Eduardo Jones writes for Beatdom, a Beatnik Literary Journal. Besides his claim to HST’s ether, Mr. Jones was also good friends with Camu Tao. So in stride with Camu’s Columbus release party tonight at Skullys,I solicited memories from Eduardo and a few other of Camu’s friends. I have an interview with El-P that I’m gonna put up later this week. I already said my peace in the Other Paper,
400 Lb Ear Lifts and Leak Smoke……..
By Eduardo Jones
Mr. Flexner asked me if I’d like to share a Camu memory with everybody for his blog. Now, I started thinking back about Camu and my experiences with him, two stories really stick out in my head more than any others– so I’ll share both.
Let’s take a trip back in time to the hay days of Bernies, back when the air was alive with Hip Hop, raw sewage, blunt smoke and the smell of 200 sweaty assholes on a Sunday night. I believe if memory serves me right is where I’d first met Camu. I was still a pretty new face around Columbus, but as fate would have it I somehow met all the right people. Jesus, it frightens me at times to think what would have happened if I’d met some meat head frat boy instead of Asend and Lil Steph.
On this particular night in question I was down at Bernies with Cameron. He was a very close friend of mine, but as many of you know Cameron tended to be a bully. He was the epitome of a Debo. The kid weighed in at around 400lbs, and had a taste for imposing his will on people. If they didn’t play by Cameron’s rules odds were he was smacking the shit out of them. He also tended to get pissed and start fights over some really stupid shit. I’m not shit talking him; I’m just telling it like it is.
I was getting my drink on and bullshitting with PRZM about how we needed to find some bitches; as par for the course when I talked with P. If you knew PRZM, you know he had three loves– Polo, Pussy, and Music; not necessarily in that order either. Suddenly our conversation was interrupted by some commotion out on the dance floor. It doesn’t take long for me to realize its Cameron man handling someone. This was going to be a problem as it usually was because of Cameron’s size nobody really ever wanted to nor tried to interfere when he was getting his Debo on.
Needless to say the music stops and everybody’s kind of just like what the fuck is going on. The next thing I know Camu comes bum rushing across the floor like a freight train. He spins Cameron around and grabs him by the ears and picks him up off the floor. No joke: picked his fat ass up off the ground by his ears! Then runs with him across the dance floor, and proceeds to bounce his head off this iron girder that holds the building up. Cameron’s feet still aren’t touching the ground by the way. He’s pale white and doesn’t even know what to say or do and it’s obvious by the look in his eyes he’s shocked and scared. I mean come on this was probably the first time anybody lifted him off the ground, never mind by the fucking ears! Cameron obviously didn’t want any of Camu after this. That always tends to be the way with bullies though. Once somebody actually shows them they aren’t scared and they can’t pull that shit on them, they tend to piss down their legs like a scared puppy.
That was one thing I always admired about Camu. He was fun, friendly, and a clown, but he never took shit from anybody and would always be quick to put somebody in their place if they stepped out of line; sometimes when nobody else would.
Now for this next memory we need to fast forward a few years. Camu came by my house one day. I can’t remember why or what for. Probably just to kick it. Anyways, I’m going through this box of shit in my room and I find this bottle of leak. I have no clue how long I’ve had it or how the hell I even got it. Back then I always had drugs, so most likely it was something I put away for a special occasion and forgot all about.
I show it to Camu and ask. “You want to get wet?” Needless to say he agrees and we start smoking dips. Something aint right about this shit though. I don’t know if it was because it was old or watered down, but it aint that strong. I mean it’s doing its job but not the way it should be. So we decided we needed to smoke as much of this shit as we could to get to the proper level. So we spend the next couple hours smoking this shit. Before long we decide we need to go out and do something. So we head down to Skully’s to meet up with the usual suspects. Camu tells me to bring the bottle so we can keep smoking it at the bar.
By now we’re both pretty dusted. It took twice as much as it probably should of, but everything got that nice electric fog feel to it after a while. We’re in one of those just us frames of mind you tend to get in when you’re the only people fucked up on one specific substance. So we aren’t really being too social. We’re just sitting at this table in the corner dipping cigarettes.
Camu decides he wants to go smoke a blunt and we should just say fuck it and pour the rest of the bottle on the blunt . Excess is always best, I have to agree. So there we are off on the side of Skully’s rolling this blunt and soaking it with this leak. Just before Mu sparks it, he looks at me says. ”Listen if anybody comes over here and wants to hit this shit, just pass it to them and don’t say shit.” I can agree with this plan, after all I’m the guy who used to sneak in tweak shacks when everybody had finally crashed and dip their fingers in bowls of liquid acid for shits an giggles. I’m pretty sure this wasn’t Mu’s plan to just get people wet for no reason or maybe it was. I think he just didn’t want anybody knowing we were smoking leak. So rather than be like no don’t hit that shit! Why not just pass it to them? Ignorance is bliss, right?
In no time these three chicks come around the corner and see Mu and I hitting this blunt. Of course they’re all like hey let us get down. So I pass it to them. Mind you this thing is sopping in leak! It doesn’t take long for one of them to say this thing tastes a little funny. Mu says it’s these new menthol blunt wraps he got in New York and they fucking buy it. I’m looking at Mu the whole time about to lose my shit, because these bitches are puffing on this thing like it’s the last blunt in the land. Mu’s just staring at me with this look in his eyes, like this is funny shit, but you better not say anything. It’s taking me everything in me to not just burst out in a hysterical laughter. I can’t even look at Mu at this point.
Before long the blunt is gone. These bitches are looking a little twisted and bounce thinking they just smoked two suckers weed and weren’t giving them the time of day otherwise. The minute they get in their car and pull off me and Mu started laughing so hard we were practically crying. I don’t know what ever happened to those chicks, but I doubt they ever just walked up on two strangers and tried to smoke all of their weed ever again.
Camu was a one in a million type and they’ll never be another like him again. I always had fun whenever I hung out with Mu. I miss him greatly and wish I had gotten more time with him than I did. I guess in a way the release party this Monday for The King Of Hearts is a way to rock out and hang out with him one more time. I know his spirit will be there in full effect.