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Go Ask Alice

50th Anniversary Edition


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About The Book

Celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the acclaimed, bestselling first-person account of a teen girl’s harrowing descent into drug addiction—as heart-wrenching, shocking, and timely as ever, this cautionary tale now has a brand-new cover.

January 24th
After you’ve had it, there isn’t even life without drugs…

It started when she was served a drink laced with LSD in a dangerous party game. Within months, she was hooked, trapped in a downward spiral that took her from her comfortable home and loving family to the streets of an unforgiving city. It was a journey that would rob her of her innocence, her youth—and ultimately her life.

Read her diary.
Enter her world.
You will never forget her.


Go Ask Alice
September 16

Yesterday I remember thinking I was the happiest person in the whole earth, in the whole galaxy, in all of God’s creation. Could that only have been yesterday or was it endless light-years ago? I was thinking that the grass had never smelled grassier, the sky had never seemed so high. Now it’s all smashed down upon my head and I wish I could just melt into the blaaaa-ness of the universe and cease to exist. Oh, why, why, why can’t I? How can I face Sharon and Debbie and the rest of the kids? How can I? By now the word has gotten around the whole school, I know it has! Yesterday I bought this diary because I thought at last I’d have something wonderful and great and worthwhile to say, something so personal that I wouldn’t be able to share it with another living person, only myself. Now like everything else in my life, it has become so much nothing.

I really don’t understand how Roger could have done this to me when I have loved him for as long as I can remember and I have waited all my life for him to see me. Yesterday when he asked me out I thought I’d literally and completely die with happiness. I really did! And now the whole world is cold and gray and unfeeling and my mother is nagging me to clean up my room. How can she nag me to clean up my room when I feel like dying? Can’t I even have the privacy of my own soul?

Diary, you’ll have to wait until tomorrow or I’ll have to go through the long lecture again about my attitude and my immaturity.

See ya.

September 17

School was a nightmare. I was afraid I’d see Roger every time I turned a corner in the hall, yet I was desperate for fear I wouldn’t see him. I kept telling myself, “Maybe something went wrong and he’ll explain.” At lunch I had to tell the girls about his not showing. I pretended I didn’t care, but oh, Diary, I do! I care so much I feel that my whole insides have shattered. How is it possible for me to be so miserable and embarrassed and humiliated and beaten and still function, still talk and smile and concentrate? How could Roger have done this to me? I wouldn’t intentionally hurt anyone in this whole world. I wouldn’t hurt them physically or emotionally, how then can people so consistently do it to me? Even my parents treat me like I’m stupid and inferior and ever short. I guess I’ll never measure up to anyone’s expectations. I surely don’t measure up to what I’d like to be.

September 19

Dad’s birthday. Not much. 2

September 20

It’s my birthday. I’m 15. Nothing.

September 25

Dear Diary,

I haven’t written for about a week because nothing of interest has happened. The same old dumb teachers teaching the same old dumb subjects in the same old dumb school. I seem to be kind of losing interest in everything. At first I thought high school would be fun but it’s just dull. Everything’s dull. Maybe it’s just because I’m growing up and life is becoming more blasé. Julie Brown had a party but I didn’t go. I’ve put on seven ugly, fat, sloppy, slobby pounds and I don’t have anything I can wear. I’m beginning to look as slobby as I feel.

September 30

Wonderful news, Diary! We’re moving. Daddy has been invited to become the Dean of Political Science at ________. Isn’t that exciting! Maybe it will be like it was when I was younger. Maybe again he’ll teach in Europe every summer and we’ll go with him like we used to. Oh those were the fun, fun times! I’m going to start on a diet this very day. I will be a positively different person by the time we get to our new home, Not one more bite of chocolate or nary a french fried potato will pass my lips till I’ve lost ten globby pounds of lumpy lard. And I’m going to make a completely new wardrobe. Who cares about Ridiculous Roger? Confidentially, Diary, I still care. I guess I’ll always love him, but maybe just before we leave and I’m thin and my skin is absolutely flawless and petal smooth and clear, and I have clothes like a fashion model he’ll ask me for another date. Shall I turn him down or stand him up or will I — I’m afraid I will — weaken and go out with him?

Oh please, Diary, help me to be strong and consistent. Help me to exercise every morning and night and clean my skin and eat right and be optimistic and agreeable and positive and cheerful. I want so much to be someone important, or even just asked out by a boy every once in a while. Maybe the new me will be different.

October 10

Dear Diary,

I’ve lost three pounds and we’re busy getting sort of semi-organized to move. Our house is up for sale, and Mom and Dad have gone to look for a place in ________. I’m staying here with Tim and Alexandria, and as much as you’ll be surprised, they don’t even bug me. We’re all excited about moving and they do whatever I tell them about helping with the house and meals and such — well, almost. I guess Dad will be taking over the new position at mid-term. He’s as excited as a little boy and it’s kind of like old times. We sit around the table and laugh and joke and make plans together. It’s great! Tim and Alex insist they have to take all their toys and junk. Personally I’d like to get a whole new everything, except my books of course, they are part of my life. When I was hit by a car in the fifth grade and was in a cast for such along time, I’d have died without them. Even now I’m not really sure which parts of myself are real and which parts are things I’ve gotten from books. But anyway it’s great! Life is positively great and wonderful and exciting, and I can’t wait to see what’s behind the next corner and all the corners after that.

October 16

Mom and Dad came back today. Hooray, we have a house! It’s a large old Spanish-type house which Mom loves. I can’t wait to move! I can’t wait! I can’t wait! They took pictures which will be back in three or four days. I can’t wait, I can’t wait, or have I said that a million times before?

October 17

Even school is exciting again. I got an A on my algebra paper and everything else is going A and B too. Algebra is the worst. If I can pass that I guess I can do anything! Usually I’m lucky to get a C, even when I kill myself. Isn’t it funny, but it seems that when something is going good, everything else goes good too. I’m even getting along better with Mom. She doesn’t seem to nag at me so much anymore. I can’t figure out which one of us has changed — I really can’t. Am I being more whatever it is she wants me to be so she doesn’t have to always be on my back or is it she is less demanding?

I even saw Roger in the hall and couldn’t have cared less. He said “hi” to me and stopped to talk, but I just walked on by. He’s not going to drop me on my head again! Gee, only a little over three months!

October 22

Scott Lossee asked me to go to the movies Friday. I’ve lost ten pounds. I’m down to a hundred and fifteen which is all right, but I’d still like to lose another ten pounds. Mom says I don’t want to get that thin, but she doesn’t know! I do! I do! I do! I haven’t had one goodie for so long I’ve almost forgotten what they taste like. Maybe Friday night I’ll go on a binge and eat a few french fries . . . ummmmmmm . . . .

October 26

The movie was fun with Scott. We went out after and I ate six wonderful, delicious, mouth-watering, delectable, heavenly french fries. That was really living in itself! I don’t feel about Scott like I used to about Roger. I guess that was my one and only true love, but I’m glad it’s over. Imagine me in my first year of high school and barely fifteen and the one and only great love of my life is over. It seems kind of tragic in a way. Maybe someday when we’re both in college we’ll meet again. I hope so. I really do hope so. Last summer at Marion Hill’s slumber party someone brought in a Playboy magazine with a story in it about a girl sleeping with a boy for the first time and all I could think about was Roger. I don’t ever want to have sex with any other boy in the whole world ever . . . ever . . . . I swear I’ll die a virgin if Roger and I don’t get together. I couldn’t stand to ever have any other boy even touch me. I’m not even sure about Roger, Maybe later when I’m older I’ll feel differently. Mother says that as girls get older, hormones invade our bloodstream making our sexual desires greater. I guess I’m just developing slowly. I’ve heard some pretty wild stories about some of the kids at school, but I’m not them, I’m me, and besides, sex seems so strange and so inconvenient, and so awkward.

I keep thinking about our teacher in gym teaching us modern dance and always saying that it will make our bodies strong and healthy for childbearing, then she harps and harps that everything must be graceful, graceful, graceful. I can hardly picture sex or having a baby as being graceful.

Gotta go. See ya.

November 10

Oh dear Diary, I’m so sorry I’ve neglected you, but I’ve been so busy. Here we are preparing for Thanksgiving already and then Christmas. We sold our house last week to the Dulburrows and their seven kids. I do wish we could have sold it to someone with a smaller family. I hate to think of those six boys running up and down our beautiful front stairs with their dirty, sticky fingers on the walls and their dirty feet all over Mother’s white carpeting. You know, when I think about things like that, I suddenly don’t want to leave! I’m afraid! I’ve lived in this room all my fifteen years, all my 5,530 days. I’ve laughed and cried and moaned and muttered in this room. I’ve loved people and things and hated them. It’s been a big part of my life, of me. Will we ever be the same when we’re closed in by other walls? Will we think other thoughts and have different emotions? Oh, Mother, Daddy, maybe we’re making a mistake, maybe we’ll be leaving too much of ourselves behind!

Dear precious Diary, I am baptizing you with my tears. I know we have to leave and that one day I will even have to leave my father and mother’s home and go into a home of my own. But ever I will take you with me.

