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BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question

bobad 15 Oct 08 - 10:18 PM
Beer 15 Oct 08 - 11:46 PM
Beer 16 Oct 08 - 12:07 AM
john f weldon 16 Oct 08 - 03:03 AM
john f weldon 16 Oct 08 - 03:05 AM
Bee 16 Oct 08 - 08:56 AM
john f weldon 16 Oct 08 - 09:46 AM
Peace 16 Oct 08 - 10:16 AM
john f weldon 16 Oct 08 - 10:33 AM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 16 Oct 08 - 11:59 AM
john f weldon 16 Oct 08 - 12:19 PM
Beer 16 Oct 08 - 12:28 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 16 Oct 08 - 12:33 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 16 Oct 08 - 12:36 PM
john f weldon 16 Oct 08 - 12:39 PM
bankley 16 Oct 08 - 12:43 PM
john f weldon 16 Oct 08 - 12:45 PM
john f weldon 16 Oct 08 - 12:58 PM
meself 16 Oct 08 - 01:02 PM
Beer 16 Oct 08 - 01:12 PM
john f weldon 16 Oct 08 - 01:13 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 16 Oct 08 - 01:19 PM
Azizi 16 Oct 08 - 01:29 PM
bobad 16 Oct 08 - 01:33 PM
john f weldon 16 Oct 08 - 01:51 PM
john f weldon 16 Oct 08 - 01:55 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 16 Oct 08 - 02:33 PM
john f weldon 16 Oct 08 - 02:48 PM
john f weldon 16 Oct 08 - 02:55 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 16 Oct 08 - 03:29 PM
Peace 16 Oct 08 - 03:43 PM
bobad 16 Oct 08 - 03:55 PM
Beer 16 Oct 08 - 04:00 PM
john f weldon 16 Oct 08 - 04:15 PM
Peace 16 Oct 08 - 04:17 PM
bankley 16 Oct 08 - 04:21 PM
john f weldon 16 Oct 08 - 04:26 PM
Peace 16 Oct 08 - 04:39 PM
Amos 16 Oct 08 - 04:52 PM
Peace 16 Oct 08 - 04:57 PM
Amos 16 Oct 08 - 06:09 PM
bankley 16 Oct 08 - 06:20 PM
Beer 16 Oct 08 - 11:39 PM
bankley 17 Oct 08 - 08:36 AM
john f weldon 17 Oct 08 - 09:35 AM
bankley 17 Oct 08 - 09:43 AM
john f weldon 17 Oct 08 - 09:55 AM
bankley 17 Oct 08 - 10:03 AM
john f weldon 18 Oct 08 - 07:11 AM
Peace 18 Oct 08 - 08:02 AM
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Subject: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: bobad
Date: 15 Oct 08 - 10:18 PM

A good friend's daughter is doing her phd thesis on the counterculture scene of the 60's in Montreal and is picking my brain for information. One question she asked has me stumped so I thought I'd pass it by the Mudcat people who were there then. This is the question:

"So here's the question of the hour: where were the beautiful people of Montreal hanging out? Where was your Haight-Ashbury, your Yorkville, your Greenwhich(sic) village? Or was there even a village? Maybe it was spread out more, or had a few centres scattered about...I don't know. I guess what I'm trying to do is get a sense of the 'countercultural geography' of the city at this time. What are the hot hangouts, cozy book-nooks, cafés, headshops, meditation centres or green patches? Were anglo and franco mingling in these places?

So many questions, so little time..."

I can think of a few venues like the Swiss Hut, Phantasmagoria Records, coffee shops and music venues but can't really remember if there was a specific geographic area equivalent to Haight-Ashbury or Yorkville.

Anyone?


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Beer
Date: 15 Oct 08 - 11:46 PM

Bobad,
The early part of the 60's I was far away from Montreal. But come 67 I was where it was happening and that was anywhere in the downtown core. I'm speaking about "Expo" as you can relate I'm sure. My brother (whom you have met several times)and I would scrape up enough money to take Bus 112 to the Atwater park (I think that's what it was called)across from the Form, then pick a good spot on St. Catherine's Street and watch all the girls go by with the many different styles that were in fashion. And the 60's there sure were some fashions. But to make a long story short, the Hub for me was the expo grounds and the area near The Bay. There was a park I think across from The Bay located at the corner of St. Catherine and Union Street. Here the Hariachristina's(Spelling for Sure.) would hang out and attract an audience while other's would have their painting displayed. But I think that most times all we did was bar hop to see what was happening in the different locations.
Good luck to your friend and hope I helped in a very small way.
Beer (adrien)


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Beer
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 12:07 AM

Here is where Bob Ryszkiewicz could help. Where are you Bob???


