The First Time I Got High

The first time I got high on pot was in late 1994 when I was 16.  I had tried to smoke it once before with a group of kids who had foolishly emptied a cigarette in order to refill it with the weed they had, which of course did not work.  The time it did work, I smoked for an entire afternoon with my friend's brother, who I had not met before that day.


I met my friend Bill while working that Summer at the now long-shuttered SeaWorld Ohio, washing dishes at a restaurant called Mama Rosa's.  He was my immediate supervisor, either 18 or 19 years old.  We had kept in touch following his untimely mid-Summer firing (if you're gonna skip work, ya gotta at least call to warn them), and I got a ride to his house one late-morning during a day off from school in October.  We had planned for a while to smoke weed together, and I had just recently bought about ten dollars worth through a friend.  After being dropped off, Bill told me almost right away that he had to leave, because his grandmother needed some kind of assistance across town.  He offered that I could stay and hang out with his brother Jim until he got back, and maybe even smoke weed with him instead.  Jim, who already looked high, offered in turn to hang out with me.


After Bill left, I sat down with Jim in their living room.  He asked me if I'd smoked before, and I falsely assured him I had "done it a lot," just like on TV.  He told me that he'd been smoking about six months.  He then proceeded to pull out an arsenal of paraphernalia, including a pipe, a water bong, and a steamroller.  I handed him my weed, and he took a deep whiff of it.  "Smells homegrown" he said.  Sure, homegrown.  He packed the bowl of the water bong, and showed me how to use it.   I remember enjoying the sound of the bubbles when inhaling.  We hung out for a little while talking, and I made the rookie mistake of saying the pot wasn't doing anything.  Mere seconds later I was laughing hysterically at absolutely nothing.  We then did a hit of the steamroller as well as the pipe, and then I think one more from the water bong.  I think he was on to me by now, because he kept reminding me to hold in the hits for as long as I could, and asking through a grin "Are you sure you've done this a lot?"  I think I stammered something about "trying it," and he said "Ok, like, social smoking."  I got up and looked at myself in the mirror, and my eyes looked insane.  He asked me if I wanted to listen to any music.  "Nirvana!" I yelped.  I wanted to listen to Nirvana during my first stoned experience.  He said he had a copy of Nevermind somewhere, but sadly was unable to locate it.  I got up and looked at the CDs he had, and I saw two copies of Blood Sugar Sex Magik.  "This is fine," I said.


We hung out and listened to the Chili Peppers while playing Tecmo Super Bowl II.  We kept laughing while playing, because this version had a weird video feature that was a close up of the Quarterback whenever he threw a bomb, and Jim would yell "OH NO, THE BOMB!" each time it happened.  I remember watching the music video for "Head Like a Hole," and the infamous cow scene from Top Secret!  He asked me if I wanted any food, and we stumbled into his kitchen.  I grabbed a box of muffins from his pantry and said "Banana Nut Muffins," and started laughing like a maniac.  I had several of those as well as a bunch of cantaloupe.  He advised that I had "the munchies."  Eventually Bill came back, and we were all hanging out talking, when their suddenly mom pulled in the driveway.  I looked around, panicked at the paraphernalia spread out everywhere, and they assured me that she was clueless.  We were introduced, and she was in fact, clueless. We hung out into the late-afternoon while we came down, and I was picked up early that evening.


I remember not knowing how to feel afterwards.  I was glad to have had the experience, but also wondered if it was a waste of my day.  I wasn't nervous or paranoid while it was happening, but every other time I smoked pot afterwards, I was.  I don't know whether it was a matter of my brain trying to anticipate what was coming, and then pushing it away?  It always sounded like a better idea in practice than it was in reality, and it wasn't a habit that stuck for very long.  I tried again in earnest in 2017, with Mary Alice, and it was the same thing.  I'm too anxious of a person.  But that first time was pretty memorable.