did I ever tell you about the Doobie Tosser?

Standard

 

The Doobie Toss was an annual event that happened in downtown Gainesville. Every fall, just after harvest season, all the local growers would donate some of their best buds of Gainesville Green to the cause. Teams of people worked around the clock in the days before the event,  rolling joint after joint and loading them into shoeboxes. The Doobie Toss took place in a park downtown in front of the main library, down the street from city hall. Bands would play all afternoon and then when the clock striked 4:20, the Doobie Tosser and his merry helpers would appear, dispensing free weed to the crowd. Hundreds of doobies would go flying through the air from all directions. Then everyone would light up and have a big smoke out in public. Everyone would get really, really high. It got so well known it was featured in High Times magazine. That issue had a centerfold appropriately featuring Gainesville Green.

 

I looked forward to the Doobie Toss. I would go up there and play the Space Hippie thing solo, a few times I played with local bands. I had been spending more time up that way, playing at G.M.A.’s Harvest Fest which was in Live Oak and other gigs. I could often be found on Main Street hanging out at CMC Civic Media Center. Hey gutter punks are my people! I was up at the Krishna farm, helping deliver Krishna food to the homeless with this crazy renegade hippie I met. Commie Dave’s mom had a derelict farmhouse outside of town. Me and Dave were up there and we invited the U.M. Hemp Awareness Council to come up for the Doobie Toss and stay with us. I had drawn them this map. We were pretty remote on long dark winding backroads with no lights and no street signs.They were all freaked out and were about to give up when they pulled up to the property. I remember walking across the field towards their headlights, clomping along in these big boots waving my arms, going “ hey man it’s ok,it’s me, you made it. “ That was a great Doobie Toss that year. No problems whatsoever just a fun event that was good for the local economy, Think Global, Grow Local that sort of thing. This went on for years with nobody getting busted. Then they got a new sheriff in town, Waylon Clifford or Clifton. ( cue the music ) He was going to put a stop to all these stoned freaks that were running amuck in the town square ( and having a grand ol’ time I assure you. ) So at  the next year’s Doobie Toss, the new Sheriff Clifford and the Gainesville Police were out in full force. Early in the day, no doobies had been tossed. Just a bunch of already stoned people showing up to listen to some music ( or play some music. ) The cops started surrounding the perimeters, not busting anybody just standing around intimidating the crowd. Gainesville of course is a big college town with lots of kids. It’s known for being pretty tolerant so these kind of heavy tactics rubbed people the wrong way. Bands were playing, people were trying to have a good time despite the heavy police presence. When federal patient Elvy Musikka who was speaking on stage lit up a joint, they cops jumped the gun and tackled her and arrested her. The cops arrested the one person there who could legally smoke! As they led her away to the police station a few blocks away, the crowd followed. They milled about outside the main entrance smoking out the place while chanting to let her go. The cops had to apologize and let her go. Now they had an angry crowd to deal with. Sheriff Clifford’s plan backfired on him and he ultimately lost his job over the incident. I wish I had a copy of that picture.He was a real strange bird. A couple of local crazy activist/artists had taken pictures of him the day of the bust. He was standing in the crowd with dark shades on, a black turtleneck, black pants, black leather gloves ( and it wasn’t that cold that day ) talking into a walkie talkie. He must have been acting out his super cop fantasies and evidently it was turning him on because when they blew up one of the pictures into a huge framed portrait, the hard on in his pants was evident! Later when we took over the old train station we had that picture hanging on the wall ( along with a billboard for Café Risque which we nabbed off of 75. )

 

Cafe

 

That train station was the shit. We used to put on shows there with G.M.A.Gainesville Music Alliance who’s office was at the other end. I enjoyed working with those guys. Gainesville’s music scene was hot back then. Sister Hazel was getting big. River Phoenix’s band played locally. Gainesville was the place to be, music was all over.

 

 

Later on,  I was staying with the Doobie Tosser himself. Murli owned a block of houses in southeast Gainesville, the hippie ghetto everybody called Murliville. After he got busted they changed the name to Fort Ganja. I remember one of the residents showing me it said that on his license, Ft. Ganja. As you drove up, they had a huge banner that read Overgrow the Government.  Those guys were crazy. One day the helicopters did swoop down. They had busted Murli and put him on trial, that was the end of the Doobie Tosses. He eventually got off and moved out of state. Yes the Doobie Tosser lives on. I saw him at Rainbow Gathering a couple of years ago. I gave him a Space Hippie t-shirt.

 

here’s an article about Florida Movement that appeared in Cannabis Culture Magazine:

http://www.cannabisculture.com/articles/1592.html

here’s a link to the 2011 Melbourne and Gainesville Hemp Fests put on by C.A.N. Cannabis Action Network

http://flhempfest.org/

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s