Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on January 11, 2023 by inretaliation

It’s probably my mom’s fault I escaped the lures of the white powders.  She always seemed the most put together of anyone I knew.  Driven. Above. She didn’t make me not want to try any drugs, it’s just that the difference between her and her family was so stark.  The only difference I could see was the powders, so I steered clear.  Or maybe that’s all bullshit and being around addicts is the best way for some people to learn how not to be one.  I still haven’t done coke or meth although I have done plenty of other things.  Addiction was a bit of an extreme.  While I was around plenty of drugs my margin was skewed. Nobody I was around considered someone an addict until they started hurting other people to get their fix.  If you weren’t causing other people harm you were recreating and anyone who said different just didn’t know how to party.

It wasn’t until I was fourteen that I learned why addiction is considered a disease. Ha nah that’s when I wish I would have learned.  My dad was fun, ice cream and movies for no reason fun.  Turns out he was fun with his friends too until his wife threatened to leave him.  Then it was no more fun.  Then it was apologies and the Twelve Steps and lots of Jesus.  My sister was disdainful and pissed although that was kind of her go to mode so maybe she was ambivalent.  I did some pretty extraordinary mental gymnastics to make it all not his fault in my head.  I couldn’t get out of there fast enough.  This is not my beautiful life.

The addiction portrayed on screen is so severe, Blow or the Godfather.  Or the one you see lying on the sidewalk wrapped in dirty blankets under the overhang.  Of course they have issues, who would choose to live like that except those who were not in their right mind or had no mind left with which to comprehend anything other than where their next fix is coming from.  Those are easy to judge and dismiss. “See I am not THAT bad, I’m doing ok, I have a job, a house, a family that loves me.”  The addiction I am intimate with is quiet, mostly controlled, secret, and above all functional.

For those of you who have never been a cigarette smoker I feel bad for you.  There is something exquisite about that first drag.  The long inhalation of smoke deep into your lungs, the sharp taste filling your mouth and leaking out your nose. The extra inhale of fresh air at the end just to make sure you can feel the smoke push into every seam in your body.  It’s delicious.  I definitely don’t think anyone should start smoking just to feel that but it is a pleasure you have missed.  My first boyfriend was a smoker, he came from a family of smokers. He and his friends would gather up all the used butts when they were out of tobacco, squeeze the dregs of tobacco out and roll new ones.  There is a goddamn slang term for this that I can’t remember, I just tried to google it but nope only one I got was snipe and that was certainly not it.  Anyway I managed to avoid this habit until I went to Europe.  You try hanging out with a bunch of desperate models and not smoking. It was weird enough that I wouldn’t do coke. I couldn’t be a complete goody goody.  I had dabbled before Europe, I loved that most girly of cigarettes, the clove, but hell those were expensive. Anyway after three months hanging out in clubs with insanely beautiful people trying desperately to fit in or at least blend a little I came back to the US a full fledged unapologetic smoker.


Posted in community, home, Humboldt County with tags , , , , on January 5, 2023 by inretaliation

There is always a sense of excitement after a storm. I can’t wait to go out and see what damage has occurred during the night. This last one was a pretty big one. They measured winds of up to 97 miles per hour up on Bear River road. I woke up eager to run outside and asses the consequences. There is a tree down in the neighbors yard it missed all the junk cars and Rv’s. It is lying straight across a power line though. I called PG&E but a quarter of the people in the northern part of the state are without power so we are pretty low priority. The gentleman on the phone sounded bored as he took the potentially life threatening information. I can only imagine how many other similar calls he has had this morning. The river is still well within it’s banks which is strangely a little disappointing. I don’t know if it is because we have been in a drought for so long or it is just human nature to be attracted to destruction but it always gives me a little thrill to have the river overcome it’s boundaries. As a matter of fact none of our roads into our little valley are impassable. Down along the beach you can tell that the tide must have been magnificent. There is driftwood thrown atop the dunes and the dunes themselves seem sheared in half by the strength of the incoming tide. Out here the road is thick with mud from the sand leaching across as if the dunes on either side are striving for a connection.

