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Profile Information

Name: Harvey the Rabbit
Gender: Male
Hometown: New England
Home country: USA
Current location: Hollywood
Member since: Wed Aug 3, 2011, 12:52 PM
Number of posts: 12,054

About Me

Nixon was a fucking crook. As a teenager I marched on the UN in 1982 with a million other people demanding we get rid of the threat of nuclear weapons hanging over our heads. Since then I've worked to get Democrats elected like John Aristotle Phillips, known as the A-Bomb Kid when he ran for Congress against Stuart McKinney in CT in the 80's (we lost twice) through the Obama campaign in 2008 and 2012. I want to legalize cannabis, reform our prison for profit system, cut our military budget, get out of Afghanistan and push solar energy panels into every building in the USA.

Journal Archives

Donald Jr. is blaming a Shakespeare production for today's shooting, however the fault lies not

in our plays, but in ourselves.

"Will no one rid me of this meddlesome Special Prosecutor?"

Trump is like Becket meets Shakespeare with a side of Three Stooges.
Does he try to fire Mueller?

We live in a country where the comedians and artists are held more accountable for their actions...

than those elected to govern.

Meet the Press offers up a perfect example of "WhatAboutism" from a WSJ reporter

Talk is about Jared's back channel and she Whatabouts on an Obama rep meeting 9 years ago.
Then throws out a new charge about Obama FISA court unmaskings.
Joy Reid starts talking about FISA warrants and the WSJ person has the NERVE to say "you aren't responding to what I said." after Whatabouting for 5 minutes previously.
Chuck Todd let it happen then went to commercial.

The only time I ever played hooky was because I had a chance to meet Gregg Allman...

The only time I ever legitimately skipped school and played hooky was because I had a chance to meet Gregg Allman, and it literally changed my life.

It was December 1981, my senior year of high school, and i-95fm, our local CT rock & roll radio station held a call-in contest to win tickets to a taping of Robert Klein’s radio show at a recording studio in New York City. His guest was going to be Gregg Allman. I wanted those tickets.

I called in a bunch of times and miraculously won four tickets to the show. One problem, it taped on a school day. During school hours. In NYC. Naturally my friends Tracy, Steve, and Jeff all agreed we should skip school to go to the taping. Comedy and Rock & Roll in the big city! It was time for this teenager, just a couple of weeks short of my 18th birthday, to celebrate.

The appropriate morning arrived and we loaded into Tracy’s vintage baby blue VW Bug and drove into the city for the show. Steve lit a breakfast joint, Tracy cranked the Allman Brothers on the car's cassette player and we were off.

I was already doing stand-up in the city by this time, just Open Mike Night amateur stuff, so I knew my way around Manhattan pretty well, but I always took the train. I didn’t drive in often so we were happy when Tracy found a decent parking space. We fed the meter and checked our watches. The spot was close enough to the building so we left our big heavy coats in the trunk of her car and hustled around the corner and down the street into the building for the show at noon.

Audience of about 50 people in a small studio with a stage. Robert Klein comes out and kills it in his monologue. His guests that day were Gregg Allman and John McKuen from The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. Klein interviewed them both. They each played a couple of solo acoustic songs.

Gregg Allman played ‘Melissa’ and ‘Blue Sky’ my favorite Allman Brothers songs. He was awesome. Gregg looked great, very healthy, his long blonde hair glowing under the studio lights. I still remember it to this day. He was 10 feet away from me.

During the show Klein brought Gregg’s road manager Paco, a cheerful, barrel chested, bearded guy who looked like a Woodstock hippie crossed with a Teamster, on stage and had him join the interview. Behind the scenes stories, comedy, intimate acoustic performances from rock legends, the hour went by fast. I know this doesn’t hold a candle to Ferris Bueller, yet, but it’s about to get good.

At the end of the taping the crowd rushed Gregg, Robert, and John for autographs. We hung back, taking it all in. Steve said “Let’s go get autographs.”
I said “We could do that, or we could go talk to him.”
I pointed to Paco, who was standing by himself on the side of the studio, watching Gregg and the crowd around his star like a parent watching their kid on a playground.

