July 30, 1994. All he wanted was a souvenir. He told me, go to this new Woodstock thing, see what's going on and write me a piece. I never know what to expect from Matt, so I agreed. And then I found out the specifics. No ticket, no up front money, no transportation. I was on my own. And he wanted proof that I'd been there. Something that could only be gained by entrance to the ultimate concert sequel. At least I had my parents' credit cards and a week and a half to get to New York.
Getting there was the first problem. Matt was working at a video store at the time, so he couldn't get off work to go (Apparently this is why he asked me to go, but I think he just likes to dump shit on me because I told him once that I would only sleep with him if he promised to pay for dinner-we've been friends since then.). He also hadn't started actually working on putting the magazine together, he just said that when it did happen he wanted a hands on look from Woodstock '94. I still am not sure why I did this thing, except for the few interesting variables. (1) I had just broken up with my boyfriend of three and a half years. (2) School didn't start for almost a month. (3) I really wanted to see Trent Reznor in his leather bondage gear. All of this added up to a lot of time on my hands with nothing to do.
I thought transportation would be easier than it turned out. I have this friend who I thought would be totally into a run across country for a big concert, but when I tried to get in touch with Zep, he wasn't home. Pot run across the border was my guess, but I'm not totally sure. He just wasn't there. Which left me alone again (I think this was actually to my advantage. Zep has a tendency to hang all over me and he's only mildly amusing in bed.), so I decided on a flight to New York City and then trust my luck from there.
Flash forward to August 11, 1994. I was looking around JFK for people who might be going to the concert. I needed a ride and didn't feel like venturing any farther than the curb outside before I had secured further transportation. When I was on the plane, I scanned the entire interior for someone promising and found nothing. At the time I was wearing some naturally baggy pants (I had this eating problem near the end of my relationship-but by August I was back to 106.) and a very unrevealing button-down shirt that used to be Zep's I think. I needed to be noticed so I pulled the belt off my pants (Causing them to fall to the widest part of my hips which also exposed the upper third of my bikini bottoms. I had abandoned underwear for swimsuits because of what I saw while viewing the first Woodstock movie-a lot of rain.), took off the shirt and tied it around my waist. Two minutes later this guy (about six-one, blond hair to his shoulders and covered in flannel) tapped my shoulder and said, "Going to Woodstock?"
His name was Dennis, he was from somewhere in Ohio (I think) and his credit card got us a rental car at the Budget desk. It would have been a lot more comfortable in that Ford Escort if his three friends (Gary, Shannon and Delroy-I kid you not) weren't along for the ride also. I guess I really shouldn't complain, I mean, I wasn't paying for the thing. It was kind of annoying listening to the greatest hits of The Band (I guess Dennis wanted to know the words to every song that was gonna be played at the concert-even the stupid ones) on the way. I asked them if they had any old Green Day, Gary asked, "You mean like the first single? 'Longview?'" I decided to find new friends once I found my way inside the compound.
August 12, 1994. "You mean you never bought a ticket?" This was Dennis asking me a stupid question in disbelief.
"I didn't think I needed one. Wasn't the first Woodstock free?"
"Yeah, but that was in the sixties. Things were cheaper then." Dennis was beginning to pull on his flannel shirt. If he didn't watch out there was gonna be some natural wear n tear happening. "And what about us?"
He was referring to a little make-out session that occurred about ten feet from the camp site the night before. I really couldn't help myself. I mean, he may have been a poser, but he was cute. Besides, I had to get over my breakup sometime.
"I'll see you inside. I just have to scope out the security. There's got to be a hole around here somewhere." I was referring to the fence that had been erected around the entire site. It looked like some kind of bad boys camp.
After milling around the area for about fifteen minutes, I ran across a group of people standing really close to the fence-and a group of people on the other side either talking to them or covering for something.
There was a guy who was obviously a lookout surveying the regions I came walking in from. He would have been a lot cuter if he hadn't had so much facial hair. Looked like he was doing a bad Jesus impersonation.
"What's going on?" I asked, trying to ease my way into the situation.
"It just looks like something I might want to be a part of." I didn't want him to think I was a narc or anything.
"You holding?" he asked, looking at me intently for the first time. Before he had just casually glanced at my face and then over my head to see if anyone was following me.
"Yeah, you have some shit?"
"'Cause this is where we're pushing it through, y'know." And then I realized the situation. There was a search to get into the site. No alcohol allowed. These guys were smugglers. How cool!
"Are you sneaking people in through here too?"
"Huh?" The Jesus guy didn't seem to catch my drift.
"Like people who don't have tickets, can we get in through here?"
He looked at me like I was out of my mind for a second and then his face took on one of complete understanding. It closely resembled the way my last boyfriend's face looked when we fucked. He would be totally intense until right as he came and then his face would turn to Howdy Doody.
"You didn't buy a ticket?"
"No! This is Woodstock."