The Mattole January 5th 2023
The Mattole October 16th 2022


Posted in home, pop culture with tags , , , , , , on January 4, 2023 by inretaliation

It’s the forms that tipped me off, you know the ones in the doctor’s office they make you fill out every single goddamn time you go in.  I just assumed we all lied, everyone in the whole world lies on those forms.  Maybe not the people who don’t do anything bad, but then I think they probably lie on some part of it right…like maybe how many days a month they think of self harm.  If we all lie the doctors must be onto us. They are supposed to be smarter than us, although they could think “why would anyone lie to their caretaker? It would make their care ineffective”.  If everyone lies there have probably been studies on the range of lying and then they can average out what is actually the truth.  So if you say on the form you only drink one drink a day and you only smoke a pack every three days, and you only partake of one recreational drug very occasionally, they know you’re lying right and they just apply a margin of error and that’s why they look at you like they know the truth and are disappointed in you. So I started thinking it was a waste of time to lie on the form, but I couldn’t write down the truth.  When you write it down like that it looks worse than it actually is and you want to use all the time in the appointment explaining how much of an addict you are not.  They recently began this new well child thing where they ask your kids all these questions about you also.  Shiver. I do not want my kids to feel shame about me. If you don’t have kids don’t worry they still ask the kids if anyone they are acquainted with does, you know, DARE stuff.

It seems as if I have always known about addiction. I am sure it helped that I grew up in the Regan era, thank you war on drugs for making them even cooler.  Do you guys remember that fried egg commercial? Brilliant.  Anyway that isn’t why I knew, I have the distinction of coming from a family of addicts.  Don’t picture trainspotting or the inner city.  My family’s drug of choice was meth.  Meth seems to be the poor white rural person’s drug, I am not trying to be exclusive here, drugs do not discriminate, they leave that to the doers. I grew up in a mill town. The mill was the biggest job provider with the county being a close second.  Our mill was running 24 hours a day like most mills.  This is before the whole tree sitting thing gained traction. There was a culture inside the mill and meth was prevalent in that culture.  Actually I would like to back up a second. I am pretty sure my grandma did meth and she wasn’t anywhere near a mill until much later in her life. Forget about me trying to explain the goddamn mill.  People are social creatures they like to experience what their fellow man is experiencing. It’s why abstinence has not and will not ever work in mass numbers. It’s not like I was toddling around the house and I found pipes or little baggies or anything.  It was one of those things you just knew.  Adults can be dumb sometimes and they forget how knowledge seems to beam itself into a kid.  Kids don’t have to see or be told it just appears in their consciousness. Although there was this one time my sister and I were in our dad’s friend’s house, they were probably a tax bracket above us, and I was snooping around and opened the cabinet under the coffee table.  There was a mirror with a razor and a can full of white powder.  Again I am not sure I was old enough to know that it was cocaine, but I definitely knew I shouldn’t be anywhere near it.


Posted in community, Humboldt County with tags , , , , on May 20, 2016 by inretaliation


I just put a new motor in my 85 Toyota pickup.  I love the Shark, it looks tough and it has both a straight axle and fuel injection.  Anyway, the first thing I wanted to do with it, was go to the dump.

On my property there is a spot we call the resource forest, it basically holds everything that doesn’t really get used anymore but could maybe come in handy someday. I know all of you at least have a drawer full of that kind of stuff.  Well a big part of the resource forest is plastic from ex growers on the property.  Huge swaths of panda plastic, bins and bins of grow bags, and of course PVC.  Earlier this year I rented a U-haul, filled it with this plastic and took it to the dump. (ok there were a couple of water heaters, and a washing machine in there too) I didn’t even make a dent.  I knew I wasn’t going to make a difference with the Shark either, I just wanted a mission.  After packing the Shark as full as it could go with panda plastic and strapping it all down, I made a pit stop at the local store.