November 30

Dear Diary,

Sorry I didn’t talk with you on Thanksgiving. It was so nice, Gran and Gramps were here for two days and we talked about old times and lay around the living room. Daddy didn’t even go to his office the whole time. Grandma made taffy with us like she used to when we were little, and even Daddy pulled some. We all laughed a lot, and Alex got it in her hair and Gramps got his false teeth stuck together, and we were almost hysterical. They are sorry we are moving so far away from them and so are we. Home just won’t be the same without Gran and Gramps dropping in. I really hope Daddy is right in making the move.

December 4

Dear Diary,

Mama won’t let me diet anymore. Just between us, I don’t really know why it’s any of her business. It’s true I have had a cold for the last couple of weeks, but I know it’s not the diet that is causing it. How can she be so stupid and irrational? This morning I was having my usual half grapefruit for breakfast and she made me eat a slice of whole wheat bread and a scrambled egg and a piece of bacon. That’s probably at least 400 calories, maybe even five or six or seven hundred. I don’t know why she can’t let me live my own life. She doesn’t like it when I look like a cow, neither does anybody else, I don’t even like myself. I wonder if I could go stick my finger down my throat and throw up after every meal? She says I’m going to have to start eating dinner again too, and just when I’m getting down where I want to be and I’ve quit fighting the hunger pangs. Oh, parents are a problem! That’s one thing, Diary, you don’t have to worry about, only me. And I guess you’re not very lucky at that, because I’m certainly no bargain.

December 10

When I bought you, Diary, I was going to write religiously in you every day, but some days nothing worth writing happens and other days I’m too busy or too bored or too angry or too annoyed, or just too me to do anything I don’t have to do. I guess I’m a pretty lousy friend — even to you. Anyway I feel closer to you than I do to even Debbie and Marie and Sharon who are my very best friends. Even with them I’m not really me. I’m partly somebody else trying to fit in and say the right things and do the right thing and be in the right place and wear what everybody else is wearing. Sometimes I think we’re all trying to be shadows of each other, trying to buy the same records and everything even if we don’t like them. Kids are like robots, off an assembly line, and I don’t want to be a robot!

December 14

I just bought the most wonderful little single pearl pin for Mother’s Christmas present. It cost me nine dollars and fifty cents, but it’s worth it. It’s a cultured pearl which means it’s real and it looks like my Mom. Soft and shiny, but sturdy and dependable underneath so it won’t dribble all over the place. Oh I hope she likes it! I want so very much for her to like it and for her to like me! I still don’t know what I’ll get for Tim and Dad, but they’re easier to buy for. I’d like to get a nice gold pencil holder or something for Dad to put on his big new desk in his big new office so he’d think of me every time he looked at it, even in the middle of tremendously important conferences with all the leading brains in the world, but as usual I can’t afford a fraction of the things I want.

December 17

Lucy Martin is having a Christmas party, and I’m supposed to bring a gelatin salad. It sounds like a lot of fun. (At least I hope it will be.) I’ve made myself a new white soft wool dress. Mother helped me and it’s really beautiful. Someday I hope I can sew as well as she does. In fact someday I hope I can be like her. I wonder if when she was my age she worried about boys not liking her and girls being only her part-time friends. I wonder if boys were as oversexed in those days as they are now? It seems like when we girls talk about our dates that most of the boys are that way. None of my friends ever go all the way, but I guess a lot of the girls at school do. I wish I could talk to my mother about things like this because I don’t really believe a lot of the kids know what they’re talking about, at least I can’t believe all the stuff they tell me.

December 22

The party at the Martins was fun. Dick Hill brought me home. He had his father’s car and we drove all over town and looked at the lights and sang Christmas carols. It sounds kind of corny, but it really wasn’t. When we got home he kissed me goodnight, but that’s all. It kind of made me nervous because I don’t know if he doesn’t like me or just respects me or what? I guess I just can’t be secure no matter what happens. I sometimes wish I were going with someone then I’d always know I had a date and I’d have someone I could really talk to, but my parents don’t believe in that, and besides, confidentially, no one has ever been that interested in me. Sometimes I think no one ever will be. I really do like boys a lot, sometimes I think I like them too much, but I’m not very popular. I wish I were popular and beautiful and wealthy and talented. Wouldn’t it be nice to be like that?

December 25

It’s Christmas! Wonderful, magnificent, happy, holy Christmas. I’m so happy I can hardly contain myself. I got some books and records and a skirt I really love and a lot of little things. And Mother really loved her pin. She really did! She loved it! She put it right on her nightgown and wore it all day. Oh, I’m so happy she liked it. Gran and Gramps were here and Uncle Arthur and Aunt Jeannie and their kids. It was really great. I guess Christmas is the very best time of the year. Everybody feels warm and secure and needed and wanted. (Even me.) I wish it could be like this all the time. I hated for today to come to an end. Not only because it was such a great day, but because this will be our last big holiday in this lovely house.

Goodbye dear house dressed in your holiday finery of tinsel and holly and bright-colored lights. I love you! I’ll miss you!

January 1

Last night I went to a New Year’s party at Scott’s house. The kids got a little wild. Some of the boys were juicing it up. I came home early saying I didn’t feel well, but actually it’s just that I’m so excited about moving in two days that I am beside myself. I’m sure I won’t sleep at all for the next two nights. Imagine moving into a new home and a new town and a new county and a new state all at the same time. Mom and Dad know a few people on the faculty and they’re at least casually acquainted with our new house. I’ve seen pictures of it, but it still seems like a large, cold, foreboding stranger. I do hope we like it and it can adjust to us.

Frankly, I wouldn’t dare say this to anybody but you, Diary, but I’m not too sure I’m going to make it in a new town. I barely made it in our old town where I knew everybody and they knew me. I’ve never even allowed myself to think about it before, but I really haven’t much to offer in a new situation. Oh dear God, help me adjust, help me be accepted, help me belong, don’t let me be a social outcast and a drag on my family. Here I go bawling again, what a boob, but there isn’t any more I can do about that than there is I can do about moving. So you’re wet again! It’s a good thing diaries don’t catch cold!

January 4

We’re here! It’s barely January 4, only ten minutes after one, and Tim and Alex have been quarreling and Mama has either the stomach flu or she’s just upset because of the excitement; anyway Dad has had to stop twice so that she could throw up. Something went wrong and the lights haven’t been turned on and I think even Dad is about ready to turn around and go back home. Mom had made a diagram of where she wanted the movers to put everything and they got it all fouled up. So we’re all just going to roll up in bedding and sleep in whichever bed is handy. I’m glad I’ve got my little pocket flashlight, at least I can see to write. Confidentially the house looks pretty weird and haunted, but maybe that’s because there are no curtains up or anything. Maybe things will look brighter tomorrow. They certainly couldn’t look worse.

January 6

Sorry I haven’t had time to write for two days, but we haven’t stopped. We’re still trying to get curtains hung and boxes unpacked and things put away. The house is beautiful. The walls are thick dark wood and there are two steps going down to a long sunken living room. I’ve apologized to every room about the way I felt last night.

I’m still worried about school and TODAY I must go. I wish Tim were in high school. Even a little brother would be better than no one, but he is in his second year of junior high. Already he’s met a boy down the street his own age and I should be happy for him, but I’m not — I’m sad for myself. Alexandria is still in grade school and one of the professors lives close and has a daughter her age, so she will go directly to his home after school. How lucky can you get, built-in friends and everything? For me, as usual, nothing! A big fat nothing, and probably just what I deserve. I wonder if the kids wear the same things they do at home? Oh, I hope I’m not so different they’ll all stare at me. Oh, how I wish I had a friend! But I better paste on the big phony smile, Mother is calling and I must respond with an “attitude that will determine my altitude.”

One, two, three, and here goes the martyr.

Evening, January 6

Oh Diary it was miserable! It was the loneliest, coldest place in the world. Not one single person spoke to me during the whole endlessly long day. During lunch period I fled to the nurse’s office and said I had a headache. Then I cut my last class and went by the drugstore and had a chocolate malt, a double order of french fried potatoes and a giant Hershey Bar. There had to be something in life that was worthwhile, All the time I ate, I hated myself for being childish. Hurt as I am when I think about it I have probably done the same thing to every new person that came to my schools, either ignored them completely or stared at them out of curiosity. So, I’m just getting “cut” back and I guess I deserve it, but oh, am I ever suffering! I ache even in my fingernails and toenails and in my hair follicles.

January 7

Last night’s dinner was excruciating. Alex loves her new school and her new little friend Tricia. Tim rode the bus with the neighbor boy and was in three of his classes, he said the girls were cuter than the ones at his old school and he said they fell all over him, but that’s the way it always is when a new boy moves in. Mom went to a tea and found everyone “charming, beautiful and pleasant.” (Isn’t that nice.) Well, like oil and water, I can’t quite adapt or fit. Every so often I even seem to be on the outside just looking in on my own family. How can I possibly be such a dud when I come from this gregarious, friendly, elastic background? Gramps was in politics and he was always the favored candidate, with Gran traveling by his side. So what is it with me? Am I some kind of a throwback? A misfit? A mistake!