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 03:03 AM

The McGill "Student Ghetto". McGill on the West, St Lawrence on the East, Sherbrooke on the South; Pine on the North.

The Fifth Dimension - Fifth Amendment Coffeehouse was a major hangout, along with the aforementioned Swiss Hut (a disgusting dive).

The Hare Krishna temple was in middle....

Ah, the tales I could tell. I should be a tour guide.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 03:05 AM

Oh, and the Birmingham, an apartment building corner of de Maisoneuve and Bleury. They tore it down in the 70's. For many yrs, it was a parking lot, and now they're building there again.   But all the really cool people lived there at some point, like me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Bee
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 08:56 AM

Keep talkin' fellas - this is interesting history that i wasn't really part of. Expo 67! What a wake up that was for a lot of rural teenagers who'd never seen much past the end of their own dirt road!

A group of local churches fund-raised to send 67 of us to Montreal for a week; hired a train car, put us up on the floor of a great big Montreal church...living in the balmy October of Cape Breton, we none of us had winter gear with us, and the Montreal church people had to loan us sweaters and coats, it got so cold.

We had glimpses of the local scene as we wandered through the pavilions and the fair. I remember talking with young men who seemed as exotic to me as any of the foriegn exhibits, a couple of them invited me to come away with them. I was sixteen and couldn't imagine being so bold and bad.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 09:46 AM

Oh, this has jogged a million memories. I started McGill in 62, graduated 66. 66-67, partially living on Lorne Crescent. 68-69, the Birmingham. In 70, I moved to NDG.

It was a real "neighbourhood"; you could stroll around with no real plan and meet folks and do stuff, or do nothing. I guess I didn't have too many responsibilities.

Here's a mini-vignette: Mid-60's. I was sitting around with a bunch of hippies on Ste Famille when the doorbell rang. To everyone's surprise, the caller was an "elderly" gentleman, who turned out to be the now-retired high school principal of several of them! He was just stopping by for a visit... ...I found this a little disconcerting, since most of my experiences with principals involved a short piece of leather. But things loosened up when the old guy asked: "Uh, do you kids have any dope?" And a few minutes later, the former principal and his former students were happily puffing away.

Does anyone remember the short-lived coffee-house in the basement of St John's Anglican church? I believe I once saw Peace perform there, but he may well wish to correct me. A week later it got raided by the fuzz.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Peace
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 10:16 AM

Just saw this thread. John, where was that church located? St Catherine St?

There was the Yellow Door which housed (I think) an office for Americans to get help regarding getting settled in Canada until the Vietnam War was over.

In the early 1960s jazz clubs were hubs for people disenchanted with some things.

The Aylmer Street area was a focus. The drugs of choice were grass and oil. I don't know that through personal experience; some friends told me about it.

The Penelope was mostly a bar, but there were other establishments very near-by that attracted some 'heavier' folks.

Old Montreal housed some art galleries and lofts that were party areas, but the discussions were very anti-establishment.

Too, that was a time when there was very much ethnic movement around the city. When there is unrest, it crosses cultures and languages.

In the late 1960s there was a club called Johnny's Hideaway. Second and third floors of a building near the corner of Aylmer and Sherbrooke. Many of the clients spoke as though they were involved in efforts to 'free Quebec'. I know that some folks there carried friends, and possession of a knife didn't disqualify a person from having a beer or wine to enjoy in the ambiance of the rooms.

Bob will have lots to add, and I'll get in touch with a few folks from back in the day and see what they recall.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 10:33 AM

St John the Evangelist, currently with a red roof, used to be green, right behind Place des Arts on de Maissoneuve. Had ghosts in the basement. They were trying to "reach out" to young people.

