I Played Basketball On LSD…and There’s More


It was the summer of 1971. Or, was it ’72? It might have been ’73.

Anyway…my buddy and I often played 2-on-2 pickup basketball games in gyms in Southern California. One day we dropped some really colorful Orange Wedge acid (could have been Orange Sunshine) and went to a gym to play basketball.

Acid heads know what I mean when I say we were starting to ‘Come on” when we challenged two guys to a game. Perhaps if we weren’t in a hazy state we would have noticed some odd things about them.

But we didn’t and the game was on. About the time one of them pulled up to take a shot I was getting “follow-ups.” The ball seemed to hang in the sky, coming down like a rainbow as it rattled around the rim and went in.

My friend looked at me, and shrugged. Then he started to get “follow-ups” while we tried to guard the basket. It was useless. We were moving like automatons. The game was over before we knew it. 10 – 0. A point a basket.

We took a break. Got some water at the fountain in the gym. We both were enjoying all the colors around us when I happened to look over at the other side of the gym and spotted one of the guys warm-up jackets…they were cops!

At that moment we we a white version of Cheech and Chong. Can’t remember all the dialogue (I’d be lying if I did), but I know we panicked hard for a couple of minutes.

It was a real bad thing to be caught doing drugs in the ’70s. People were getting life sentences for a joint.

Then something strange happened.

Perhaps it was pride. Perhaps we were a good team of two. We looked at each other and smiled. The two cops were taking shots at the basket on the far end of the court. We brought our Red-White-and Blue ball over and challenged them to a rematch.

They smiled so wide I could see their tonsils. We knew what they were thinking. Another easy game.

We got the ball first. I drove to the basket and when they both picked me up I tossed the ball to my friend. Swish! 1-0 us. They blinked for a moment then took the ball out. We played tough man-to-man defense, unlike the first game.

I wish I could remember the final score…but, I can tell you we won! Both men seemed shocked. They had to suspect we were flying higher than the balls we were tossing up from every angle.

What a victory. As soon as we got outside I threw my guts up – some orange flavored cereal from that morning – and then we went tripping on to our next adventure. It must not have been that good, because I can’t remember it.

As It Stands, this is a story I couldn’t have shared during my newspaper days. I’m glad I can now. Hope you enjoyed it.