January 14

A whole week has gone by and no one has done more than stare at me in a kind of curious, hostile, “what are you doing here?” kind of way. I’ve tried to bury myself in books and my studies and my music and pretend I don’t care. I guess I don’t really care, and besides what difference could it possibly make if I did? I’ve gained five pounds and I don’t care about that either. Mother is worried about me I know, because I’ve become so quiet, but what is there to talk about? If I went by her standing rule of “If you can’t say something nice about things don’t say anything at all,” I’d never even open my mouth except to eat, and I’ve been doing plenty of that!

February 8

Well, I’ve gained almost fifteen pounds since we’ve been here, my face is a mess and my hair is so stringy and oily I’d have to wash it every night to keep it decent. Dad is never home and Mom is on my back all the time, “Be happy, put up your hair, be positive, smile, show some spirit, be friendly,” and if they tell me I’m acting negatively and immaturely one more time I’m going to gag. I can’t wear any of the clothes I made before I came here and I know Tim is ashamed of me. When I’m around his friends he treats me like a dum-dum, insults me and makes remarks about my hippy hair. I’m getting fed up to here with this town and school in general and my family and myself in particular.

March 18

Well, I’ve finally found a friend at school. She’s as cloddy and misfitting as I am. But I guess that old poke about birds of a feather is true. One night Gerta came to pick me up for the movies and my folks were everything but rude to her. Imagine my long-suffering, sweet-mouthed mother being tempted to utter a slimy phrase about my drab-looking nobody friend. I wonder why she doesn’t take a second look at her drab-looking nobody daughter, or would that be too much for the well-groomed, thin, charming wife of the great Professor, who might be the President of the school within a few years.

I could see them all squirming a little even as I have been squirming ever since we got to this impregnable hole.

April 10

Oh, happiness and joy and elation, mother has promised me that I can spend the summer at Gran’s. I start on a diet as of today, this very minute! Of course she had one little string attached to it, as she always does — that I get my grades back up.

April 20

School is almost over, two more months and I can hardly wait. Tim is intolerable, and mother is constantly, constantly picking at me, “Don’t do this — don’t do that — do do this — do do that — why don’t you? — you know you should — now you’re acting childish and immature again.” I know she is always comparing me with Tim and Alexandria and I just simply can’t measure up. It seems like every family has to have one goon, guess who’s it on this homestead? It’s natural to have a little sibling rivalry, but ours is getting way out of control. I really do love Tim and Alex, but they’ve got plenty of faults too, and I find it difficult to decide whether I love them more than I hate them or whether I hate them more than I love them. This also applies to Mom and Dad! But truthfully I guess it applies even more to myself.

May 5

Every single teacher I have this term is an idiot and a drag. I read once that a person is lucky to have two good teachers who stimulate and motivate him in his whole lifetime. I guess I must have had my two in kindergarten and first grade, right?

May 13

I met another girl walking home from school. She lives just three blocks from us and her name is Beth Baum. She’s really awfully nice. She’s kind of shy too and prefers books to people just as I do. Her father is a doctor and away from home most of the time just like Dad, and her mother nags a lot but then I guess all mothers do. If they didn’t I’d hate to see what homes and yards and even the world would look like. Oh, I do hope I won’t have to be a nagging mother, but I guess I’ll have to be, else I don’t see how anything will ever be accomplished.

May 19

Today I went home with Beth after school. They have a lovely house and a full-time, live-in maid. Beth is Jewish. I’ve never really had a Jewish friend before, and for some reason I thought they’d be different. I don’t know how, because we’re all people, but I just thought they’d be . . . well, more like . . . as usual I don’t even know what I’m talking about.

Beth is really conscientious and worries about her grades so we did some work and then listened to records and drank no-calorie cokes. (She’s trying to lose weight, too.) I really like her and it’s nice to have a true friend, for confidentially I didn’t really ever feel secure with Gerta, I always wanted to correct her grammar and tell her to watch her clothes and her posture. I guess I’m more like Mom than I thought! It’s not that I’m a snob — really it’s not. But real friendship can’t be built on sympathy and a hanging-on to someone just to keep from drowning. It has to be built on mutual likes and abilities and, yes, even backgrounds. Boy, Mom would be proud of my thinking and attitude today. It’s just too bad we can’t communicate anymore. I remember being able to talk to her when I was little but it’s as though we speak a different language now and the meanings just don’t come across the right way. She means something and I take it another way or she says something and I think she’s trying to correct me or “uplift” me or preach at me and I really suspect she isn’t doing that at all, just groping and being as lost with words as am I. That’s life, I guess.

May 22

Beth came over to my house to study today, and Mom and Dad and both the kids like her! They even asked her to call and get permission to stay for dinner, and then Mom is going to take us downtown shopping since it’s Thursday night and the stores are all open. I ran in to change clothes, and Beth ran over to grab her things. We’ll pick her up on the way, but I just had to stop and jot the whole ecstatic experience down. It’s just too tremendous and delightful and wonderful to keep all bottled-up inside.

May 24

Beth is a wonderful friend. I guess she’s the only “best” friend I’ve had since I was a very little girl. We can talk about anything. We even talk a lot about religion. The Jewish Hebrew faith is a lot different than ours. They have their meetings on Saturday and they are still looking for Christ or the Messiah to come. Beth loves her grandparents a lot and she wants me to meet them. She says they are Orthodox and eat meat off one set of plates and milk things off another set of plates. I wish I knew more about my own religion so I could tell Beth.

June 3

Today Beth and I talked about sex. Her grandmother told her that when a Jewish boy and girl are getting married, if someone says the girl isn’t a virgin and they can prove it, the boy doesn’t even have to marry her. We wondered exactly how they proved such a thing but neither one of us really know. She said she’d rather ask her grandmother than her mother, but I’d rather ask my mother if I were to ask anyone, which of course I won’t! And my mother wouldn’t know about Jewish customs anyway.

Beth says she has nightmares about walking down the aisle, wearing a long beautiful white gown, with hundreds of people at her wedding and someone whispering to the Rabbi that she’s not a virgin and the boy turning around and leaving her. I don’t blame her — I’d feel the very same way. Someday when she gets up enough nerve she’s going to ask her grandmother or somebody about it. I hope she’ll tell me because I really want to know too.

June 10

Dear Diary,

School will soon be over and now I don’t want it to end. Beth and I are having such a good time. Neither one of us are very popular with the boys, but sometimes Beth has to go out with the Jewish sons of her mother’s friends. She says it’s usually a big bore, and the boys don’t like her any more than she likes them, but Jewish families are like that, they want their kids to marry other Jewish kids. Some night Beth is going to fix me up on a blind date with “a nice Jewish boy” to quote her mother. Beth says he’ll love it because I’m not Jewish and he’ll feel he’s putting something over on his mother. I think I like him already.

June 13

Hurrah! School is out! But I’m kind of sad too.

June 15

Beth fixed me up with a boy named Sammy Green. He was incredibly proper and polite to my parents which made them like him, but once we were out in the car he was all hands. Parents really are a poor judge of character. Sometimes I wonder how they made it to the age they are. Anyway the whole night was really stupid. Sam wouldn’t even let me watch the movie in peace. Besides it turned out to be such a dirty film that Beth and I stayed in the ladies’ room for a long time after it was over. We were both too self-conscious to come out, but since we couldn’t spend the night in there, we finally made our grand entrance into the lobby pretending that nothing had ever even happened. The boys tried to discuss the movie, but we both ignored them, and it too.

June 18

Today I received the ghastly news that Beth is going to have to go to summer camp for six weeks. Her folks are going to Europe so they’ve made arrangements for her at an all-Jewish camp. I am heartbroken and so is she. We’ve both talked to our parents, but we might as well be talking to the wind. They don’t hear us, they don’t even listen to us. I guess I’ll go spend the summer with Gran as I planned, but even that doesn’t seem to hold much interest anymore.

June 23

Beth and I have only two more days together. Our parting is almost like looking forward to a death. It seems that I have known her always for she understands me. I must admit that there were even times when her mother arranged dates for her that I was jealous of the boys. I hope it’s not strange for a girl to feel that way about another girl. Oh I hope not! Is it possible that I am in love with her? Oh, that’s dumb even for me. It’s just that she is the dearest friend that I have ever had or that I shall ever have.

June 25

It is over! At noon Beth is leaving. Last night we said our goodbyes and we both cried and clung to each other like frightened children. Beth is as alone as am I. Her mother is a screamer and tells her she’s being childish and silly. At least Mom and Dad are sympathetic and understand how lonely I’m going to be. In fact, Mother took me shopping and let me spend five dollars on a little solid gold necklace with a personal inscription engraved inside, and Dad has told me I can make two long-distance calls to her. That’s really pretty decent and thoughtful of them. I guess I am lucky.

July 2

Dear Diary,

I’m at Gran’s and I have never been more bored in my life. Talk about a long hot summer — and it isn’t even really summer yet! I think I shall lose my mind! I’ve been reading a book a day since I got here and already I’m bored out of my skull. It’s amazing, because during school I really longed for the time to stay in bed and just loaf, loaf, loaf and read, read, read and watch Tely and do the things I want to do, but now I’ve run out of things. Oh, sheer agony. Sharon has moved and Debbie is going with some guy and Marie is on vacation with her folks. I’ve only been here five days. I’ll have to force myself to at least stay a week before I ask to go home. Can I stand it without going mad?