I walked inside and heard an elderly gentleman asking one of the clerks if they knew who owned my truck.  I chimed in thinking he wanted to tell me how amazing my truck is.  He asked me to step outside, he wished to speak to me in private.  I obliged and he begins to tell me about all the trash he has been seeing on the road into big town.  He says he knows it probably isn’t me but that I should watch my load very carefully.  This gentleman owns a big purplish dodge van that he uses for transporting his stone sculptures.  He says he has been tempted to pick up the bags and open them to look for a name.  I reassure him that I will be watchful and I go on my merry way.

Sure enough I pass by these bags of trash….then I stop in the middle of the tiny windy road and run back for the bags.  Thankfully they are light and dry, ugh someone else’s trash juice on me would have been upsetting.  I stomp everything into the back of the truck and retie my load.  I spend the rest of the 40 minute trip wondering why, if he cared so much, didn’t he pick them up.  I don’t believe in landfills, I think mother earth would be better able to deal with our trash if we spread it everywhere evenly.  That would look terrible I know, but we should realize this is a question of aesthetics, not saving the planet. (Those incinerators in Europe, why can’t we get some of those?)  The gentleman, why did he leave the trash on the side of the road?  Once the bags broke open the mess would be far worse.  Was he giving the culprits the chance to do the right thing?  Did he want something to complain about, to down talk what he saw as careless people taking over our tiny town? Wouldn’t it be better if we all tried to fix something the moment it broke, rather than walking away because it is someone elses responsibility?


Posted in community, Humboldt County, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on April 28, 2016 by inretaliation

My little town is going through a little uprising.  It has been festering for years, the more that weed becomes an outsourced business, the more the discontent grows.  Our town is typical of small Humboldt villages, lots of back to the landers, a little bit of meth, a few old time ranchers, more new fangled new agers, and everyone (except most of the meth heads) with a little too much untaxable income.  Our land prices are high, we did not suffer in the crash of ’08, the land is too beautiful, it is always desirable.  I have lived here for 17 years and I see the change.  People come from out of town or out of the state and buy land, they camp long enough to pull in a huge crop, bring in tons of out of town workers, and then they all leave when the rain comes.  They do not spend the time making an effort to get to know the wonderful community they make their living in.  They do not care about our children’s soccer games or school plays.  They don’t celebrate on the beach with us for May Day.  Their money and ruthlessness makes us feel powerless and bullied.


The catalyst seems to be that recently one of our sons was killed as a pedestrian on the 101 hit by a car.  He was 27, his death has made all the do gooders want to form committees to save our town, our community.  He was addicted to meth, but that should not be his whole story he had parents who struggled and lost to their own addictions, he was isolated, he rarely left our town.  After his father died he lived alone up on a hill that you could only drive up sometimes.  He struggled to be good, to contribute.  A few years ago a couple of his friends took great advantage of him, they plied him with drugs and got him to agree to let them grow on his property.  He became so drugged up he lost a bit of his mind, his friends kicked him out he lived in his car they gave him more drugs so he wouldn’t say anything he lost more of his mind.  Finally another member of the community made sure his friends left the valley and never came back.  The son never really came back either.  His death makes us feel guilty, we stood by and watched and didn’t do anything worthwhile.

Marijuana and the economy around it are inseparable from our community, its joys and its hardships.  I make my money from weed, I hire itinerant workers, I love my community, I am both.  I am concerned that we will forget where we came from, that we will judge without understanding. There are so many things we can blame when we forget that we are our own original melting pot of needs and desires. In the name of equality we will condemn those who don’t agree with us.  In order to make our community greater we need greater understanding, not the fake judgemental kind.  The kind that happens when you realize you are capable of terrible wasteful things too.  The kind that happens when we realize we all are the same.


