Mota: My first puff of cannabis
So there I was, living in L.A. at 12 years old. I’d been going to a new school for a few weeks now, and was just starting to make friends in yet another new town. It was the first night that I would be spending over my new friend Tim’s apartment and I was just offered a puff of something, by Tim’s dad, that I had never heard of before, called “Mota”.
While I still didn’t know what “mota” was, and to be honest – if you told me it was marijuana – I still wouldn’t of known what you were talking about, I was pretty sure it was something that I shouldn’t have been doing at the age of 12. At the same time, here was my new best friend at the time and his dad smoking it together and laughing, how bad could it be?
You see, no one had ever talked to me about smoking pot, or drugs, or any of that kind of stuff. I’m sure I smelled it once or twice around the tattoo shop my dad used to have when I was younger, but I really didn’t remember it and still didn’t “know” what it was. While I didn’t know what the smell was, and it seemed new to me, I started to think somehow it was familiar. I can’t explain it, but the smell of this mota had a welcoming kind of smell to it. You ever smell something and have to stop and think about where you smelled it before? This is what I started to feel like, and I never did figure out if I just liked the smell, or if I had smelled it before.
It wasn’t until after I smoked marijuana, that I even knew that’s what it was. I certainly didn’t know at the time that “mota” and marijuana were the same thing. One thing I knew for sure was, I was already smoking cigarettes like mom, grandma, my cousins, uncles, and many other family members and friends who thought it was alright, and as far as I knew, there was no difference in this “mota” and the cigarette I was smoking, except for the smell and maybe (hopefully) the taste.
“Well, you wanna try it, or not?”, asked Tim’s dad, as he held the soda-can, turned pipe, out towards me.
“Sure, I’ll try it”, I said.
I remember taking hold of the soda can and fumbling to get a feel for it. Finally, I noticed the way it was dented left a natural resting place for the thumb when you held it with the left hand. This thumb-notch had a hole poked in it that I saw Tim and his dad using to control the flow of the smoke. I fired up a lighter and touched it to the pile of “molta” that was laying on top of the makeshift-pipe. I covered the choke-hole with my thumb and placed my mouth up to the can. As I drew a few puffs of air through the can, I could see the flame being sucked through the molta. I could feel the air inside the can beginning to heat up and fill with thick smoke. After about 3 or 4 puffs I released the choke-hole, while still breathing in, and allowed the smoke to fill my lungs.
Right away I could tell, this was no cigarette! It tasted good…. no it tasted GREAT actually, and smelled way better than any cigarette too. I can remember trying to hold my breath for a second, and knowing that I wouldn’t be able to hold it in like my friend and his dad did. I immediately started coughing out my nose and had to exhale everything I had just taken in.
I can remember hearing laughter as I choke-coughed, and half spit on the floor.
“Yep, real good mota Timmy….” I heard Tim Sr. say with a laugh.
to be continued…. Read Part 4 Here