July 7

Today a very strange thing happened, at least I hope it’s going to happen. Oh I do! I do! I do! Gramps and I walked downtown to get a present for Alex’s birthday and while we were in the department store, Jill Peters came by. She said “hi,” and we stopped to talk. I hadn’t seen her since we moved away, and I’d never really belonged in her crowd which were kind of the top echelon, but anyway she said she wants to go to Dad’s university when she graduates from high school and said she couldn’t wait to get out of this little hick town and move to where things really happen. I tried to pretend we were very sophisticated and gay there, but actually I haven’t really seen much difference between the two places. I guess I lied a pretty good story though, because she said she was going to have a few kids in tomorrow night and she’d call me. Oh, I do hope she does!

July 8

Oh Diary, I’m so happy I could cry! It did happen! Jill called at exactly 10:32. I know because I’d been sitting by the phone with my watch in my hand trying to send ESP signals to her. She’s having a few kids over for an autograph party, thank heavens I brought my yearbook. It won’t be the same as theirs and none of their pictures will be in it, but then mine won’t be in theirs either. I’m going to wear my new white pants suit, and I have to go now and wash my hair and put it up. It’s really getting long, long, long, but if I put it up on orange juice cans I can make it have just the right amount of body and a nice large curl on the bottom. I hope we have enough cans — we’ve got to! We’ve simply got to!

July 10

Dear Diary,

I don’t know whether I should be ashamed or elated. I only know that last night I had the most incredible experience of my life. It sounds morbid when I put it in words, but actually it was tremendous and wonderful and miraculous.

The kids at Jill’s were so friendly and relaxed and at ease that I immediately felt at home with them. They accepted me like I had always been one of their crowd and everyone seemed happy and unhurried. I loved the atmosphere. It was great, great, great. Anyway, a little while after we got there Jill and one of the boys brought out a tray of coke and all the kids immediately sprawled out on the floor on cushions or curled up together on the sofa and chairs,

Jill winked at me and said, “Tonight we’re playing ‘Button, Button, Who’s Got the Button?’ You know, the game we used to play when we were kids.” Bill Thompson, who was stretched out next to me, laughed, “Only it’s just too bad that now somebody has to baby-sit.”

I looked up at him and smiled. I didn’t want to appear too stupid.

Everyone sipped their drinks slowly, and everyone seemed to be watching everyone else. I kept my eyes on Jill supposing that anything she did I should do.

Suddenly I began to feel something strange inside myself like a storm. I remember that two or three records had played since we had had the drinks, and now everyone was beginning to look at me, The palms of my hands were sweating and I could feel droplets of moisture on my scalp at the back of my neck. The room seemed unusually quiet, and as Jill got up to close the window shades completely I thought, “They’re trying to poison me! Why, why would they try to poison me?”

My whole body was tense at every muscle and a feeling of weird apprehension swept over me, strangled me, suffocated me. When I opened my eyes, I realized that it was just Bill who had put his arm around my shoulder. “Lucky you,” he was saying in a slow motioned record on the wrong speed voice, “But don’t worry, I’ll baby-sit you. This will be a good trip. Come on, relax, enjoy it, enjoy it.” He caressed my face and neck tenderly, and said, “Honestly, I won’t let anything bad happen to you.” Suddenly he seemed to be repeating himself over and over like a slow-motioned echo chamber. I started laughing, wildly, hysterically. It struck me as the funniest, most absurd thing I had ever heard. Then I noticed the strange shifting patterns on the ceiling. Bill pulled me down and my head rested in his lap as I watched the pattern change to swirling colors, great fields of reds, blues and yellows. I tried to share the beauty with the others, but my words came out soggy, wet and dripping or tasting of color. I pulled myself up and began walking, feeling a slight chill which crept inside as well as outside my body. I wanted to tell Bill, but all I could do was laugh.

Soon whole trains of thought started to appear between each word. I had found the perfect and true and original language, used by Adam and Eve, but when I tried to explain, the words I used had little to do with my thinking. I was losing it, it was slipping out of my grasp, this wonderful and priceless and true thing which must be saved for posterity. I felt terrible, and finally I couldn’t talk at all and slumped back onto the floor, closed my eyes and the music began to absorb me physically. I could smell it and touch it and feel it as well as hear it. Never had anything ever been so beautiful. I was a part of every single instrument, literally a part. Each note had a character, shape and color all its very own and seemed to be entirely separate from the rest of the score so that I could consider its relationship to the whole composition, before the next note sounded. My mind possessed the wisdoms of the ages, and there were no words adequate to describe them.

I looked at a magazine on the table, and I could see it in 100 dimensions. It was so beautiful I could not stand the sight of it and closed my eyes. Immediately I was floating into another sphere, another world, another state. Things rushed away from me and at me, taking my breath away like a drop in a fast elevator. I couldn’t tell what was real and what was unreal. Was I the table or the book or the music, or was I part of all of them, but it didn’t really matter, for whatever I was, I was wonderful. For the first time that I could remember in my whole life, I was completely uninhibited. I was dancing before the whole group, performing, showing off, and enjoying every second of it.

My senses were so up that I could hear someone breathing in the house next door and I could smell someone miles away making orange and red and green ribbed Jell-o.

After what seemed eternities I began to come down and the party started breaking up. I sort of asked Jill what happened and she said that 10 out of the 14 bottles of coke had LSD in them and, “button, button,” no one knew just who would wind up with them. Wow, am I glad I was one of the lucky ones.

Gramp’s house was dark when we got home, and Jill helped me to my room, out of my clothes and into bed, and I drifted off into a seasick type of sleep, wrapped in a general sense of well-being, except for a slight headache that probably was the result of long and intense laughing. It was fun! It was ecstatic! It was glorious! But I don’t think I’ll ever try it again. I’ve heard too many frightening stories about drugs.

Now that I think back I should have known what was happening! Any dum-dum should have known, but I thought the whole party was so strange and exciting that I guess I just wasn’t listening or maybe I didn’t want to listen — I’d have been scared to death if I’d known. So I’m glad they did it to me, because now I can feel free and honest and virtuous about not having made the decision myself. And besides the whole experience is over and past and I’ll never think of it again.

July 13

Dear Diary,

For two days now I’ve tried to convince myself that using LSD makes me a “dope addict” and all the other low-class, unclean, despicable things I’ve heard about kids that use LSD and all the other drugs; but I’m so, so, so, so, so curious, I simply can’t wait to try pot, only once, I promise! I simply have to see if it’s everything that it’s cracked up not to be! All the things I’ve heard about LSD were obviously written by uninformed, ignorant people like my parents who obviously don’t know what they’re talking about; maybe pot is the same. Anyway Jill called this morning, and she’s going to her friend’s for the weekend and she’ll call me the first thing Monday.

I told her what a great, great, great time I had and she seemed pleased. I’m sure if I hint around she’ll see that I get to try pot just once, then I’ll immediately go home and forget the whole drug set-up, but it’s nice to be informed and know what things are really like. Of course, I wouldn’t want anyone to know I’ve really used them, and I guess I better go get one of those little fishing tackle-type metal boxes to lock you in with a good padlock. I can’t take a chance on anyone reading you, especially not now! In fact, I guess I better take you with me even to the library to look up something about drugs. Thank goodness for the catalogue section, I wouldn’t dare ask anyone. Also if I go now when the library first opens I’ll probably have the whole place to myself.

July 14

On the way to the library I met Bill. He’s taking me out tonight. I can’t wait to see what happens. It’s a completely new world I’m exploring, and you can’t even conceive the wide new doors that are opening up before me. I feel like Alice in Wonderland. Maybe Lewis G. Carroll was on drugs too.

July 20

Dear close, warm, intimate friend, Diary,

What a fantastic, unbelievable, expanding, thrilling week I’ve had. It’s been like, wow — the greatest thing that has ever happened. Remember I told you I had a date with Bill? Well he introduced me to torpedos on Friday and Speed on Sunday. They are both like riding shooting stars through the Milky Way, only a million, trillion times better. The Speed was a little scary at first because Bill had to inject it right into my arm. I remembered how much I hated shots when I was in the hospital, but this is different, now I can’t wait, I positively can’t wait to try it again. No wonder it’s called Speed! I could hardly control myself, in fact I couldn’t have if I had wanted to, and I didn’t want to. I danced like I had never dreamed possible for introverted, mousy little me. I felt great, free, abandoned, a different, improved, perfected specimen of a different, improved, perfected species. It was wild! It was beautiful! It really was.

July 23

Dear Diary,

Gramps had a little heart attack last night, thank goodness it happened just as I was getting ready to go out and it wasn’t really serious. Poor Gran is pretty much beside herself, but she’s staying calm on the outside anyway. They haven’t bugged me at all since I’ve been here, and they’ve been so delighted that I’m having a good time and that I’ve met a lot of friends that they stay completely out of my way. Dear-hearted square souls. If they only really knew what was happening! Their eyebrows would be shocked up into the middle of their heads.

