May 24, 1999
Lajitas, Texas, USA

"The warrior believes it is better to be kind than right." - Richard

Richard, Anne and I are half way up a mountain, overlooking Lajitas, allowing the horses to have a break. Rich is giving me a lesson on the native plants.

"Ocotile, when burned, smells like sandalwood," Richard informs. "And Sangria De Dragon (Blood of the dragon) was used by natives as a tooth bush and to numb a baby’s gums while teething."

"Lecheguilla (in the yucca family, with a very sharp needle-like tip) was once commonly used by natives for sewing. The tip contains a cortisone steroid which is said to neutralize the poison of a rattle snake bite. On average, only one in ten rattle snake bites are poisonous, so don’t stick yourself with one of these unless you are sure."

Young rattle snakes are more likely to inject their venom, because they haven’t learned to conserve it. Older rattlers don’t waste their venom on something they aren’t going to eat. The venom digests the victim from the inside out. This enables the snake to swallow the victim whole. When it is fully digested, the venom returns to the glands behind the snake’s hollow fangs, ready for the next victim.

"Try this," said Richard, handing me piece of the fruit from the Patilla Cactus. "It tastes like strawberry-kiwi."

The white man caused the death of more native Americans by infecting them with foreign diseases than by murdering them by force, Richard says.

7:40pm. After a couple hours in his bedroom, Richard opened the door, and stood in the doorway wearing only a pair of bright multi-color tie-dyed briefs, and said, "How are you, MAX? I’m wired." Then he went back in and shut the door. I’m curious to know what it feels like for myself, but not curious enough.

Chick hip-hop rocks. I’m currently luv’n Lauren Hill. This morning, I was groove’n to TLC’s Scrub on MTV.

The sky is dark gray, blue and purple and the land is golden - with no shadows.

I am witnessing yet another awesome light show. Adam and Ryan are standing with me in the drive-way and we are talking about coke. Adam says he use to buy it in Austin, then cut it with baby laxative to double the weight and price, before selling in Kentucky. "It is very rare to find pure coke," he says. "Most is cut hard."

Richard thinks it should be legal to snort lines at home, but not in public-- "like at a bar." "If drugs were legal... they’d be cheap." he believes. "And punks wouldn’t be trying to break into my house to steal CDs... so they can afford another rock."

"If Billy was a crack head..." explained Richard, "and just spent his days junked out in his bedroom and eventually died, all the other other kids on the street would know what happens to crack-heads. They’d know that’s not cool. But, as it is now..." He continued. "When the police take the example out of the community, the children no longer have an example of what not to do and they repeat the same behavior. Have you seen Lord of the Flies?" asked Richard. "The premise is that we as a society need an enemy. What if they called a war and no body came?"
"I’m sorry," Anne chuckled, in motherly tone, "Richard can’t come to war today."

"Kennedy’s father amassed his fortune during prohibition as a rum runner between Cuba to Florida," Richard informed.

The war on drugs is a boogy man - a communism of the 50’s.

"I believe in civil disobedience." Richard shares. "I believe it is my duty to break the law. I am a non-violent revolutionary. The constitution of the United States says, ’When the government is no longer for the people and by the people, it is the citizen’s duty to practice civil disobedience.’"

"Uncle Sam and Slick Willie are screwin’ the world," I commented watching the news on the boob.
"I’ve got a strong sphincter!" laughed Richard, pouring himself a coffee. "All in all you’re just another brick in the wall" and don’t forget to pay your taxes! ’m a revolutionary mother fucker. If I can cut "em down I will. "If you are a big tree... I am a small axe!""
"I didn’t have as much respect for you in the palapa days." I admitted. "But, it was because of the coke and I thought the passes made you look mental."
"If you are going to put me in a box...." he responded, "make it a B-I-G box."

Richard is telling me about the genius of Dr. Seuss’ Star Belly Sneaches - a story about racism. Anne said, "someone could make a fortune if they translated Dr. Seuss book into Norwegian." They are explaining a few Dr. Seuss story lines. I’m luv’n it. I always thought he was cool, but not until now did I realize the depth of his messages.

May 25, 1999
Study Butte, Texas, USA

7:37 pm. Randy is on his computer with a cyber-lover. "It’s easier to pretend to be someone else on-line," he says, "but it is also a lot easier to be yourself."

An hour ago, Randy entered Richard’s house bitching about the dry wall job he lost, "fickle" locals and how he "should have moved to Mexico instead."

Fed-up with Randy’s negative talk, Richard began explaining "the warriors path." Obviously effected by the massage and Richard exuberant positive energy, Randy later reflected to his time there at the kitchen table as "therapy". Richard has a powerful effect on people, including myself.

Richard calls his superior, "The God of my understanding." Randy says his is "God." Richard suggests he should put "My" in front of his "God."

8:23pm. "I almost died." Randy shares of his of experience overdosing on morphine.

Bill told me he heard speculation that Randy is a narc. Randy says that, "even the smart ol’ timers around here think I’m here just lining up a route from my next shipment."

8:34pm. There is not a thing I need at this moment. I have no desires. The awesome sunset before my eyes is fulfilling enough.

A small coyote is trotting along the desert floor through the scatted brush.

9pm. Randy just approached me, with phone still in hand, speaking of a job proposal-- building a house in Fort Davis (between here and Presidio), for $13 an hour. He also tells of a maintenance position for the Fort Davis school district that he hopes to fill. His total out-look on life seems to have changed. He is optimistic. Life is good again.

Randy keeps saying, "You follow what I’m saying?", and I find it annoying.