So we went and chatted up Paco. I found out later what a legend this guy was in the touring rock industry. He had been working with the Allman Bros band for 5 years or so at this point after working with damn near everyone in the business for 15 years before that. I can’t tell you exactly how we did it. I was funny, we knew our music, we played it cool but for some reason Paco liked us.

As the crowd was starting to filter out he invited us back to the green room. We met Robert Klein, we met John McKuen. They were both very nice. They left and Paco introduced us to Gregg Allman. He was a really nice mellow guy at that time in his life. He had quit hard drugs and drinking and his version of sobriety was just smoking grass. That’s what he called it, grass. I met him several more times and that’s all he ever called it and I think he’s the only person I’ve ever met who called it that. But that was sober life for his, just grass. Now, this is GREGG ALLMAN telling us this. WTF? Right?

So with that story over Gregg asks Paco for a cookie. Paco pulls a bag of these huge homemade cookies out of a knapsack sitting on a chair and gives Gregg a cookie. Gregg proceeds to explain he takes a lot of his grass in edible format. He holds the cookie under our noses and it smells like a bar of pure hashish, it’s that strong. We were very impressed, then Gregg offers us a cookie to share. They’re too strong to give each of us one he says. We should each have a quarter of it.

Paco’s eating a cookie, Gregg’s eating his cookie so we ate our quarter cookies. Then Tracy says “We smoke a lot grass. Want us to spark up a joint?” They say not now because Gregg has to go do a live radio show after this but if we could spare a couple of joints for them for later they would be our best friends (or something like that). Steve whips out a baggie from his back pocket and pulls a clump of weed out of it. Paco grabs a sheet of paper from a table and wraps it up, then puts it in his pocket.

Just as I was about ask for an autograph from Gregg and go, Paco offers us backstage passes to the show at the Meadowlands in New Jersey THAT night. We look at each other, we can’t, we have to get back to CT. We’ve already skipped school to do this. We can’t head to Jersey after this. Thanks, but no.

So Paco and Gregg offer us back stage passes to their shows in Springfield MA and New Haven in the next two weeks. We get hooked up, they got hooked up. We had a ball. My first Green Room! I had a free Coke.

We wind up riding down in the elevator with them to Gregg’s limo. We say goodbye, tell them we’ll see them next week and walk off down the street back to our car, all of us higher than we’ve ever been in our lives from a quarter of Gregg Allman’s magic cookie.

It’s dark now as we walk back to the car. In December the dark comes early, and the lights of the city were dancing in my little stoner head as I heard Steve say “Where the fuck is the car?”

We had been in there so long, much longer than we expected, the time had expired and Tracy’s car had been towed to the impound lot down by the seaport. We were stranded in the city without our ride and no coats. Between us we had less than $10 on us, which was enough to pay the tolls home but not get us anywhere else. Not far anyway.

We found out the status of the car at the NYPD substation in Times Square. At first we thought it had been stolen but no, it was on us, we fucked up. We made friends with Gregg Allman. Remember, we are in this NYPD station stoned out of our minds. The bridge and tunnel crowd is bad enough but when it’s four stranded teenagers it’s as bad as it gets and these officers wanted nothing to do with us at all. I don’t blame them.

We found out the car was towed, where it was, how much to get it out, and oh, by the way, the lot is closed now because it’s so late. It’s rush hour in the city.

While I’m standing there listening to the info the officer is giving Tracy (because it’s her car) I watch a cop pulling/dragging some guy by the arm to their front door. He tells the guy to ‘get lost’ and whacks him on the back of his legs with his nightstick as a goodbye. I’m like “Time to go gang. Now.”

At this point I had come up with a plan. We were going to walk to Grand Central Station and catch a train home. How were we going to pay for it? We had $10 between us. We weren’t going to pay, not now anyway. Because I knew a weird rule from a time I had been stranded before. If you don’t have your wallet or money you can get on a Metro North train with only a driver’s license or if that was lost just give them an address, and the nice train people will send you a bill for your fare in the mail. We finally got on a train home and “ticketed” before we turned to each other

Jeff said “I can’t believe we just met Gregg Allman!”
Tracy said “I can’t believe we just got high with Gregg Allman!”
Steve said “I can’t believe I got Gregg Allman high! Well, later anyway.”
I said, “I think we should take Steve’s car to Springfield next week.”