Us vs. Them

Posted in Uncategorized on March 5, 2013 by inretaliation

I try to stay away from marijuana issues on this blog, because so many do it so much better than I care to.  However, I have been becoming more and more concerned with the fate of our county.  Once again we are becoming divisive, I don’t know how many of you lived here when logging was the hot-button issue, but you were definitely either for or against, there was no middle ground.   We have made big jumps toward making marijuana the main issue in our county this year (as we should), first (for me) there was the tax on excessive electricity use in Arcata, and then the Lost Coast Outpost put up a google earth video  made by HIIMR, now we have the Draft Medical marijuana Outdoor Cultivation Ordinance.

Most pot farmers that I know are earth conscious and would love to be able to certify themselves as organic without repercussions from the government.  Their client base cares about such things and is willing to pay a little extra for the guarantee that their product is earth friendly.  When I was deep into horses the desirable thing was to have an animal that had a willingness to learn.  Your job as a rider was to make the right choice the easiest choice.  In order for government regulation to be successful it should make it easy to do the right thing.  We do not have to turn this into an us vs. them fight.  Growers are not all mindless greedy zombies, a lot of them helped to build or sustain the communities they work in.  They live here, attend schools here, bank here, shop here, read the newspapers here, donate money here, and attend art shows or benefits here.  Even if they are just greedy sub par humans it is still in their best interest to have ample clean water, and loamy clean soil that doesn’t wash away. Villainizing is the worst way to get people to listen.  We should make it easy for them, we could offer no blame clean up services, or alternative water and fertilizer solutions.  Come on you hippies, remember we are all connected, let’s use our minds to figure out a way we can all benefit.

Our new enemy should not be the only thing Humboldt County is world-famous for.  We could chase growers out of Humboldt County and watch it dissolve into one of those kitschy places between the ocean and the highway, where there are only low buildings, funny wood art shops, and a serious lack of teeth.  Or we could harness our power and keep Humboldt County a relevant name worldwide.images-1


Our National Debt

Posted in politics on November 13, 2012 by inretaliation

U.S. National Debt Clock

The above link is the U.S. National Debt Clock.  It’s easy to understand and totally unnerving.  I got to learn the difference between deficit and debt and exactly what that means to me in dollars and cents.  Now when news organizations interchange these two words I can tell in which direction they are trying to skew things and I can better gauge how what they are saying affects me.

The webpage can also give you a debt clock on your state.  It tells you how much every taxpayer in our state would have to pay in order to get this great state of ours out of debt.  It is quite a lot less than we would have to pay to get the entire country out of debt but it is still quite a bit more than I can personally afford.  The clock is constantly updated so you can watch the numbers roll over and over.
It does give you some good news.  It shows how much our GDP is and the rate at which that is growing.  It is very mildly reassuring.  Until you read the news.


This is all a little difficult for me to comprehend, but basically I think between tax cuts and spending increases we have kind of screwed ourselves.  Now I am not blaming one party or another, we all know who is for tax cuts and who is for spending increases.

I just read that Obama is calling for a 1.6 trillion dollar increase in tax revenue.  I’m just a bit curious how that happens.  A budget has not been passed in the four years Obama was president.  It is up to Congress to pass a budget using the presidents budget as a guideline.  Obama has submitted a budget every year, only to have it filibustered or simply laughed at by both parties.  When he submitted his 2012 budget it was vetoed 97-0 by the Senate.  When he submitted his 2013 budget in February it was vetoed 414-0 by the House.  Again, his budget is just supposed to be a guideline or a wishlist, but congress has not come up with anything they can agree on in four years.

Well, I personally am waiting with bated breath.  Good luck with in your next four years Mr. Obama.


Posted in Uncategorized with tags on October 18, 2012 by inretaliation

I avoid confrontation, mostly because I am a coward.  It makes me nervous and shaky to talk to someone when I am upset with them.  My brain seems to go on hiatus, and my well planned out thoughts spew forth in a jumbled mess.  I am practicing but I cannot believe how much I let things that bother me go rather than deal with them in the moment.  The moment is really the only place to deal with things.  As soon as you let it pass relevance of any kind is lost forever, making anything you choose to say later weak and worthless.

