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  ...presents...                 Reverie
                                                         by Reid Fleming
                                                         06/06/1999-#370

             __///////\ -cDc- CULT OF THE DEAD COW -cDc- /\\\\\\\__
               \\\\\\\/  Everything You Need Since 1986  \///////
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Often, when I pick up one of my books, I begin to reminisce.  Sometimes 
it has nothing to do with the contents of the book; rather, events spring 
to mind to which the book was a witness.  Or even a participant.
 
My copy of _How to Make War: A Comprehensive Guide to Modern Warfare_ by 
James F. Dunnigan is such an artifact.  If you're ever over at my house, 
look for it in my bookshelf.  If you find it, open the front cover and 
hold it to the light.  You'll notice two pinholes roughly in the middle 
of the cover.  I made those holes one night about ten years ago.
 
I was staying at a friend's house in suburbia.  His parents were gone for 
months at a time, so we had the run of the place.  We often took drugs, 
threw parties, played host to innumerable high school burnouts.
 
One night, a female friend of mine was visiting.  Her boyfriend did not 
arrive with her.  I had been suffering from a longstanding crush on her, 
and that evening it was particularly acute.
 
Somehow or other, she and I end up alone in my bedroom.  We're sitting on 
the bed, talking about nothing.  Feeling lucky, I try to put some moves 
on, but she doesn't respond.
 
Suddenly there's a knock at the bedroom door.  It swings open to reveal 
another friend of mine, just back from Europe.  We all hug & talk.
 
After short while, my world traveler friend produces a present for me.  
It's a piece of hashish from Amsterdam, about the size of a piece of 
Dentyne chewing gum.  Since it was the first hashish I'd ever seen, I 
thought it looked like a tiny amount.
 
At the sight of the hashish, the girl on the bed perks up considerably.  
Perfect, I think.  I'll get us high, then we'll let nature take its 
course.  I say goodbye to the global drug smuggler, profusely thanking 
all the while, and then shut and lock the bedroom door.
 
But I have no idea what to do with it.  Luckily, my friend knows most 
everything about all manner of drugs.  She explains that it's customary 
to burn a small amount on the tip of a pin, then trap the smoke in an 
upturned brandy snifter.
 
This is hard to imagine, but within a couple of minutes I gather the 
crucial equipment.  One pin.  One brandy snifter.  A lighter.
 
Now we need a platform, something to jam the pin into that will keep it 
standing vertical.  And preferably something portable.  That's when I 
reach over and picked up _How to Make War_.  The title was ironic, since 
making war was the last thing on my mind at that point.
 
I shove the pin through the front cover and then close the book.  The pin 
falls over because the hole is too big.  I puncture the cover again, this 
time more carefully, and the pin stands up straight.
 
My friend puts a tiny piece of hash on the pin, lights it, and turns the 
wine glass over on top of the pin.  After the smoke becomes sufficiently 
thick, she brings her lips close to the edge of the glass, tilts the 
glass slightly away from her face, and inhales deeply.
 
I see the air inside the glass become clear.  Then I imitate her 
performance.  We each take three or four hits, then lay back on the bed 
and let the drug take over.
 
As it turned out, nothing happened that night between us.  But several 
months later, she and I did begin a romantic liaison which ended 
bitterly.  I haven't heard from her in years.
 
But right here, next to me, is the book.  It bears scars from that 
night.  It's evidence that corroborates my story.  And whenever I look at 
the cover, I think of her, and that night.  When I wanted nothing more in 
the entire world than to touch her.


    .-.                             _   _                             .-.
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