Flaskaland
Wednesday, September 11, 2013
  Tina & the Mystic Law



I later, within six months or a year after the skylight incident with Tina in Palmer Canyon, maybe sometime in 1970, I saw Tina on Telegraph Avenue in front of the glass windows of the (was it the Owl Rexall then? the exterior was painted yellow and blue, just like the blue and gold of the Cal colors) drugstore down from Bancroft.  She was dressed well in a business suit, the ensemble was brownish gray with small checks and her jacket had a little skirt from the midriff.  She was with a group of fellow travelers.  She was chanting and handing out small slips of paper that said: Nam Yo Renge Kyo.  She was devoted and singing the Lotus Sutra now.   That's about the time that Charlie and Geno would leave after Mandrake's closed and head over to the San Francisco nightclub where Ike & Tina were performing, where they could hang out backstage and watch the show.  Soon after, she began putting some Buddhist moves into her stage show, her hands clasped together as in prayer, when singing to certain members of the audience.  That was sweet.

I wasn't surprised by that at all, as earlier in my life one of the Berkeley street urchins I'd met in 1964 reappeared in 1965 or so, a black guy named Harris, reappeared on the Avenue playing drums and chanting "Hare Krishna" and dressed in saffron robes.  I'd been surprised to see him transformed in that manner, but ...

There had been a lot of Eastern and strange or unusual forms of devotional worship popping up throughout the Bay Area at that time, assembled suddenly into large groups of worshippers, a phenomenon which continued on and on through the the years I spent there.  And in my travels by then, I had even seen John Travolta himself dressed more than a bit like Fonzi (black motorcycle jacket and levis) trying to lure rich matrons into the Scientology Center in Santa Barbara on State Street.


 




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