Otis Redding Was Playing When I First Smoked Crack
by Michael Nhat
In the beginning of the summer of 1996 I smoked crack. Otis Redding’s Greatest Hits just happened to be playing. I was in Clinton, Iowa at a friends house. I don’t remember how the desire to try crack came up, but I had easy access to some. I was storing crack in my parents ceiling for a friend who paid me 100 a month. That night, I must have drove home, and drove back then to sell crack to my friends back at his place and that’s when he put in Otis Redding. I’ve heard his music before, but couldn’t think where, then I nailed it, “Dream a Little Dream Of Me”. Some 80’s romantic comedy where they play “I’ve Got Dreams To Remember” which was playing right now. I was an instant fan. And not just because I was smoking crack. I was a music connoisseur of all genres. At this particular time I was in a 60’s/70’s soul/oldies phase. I hunted songs down. I don’t even remember how I did it without the internet back then, but I did. Anyways, this didn’t need hunting down. I went out and bought the double-disc of hits and the B-sides/Alternate takes disc right away.
Later that summer, My father did some surprise house fixing up and found the crack. He was not happy. He and my mom had a meeting with me. They wanted me to know they were deciding whether or not to call the cops or not. In conclusion, my father said he flushed it all down the toilet. And my friend the crack belonged to was banned from the house and obviously lost a lot of money. A year later he asked me if my dad really flushed the crack or if I just smoked it myself or sold it myself and kept the profit. The past did not change, thus never did my story. I was in disbelief he didn’t believe me and hurt he thought I would do that to him. Our friendship dwindled. I did crack a handful of times at some parties, but I never became an addict.It never appealed to me that much that I needed it. What was it like? Not much really, just some taste. Nothing mind-blowing.