February 14, 2003


By Tenzin McGrupp © 2003

The disgruntled taxpayers moaned and whined at their local representative in a town hall meeting, where dozens upon dozens of the county’s struggling farmers were being screwed over by the suits in Washington. Their farmland property values have now been re-evaluated, and re-assessed, and they have to fork over almost twice as many dollars each year to the junkies in DC. The locals were in a bind. The state’s growing unemployment and slumping economy, which had destroyed a small, yet gleefully boisterous people, had nearly all but suffocated the life out of the sincere collective of peanut farmers and strawberry growers.

But then they arranged a clandestine meeting just outside old man Frankford’s spread near the Snatchahoee River, at the insistence of the good Reverend Earl “Sunshine” Higglesby. Their plan was simple: marijuana cultivation. And with the help of three individuals, outsiders and strangers, they all carefully agreed to start growing.

Within the first six months the local farmers, had found a groove as marijuana growers. Their mentors, a young group of entrepreneuring, goatee wearing chaps from Calgary, who learned the cash crop trade near the outer Islands off of Vancouver, British Columbia, had been looking for an opportunity to set up shop in middle America, a weed franchise if you will. The agreed to show the farmers what to do, in exchange for part of the profits. The towns people didn’t think twice and quickly heeded Revered Sunshine’s advice to do what’s best for God’s children, and grow high grade strains of British Columbia’s finest first generation cloned Purple Kush.

Every family that owned a farm was growing, and the cash was divided equally among every resident of the county. Some of it was pay off money, but most of it was welcomed by all. A new church got built, and their schools were finally able to buy textbooks, which was desperately needed, because they had sold most of them on e-bay to a collector of vintage MacGraw Hill history books from the 1950s.

But now the government got wind of their pot scheme and wanted a cut, before they hauled them all away, using men in black ski masks and locking them up in concrete cells with terror suspects. The locals had to vote whether or not to pay their new taxes, or tell their government to, “Fuck off.” The Reverend Sunshine began the meeting with a prayer, followed by a sad story, about a man, his dog, and a loaded pistol.

Tenzin McGrupp is a writer from New York City.

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