Gramps’ attack only means that he’ll be bedridden for a few weeks, but I’ll have to really be careful that I don’t cause any extra trouble so that they’ll want to send me home. Maybe if I start helping more around the house they’ll even think they need me.

I hope nothing happens to Gramps. I love him so much. I know sometime both he and Gran will have to die, but I hope that isn’t for a very long, long time yet. It’s strange, but I’ve never thought much about dying till now. I suppose someday even I will have to die. I wonder if there really is a life after death. Oh, I do hope there is! But that isn’t the part that really worries me. Actually I know that our souls will go back up to God, but when I think about our bodies being buried in the dark cold ground and being eaten by worms and rotting I can hardly stand the thought. I think I’d rather be cremated, yes, I would! I definitely would! I’m going to ask Mom and Dad and the kids as soon as I get home to be sure and have me cremated when I die. They will, they’re a sweet and wonderful and good family and I love them and I’m lucky to have them. I must remember to write to them again this very day. I haven’t been too good about writing, and I must, I simply must be better. And I think I’ll tell them I want to come home, now! Right now! I want to get away from Bill and Jill and all the others. I don’t know why I shouldn’t use drugs, because they’re wild and they’re beautiful and they’re wonderful, but I know I shouldn’t, and I won’t! I won’t ever again. I hereby solemnly promise that I will from this very day forward live so that everyone I know can be proud of me and so that I can be proud of myself!

July 25

Gramps is getting along fine. I’ve done all the cooking and cleaning and everything so Gran could just stay with him all the time. They really appreciate it and I appreciate them.


Jill called and invited me to a party, but I told her I’m committed to my grandparents till things are better. I’m glad I had an excuse for not going.

July 28

Mom and Dad have been calling every day since Gramps had his attack. They asked me if I wanted to come home and I really do, but I feel I should stay here till at least next week and help.

August 2

I’m getting bored to the teeth, but at least I’m giving moral support to Gran, and after all she’s done for me all my life that’s the least I can do. Bill called again and asked me for a date and Gran insists that I get out so I guess I’ll go with him but I’ll just baby-sit if he wants to trip.

August 3

Bill had six kids over to his house last night. His folks had gone to the city so they wouldn’t be back till one or two. They were all going to trip on acid, and since I’d been cooped up for so long I decided I might as well take one last trip too. I’m certainly not going to use any of the stuff when I get home. It was groovy, even greater than the others. I don’t see how each trip can be better than the one before, but they are. I sat for hours examining the exoticness and magnificence of my right hand. I could see the muscles and the cells and the pores. Each blood vessel was a fascination unto itself, and my mind still flutters with the wonder of it all.

August 6

Well, last night it happened. I am no longer a virgin! In a way I’m really sorry, because I always wanted Roger to be the first and only boy in my life, but he’s away visiting, in fact I haven’t seen him since I got here. He might have grown into a gawky, stupid, rambling idiot anyhow.

I wonder if sex without acid could be so exciting, so wonderful, so indescribable. I always thought it just took a minute, or that it would be like dogs mating, but it wasn’t like that at all. Actually, last night it took me a long time to get started on the trip. I just sat in the corner feeling left out and sort of antagonistic, then suddenly it happened and I wanted to dance wildly and make love. I hadn’t known that I even felt that way about Bill. He had seemed a nice quiet person who took care of me when I needed support, but suddenly I didn’t have any inhibitions about trying to seduce him, not that he needed much pressure. Actually it still doesn’t seem quite real.

All my life I’ve thought that the first time I had sex with someone it would be something special, and maybe even painful, but it turned out to be just part of the brilliant, freaky, way-out, forever pattern. I still can’t quite separate one thing from another.

I wonder if all the kids had sex — but no, that’s just too awfully animal and indecent! I wonder how shocked Roger would be if he knew, and my parents and Tim and Alex and Gramps and Gran? I think they would be mortified, but no more than I am!

Maybe I even really love Bill, but right now I can hardly even remember what he looks like. Oh, I’m so horribly, nauseously mixed up and — what if I’m pregnant? Oh, how I wish I had someone, anyone, to talk with who knows what they’re talking about.

I hadn’t thought about being pregnant before. Can it happen the first time? Will Bill marry me if I am or will he just think I’m an easy little dum-dum who makes it with everyone? Of course he won’t marry me, he’s only fifteen years old. I guess I’ll just have to have an abortion or something. I certainly couldn’t stand it if I had to leave school like _____ did last year. The kids talked about absolutely nothing else for weeks. Oh God, please, please make me not pregnant!

I’m going to call Mom right now. I’ll get Gran to buy a plane ticket and I am going home tomorrow. I hate this rotten place and I hate Bill Thompson and all that crowd. I don’t know how I ever got mixed up with them, but I was so pleased and felt so smart when they accepted me and now I feel miserable and ashamed as though that’s going to do any good.

August 7

Mom and Dad think I should wait until next week to come home. I couldn’t really argue, because Gran needs me. But in the meantime I’m not going to answer the phone or step off our property.


Jill called, but I told Gran to tell her I wasn’t feeling well. It’s pretty obvious, even to Gran, that I’m really not. I’m living with doubts and apprehensions and fears that I never dreamed possible.

August 9

The world has actually stopped in its orbit. My life is completely over. After dinner when Gran and I were sitting out in the garden we heard tappings at the back gate and guess who of all the people in the universe stopped by? Roger and his mom and dad. They got back in the afternoon and heard about Gramps’ sickness and had dropped by to visit him.

I was beside myself. Roger is even more breathtakingly good-looking than ever, and I wanted to throw myself in his arms and cry my heart out to him. Instead we shook hands and I hurried to get everybody something to drink. Later, after we’d all talked for a while, Gran sent me in to get some chips and dip, and Roger followed me! Can you imagine Roger following me? He even asked me out! I wanted to die right then and there, and later when we were out in the garden he started telling me about how he was going to military school for the next year and a half till he was ready for college. He even said he was a little frightened and lonely about going away by himself for the first time, and he told me how he wanted to become an aeronautical engineer and work on new techniques for air travel. He’s got some wonderful ideas! It’s almost like reading Jules Verne, and he has so many plans for his life, with the Army and all.

Then he kissed me and it was what I had always dreamed it would be since I was in kindergarten. Other boys have kissed me but it wasn’t the same at all. This was fondness and liking and desire and regard and admiration and affection and tenderness and attachment and yearning. It was the most wonderful thing that has ever happened in my life. But now I’m sitting here and I feel sick to my stomach. What if he finds out about what I’ve been doing since I got here? How could he ever forgive me? How could he ever understand? Would he? If I were only a Catholic maybe I could do some kind of terrible penance to pay for my transgressions. I was brought up to believe that God would forgive people’s sins, but how can I forgive myself? How could Roger forgive me?

Oh, terrors, horrors, endless torment.

August 10

Roger has called four times today but I refused to talk to him. Gran and Gramps want me to stay over a few days until I feel better but I can’t. I simply can’t face Roger again until I get my thinking straightened out. Oh, how did I ever get mixed up in such a mess? Imagine losing my virginity four nights before seeing Roger again. The awful irony of it! But even without that, would he have understood the acid trips? Would he have wanted me after those? I hadn’t really cared before, but I care now! And it’s too late!

I must talk to someone. I must find someone who understands about drugs and talk to them. I wonder if I could talk to someone at Dad’s university. Oh, no, no, they’d be bound to tell him and then I’d really be in a mess. Maybe I could say I was doing a paper on drugs for a science project or something, but I can’t do that until school starts. I think I’d better take some of Gramp’s sleeping pills, I’m never going to be able to sleep without them. In fact I think I’d better take a supply of them. He’s got plenty, and I’m sure I’ll have a few bad nights at home before I get straightened out. Oh, I hope it’s just a few.

August 13

It’s all I can do to keep from crying. Mom and Dad just called to say how proud they are to have me for a daughter. There are no words to express how I feel.

August 14

Gran took me to the plane. She thinks Roger and I had a quarrel. She kept telling me everything would be all right and that it is a woman’s place to be long-suffering and patient and tolerant and understanding. Oh, if she only knew! Mom and Dad and Tim and Alex met me and all told me how pale and wan I looked, they were ever so gentle and loving. It’s good to be home.

I must forget about everything. I must repent and forgive myself and start over; after all I just turned 15 and I can’t stop life and get off. Besides since I’ve thought about Gramps dying I don’t want to die. I’m afraid. Isn’t that ghastly and ironic? I’m afraid to live and afraid to die, just like the old Negro spiritual. I wonder what their hang-up was?

August 16

Mother is making me eat. She’s fixing all my favorite foods but they still don’t taste like much. Roger wrote me a long letter asking me if I was all right, but I simply haven’t the energy or the strength or the desire to answer him. Everyone is terribly worried about me and, in fact, I’m even terribly worried about myself. I still don’t know if I’m pregnant and won’t know for another ten or twelve days. Oh, I pray I’m not. I keep asking myself how I could have been such an idiot, and there is no answer other than the fact that I am an idiot! A stupid, bungling, senseless, foolish, ignorant idiot!