"What do you mean?"
"Can I get through here, that's what I mean."
The Jesus guy had to think about this a little more and then he excused himself into the crowd with a point to the heavens. I figured that even if he said no, I would be able to push through with the booze and the drugs.
A few minutes later Jesus came out of the crowd with a few other friends, one had a large scar on his face that went from where his hair was beginning to recede to his nose in a curve like a fish hook. I began to wonder if there wasn't another place I could sneak through.
"Slash here says that's cool as long as you take some shit through with you," Jesus guy said, vaguely gesturing to fish hook guy.
"Slash?" I asked in spite of myself.
"Yeah," Fish hook said. "Like the Guns N' Roses guy."
"Right." I took in a few sheets of acid (low grade they promised me, no one does the good shit anymore), a couple bottles of Jack in my coat and about a half pound of weed stuffed down my pants. As Slash watched me put the pot in my crotch, he smiled greedily. I made a mental note to get away from my benefactors after the swap was made.
"Coming through!" Jesus guy yelled as they pushed me through the slit in the fence. I was caught by a couple of girls who gave me the look of eternal jealousy.
"They're sending people now," one girl said. She couldn't have been eighteen even if they'd slopped aging make-up on her. I handed off the Jack, pulled out the pot and was about to give up the acid when I had a thought. I tore off a healthy chunk of one of the sheets, stuck a hit on my tongue and said, "Payment." They didn't know any better. One of the girls muttered, "Bitch." I ignored it and began to wander off. That's when I heard the roar.
Turning around I saw hundreds of people moving through the slit in the fence, which was quickly becoming a gaping hole. I smiled and let the acid sink in. Besides, I had to find the stage before everyone began looking like trees. That's just a weird side effect I've always had with acid. Maybe it's because it happened the first time I did it and I always remember right before the shit kicks in big time. Like some kind of reoccurring hallucination.
It wasn't until I had walked for about fifteen minutes before I figured out that there wasn't just one stage (how Lollapaloozan of them). Luckily it was Friday or I never would have been able to cope with that kind of situation. Fridays are always better for me like that.
And then I realized I was thirsty. Not, like, oh I need something to drink, but I need something to DRINK! Beer, that would've been good. Problem was, it was too hard to sneak that in. Beer is bulky, takes up so much space because it has so much water in it. So I had to go and change some of my money in for Woodstock money. Felt like I was in Disneyland or something. They came in coins. Little lightweight pieces of aluminum that were supposed to be worth money at the Pepsi stations all over the place. I bought a large Pepsi (no choice, unless I wanted to do without caffeine or taste) for a couple coins and began wandering. That's when things began to get a little weird.
I'd never done acid on Pepsi before. Things started to jump every now and then, and the music (I have no idea what it was, probably because I really only knew the songs of about five of the bands who were supposed to play at the thing) was not helping things. After about a half an hour (I'm guessing on time here, could've been five minutes.), everything was jumping with the music. All these little fucking trees sitting on blankets and shit jumping with the music. All the fucking Pepsi stands and the stage and big trees and everything was jumping. I sat down right there-wherever I was. And then he came up to me.
"Hi." He looked like Zep, my friend in Albuquerque who was not around when I needed a ride to this concert. Obscenely long hair, gorgeous eyes (green, I think) and built like a stick, or let's say a thin tree. Actually, for some reason, he looked normal. For a second I thought I was over my tree phase, and then I saw a tree mosh pit and quickly looked back to Zep's twin.
"Hey, what's up?" I didn't want him to know I was in the middle of a bad tree phase of my acid trip so I played it cool.
"Cool isn't it?" I don't know what he was talking about but he was so beautiful I began to stand up. Every inch closer I got to his face, the more it looked like God, or what I think God should look like if he was a hot young man who wanted to fuck me.
We made out for hours. Or maybe it was a minute or two. Really, the only thing I remember vividly about this guy was when we were making out against this tree and I reached down his pants. Pulling it out, I stopped everything in shock.
"Jesus Christ! It's a fucking tree!" I yelled.
"You're so cool," he said, sighing like this wasn't a surprise to him.
I missed pretty much everything. I didn't get to see Trent Resnor in black leather. I missed Green Day incite what was actually already a riot. I have no idea what went on musically. I remember drinking a lot of Pepsi, scamming a shitload of pot of this dumb guy who thought I was a vice cop dressed like a whore to fool the tourists. I'm not sure exactly what kind of social significance the whole event took on or if it accomplished what it set out to (Was that to make money? I don't know.) in the overall scheme of things. But I did fuck a tree.
I remember Matt telling me that he went to a National Boy Scout Jamboree once and the only thing he did in the course of two weeks was scope out the Penthouse Madonna layout and trade patches. So maybe you get out of it what you want. Shit, maybe I'll just by the soundtrack and hope that I'm somewhere in that movie. One weird thing though, I had no idea that trees could mud surf like that.
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