Space Queen

By @projectspacequeen


My my how things can change in a short amount of time. Out of respect for my co-workers/friends who got us up to Humboldt for this job, I don’t want to say much about the changes. Sometimes you have to just simply let things go.  I can sit here and blame the quick “progress” that Prop 64 has altered in the state of California in the last several months, but then this article would quickly turn into a political rant that I neither have time or space (mental and literal) to write about. I could also sit here and psychologically bash a pot farm boss who doesn’t know how to smoothly operate a business or know how to appropriately treat the people working for him… but again, no time for such things. I will, however, say this with much conviction: f**k a trim machine.

Two weeks ago we packed up frantically and split from Humboldt after the job fell through. A good buddy helped us out immensely, and super last minute – last minute meaning I was literally sobbing in the truck worrying about the future and feeling very lost when she called me up.

“It’s a job with our buddies out in Butte County where we live, probably just about a week’s worth of work but at least it’s something!” she said, with so much empathy, I could feel it through the phone. So that was that. My boyfriend and I, like we have for seven years, grabbed each other’s hands and set off for this new unknown adventure, out of the redwoods and into the rolling ochre hills of outlaw land California.

After grabbing some supplies (booze, brats, beans) in Yuba City we cruised up 45 minutes to a tiny town right across the Butte County line and up a dusty road flanked by horse farms. It was particularly hot as we pulled up to the new destination: I could spot 6 dogs barking and running towards us, a donkey braying her face off in the field to the left, and up ahead: a chop shop garage full of Harleys, and a crew of fellow longhairs scoping us out. Considering how long I have worked in this industry and how many times I, quite frankly, have been f**ked with by pot farm bosses, I couldn’t help but feel slightly apprehensive as we got out to say hi to our new boss guys. I was taking in the entirety of it all: this was, after all, a brand new place to me. Their compound was heavily locked up, no trespassing signs posted all over the gate; the best one by far was a sign with a German Shepard illustration that read, “I can get to the gate in 2.8 – how fast are you?” We most definitely passed several tweakers on foot in the middle of nowhere and heard a number of gunshots in the distance that night. But we all ended up becoming friends very quickly, grillin’ up food and drinkin’ together into the late evening.

What was supposed to be a week-long job turned into a couple weeks, and then we quickly were asked to come back for the rest of the full season. Now, what I need to address here, is my tendency to be fatalistic in times of the unknown, and what is ahead. Especially when it feels like the universe is constantly battling against you… it’s been a rough year y’all. But ending up at this long hair biker farm felt like it was meant to happen, and quite brutally reminded me that life is about the journey and not the destination. I felt safe here, with my man, and our new friends, deep in Outlaw Country California.

History lesson: There was an epic article in Easyriders Magazine from the early 1980’s about Butte County. It was one of the first main gold rush sites in the 1800s. The article focused on an unknown location out in the hills that was blocked off by a road chain so vehicles couldn’t get through, yet behind the chain and rolling hills, there was a community of outlaws holding their ground in territory that the police were probably too scared to deal with. There were hillbillies and all their guns, explosives and booby traps, hippie communes, bikers growing weed in the trees, gold panners, and probably a handful of meth cooks, all living off the land and acting like their own community, protecting each other from the constraints of society. They all took turns each day hiding out on the road making sure no unwanted curious stragglers came into their world, even though they all dabbled with different daily practices in their lives. They had a common goal. They didn’t like how society was managed and therefore created their own. Which is fascinating to me, as we fast forward to present day 2017 – and the existence of the future State of Jefferson, which is parallel in many ways, not to mention in the same area of California. About Jefferson: I’m sure some of you know about it, and for those of you who don’t, read about it for f**k sake. There’s a giant sign on the side of the 5 freeway north of Sacramento that says “The State of Jefferson…coming soon.” So read up people because I’ll address this more next time.

My point for writing any of this? Well, there are small revolutions happening everywhere, every day, if you look for them. Whether they occurred 30+ years ago, like the outlaws of Butte County, or happening right now with our new biker friends making the most out of country life. Or to something much bigger like a whole new state emerging from the high hills of California – it is unique and very inspiring to get off our asses and make sh*t happen.

Until next time my friends –

The Space Queen