The cinema was even fuller tonight than it was on Saturday. Monday night is when the Deckchair cinema has its Flix in the Wet night, a single night a week where the kind of movies that play at arthouse cinemas in larger cities are screened in Darwin. I’d seen Waltzing with Bashir there three weeks ago and it wasnt anywhere near as packed.
Gonzo was filming tonight and maybe that was the reason why. As a documentary, it was excellent and it made me want to read some of Thompson’s political pieces. I’d read Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas when I was in my early twenties and was enchanted by its wild energy as was probably everyone who read it at that age.
It’d made me want to experiment with more drugs but my natural tightfistedness and caution overcame that impulse quickly enough. Plus I’d had a couple of bad experiences on mushrooms prior to reading the book so there was a part of me that knew it wasnt all fun and games. Not that Thompson pretended it was fun and games, he just seemed to make the horror of it exciting.
Anyway, I came out of Gonzo thinking about the few druggies I’d known, the ones who made a lifestyle out of it and seemed to be trying seriously to emulate the fictional Raoul Duke character. And I thought about how much I despised them, the real life ones. I also thought about the other people i knew who werent druggies but just happened to take a lot of drugs pretty regularly.
I couldnt quite tell the difference for awhile except that the latter group were friends and so I could place them in the context of their lifes and that former group were generally trashed strangers being dickheads at festivals.
Then I realised that my friends, no matter how trashed they were, remained considerate (if sometimes a little distracted), friendly and caring whether it was to people they knew or strangers. And the few druggies i’d encountered when they weren’t on drugs, were still dickheads.
Trashbag druggies, giving drugs a bad name.