In retrospect, my mom was probably right about Jummy being a bad influence. One summer, he always had weed. I had no clue where it came from, but Jummy said I could continue smoking it without smoking him out in return if I never asked him where he got...
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Being young wouldn't have been the same if it were not for the struggles I faced while trying to find weed. Although I have been waiting for the (inevitable) legalization of weed for years, I know that the kids who grow up with legalized pot will have one less arduous life experience to bond over with their peers. They'll never know the merciless boredom of waiting for the phone to ring—or in my case, waiting in a diner booth for the translucent, green pager to buzz with 420 somewhere in the numeric message. My high school buddy Jummy was often the face across from me in the diner during these trying moments, and he and I grew closer each time we faced it.
In retrospect, my mom was probably right about Jummy being a bad influence on me. He had a mohawk and was perpetually getting kicked out of school. The oldest of three brothers, he was something of a black sheep in his family, and more than once I heard his parents lecturing him about being a better role model. But all that mattered to me was that he was there to share the strife with me—we were truly dedicated to our cause.
We would pool our cash, hit up every kid who could potentially be holding, and impatiently wait for a response from those unreliable bastards. Whenever we got some, we'd rejoice and sneak past Jummy's unsuspecting parents up to his room and smoke it all at once. When weed was unavailable, neither of us handled the stress well—that's why I was suspicious when Jummy wasn't very concerned one summer.
That summer, he somehow always had weed. It wasn't great weed—some bushy homegrown, outdoor crap that looked like it was out of Dazed And Confused—but it certainly did the trick. He never had tons of it—just a couple of scrappy grams in a cellophane cigarette pack wrapper. Any time I mentioned my worries, Jummy would either have weed on hand or be able to disappear for 20 minutes and return with some pot. As long as I didn't ask him where he got it, he said I didn’t have to smoke him out in return. I complied, but our other friends caught on and began to question where he got his supply.
There were a bunch of woods behind Jummy's house, so the immediate assumption was that he had plants back there—the buds’ poor maintenance supported this theory, because Jummy definitely didn't know how to properly grow weed. Pressed for an answer, Jummy made up a tenuous story about a cousin hooking him up. We gave him shit for it, but no one pushed him too hard, because he could always diffuse the conversation by immediately smoking us out with his weird weed.
One day, we were all sitting on our friend’s porch playing the pager game. Without a single response, we hopelessly looked to Jummy. He was empty-handed, claiming that the magical cousin was out of town. Spoiled by a stream of weed that seemed endless just a day before, the crew grew somewhat hostile. The group’s collective frustration weighed on Jummy, who was obviously hiding something. Finally, he broke.
“Fine! Fine! I’ll fucking tell you! I’ve been stealing that weed from my parents!”
We were all shocked to learn that Jummy’s prim and proper parents were actually massive stoners who had a consistent supply hidden in the house. Jummy told us how he was rooting around in the basement one day and found a garbage bag filled with bud that was pretty much still on the plant. He deduced that they were getting it from an old friend who had apparently been growing weed the same way since the early 70s—that was why it was never the kind of bud we were used to. He was amazed to learn that his parents were total hypocrites who admonished him for his weeded out lifestyle when they were just a couple of stoners too. (At the time, Jummy didn’t factor in the myriad of other traits that made him a bad kid worthy of punishment.)
Jummy had to benefit somehow from this catch, but he knew he couldn’t go the open route and tell his parent that he had discovered their secret. Instead, he turned it into his own stash, chipping away a couple of grams each day so his parents wouldn’t notice. It worked well for the first several weeks, but then Jummy got greedy—or rather, he got generous. Once he started sharing it with the guys and me, he had to sneak away more and more at a time to keep the jig up. The day before we all went in on him, Jummy’s mom had finally noticed that their stash was shrinking more rapidly than usual. She told Jummy's dad, and both of them confronted Jummy about it, concerned that he was not only smoking their weed, but consuming it at such a rapid pace. The poor kid took the fall, never revealing we were his accomplices, but perhaps impressing his parents with his consumption abilities.
The jig being up, Jummy no longer had access to the mother-load, but at least his parents didn’t punish him—even they realized there was no justice in reprimanding him when they smoked pot too. That’s why he wasn’t grounded and was instead sitting with us on the porch unloading the weight of this secret. He hadn’t spoken a word of his discovery until that moment, and verbalizing it really drove the reality home for him. “My parents are fucking stoners, man. I can’t believe it,” he said. We all looked on in silence. We couldn’t believe it either.
Before long, Jummy actually started sneaking trees from his parents' stash again, but this time he was reasonable about it and so were his parents. They had reached a silent understanding—we no longer had to act paranoid when we spoke to them when we were stoned, and we no longer had to sneak past them when we were dashing to Jummy's room to smoke. It may not have been the most predictable route to peace between them, but it worked for them—plus it got me high like ten million times. Thanks, Jummy and Jummy’s mom and dad.
Previously - Life's Weed Bonuses