"School days, school days, dear ol pocket pool days" ~Alan Sherman
Well, looks like Little Johnny was late again and kudos to Norm, Paul and All for covering this fun topic like a new textbook with a brown paper sack.
So, with little left to add…Let’s talk about those “highs” we tried before pot enrolled during the mid 60’s.
My first exposure was to those mimeograph sheets coated in God-knows-what organic solvents that when fished from the waste basket and huffed till dry where reputed to give one a serious buzz. I tried it once and got caught “blue handed” before I could saturate my pleasure receptors and rewarded by banging erasers and snorting the chalk dust instead.
Next was the James Brown Spin-Around on a soft lawn, circling till gravity was reversed in the vortex and one hit the ground spinning. True confessions: were it not for my newly replaced hip, I’d give it a spin today.
Similar high was achieved by hanging upside down on the Monkey Bars where I would spend abstain, favoring hours on end watching London and France: Aqualung had nothing on me.
And who can forget the Hyperventilate/Chest squeeze gambit that traded oxygenated brain cells for a chance to pass out. The hyperventilation actually sereved to oxygenate one’s brain so when extreme vagal nerve activation slowed one’s heart into a near stop, the lack of blood was transcendent. I only participated in this circus as the squeezer and not the squeezee, since my friends were also pyromaniacs and could have easily torched me as I lie comatose. My adventures in oxidative combustion, while legendary, are fodder for another canon.
Akin to the mimeograph huff was the actual realization that that Tester’s Glue used for model cars could take one for a real ride if opened on the way home from King Norman’s in the bag and inhaled. I never partook of this and amongst kids in my hood, this was rated as somewhere between classless and crazy. The Lanning brothers seemed to have had the monopoly on this cheap high, mostly by default, and it was not uncommon to see them falling down stupid at Westlake Park after school. I think they both went on to be highly-placed operatives in the GOP but I digress...