Moose Hall, yes. Bob?

Things started getting nastier in the later part of the sixties. A friend almost got his eye poked out in the Swiss Hut. I hated that place, it was dangerous, but it was where my friends hung out.

I liked the Penelope.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 11:59 AM

Hi Kids: 1967 was the year a much younger version of myself( I was 22) landed in Montreal via my first trip in an airplane to "scout out" Montreal. The family on my mother's side had lived here for 100 years. Montgomery St. was Grandma's place where the gas stove was always on. My first words in French were "patates frites" that could be obtained in a paper bag for $.15 on the corner of Ontario & Montgomery. Hogan, Bercy, Hochalaga were the streets of familiarity back in 1952. We came up every few years to visit. Way before that first plane ride. My uncles owned a hardware store in the area, and another on St. Denis. I used to help them prepare paint, cut keys, etc.

I met John Foley in 1967, he had just opened the Yellow Door. Guys from the U.S. were there as it was a haven for people who weren't interested in going to Vietnam. Drug counseling, aid for the old Folks were under way under the guidance of Roger Balk, a Pastor/Reverend, I think, with long sideburns and connected to McGill. A hang loose, nice guy who was always smiling. For me, the core was "The Door" and the McGill Ghetto, La Bodega, and the Spanish bars along Park. You could slip in to the McGill Cafeteria and blend in nicely with the Canadians...HA

This was a concern because I knew the F.B.I. had been looking for me back in Rhode Island. Not showing up for the draft was, uh, "not good" from their perspective. So, I spent the early years wondering if somebody would show up in a car and take me back across the border.

For me, at that time, Old Montreal was "a bit tense" with the "Quiet Revelolution" perculating in that area. I found peace in Chinatown, with Lee Siu Pak and my Martial Arts friends.

'67 was when I met Penny Lang, at a Hoot. She told John, "you should give this guy a gig, he's good." So, I was "in". The Door had food. You could create a sandwich for $.15. A slice of cheese was 5 cents, slice of bread 5 cents, ham 5 cents...That, and the never ending coffee. Blessings...

There was this protest singer I admired. He sang songs that made sense..."Che Guevara", "Can I Come Across to You", etc. Always in a green fatigue jacket, or woodsman's coat. His name was Bruce Murdoch.

So to return to the era...Park Avenue was for souvlaki, a new thing for me. We would go up there after a show to "The Meracles", Bougatsa, Galaktobouriko(if I spelled those right, witness a minor miracle.)
We walked in with guitars, which the owners perceived as "trouble". It was a bit of a "closed society" up there, back then. I spoke to the owner and explained to him we were musicians there for the food, and not "hippies" wanting to disturb the tranquility. We got accepted...

So, The Yellow Door was the core, you could get gigs in the outlying areas, Chateauguay, "up North", Sherbrooke, etc. The contacts were great and a lot of us "bonded" in more ways than one.

Hangouts? "Phantas" for records. You could sit on the couches. One day I was in there, checking out stuff on the back wall. I hear a loud bang at the cash, and the sound of a record player arm scratching 'cross a disc. I turn around and see that everybody is on the floor except me...HOLDUP. The guy is waving what looks to me like a 1911 '45. The banging is coming from him hitting the cash register with it. He disappears into the street...

Flashback to some Sgt. Det. in Montreal who used to carry an Uzi on a sling under his trenchcoat. Investigating the mob will not get you many friends. He goes to a Dep for some cigs where a robbery starts to take place in back of him as he's at the cash. He waits 'til they grab some money and head for the door. Then he opens up with the Uzi...Bye Bye bad guys. Bullet holes in the walls across the street. Ah yes, the 60's(and early 70's), Peace & Love...

Skipping around here. Yeah the Krishnas, Hare, Hare. Those "Feasts" on Sundays helped with food on a few occasions. Respect & Thanks...Swiss Hut(10 cents a draft) New Penelope, Coffeehouse in a dark church basement near The Bay...