August 17

I have used the last of Gramps’ sleeping pills and I’m a wreck. I can’t sleep and I’m all screwed up and Mom is insisting that I go see Doctor Langley. Maybe that will help. I’ll do anything.

August 18

I went to see Doctor Langley this morning and I really laid it on about my not being able to sleep. He asked me a lot of questions about why I couldn’t sleep, but I just kept repeating I didn’t know, I didn’t know, I didn’t know. Finally he broke down and gave me the pills. Actually I don’t need the sleep as much as I need the escape. It’s a wonderful way to escape. I think I can’t stand it and then I just take a pill and wait for sweet nothingness to take over. At this stage in my life nothingness is a lot better than somethingness.

August 20

I don’t think the sleeping pills Doctor Langley gave me are as strong as the ones Gramps had because I have to take two of these and sometimes even three. Maybe it’s because I’m so nervous. Anyway I don’t know how much longer I can last; if something doesn’t happen soon I think I’m going to blow my brains out.

August 22

I had Mom call Doctor Langley and I’m going to ask him for some tranquilizers. I can’t sleep all day long and I certainly can’t walk around like this so I hope he gives them to me. He’s got to!

August 23

Tranquilizers are the greatest. This afternoon I took one just before the mailman’s arrival with another letter from Roger. Instead of getting all upset, I sat down and poured my whole soul out to him, nothing of course about my acid trips or the Speed, and surely not about Bill and my possible condition, but just about the important things that concern us both. I have even begun to wonder if maybe I could turn Roger on just once so he would understand. Could I? Could I make him take his first trip unknowingly as I did? Oh I wish I dared! It seems like I’ve been held down for so long, maybe it’s the sleeping pills and the tranquilizers, but there are moments when I’d really like to just burst loose, but I guess those days are gone forever! I’m really confused! I wish I had someone to talk to!

August 26

What a wonderful, beautiful, happy day! My period started! I was never so happy for anything in my life. Now I can throw away my sleeping pills and tranquilizers, I can be me again! Oh, wow!

September 6

Beth came back from camp, but she’s hardly the same person and she met some Jewish jerk that she’s going steady with. They are going to be together all the time, day and night. Perhaps I’m a little jealous because Roger lives so far away and school has started and Alex and her noisy little friends are driving me crazy and Mom has begun to get on my back too.

Today I went down to this great little boutique and found a cute pair of moccasins and a vest with fringe and a really great pair of pants. Chris, the girl who works there, showed me how to iron my hair (which I did tonight) and now it’s perfectly straight. It’s the greatest! The greatest except that Mom couldn’t stand it. I went downstairs to show her and she said I look like a hippie and that she and Dad and I must have a little talk some evening. I could tell them a thing or two, because I imagine that sex without drugs isn’t even the same thing as the mad, forever wonder of it when you’re really way out there. Anyway I seem to be doing less and less right, I’m getting so that no matter what I do I can’t please the Establishment.

September 7

Last night was the bitter end. Mom and Dad flowed tears and flowers about how much they love me and how worried they’ve been about my attitude since I got back from Gran’s. They hate my hair, which they still want me to wear in a flip like the kiddies, and they talked and talked and talked, but never once did they even hear one thing I was trying to say to them. In fact at the beginning, when they were telling me about their deep concern, I had the overwhelming desire to break down and tell them everything. I wanted to tell them! I wanted more than anything in the world to know that they understood, but naturally they just kept on talking and talking because they are incapable of really understanding anything. If only parents would listen! If only they would let us talk instead of forever and eternally and continuously harping and preaching and nagging and correcting and yacking, yacking, yacking! But they won’t listen! They simply won’t or can’t or don’t want to listen, and we kids keep winding up back in the same old frustrating, lost, lonely corner with no one to relate to either verbally or physically. However, I’m lucky I have Roger, if I really have him.

September 9

Another sock in the belly day. Roger is definitely going to that military school and the first time he’ll be home is Christmas — and maybe not even then! His dad went there and his grandfather did too, so I guess he’s almost obligated to go, but I need him here, not there in that idiot school marching around for a whole year. Now we’ll be a whole continent away. I wrote him a ten page letter telling him I’ll wait for him even though in his last letter he told me that he expected me to date and have fun. But how can I have fun in this hole? ? ? ?

September 10

I was so depressed about Roger that I walked down to look at clothes in the boutique where Chris works. It was almost her coffee break so we went next door to have a coke and I told her how low I was because of Roger. She immediately understood. It was great to have someone again that I could talk to. When we got back to the store she gave me a little red candy type thing and told me to go home, take it and listen to some groovy music. She said, “This heart will pep you up like tranquilizers slow you down,” and you know she was right! I’ve been using too many sleeping pills and too many tranquilizers. I don’t know why that dumb doctor didn’t give me something to make me feel better instead of something to make me feel worse. I’ve been feeling great all afternoon, feeling like living again. I’ve washed my hair and cleaned my room and ironed and done all the things that Mom has been nagging me to do for days. The only problem is that now it’s night and I can’t seem to turn the energy off. I’d stay up and write to Roger, but I just wrote him a giant letter yesterday and he’d think I was some kind of nut. I guess I’ll just have to waste one of my good sleeping pills to stop it. That’s life.

See ya.

September 12

Dad and Mom are constantly harping about the way I look. They keep saying that they know I’m a good, sweet girl, but I’m beginning to act like a hippie and they’re afraid the wrong kind of people will be drawn to me. What it amounts to is they are so ultra-conservative that they don’t even know what’s happening. Chris and I talk a lot about our parents and the Establishment. Her dad is an executive with a breakfast food company and he travels a lot “often in the company of other women” she confided to me. And her mom is such a devoted club and civic-minded woman that the whole town would probably fall flat on its face if she took an evening off to listen to her daughter. “Mom’s the ‘pillar of society’ in this town,” Chris told me. “She holds up everybody and everything but me, and man have I been let down.”

Chris doesn’t need to work but she just simply can’t stand it around her house. I told her I was beginning to feel the same way and she’s going to try and get me a job with her, isn’t that the greatest?

September 13

Wow! I’m really living! I have a job. Chris asked her boss last night and he said yes. Isn’t that the greatest?! I’ll be working with Chris on Thursday nights and on Friday nights and all day Saturday and I’ll be able to buy anything my non-conforming little heart desires. Chris is a year older than I am and she’s a year ahead in school, but she really is a great girl and I love her and relate better to her than I ever have with anyone in my life, even Beth. I suspect she knows a little about drugs, because she’s given me hearts a couple of times when I’ve been really low. Someday soon I’ve really got to talk to her about these things.

September 21

Dear friend Diary,

I’m sorry I’ve been neglecting you, but I really have been busy with my new job and school starting and all, and you still are my very dearest friend and closest confidant, even though I am really tuned in and receive well with Chris. We never get tired and she and I are two of the most popular girls at school. I know I look great, I’m still down at 103 pounds, and every time I get hungry or tired I just pop a Benny. We’ve got energy and vitality to spare, and clothes, like man. My hair is the greatest. I wash it in mayonnaise and it’s shining and soft enough to make anyone turn on.

I still haven’t met a guy I really dig, but that’s probably all right because I’m waiting for Roger.

September 23


My parents are absolutely and positively going to make me blow my mind. I have to take Dexies to stay high at school and at work and on dates and to do my homework, then I have to take tranquilizers to bear up at home. Daddy thinks I’m blowing his image as the college dean. He even yelled at me at the table last night for saying “man.” He has his words when he wants to stress a point and that is all right, but let me say “man,” and you’d think I had committed the unpardonable sin.

Chris and I are about ready to cut out. She has a friend in San Francisco who could help us get a job, and since we’ve both had experience in a boutique it shouldn’t be that hard. Besides her parents are about ready for a divorce. They do nothing but fight when they are together and she’s had it. At least I don’t have to put up with that.

Also Roger says he’s too busy to write much, which is an unlikely story. Like Chris says, “a man’s blood soon runs cold when there is no one around to warm it up.”

September 26

Last night was the night, friend! I finally smoked pot and it was even greater than I expected! Last night after work, Chris fixed me up with a college friend of hers who knew I’d been on acid, etc., but who wanted to turn me on to hash.

He told me not to expect to feel like I felt with liquor and I told him I’d never had more than champagne at birthday parties and leftovers from cocktail parties. We all got hilarious over that and Ted, Chris’s date, said that lots of kids never try booze, not only because it’s their parents’ thing, but because it’s a lot harder to get than pot. Ted said that when he first started experimenting he found he could steal a lot of money from his parents and they would never miss it, but let him take one swig out of any of their booze bottles and it was as though they had it measured to the ounce.

