“We’re going to Buddies,” my friend’s sister’s boyfriend said. He was Filipino, and his eyes were wild with drugs.
“Oh—is that a social club?” I asked.
“No—were you born under a rock? It’s where I get my weed. Plus, the store has some unusual curiosities.”
He had me curious. Ordinarily—I never frequent a store where they sell marijuana. Drugs are killers of brain cells—and I don’t want my brain to be pickled at 40.
People are always doing things—and my natural instinct has been not to do anything. It feels right, for me. But on this occasion, I decided to go along, anyway.
The store was where they used to sell XXX movies. I wonder if all the degenerate businesses get together and decide who replaces the other when they go out of business. It was a plywood box, with a door, and window art that looked like Jimmy Hendrix was getting high with the sun shining through his face.
The proprietor had two bellies, three chins and wore overalls. He was bald with 1950s glasses—which made him look like a hick who worked for the CIA.
“Give me your snap-dragon green,” my friend’s sister’s boyfriend said.
The owner shuffled over to the pot, and put it in some tin-foil. Anything else?” He asked.
I was looking around. There were Native American peace pipes. Pipes belonging to the likes of Sherlock Holmes. And the intellectual pipe, smoked by PhDs in the math department. The old man noticed that I was interested.
“You don’t smoke, do you?” He asked.
“Good for you. How do you know the pothead?”
“He’s my friend’s sister’s boyfriend.”
“That’s a mouthful. Would you like to see something I keep reserved only for special customers?”
I hesitated. The likelihood that he would show me heroine was pretty high—and I wasn’t interested.
“Okay—but I don’t do drugs.”
He laughed, in a high-pitched squeaky voice that sounded like a rat. “Follow me upstairs, and I’ll show you the ultimate high. In the loft was his bedroom, and on the adjoining wall were glass jars.
“Those contain feelings,” he said.
“What kind of feelings?” I asked.
“The easiest and the most profitable is the sexual high. Then, more complicated feelings arise—like love, or anger.”
“People pay to feel angry?”
“You would be surprised how many repressed individuals exist in society. They can’t feel things on their own—they need drugs.”
“But how do you collect feelings?”
“I use this machine. It’s kinda like a breathalyzer, and works a bit like a bong.”
“To retrieve the feeling, you breath in. And to store the feeling, you breath out. Mostly, I save my feelings for myself. I don’t like to feel, what other people feel, but people pay me for my own feelings.”
“What’s that feeling in the corner,” I asked. “It has a pink color.”
“That’s luck. I bottled it five years ago, when I bet 100,000 dollars that Trump would win the election. I’m waiting for the next election to take it.”
To think the fate of our superpower was determined by a weed distributor made me loopy.
“You’re looking a bit green. Can I interest you in a feeling?”
“No. I’ve seen enough. My belief in a grand plan has been crushed.”
The walls started shaking. “It’s an earthquake! Get downstairs before you become overwhelmed by my feelings!” He didn’t have to tell me twice, and when I was running downstairs, the bottle of luck broke, and I absorbed his feeling. I heard screaming behind me—it sounded like a man engaged with road rage and rape. I ran even faster. My luck would save me. I bought a Mega Millions ticket downstairs in the vending machine. I messaged a girl on Facebook. I went to the golf course and broke the record. The positive feelings of luck were bubbling inside of me. I looked at the breathalyzer and bong on my seat. I breathed out and put the feeling, safely away in a glass jar.
“I’ll save you for later,” I said. “Luck trumps fate—and the democratic party.”