“At my table, we have Lamb’s Players Actor Lynn Hansen and Richard’s sidekick since high school Jim Blowers. I’d like you both to open with your initial reminiscences when first meeting Richard.” Well, Jon,” Lynn says, “What I thought about Rick was mostly sad or dramatic. He would tell us that one of his friends…

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I buy the acid. The Purple Haze feels so small and incidental. I hold it between my fingers, feeling how small it is, as I try to get up the courage to try some. I break off about a third of the tablet and swallow it with a gulp of water. I wait about ten…

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“Hey Dad,” I ask casually, “will you give me a dollar for every word that I exceed my previous typing score? Right now I’m up to forty-two words per minute and could use a little motivation to see if I can improve my numbers.”  “Sure, son,” he says pleased thinking that I want to excel.…

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Out of the corner of my right eye, following the edge of the road, I pedal my bicycle to the station and ask, “Hey Art, can you get me some acid?” “Yeah, sure,” he says coolly. “Right now, I’m dealing in two-man tabs of Purple Haze and its three bucks a tab.” I had no…

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During my eighth grade year we are shown films on the dangers of LSD, and of course we know it is a ploy to scare us into staying straight.  After school I want to see if I can get any reaction or signs of caring from my Mother. I say testing, “Mom, I think I’ll…

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I’m feeling sorry for myself, when I recall one of my teacher’s warnings: “Never look directly at the sun!” So, I take my large magnifying glass, climb up the stairs out of my damp mold-soaked bedroom, head outside, hold the magnifying glass skyward, and stare through the lens at the blazing sun, trying to burn…

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The specter of death is back. My paternal grandmother remarried after my grandfather was crushed to death. Her new husband is sharpening a roofing knife when she comes home to fix him lunch. First he tries to shoot her with a shotgun, but she wrestles it away from him and starts running out the door.…

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As I struggle with coming to terms with my Mother and immediate visual challenges, other events have horrible impacts that send shivers down my spine. A fire breaks out in my aunt’s home, and my Uncle Bud, along with four cousins, burn to death. I try to turn off my brain and try to flush…

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In school we are forced to watch a creepy film full about bullies called, Lord of the Flies.” The film reveals how evil grabs a bunch of boys stranded on an isolated island. What frightens me most, is one of the kids is fat, asthmatic, and wears glasses. Like I’m mockingly called Magoo, the bullies…

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I’m at the 1966 state-wide Boys Club Sports and Art Competition. I’m working on an art project, when two boys approach me. “Hey, it’s Mr. Magoo!” one says. “Got any money, Magoo?” the other bully asks.  One of them snatches my wallet from my back pocket. He dangles it in front of my eyes. “Can…

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“At my table we have Kerry Jo, Russell Cedarburg, Glen Hansen, and Bernelle Hansen, all of which started performing with Richard in the early 70’s. I’m learning that Richard is a bit colorful. Can you share some of his weirdness or idiosyncrasies? Kerry would you mind starting?” “Sure,” Jon, I didn’t know quite how to…

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My mother finally emotionally abandons my sister Lori and me. When my parents would visit friends, she did not want to be seen with us. It was fine with our kind father, but our mother would have none of it. “They’re staying in the car!” she would coldly order. She would leave us stuffed in…

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