Then Richie showed me how to smoke. And I’ve never even had a cigarette! He gave me a small orientation lecture, like I should listen for small things I wouldn’t ordinarily hear and just relax. At first I took too deep a drag and almost choked to death, so Richie told me to suck in openmouthed gulps to mix as much air in as possible. But that didn’t work too well either and after a while Ted gave up and brought out a hookah pipe. It seemed funny and exotic but at first I couldn’t get any smoke and I felt cheated because the other three were obviously stoned. But finally it started to work, just when I thought it never would, and I really began to feel happy and free as a bright canary chirping through the open, endless heavens. And I was so relaxed! I don’t think I’ve been that relaxed in my whole entire life! It was really beautiful. Later Rich brought a sheepskin rug out of his room and we began walking through the thickness of it and there was a sensation in my feet that was totally indescribable, a softness that enveloped my complete body, and quite suddenly I could hear the strange almost silent sound of the long silky hairs rubbing against each other and against my feet. It was a sound unsimilar to any I have ever heard, and I remember trying desperately to give a dissertation upon the phenomena of each individual hair having perfect pitch within itself. But of course I couldn’t; it was too perfect.

Then I picked up a salted peanut and noticed that nothing had ever tasted so salty before. It felt like being a child again and trying to swim in the Great Salt Lake. Only the peanut was even saltier! My liver and my spleen and my intestines were corroded with salt. I longed to taste a fresh peach or strawberry and have the flavor and sweetness and delectableness of them consume me also. It was great and I began to laugh in a totally mad way. I was delighted that I was so different. Everyone in the whole universe was mad except me. I was the only sane and perfect being. Somewhere in my brain I remembered reading that a thousand years with man is as a day with the Lord and I had found the answer. I was even now in my new time length living the lives of a thousand men in the space of hours.

Later we were all very thirsty and dying for something sweet. So we walked to the ice cream shop, joking about the incredible high curbs and the unbelievable oddly shaped moon which kept changing shapes and colors. I don’t know if we were all really as high as we said we were, but it was fun. And in the restaurant, we joked and laughed as though the whole world and its secrets belonged to us alone. When Richie brought me home about midnight, my parents (who were both up) were very pleased with the nice, young, clean-cut gentlemanly young man I was going out with. They didn’t even complain about what time it was! Can you believe it?

P.S. Richie gave me some joints to smoke when I’m alone and I want to be in heaven. Isn’t that nice, nice, nice!

October 5

Chris and I are thinking about quitting our jobs because it’s getting so that we don’t have any time for what we want to do.

I’m deeply in love with Richie, and Chris is in love with Ted, and we want to spend as much time with them as we can. The bitch is that none of us ever seem to have enough money, so Chris and I have both had to push a little pot. Of course we only sell to the kids who are heavy users and who would just buy it from someone else if they didn’t get it from us.

Ted and Richie are in college, and they have to work a lot harder than we do in high school so they don’t have the time to sell. And besides it’s a lot easier for guys to get busted than for girls. At first it was pretty hard to keep my cool around the Establishment, but since I’m now Richie’s chick all the way I have to do what I can to help him.

October 8

I convinced Rich that it would be easier to push acid than pot, at least we can put it on penny stamps or gum or life savers and carry them around with us without having the fuzz breathing down our necks or without having some idiot fink find out where or what our bag is.

Richie is so good, good, good to me and sex with him is like lightning and rainbows and springtime. I may be just chipping around with drugs, but I’m really hooked on that boy. We would do absolutely anything for each other. He’s going into medicine, and I’ve got to help him any way I can. It’s going to be a long hard pull but we’ll make it. Imagine eight or ten more years of school for him — and he’s already in his second year of college! Mom and Dad think he’s still in high school. I think I won’t go on to college. Dad will just curl up and die, but it’s more important for me to work and help Rich. As soon as I’m out of high school I’ll get a full time job and we’ll settle down. He’s been a straight A student but he says he’s slipping a little.

I really love that man. Oh, I really truly do! I can’t wait to get to him. He teases me and says I’m oversexed because I’ve been bugging him to let me try sex without being stoned first. He’s promised me he will. It will be almost like a new experience. I can hardly wait.


Richie and I never go anywhere. It’s almost a ritual for him to pick me up, and spend a few minutes with my parents and then rush over to the apartment he shares with Ted. I really wish we could be together stoned every night, but he only lets me come over when he restocks my acid supply and gives me enough grass and barbs to last me until I see him again. I know he’s studying very hard so I try to content myself with what he can give me of himself which seems to be getting less and less. Maybe I am oversexed, at least I seem to be a lot more interested in it than he is. But that’s only because he worries so about me. I wish he’d let me take the pill and I wish he didn’t have to work and study so hard. Oh, well, what I’ve got is so great I don’t know how I could even wish for anything more.

October 17

Today I went to the grade school again. I don’t mind pushing at high school because the stuff is sometimes kind of hard to get and the kids usually come up and ask me for it. Chris and I just supply it from Richie. He can get whatever is their bag, barbs or pot or amphetamines or LSD or DMT or meth or anything. The high school kids are one thing and even the junior high, but today I sold ten stamps of LSD to a little kid at the grade school who was not even nine years old, I’m sure. I know that he in turn must be pushing and these kids are just too young! The thought of nine and ten year olds getting wasted is so repulsive that I’m not going over there any more! I know if they want it they’ll get it somewhere but they won’t get it from me! I’ve been lying here on my bed ever since I got home from school thinking about it, and I’ve decided that Richie must come over and see Dad about a scholarship, surely with his grades and background something could be worked out. I’m sure it could.

October 18

If there were medals and prizes for stupidity and gullibleness I certainly would receive the half-assed one. Chris and I walked into Richie and Ted’s apartment to find the bastards stoned and making love to each other. No wonder Richie Bitchie wanted so little to do with me! Here I am out peddling drugs for a low class queer whose dad probably isn’t sick at all. I wonder how many other dumb chicks he’s got working for him? Oh, I’m so ashamed! I can’t believe I’ve sold to eleven and twelve year olds and even nine and ten year olds. What a disgrace I am to my self and my family and to everybody. I’m as bad as that son of a bitch Richie.

October 19

Chris and I sat around the park all day thinking things over. She’s been using drugs for over a year and I’ve been on since July 10 to be exact. We’ve decided it would be impossible to change while we’re here so we’re going to cut out and go to San Francisco. And I’ve simply got to turn Richie in to the police. I’m not being vindictive or spiteful or jealous, really I’m not. It’s just that I’ve got to do something to protect all those grade and junior high school kids.

All this crap Rich sold me about “they’ll get it someplace” and all that is just a bunch of high pressure bullshit. He doesn’t care about any one in this whole world but himself, and the only way I can make retribution for what I’ve done is to at least keep him from getting more kids started. That’s one of the worst things about this drug business. Practically every kid that uses also sells and it’s just a giant round robin thing that keeps on getting bigger and bigger until I wonder where it will ever end! I really do! I wish I’d never gotten started. And now Chris and I have both pledged to each other that we’re going to stay clean. We really and truly are! We’ve given our sacred oath and promise. In San Francisco we won’t know a single soul that uses it and it will be easy to stay off.


It’s very sad sneaking off in the middle of the night, but Chris and I could think of no other way. The bus will be leaving at 4:30 A.M. and we must be on it. First we’ll go to Salt Lake City for awhile and then backtrack to San Francisco. I am really quite afraid of what Richie might do if he caught me. He will almost surely know the one who turned him in because I told the police in my letter about the few places I know where he stashes his supply. I wish all dealers could be put away!

Goodbye dear home, goodbye good family. I really am leaving mostly because I love you so much and I don’t want you to ever know what a weak and disreputable person I have been. And I hate being a high school dropout, but I dare not even write for my transcripts, knowing you and Richie might follow them. I’m leaving you a note beloved family, but it can never tell you how sacred you are to me.

October 26

We are in San Francisco, in a dirty smelling and stifling little one room apartment. We are both filthy after so many miserable hours on the bus, and since Chris is taking her bath down the hall I will write a few lines till it is my turn. I’m sure we have enough money to last us till we get jobs because I kept the one hundred and thirty dollars I was supposed to turn in to bastard Richie, and Chris was able to draw out the four hundred plus dollars she had in the bank. This whoring little spider hole we are in cost ninety dollars for the month, but at least that will give us enough time to get jobs and look for a decent place to live.

I feel dreadful about my parents, but at least they know I’m with Chris and they think she is a nice and respectable girl who won’t lead me astray. Boy, how much further astray could I go?

October 27

Chris and I have looked all day for jobs. We’ve followed up every ad in the paper, but we’re either too young, or too inexperienced, or we don’t have references, or they want someone with a following, or they’ll call us. I have never been so damned exhausted in my life. We certainly won’t need anything to make us sleep tonight, even on the lumpy, soggy, let down contraption which is called a bed in this cracker box.

October 28

Everything always feels clammy and damp here. There is even a green type of fungus mold growing in the closet, but thank goodness we won’t be here long, at least I hope we won’t be here long! But today was no more successful than yesterday in job hunting. We couldn’t locate Chris’ friend either.

October 29

I took a job in some crappy little lingerie store, It doesn’t pay much, but at least it will keep us in groceries, etc. Chris will keep looking for a better job and after she gets one then I will quit and look for something a little more challenging. Chris hopes that maybe in a year we can open our own boutique. Wouldn’t that be wonderful? And maybe when we’re very successful we can invite our families to come and see us and glory in our success.