But it was the people, the incredible people...Penny Lang, Wayne & Penny Rose(Rose's Cantina), John Foley, Bruce Murdoch, Chuck & Jenny Baker, Gary Davis, Bruce Cockburn, Dennis Brown, Bill Garrett, Roger Balk, Tex Koenig, Tammy Bayliss, Liz Tansey, Rick Whitelaw, Ron Bankley, Frank Quinn, Fred Torak, Murray McLaughlin, Gordon Lightfoot, Leonard Cohen, "Tippy" Trudeau(Pierre's brother) & wife, Lindsay Cameron, George Gruenfeld, Peter Chalmers, Jesse Winchester, Sue Ellen Lothrop, Allan Fraser, Daisy DeBolt, Roger the Clown, Ellen Shizgal, Kay Johnson, Noah Zacharin, David Young, Mike Regenstrief, Bill Staines, Paul Geremia, Roy Book Binder(U.S.), Mark Nerenberg, Josh Onderisin, Linda Pressman(Phantasmagoria), hundreds more...

Thanks for the memories, Much Love & Light to you all...
bob


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 12:19 PM

At one point I got involved with some theatrical types who were doing "street theater" to protest such things as crummy housing, etc. For some reason, I was dressed as Charlie Chaplin, and we had various skits that we would perform as we paraded from Dominion Square to LaFontaine Park. There were about 40 of us in all.

We had barely started off, when we discovered that, same day, same route, was a huge Separatiste parade, coming up behind us. Tens of thousands, outnumbering us 100's or 1000's to one! They loved us! We ended up seeming like an advance party for the FLQ, helping to clear the streets for them with a bit of light entertainment.

Good grief!


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Beer
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 12:28 PM

I was going across the Champlain bridge one evening after dark and notice that the bonnet of the car was not closed (My first car Envoy Epic Station wagon.)so I pull over as there was little or no traffic to close it. Man in seconds I was surrounded by the army. Never forgot it.

Bob R., you still in touch with with Fred Torak? Just wondering.
Adrien


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 12:33 PM

Moose Hall...Yo...I'm with "Linda"...."Kelly" comes in and says he wants to have sex. She says, "Oh, O.K." takes him to some girls who have the same mindset. They go into the night...Is this where the expression..."Loose as a Moose" comes from? No, that's from Rhode Island and the Hornets of RIC...

Quotes from The Yellow Door...Girl says,"what do I have to do to get laid around here?" Well, you just....

Nude women, wearing just painted bodies at the bar at Tatou years later on Halloween having a drink. I walk up and just say "Thank YOU"...

Later...Same place, woman at the bar, I ask, "What's your sign?" She replies, "Clitoris rising..."

Note: Real names confidential to protect, the young, innocent, and horny...

Free Love...My My, The 60's...


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 12:36 PM

Beer: Just saw the Fred Torak question, Ron Bankley and I talked about getting together a while back. I'd love to see him. It's been 33 years...


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 12:39 PM

With a group of guys who were all struck dumb by a passing transparent blouse, when one finally said: "...and.. ..it's all for free!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: bankley
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 12:43 PM

yeah, all of the above for sure.... there was also a jazz coffee house on Mountain St. called Le Baril or the Barrel, just up the hill from Rockhead's Paradise... a dark, downstairs joint, cost a couple of bucks to get in... I played there a lot.. they'd have a prog. rock blues band start at 8 pm until midnite, then they'd feature the heavy cats... free-jazz, black NY players... who would often go until 6 am. Friggin wild stuff... Frank Wright, Albert Ayler, Ornette Coleman.... monsters all.... I also met and heard Walter Rossi there for the first time after he just got off a 2 yr. stint with Wilson Pickett... hooked up with a band called 'The Influence'.. just scorchin'.. Hendrix was set to produce them (Buddy Miles and Walter were good buddies) but Jimi died before that happened.... anyhow, just to say there was a lot of exciting music happening all over town and I was lucky enough to be a part of some of it...


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 12:45 PM

One nice thing about the McGill cafeteria was the free food. Not served by the cafeteria; I'm talking about the stuff the students threw away. They'd come in, chuck their untouched lunches in the garbage and go buy some fries. Some other bums & I would fish them out & eat some Mom's neatly wrapped sandwiches! Got us through many a lean time.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 12:58 PM

Peace and Love.