We got back to Norwalk and had to call our parents for a ride from the station. That’s when we found out the school had busted us to them hours ago. We were Dead Kids walking. It was the most trouble I got into during high school.

And it was worth every part of it. If you ask my Mom about this she will tell you that I’m still grounded.

Wait you say, you claimed this event changed your life and as cool as this story is, where’s the life change?

The coda to this story is in the six Allman Brothers band concerts we saw in the next two months all over New England. Backstage passes every time. It was like Paco became the coolest uncle we ever had. We saw them in Providence, Springfield, Boston, New Haven, and Long Island, NY. The first time I ate at a craft service table was at an Allman Brothers concert.

Behind the scenes with the Allman Brothers was a trip and a half. I turned 18 during this period and discovered that even rock legends were just ordinary men. I saw Gregg Allman and Dickey Betts get into a fist fight back stage for a long minute before everyone broke them apart. They truly hated each other at this point. I found out later Betts was still drinking and doing hard drugs and it widened the growing rift between them. But they needed each other to make money on the road. They had an interdependent relationship they both resented. I learned so much about show business sitting backstage and watching everyone those six nights.

Gregg was always nice to us, we were the “New York kids with the good grass.” We always made sure to live up to that reputation. Basically, I lived ALMOST FAMOUS-style twenty years before they made the movie. I have never forgotten a moment of it. I learned about the isolation fame brings to people who achieve it. Gregg always seemed a little lonely to me when I spoke with him. Wistful would be a good word for it. Eventually the band moved on to venues out of reach by our cars and we said goodbye to the gang of friends we made.

Paco was the one who changed my life though. He thought I was a really funny kid and I told him one night in Boston how I wanted to be a professional comedian. He told me he had a friend in NYC, Phil Selman, that booked comics in nightclubs and would be happy to introduce me to him. Within six months I was working paying gigs. Phil was a character and that’s another story but he became my booking agent for almost 10 years because of Paco’s introduction.

Every time I hear The Allman Bros songs “Melissa” or Blue Sky” the memories come flooding back to me like it was yesterday.

To sum up, Gregg Allman was a great guy, unless you were Dickey Betts, he loved grass and playing music. If there’s a Rock & Roll Heaven the house band just got a whole lot better.

Rest in Peace Gregg Allman, and thank you, for the music, the memories, your friends who changed my life, and for an unforgettable journey from boy to man unlike any other. And the cookie, thank you for the cookie.

If you don't understand that antisemitism is behind the current acceptance of violence against

reporters by the right wing then you don't understand America.

This trip is going to be hell on Donald Trump bankbook

He's going to be traveling for nine days and not able to spend any government money at any of his trump properties.
No self-dealing? That's not why he leaves the White House.

Asked about Comey, Trump's answer veers into how bad Obamacare is.

This guy is a one trick pony.

Any day now I expect Trump to just pardon himself, along with half of his Cabinet and staff, and

just move on.
What the hell would anyone do then?
It's what authoritarians do.

Sure, we're talking about "impeachment" and "resignation" but Trump is probably talking about

"consolidating power" and "martial law."

We really don't know what he would do with his back against the wall.
You don't resign from a coup.
You just admit it's a coup and move on with your authoritarian state.
All approved by the GOP Congress that won't even let the Democrats in the room to negotiate the new health care law in the Senate.
I feel like we've brought a knife to a machine gun fight with the GOP.

We believe in the law.
That's why we are talking about impeachment and the Articles of the Constitution.
They don't believe in the law, except to mangle it for their agenda.
State's rights? Yes for abortion, but fuck that idea/concept for legal cannabis.

Acceptance (and/or collusion) with a Russian tainted Presidential election working with a gerrymandered Congress, and a stacked Supreme Court with a stolen Justice's seat sitting on the bench in the swing vote.
That's who we are fighting.
You can call it what you want but it sure feels like a coup to me.
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