going back and forth between coke and meth, mixing and matching, and generally doing irreparable damage to our minds and other bodily organs, while drinking and carrousing across Stockton. It was epic, truly.

Only in retrospect, did I understand how true Danny’s prediction was. A monster was indeed created… My culpability might be argued, after all,I didn’t give it to him, he took it, but the end result was not in question.

Cocaine may, or may not have eventually been his downfall, we wil never know. I do know, that Meth was. Oh, it didn’t finish him for many a year, but I think I am not too maudlin, when I say that I know, my brothers life would have been vastly different, had meth not become such a big chunk of it. Had he not come across such potent dope when he did…. he might never have gotten into it…

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