Yeah, one day they had a Peace & Love day on McGill campus. Invited every cultural, political, and religious group to commingle, etc. Each got a turn at the stage, and everyone was having a good time. Then the Student Christian Fellowship got up and sang "folky" hyms. Their leader had just started to preach a bit about certain evil things, when...

...around the corner came the Hare Krishnas, dancing and jingling and passing out some kind of wholesome glop from a big pot.

The Christian immediately cried out! There they are. What I was warning you about! The Satan Worshippers!!!

So much for Peace and Love.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: meself
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 01:02 PM

John: When do we get the animated version?

(I don't mean you're not putting enough feeling into it, but the, um, cartoony stuff).


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Beer
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 01:12 PM

Fred and a buddy of his (I think)Phil Arber were running a Bluegrass festival in Vankleek Hill for a couple of years. I think it has come to an end but not sure.

Bob R.! Do you remember a gal who would fill in for Penny Lang some nights when she couldn't make it by the name of Joan Spence(I think that is her maiden name)?
Just wondered.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 01:13 PM

Well, this stuff is the raw material. Memories are like peanuts, when you get going it's hard to stop.

Protest.

So many went wrong. One guy (who briefly claimed to be Bob Dylan's brother) told me his plan for a coming protest. He knew where to get pig's blood, and would fill waterpistols with it, to squirt on the other "pigs". I decided to sit that one out. Shades of Carrie!


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 01:19 PM

Beer: Joan Spence...Not sure. If I saw her face, most likely...BR


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Azizi
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 01:29 PM

Keep talkin' fellas - this is interesting history that i wasn't really part of
-Bee

What Bee said.

Although this discussion deserves to be above the line, I like that its in the BS section. This sections seems more informal, but that does not mean that the topic isn't as important as other subjects that are discussed in the above the line music/culture threads.

This history needs to be gathered and preserved. I'm glad that bobad's friend's daughter is doing her phd thesis on the this subject. I hope that she or other people write a book about this subject. And I hope the book is as interesting to read as this thread is.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: bobad
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 01:33 PM

Thanks guys, for all your input. I'm sure my friend's daughter, Stephanie, will mine some useful information from all your reminiscences. I sent her a link to the thread so maybe she'll pop in to ask some questions.

Your postings are dredging up some memories for me too.

Bob, you mentioned Roger Balk, I hadn't thought of him for a while but remembered that I was married (the first time, you know - the practice run) by him.

John, you asked about the church with the coffee house in the basement - it came up in discussion on the "Little Known '60s Folk Singers Thread" here: http://www.mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=75122&messages=806&page=14#2200222


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 01:51 PM

Hi Bobad.

I don't think it's the same one. This was right by what is now a huge ugly UQAM building, which was a parking lot, and earlier, a residential neighbourhood. The coffeehouse idea only lasted a few weeks, basically ending with the police raid.

I went there once, got beaten by a chess hustler (!), and the next week the cops came. They found joints on the floor and hauled everyone in. Happily I wasn't there that week. The church balked at running this experiment afterwards.

The basement of the church is in some ways the basis of St Polyglot's in Ashcan Alley. It was very spooky and supposedly haunted.

That church is where I received my formal religious education, and thus became a heathen.

Between Bleury & St Lawrence, where JFK street, Ontario Street and de Maissoneauve all kinda converge.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 01:55 PM

I'll toss in this, which is a memoir I was writing up for something else. Not much meaning to it, except to admit how much I live in my own universe.


A Zen Riot

In 68, some students at Sir George Williams University, protesting what they perceived as racism, occupied and subsequently destroyed the Sir George Computer Center.   I knew several of the people involved, and recently discovered that another friend had been in the Center at the time, although he was, at the time, unborn; he was there in utero!! This discovery triggered my memory of the event, which had a curious meaning for me. This memoir has nothing to do with race or politics. It may have something to do with Chaos theory, but probably not even that.

I was working a dull office job at the time. Students everywhere were occupying buildings, for reasons ranging from the noble to the idiotic. I had other concerns, and took little but a nodding interest in this latest incident. One day, however, I heard that "all hell had broken loose" at the Hall building, so I rushed over to rubberneck.

At the time I had a great love of computers, similar to the love one might have for, say, Angelina Jolie. In other words, I was never allowed to get close. They were distant, awesome, mythical creatures, which I longed to some day touch.

