Showing posts from October 11, 2020

Summer '75: Opening Salvo

Detail of mythic Jackalope, 1974. Omnibus Postcard Collection In the summer of 1975 I was an art counselor at the venerable Cimarroncita Ranch Camp for Boys, Ute Park NM. Originally there was the girls camp, and somebody thought that Junior needed to be somewhere if Sis was.  Getting There I rode the Dog from Athens OH thru Columbus, thence southwest through Missouri, OK City, and the vastness of Texas: Amarillo, Dalhart to Raton NM. There I was picked up by the camp in a station wagon with 3 other guys, and thence west on Hwy 64 to Ute Park NM.  "Jacky Blue" was playing on the radio. All the other guys seemed way more knowledgeable about all this, and I got the distinct feeling that my previous summer in Italy didn't count here.  Time The first three weeks were my Ohio sinuses draining in the mountain air. I'd finally come back to a home point on my native geographic axis, that ran from New Mexico up thru the Rockies into Idaho/Montana. Humor me, I was born in Den

Summer '75: Meeting An Aspen Drug Lawyer

At least that's the way I remembered it. One morning, Phil needed my help making a dump run, and drop off a car. I followed him in his then-elderly Land Cruiser out to the Pitkin County dump. We tossed some shit, got a soda, and then drove back into town. He was meeting his pal Woody, a drug lawyer at a slanted-wood paneled fern bar, back when that look was brand new. We’re sitting there on low divan cushions. The waitresses were svelte, slender and cute as fuck. I was acutely aware of my obvious broke-ass status, but managed to keep my mouth shut. Woody appeared, high-fives and back slaps, the waitresses knew him. He took a seat, he and Phil traded opening lines, as one leathery cocaine cowboy after another, with turquoise rings etc sidled up to him, whispered in his ear, and discussing upcoming court dates. Woody launched into the Big Story. He’d just gotten back from Jackson MS, where he’d sprung four unlucky knuckleheads from a major drug bust. Two guys and their respective gir

Summer '75: The Rock & Roll Seamstress

Buy the ticket, take the ride Phil & Gail's temporary rental house on the western flats part of Aspen was an 1890's gingerbread that had seen better days. It wasn't a restored painted lady like in San Francisco. It also didn't have a phone. For some reason this wasn't especially odd. A rock n roll seamstress lived across the street.The street was have been seal coated. She supposedly did work for the Eagles. This wasn’t exactly new; I knew an odd bird named Kent back in Athens who did stage wear for Alice Cooper, or so we were told. Only reason I met her was that she had a phone. So I’d go over to her house, call down to Denver, stall my grandmother, give her some money, and leave. The interior was tidy Victoriana. That style was enjoying a revival in pop culture; but I imagine that high-country junk stores were full of all that, left over from the mining booms and busts. She was in her late 30s, on the plain side, but completely sociable. On another day I met o

Summer '75: The Ducks Unlimited Blind Dinner Date

Aspen CO. Image courtesy of the Omnibus Postcard Collection Gail and Phil had a friend, a woman who was a real estate agent. Some divorced guy from Texas had a crush on her, wanted to meet her. So a dinner was arranged. Gail, Phil, The Texan, Real Estate Gal [who was seriously not interested in Tex], her sister, and yours truly. Full disclosure: the sister was seriously not interested in me either. I remember her as a tall icy brunette with a Dorothy Hamill bob. We’re at Tex’s condo somewhere on Aspen Mountain. Got there while there was still light, saw the lifts out the back day. Again, a world light years from my life. We got situated, the weed circulated. Dinner arrives, a high-dollar chunk of Texas beef with a Bearnaise, and very lush French red wine.  Then Phil and Gail bailed, claiming something. So that left me sitting next to Icy Sister, baked as fuck. I didn't have the wit to duck out.  Tex is trying to establish his Cool Guy bona fides with Real Estate Gal, easily twenty