2 comments on “from The Book of Nash, Chapter 17, Verses 75 – 78

  1. Back when I was living in Austin, Texas during the early 1970s it was rumored to be a misdemeanor to kill an Indian on a streetcar. They didn’t have any streetcars, probably because they ran out of Indians. Same thing might have happened to tainted pickles and pigeons. Laws die of their own weight when the objects of attention either vanish, or become so popular in their execution as to get cops busted busting them. Although that hasn’t happened yet with crystal meth. Might be because there’s too much money being made by cops confiscating crystal and selling what they don’t consume among themselves to high school girls. A law as convenient as that one’s going to be on the books until someone invents a meth that kills cops on a delayed fuse. Sorry for rambling. Jack


    • Problem is, Jack, that the laws are still out there for whatever perverted use one can come up with.
      Lay a little exemple gratia on you:
      Mid-’70s, living in Morrison, CO. Small redneck town over-run by a bunch of damned hippies. Population 750, five bars, one four-way stop sign.
      Hanging out at the local saloon with some of the regulars, got to talking with a fella named John Enright. A gentlemen’s gentleman, affable and witty and insightful. Very well educated and intelligent. Always a pleasure to talk to.
      His daughter Laurie had married my friend Billy Marlin, and having been one of the two photographers to cover the wedding, had gotten a few chances to speak with him at length.
      Interesting conversations. I was one of the local hippies, he was a former DEA agent recently named head of the Colorado Bureau of Investigation.
      Subject got around to week.
      Mr. Enright made somewhat of a big deal about possession of less than an ounce of marijuana having been reduced to a misdemeanor offense. No jail time, and I don’t mean “big deal” in the sense that it infuriated him or was too radical for his sensibilities. On the contrary, I took it that he realized it made perfectly good sense.
      He spoke of that as if it were a major step.
      I postulated that if Bryan, let’s say, and I were walking along Stone St. one day and saw a joint laying on the pavement, and we decided to pick up that joint, walk on down to the creek behind the post office and fire it up, we could both be charged with a no-BFD offense of being in possession of less than an ounce of marijuana. A low level misdemeanor…
      there were two of us. Me and Bryan.
      That could be argued as a conspiracy to commit a misdemeanor which was – guess what – a felony!!

      “The law changed Mr. Enright, for the better if you ask me, but if you folks really want to put the screws to us, you can. It’d be like that law never changed.”

      Man smiled, nodded, bought me a beer.
      And then we talked about the Broncos.

      It was a strange conversation, in a sense, but he knew I wasn’t playing a game of “Gotcha!!!” and also knew I likely had a few joints on me I would share with his daughter, son-in-law and some other friends before the night was out.
      And I knew he appreciated the point I made during a very productive conversation.
      Stopped by at my table before he left that evening to shake my hand, bring me another beer and let me know how much he enjoyed our talk.

      Hell of a look on some of my buddy’s faces when they asked me “Who is that guy?”

      Some laws are like ancient landmines long ago buried, waiting to be stepped on.


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