As I approached the Hall Building, it seemed to be snowing heavily. But not with real snow: the air was filled with computer cards: Hollerith cards as they were known. The students were tossing them out the windows by the thousands! For me, the charging police and, now, smoke from the building, was secondary. I stood, up to my ankles in the Holy Writ!

I reached down, picked one up, to see if I could fathom the meaning in these cryptic documents. Only one short line of computerese could fit on a card. The one I read said:

X=X+1

I was thunderstruck. The statement seemed patently false, yet packed with arcane wisdom. I was filled with wonderment, as one might be hearing a Zen Koan, or even seeing a burning bush! I wandered off, the violence behind me forgotten. I would ponder the five mystic symbols for days. I can still see the card, the punched holes, the very typeface.   I had a achieved a kind of satori.

Years later, I found the meaning of X=X+1. In a way banal, and comprehensible, but fundamental! Those symbols turned out to possess vast power; changing my life and everyone's life as much as another five symbols: E=MC(squared).


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 02:33 PM

John f. Weldon: "The Pines" on Pine Ave. where a watch was going on to see if the Management would remove a grilled cheese sandwich that was lodged behind the jukebox player at one table...It stayed there for four years. The phone was always answered, "Piiinesssss" for delivery. A hangout after a night at The Door.

And Peace, I never inhaled either. The hash was oily, but smoooth...cough, cough...(Jesse's "Twigs and Seeds...")...And who could forget Maui-Wowie? A mint green leaf that could take you "past the outskirts of Infinity" in a heartbeat....And I seem to remember a younger version of someone you know called MudRock (who is even prettier now), crawling across the street on St. Urbain after uh, "sipping" a little brew. I was trying to convince him that "death by beer" was not the way to go, that he'd make it if he just hung in there. Ah, youth... A sequel to a party at Liz Tansey's(still remember that see-through Indian Blouse) where I spoke to Felicity Fanjoy(Ryan Larkin) while she was taking a bath...All that crazy stuff seemed "normal" back then...And if somehow I could return in time to the freedom of that era...Sure, let's go...


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 02:48 PM

Geez, there was a "feminist commune" across the street, and that was when feminism was a lot more fun than it got to be a few years later. I'm going to stop this story right here.

Poor Ryan, I knew him when he was normal, and was able to observe his entire decline. Many folks tried to help him, but he was determined to self-destruct. I hope everyone's seen the animated film, including the documentary part that goes with it. In a way, that's a document about the counter-culture of the 60s.

A LOT of people I knew felt that drugs were "good for you" and helped creativity. Some survived, some died, and some are still nuts.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 02:55 PM

Is "the Grease" still there?

Remember the guy who ran a little "depanneur" (a few doors from the Hare K's) which only opened at night when all the other stores were closed. He payed off the fuzz to let him stay open, but charged twice as much for everything. Those who tended to live by night had no choice as to where to get their cheese slices. I won't mention his nickname.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 03:29 PM

Satan's Choice, Devil's Disciples, H/A, The Irish Mob, Mafia, Greek Mafia, Hendrix, Vietnam, Sir George, Ka-boom, Scott McKenzie, "If you're going to SanFrancisco...girl with flowers in her hair", Woodstock...Folk Music, Country Joe & The Fish, "Give Peace a Chance", Agent Orange, John Lennon & Yoko at the hotel, borrowed guitar...

"Leather Boys, are moving in the alley...
Secretaries with their Sugar Daddys
See the punker, hasslin' with the cops...
Every night, it never stops...
In the city, no-one cares who you are, I blow the Blues on this guitar..."(from "In the City" -BR)

And Ryan...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gvfgLBMmtVs


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Peace
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 03:43 PM

I'll let Ron know about this thread.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: bobad
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 03:55 PM

He posted earlier, Bruce.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Beer
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 04:00 PM

The Dubois Brothers selling rancid horse meat at Expo. Best damn hamburgers to be had.
Then there was the terrible tragedy where 37 folks lost their lives at the Blue Bird (Wagon Wheel Club Upstairs)located on Union Street when it was torched..
Oops! maybe this was the early 70's not sure.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 04:15 PM

Blue Bird.
No, it was 68 or 69. I lived right around the corner. Saw the whole mess the next morning. Some guys got kicked out by a bouncer, came back and torched the place.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Peace
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 04:17 PM

Damn. I missed a few posts there. Sorry, Ron. Thanks Bobad.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: bankley
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 04:21 PM

Rev. Balk did my 1st wedding as well... to a N.J. girl.. think it cost $30. There were a lot of marriages to help get Americans 'landed'...
it ended successfully as did my 2nd...

