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the guerrilla theater event, if for no other reason than it was more fun than actually assuming the freedom to do the real thing. The authorities did retaliate by ordering the Produce and Farmers' markets to stop supplying the collective with fruit and vegetables and also legislating all sorts of new regulations on the distribution of Free Food which were impossible to comply with. The only free food they could scrounge up after the city hall deal went down forever was just enough to feed themselves and seldom anyone else. And that was that.

The amount of scag Emmett used each day increased along with his tolerance for the drug, and it wasn't long before someone pinned him nodding in public and the word rapidly spread throughout the city, and eventually from coast to coast, about what everyone began to call "Emmett's problem." He was a junkie, and everybody he knew wrote him off like a bad check. It was as if he betrayed them all, and in a way he had, but no more than he betrayed himself.

The stuff from Nam was gone before he knew it, and Emmett found himself with a motherfucker of a jones! After using up that pure horse, nothing he could cop on the street could get him straight. It just took his sick off, and it was costing him eighty to a hundred dollars a day simply to do that. He got the money in the same way all down junkies get the bread they need: any way he could. Soon he was being blamed for every rip-oflf that occurred in the Haight Community, and all at once, all the people he had known and who loved and admired him, but never told him, didn't like him anymore. In fact, most hated him, and some were so angry at what he was doing to them and to himself that they tried to physically hurt him. A few of them actually did. The only person who showed pity to him was Shig at the City Lights Bookstore in North Beach who lent him money once in a while, until it got to be too much even for him, and all Emmett could ever say was, "Thanks, Shig. Be seein' you."

Finally it got to be too much for Emmett, and he checked himself into Mendocino Hospital where they said they would detoxify him with methadone. It would have worked, except that they only gave him a small amount of the synthetic opiate for four days--a very short way to come down, very fast, especially for a man with a monster, gorilla habit like the one Emmett had on his back. It didn't work, and on the morning of the fifth day, Emmett's nervous system was rattling itself to death in a vicious Saint Vitus's Dance all its own. He called Natural Suzanne who had been for months [end page 466]


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