I am so scared of facing things I allow other people in my life to get hurt rather than stand up for what is right.  It is really really depressing.  Sitting here in front of my computer I can come up with all sorts of plans of how I will confront the next issue.  These plans will make me feel confident and brave, then the moment happens and it’s all lost.  I am left grasping for any bit of strength I can find, and it turns out my brain has used that strength to run.  Ugh.

The worst people for me are my friends, I am frightened to tell them what I really think, I would rather avoid them for weeks on end, until no one but me remembers there was ever an issue.  Especially my male friends, in front of them I am the worst kind of female.  Because I do not hold people responsible for their reprehensible actions or speech, they do or say shitty things more often in my presence.  I watch others deal with the same situations with strength and grace, I envy that self-confidence, that poise.

So today I am going to tell myself once again that I can grow a spine.  I can feel it in me, I only need the timing to be correct.  This reminds me of a witty comeback problem, I would forgo access to witty comebacks for the rest of my life if only I could tell someone “Hey that was rude and uncalled for and I would appreciate it if you could reform your attitude”  Hell, I’d be happy with a simple “You’re annoying, leave me alone.”  Maybe then I will have more of the antonyms for confrontation in my life.


Posted in Uncategorized with tags on October 17, 2012 by inretaliation

Another Presidential debate happened last night.  I was overwhelmingly unmotivated to watch it, I am also depressingly unmotivated to vote for any of the presidential candidates.  Not that I don’t like politics, I love being informed, and having an opinion (I have a crazy urge to follow that statement with a smily emoticon).   The truth is that I am bored, it is uninteresting to watch people lie or talk about things they don’t believe in.  I don’t want to vote because I do not think any of my options will help our country.  All we are doing now is damage control and I think they are all terrifically unsuited for the challenge.  Our country is in debt, our foreign policy is a joke, our education system is broken, I know I sound depressing but it is true.

We are still the United States of America, which is something worthwhile.  Our constitution is beautiful and inspiring, our drive for freedom is a small miracle.  Our country can be innovative, and determined.  We need our leaders to exemplify these things in order to find our strengths again.  The debate between Stewart and O’Reilly was interesting, because they were well-informed and believed in what they were saying, they were cutting, yet courteous. When did voting become picking the lesser of two evils, when did running for president become the world’s most expensive circus?  Our idea of leadership seems to have become robots who regurgitate stale values and putrid arguments, all the while kowtowing to the party lines.

Critique This

Posted in Uncategorized on August 14, 2011 by inretaliation

I love to read…I haven’t had much time for it lately, but usually I devour books.  I love art, galleries, museums, crazy yards along the roadside.  I love music, I live in a house where new wonderful music is almost a competition, every morning something new and beautiful is wafting out of the speakers.  I hate critics, it bothers me that anyone would assume to know what was going through an artists mind as they were creating.  It bothers me that they even want to figure it out, what is wrong with taking it for what it means to you?

I saw a picture this morning, that made me curious about the UK.  I avoid the news lately, I only know what is going on because Rhett tells me snippets, while I am washing dishes and he is drinking his morning coffee.  Anyway, I digress…the photo isntantly made me think “What the hell is going in England?”  It’s Sunday I have a little bit of time, so I looked up the riots.  It seems as if everything might be calming down, and now the experts are swooping in, trying to explain everything.  Why haven’t they figured out that the human condition is in a constant flux?  We are never going to figure out why people do things.  I can’t even figure out why I do half the things I do, how am I going to be arrogant enough to tell the people in the middle of the riots why they did it.  The BBC came up with the top ten reasons for the riots.  Most of them seem absolutely ridiculous.  Of course they have experts to corroborate their theories.  It is all very annoying and makes me remember why I don’t read the news.

The Competing Arguments For The Riots In London


photo via iZnoGoodGood