Hey Beer, I'll check into the Fred/Phil Arbor Bluegrass event in VKH and let you know...

Remember when John and Yoko came to town in '69...and never got out of bed ?

Anyway, there lots of stories, but I can't read much more cuz I licked the PC screen and am really starting to feel 'different'...now where did I put the broken kaleidescope ???


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 04:26 PM

Around the same time as the Bluebird fire, the big police strike. Again, living in the same place. Total chaos. Lying in bed, I heard the running feet, screams, breaking glass. I pulled the covers over my head. The next day, got up, saw the destruction. Thought, Geez, those cops ARE good for something after all!

In those days there were no civil weddings, so Leonard Mason of the (also torched!) Unitarian Church would marry anyone. Including Liz Taylor and Richard Burton!


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Peace
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 04:39 PM

That WAS a day. Cops announced they were on strike as of 8:00 AM and there'd been eleven--I shit you not--bank robberies before noon. Let's you know the trust even the criminal element had for the word of the cops back then. Hell, it coulda been a trap!


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Amos
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 04:52 PM

John:

Your story of the Hollerith card is absolutely beautiful; the core of fractal beauty and strange attraction emerging from apparent chaos. Thanks for the grin--a true Zen moment which only the 60's could produce. LOL!!

A poem from that era, on which I pondered (under some arcane neural stimulat or other) a similar number of hours, concerning anthropos apteros, Man without wings:

Anthropos apteros, perplexed,
To know which way to wander next,
Looked up! And saw, above,
A bird
(To whom such doubts must seem absurd).


Thanks again,


A


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Peace
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 04:57 PM

That is beautiful.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Amos
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 06:09 PM

The lines are an alteration of the original, which were by W.H. AUden, called The Labyrinth:

The Labyrinth

Anthropos apteros for days
Walked whistling round and round the Maze,
Relying happily upon
His temperament for getting on.
The hundredth time he sighted, though,
A bush he left an hour ago,
He halted where four alleys crossed,
And recognised that he was lost.

"Where am I? Metaphysics says
No question can be asked unless
It has an answer, so I can
Assume this maze has got a plan.

If theologians are correct,
A Plan implies an Architect:
A God-built maze would be, I'm sure,
The Universe in miniature.

Are data from the world of Sense,
In that case, valid evidence?
What in the universe I know
Can give directions how to go?

All Mathematics would suggest
A steady straight line as the best,
But left and right alternately
Is consonant with History.

Aesthetics, though, believes all Art
Intends to gratify the Heart:
Rejecting disciplines like these,
Must I, then, go the way I please?

Such reasoning is only true
If we accept the classic view,
Which we have no right to assert,
According to the Introvert.

His absolute pre-supposition
Is--Man creates his own condition:
This maze was not divinely built,
But is secreted by my guilt.

The centre that I cannot find
Is known to my Unconscious Mind;
I have no reason to despair
Because I am already there.

My problem is how not to will;
They move most quickly who stand still;
I'm only lost until I see
I'm lost because I want to be.

If this should fail, perhaps I should,
As certain educators would,
Content myself with the conclusion;
In theory there is no solution.

All statements about what I feel,
Like I-am-lost, are quite unreal:
My knowledge ends where it began;
A hedge is taller than a man."

Anthropos apteros, perplexed
To know which turning to take next,
Looked up and wished he were a bird
To whom such doubts must seem absurd.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: bankley
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 06:20 PM

it's rare now, but if anyone can, try to get a copy of 'Goddamn Gypsy' by Ronald Lee (Yanko)..
a book that was published in the early 70's, but written in the 60's... much of it in Montreal... gypsies, Indians, black Muslims, separatists, refugees ,hippies... all woven into a fascinating adventure of self-discovery with many of the Montreal landmarks/backdrops from that era....

