2600: The Hacker Quarterly is an American publication that specializes in publishing technical information on a variety of subjects including telephone switching systems, Internet protocols and services, as well as general news concerning the computer “underground” and left wing, and sometimes (but not recently), anarchist issues.The meetings generally take place on the first Friday of the month at 5 p.m. local time, with various exceptions. 2600 meetings provide a forum to teach, learn, and discuss events in technology-land. Meetings are open to anyone regardless of age or level of expertise.
“So, I went to a 2600 meeting, and the creepy guy that runs the meetings invited me to his house to try Special K”, my friend from #PAIN quietly says into the phone, “and you have to come with me to make sure its safe.”
When I met this friend, I had never tried any drugs, had been drunk once, and thought smoking was cool, but didn’t do it. The first time I met him, he downed an entire bottle of Robitussin Extra Strength Cough in front of me… strange right? Turns out the main ingredient, dextromethorphan hydrobromide was commonly abused by the internet crowd back in those days. Weeks later I tried it, and thought the experience was.. mildly entertaining. He had told me stories of weed and acid from his boarding school in St. Catharines in Ontario, CA, and I was… intrigued: “Sure, when are we going?”
After a short drive to the east side, we pulled up in front of a dilapidated square home, that keenly resembled a shoe box. Pink in color, the roof was on its last leg, and they would later find that leaks were being caught with plastic trash buckets in at least three separate locations from the living room to the kitchen. The kitchen, rarely used for anything but boiling down vials of Ketaset to their crystal form, so they can be snorted, putting the user in a seemingly time-dilated otherworldly plane, commonly called a k-hole.
“This is Polymorf, he runs the meetings, and we’re going to split a vial of K for fourty fi..”, My friend is quickly interrupted by the 2600 coordinator, “Hey man, nice to meet you. The vials from this guy are fifty five, but I already have one cooked and ready.”
“OK, sounds reasonable,” I was more curious about experiencing a second narcotic than the cost of the vial, and the three quickly snorted a tiny 15mg line each, about an inch in length, which Poly had said should do the trick for someone that has no tolerance. Some techno music was put on, and everyone sat down and leaned back on the dirty khaki cloth sofa’s that lined the square living room. Sometime during this first experience, an attractive dark haired girl exited the cave that was the back room, occupied by her very tattoo’d very pierced boyfriend. She helped herself to a much larger line of K, and laid back on the square ottoman which was the only available seat left… nobody else noticed her entry.
Upon re-entering reality, after what was only about forty five minutes, but seemed to be at least three or four hours, we all sat up, sitting directly across from Mary, I glanced up, and my eyes must have widened significantly. She had fallen back on the ottoman, and entered her own time distorted reality, her short plaid skirt flipped up to cover her belly piercing, and exposing her milky white thighs, semi-translucent black thong, and most importantly, the shadow of a landing strip that was her favorite style. Mary was gorgeous, not only because of her model-like physique, but even more so because of her truly unique style — something that set her apart from the rest of the world, and her ability to make otherwise odd color combinations and fabrics combine to express her sensual, special personality.
Over the next year, Polymorf would introduce me to several of his connections, all over the area; one of which turned out to be Mary’s twin brother Damon. “We’re going to meet my sister’s boyfriend,” he said, “he’s going to start selling K pretty soon.” As they drove up to his duplex style home. Not long after meeting Damon, he and his current girlfriend conceived a child, both quit smoking cigarettes, and neither did any drugs — just sold them. Over the next few years I would learn Damon purchased cases of Ketaset from a connection he had with the mob, not something I had ever heard of in South Florida before… silly me. Turns out it wasn’t his sister, but that’s just the beginning of the deception.
The better part of my senior year was spent with this new crowd, leaving for school around lunch time, detouring to either Polymorf or Damon’s house to play video games, or get high. Grades weren’t affected much, as the one most important skill I’d learned in the last few years at Pine Crest was how to take tests. I learned that often the answers were clear in the question, and if not, had a keen sense of intuition, which more often than not lead me to the right answer. Weekend nights were dominated by high-school parties, which the rich preppy kids were very adept at creating — literally at least two nights a week. This senior year was dominated by ecstasy, ketamine, and LSD — drugs that echoed the electronic music and rave like clubs of the era. “Party like its 1999,” would be a common phrase for the next two years, which might just be worthy of their own story.
After returning from my first year at college for summer break, the world in south Florida had changed quiet a bit. Gone were the days of MDMA and K, and the old crowd had moved on to bigger better things, like cocaine. Almost all the old connections had switched completely, and coke had become the new thing. Looking back, it’s almost as if it happened… on purpose.