Yanko is certainly a character and is now living in Hamilton, did a couple of loose gigs with him in TO a few years ago... that's another story...


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Beer
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 11:39 PM

I checked with three antique stores and the book sells for approximately $50.00

A place I use to rest my head was a restaurant bar called the "Venus Pub Demalo"(sp.)on St. Catherine Street. Lots of good Irish music. The group I was following was called "The Cutty Sark" after that rot gut fucking terrible whiskey. However , it was cheap.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: bankley
Date: 17 Oct 08 - 08:36 AM

thanks Beer.... as I said, they're rare..... but it's a great read, Willie is the main Indian, under a different name, there's one scene where a bar clearing brawl happened at The Sir Winston Churchill Pub between the 'counter-culture' folks and a group of American Jock tourists... what a hoot... anyhow, if you ever get a copy I'll ask Yanko to sign it... he teaches a 'humanities' course at U of Toronto, and still plays sometimes with his group 'E Zhivindi Yag' (The Living Fire).... now that's some folk music you don't often hear,   eg bazooki and oud with some Vlach Roma lyrics


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 17 Oct 08 - 09:35 AM

Thanks, Amos. Very appropriate, and nice to see that whole poem. Auden himself ranged from the sublime to the ridiculous. I always loved this bit of his doggerel:

As the poets have mournfully sung,
Death comes to the innocent young
To the rolling in money,
The screamingly funny
And those that are very well hung.
- W.H. Auden

The Winston C Pub denizens were counter-culture? Sure, in the sense that they were MODS, effete poseurs who spent hundreds on their fashionable garb. I've always been of the second-hand clothing ilk, and still am!


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: bankley
Date: 17 Oct 08 - 09:43 AM

nah John, in this particular incident our rag-tag heroes blew into the bar and were given a hard time by the manager and jocks, which resulted in a lot of broken furniture and some windows... I think the 'effete' had to get some new clothes after the dust-up...
brilliant...


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 17 Oct 08 - 09:55 AM

One of the effete guys, (Bob) was, in fact, a close buddy of the "Choice" and could do 300 pushups without stopping. But he sure could "dandy it up" for the Winnie, with lacey transparent shirts, etc.

I used to drop by his place in the alley behind the church beside Musee des Beaux Arts for breakfast & gin on Sunday mornings. But if the alley was filled with bikes, I'd walk on.


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: bankley
Date: 17 Oct 08 - 10:03 AM

don't blame you...I bet it wasn't a prayer meeting,,, there was some mean muthafuggas in that crew...


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: john f weldon
Date: 18 Oct 08 - 07:11 AM

Above the Swiss Hut lived Montreal's favourite Scottish piper Ken McKenzie. His apartment has once been a lounge or cabaret, it wasn't laid out like a residence. There was a huge terrasse which could have held twenty tables. Ken would stand on the terrasse at midnight and play his pipes. He was totally invisible there, and it was fun to peek over the edge and watch cars stop on Sherbrooke street, people get out and look around wondering where the mighty sound was coming from.

The Swiss Hut was usually packed. The wooden booths were intended for 4 or 6 people, but got loaded up with 8 - 10 squashed in. One night I saw a big, bearded lonely guy with a booth all to himself. When I commented on this strange phenom, I was told: "Him? Ha! He's the Narc!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Montreal 60's Counterculture Question
From: Peace
Date: 18 Oct 08 - 08:02 AM

The Swiss Hut was a dive. (Someday I'll pass a story on to you guys.)

The Blue Lantern was another club that had its moments. One night about eight of us who had to perform next night got into some St George's (a substance devised by Lucifer himself. It was purple and it came in a bottle that said it was wine). I'm certain now that the gallon we had was from a poisoned batch. One guy woke up with his head in a toilet bowl. Anothyer with a boot print on his chording hand. Another was sleeping in the bathtub, and the fellow who had his head in the bowl may have got his head peed on a few times, because everyone was too sick to move him. All of us learned how England's saint slew the dragon. There weren't all that many weapons in that club. May have been one under the counter, but the folks who went there--other than the musicians--were a quiet peaceful group.


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