October 31

Chris still doesn’t have a job. She looks every day but we both decided that she wouldn’t take just anything. It has to be in a first rate store where she can learn everything we’ll need to know to run our own place. Every night I am so tired I can hardly make it to bed. I didn’t realize that standing up all day waiting on grouchy, lousy people would be so exhausting.

November 1

Chris and I spent the day touring Chinatown and Golden Gate Park and we took a bus across the bridge. It’s a wonderful and exciting and beautiful city, but I really wish I were home. Of course I couldn’t tell Chris that.

November 3

Chris finally has a job! It’s in the greatest little shop I’ve ever seen. I went down after work and bought a pair of sandals. She can learn everything there is to know about buying and displaying as well as selling, because there are only two of them in the shop. Shelia is the owner, and she is without a doubt the most fabulous looking woman I have ever seen. Skin as clear and white as snow and eyelashes as long as my arm, fake of course. Her hair is jet black and I know that she is all of six feet tall. I can’t understand why she isn’t modeling or in movies or on TV. Her shop is in a very exclusive little area and her prices are high, high, high, even with Chris’s discount, but anyway I just felt I had to splurge after all the scrimping we’ve done and are going to continue to do.

November 5

I’m getting more homesick every day instead of more weaned away. I wonder how Chris feels? I don’t dare say anything for fear she will think I’m a big boob, which I probably am. Actually I think I’d go on home if I weren’t so afraid of Richie. I’m sure he’d try to involve me if he could. He’s such a weak, conniving, vindictive character. I see so many things about him now that are repulsive that I don’t know how I ever got so miserably brainwashed. Guess I was just a stupid, dumb kid asking to be taken, and I was! Man, was I ever! But next time I won’t be so stupid, except there won’t be any next time! I will never ever, ever, under any circumstances use drugs again. They are the root and cause of this whole rotten, stinking mess I am in, and I wish with all my heart and soul that I had never heard of them. And I wish letters didn’t carry postmarks, then I could write to Mom and Dad and the kids and Gram and Gramps and maybe even Roger. There are so many things I would like to tell them. It’s just too bad I didn’t realize it in time.

November 8

Get up, eat, work, eat, and fall into bed exhausted. I don’t even take a bath every day any more, it’s too much trouble to wait around for the bathroom to be empty.

November 10

I quit my job and I’m going to spend my full time looking for a more interesting one. Shelia had a list of places to which I can go and says I can use her name as a reference.

P.S. We splurged and got a second hand TV for $15. It doesn’t work too well but it cheers the place up.

November 11

Well Diary,

How do you like this, I got a job my very first hour out, in fact it was the second shop I went to! Mario Mellani makes exquisite custom jewelry, much of it filled with precious stones. He wanted someone young and fresh-looking to be kind of window dressing and background for his work. I am flattered that he chose me! Mr. Mellani is big and fat and jolly and tells me he has a wife and eight children who live in Sausalito and already he has invited me over some Sunday for dinner, and to meet them.

November 13

I adore my new job. Mr. Mellani is like a second family to me. Here he is in this very exclusive little shop in the lobby of an incredibly expensive hotel, yet he brings his lunch every day in a paper sack and shares it with me. He says it keeps him from getting too fat. And Chris and I are going out to his home on Sunday! Isn’t that great! It will be really wonderful to see a bunch of little kids again. He has one son Roberto just Tim’s age and another little boy only three days younger than Alexandria, He thinks I am an orphan and I really am in a way. Oh, well.

You know, I could have plenty of dates if I weren’t particular. Our lobby is swarming with wealthy old fat men and their wealthy, mink and sable and chinchillad old wives. The men stash their wives up in their suites then come down and make passes at me. There are also endless numbers of traveling salesmen types who wander through trying to handle more than the merchandise, it hasn’t taken me many days to learn how to spot them as they pass the first doorman.


Chris and I are lucky that both our shops are closed on Sundays and Mondays so we have our two free days together. There aren’t too many really young people like us around. Shelia must be a terrifically preserved thirty and of course Mr. Mellani is old enough to be my father, and a father he is fast becoming. Tomorrow we go to his house.

November 16

We really had a fascinating time at Mr. Mellani’s. They live in a little hillside area which almost seems country. It’s at the very end of the bus line and all covered with big ageless trees. Mrs. Mellani and the kids are just like the Italian families in the movies, and she cooks like nothing I’ve ever eaten before. And the kids, even the big kids, crawl continuously all over their parents. I’ve never seen such a physical bunch. Mario, the big seventeen-year-old, was going on some kind of field trip and he kissed and hugged his father as well as the rest of the family as though he were going away forever. The rest of the day was also generously sprinkled with physical spats and spanks and slaps.

It was a lovely experience which only made me more lonely.

November 19

Chris came home from work elated. Shelia, not to be outdone by Mr. Mellani, invited us to a party she’s having at her house Saturday night after work. It will start a little late as all of us work till nine, but I’m glad because it sounds terribly glamorous and sophisticated to be going to a party at 10:30 P.M.

November 20

At first Chris and I were worried about what we would wear to Shelia’s, but she told us just to wear something comfortable, which is great because we only brought one suitcase each from home and we’re really not in the mood to spend if we don’t have to. I think maybe we’ll stay in this apartment for another six months or so then we’ll probably have enough money to start on our own. I hope Shelia will give us her blessings and help us. Maybe Mr. Mellani will let us handle some of his cheaper things too. Mario is going to come work in the shop as soon as he graduates from high school, so maybe they wouldn’t need me anyway.

November 21

Tomorrow is Shelia’s party. I wonder who will be there? Chris is always telling me about the movie and TV people who come in that Shelia seems to know personally. At least they all kiss each other and call everybody “darling” or “baby.”

Imagine knowing movie stars and TV stars personally! _____ came into Mr. Mellani’s shop one day and bought a big dinner ring, but she’s so old that I’ve only seen her in one late, late movie on TV and she played a not too exciting or glamorous crazy woman.

November 22

Oh happy Saturday. Tonight is the sophisticated night. I wonder if they’ll think I’m terribly naive if I drink coke or something instead of champagne or whatever they have. Maybe no one will even notice. I better dash off to work, sometimes my cable car is packed at this time of day and I don’t want to have to hang on the outside and get my hair all stringy.

November 23

It has happened again and I don’t know whether to weep or rejoice. Well, at least this time we were all adults doing our adult thing and not influencing a bunch of little kids. Granted some people wouldn’t consider me quite an adult, but everyone thinks both Chris and I are eighteen so I guess that’s all that matters. Anyway, Shelia lives in the most fabulous apartment with the most spectacular view. She has a doorman who is even more regal looking than the doormen where I work — and they are pretty impressive. We took the elevator up to her apartment, trying to act sophisticated and unimpressed when actually after our dirty little fly trap both of us were panting. Even the elevator was impressive with gold vinyl paper on two sides and black paneling on the other two.

Shelia’s apartment was like walking into a decorating magazine. Two whole walls were glass overlooking the twinkling city. I tried to keep my mouth from hanging open, but it was like finding myself on a movie set.

Shelia kissed us each lightly on our cheeks and led us into the room where brightly colored pillows were stacked around a large gold and antiqued mirrored coffee table. There was an oversized buff colored shaggy fur chair next to the fireplace, and the whole thing was really too much.

Then the doorbell was ringing and the most beautiful human beings I have ever seen in my life began arriving. The men were so gorgeous, they were like tanned statues of the Roman Gods, and the women were so breath-taking that it made me happy and frightened all at the same time. But after awhile it dawned on me that we’re young and shiny and healthy and these women are old, old, old. They probably couldn’t even go out of the house in the morning without a half a ton of makeup on. So we really didn’t have anything to worry about at all.

Then I smelled it. I almost stopped talking in the middle of a sentence, the smell was so strong. Chris was over on the other side of the room but I saw her looking around and knew she had smelled it too. The air seemed to be getting thick and parts of my head were begging for it. I didn’t know whether to run or stay or what. Then I turned around and one of the men passed me a joint and that was it. I wanted to be ripped, smashed, torn up as I had never wanted anything before. This was the scene, these were the swingers and I wanted to be part of it!

The rest of the evening was fantastic. The lights and music and sound and San Francisco were part of me and I was part of them. It was another incredible excursion and it went on for I don’t know how long. Chris and I both used Shelia’s apartment for a crashpad, and it was early afternoon before we pulled ourselves together enough to go back to our own dingy four walls.

I’m a little worried about what actually happened. I don’t know if we were smoking hash, which is hard to get right now, or what. But I hope I won’t have to go through this am-I-or-aren’t-I-until-next-month bit again. One thing — if we are going to get back on the merry-go-round I really am going to start taking the pill. I can’t stand the suspense, and besides now all I need to topple completely would be to find myself . . . but I won’t even think about it.


Shelia has parties almost every night and we are always invited. I haven’t found anyone I’m really into yet but it’s fun, fun, fun and we nearly always use her place as a crashpad — which is a lot better than having to come back to this hole we’re in. Chris found out that Shelia was once married to _____ and her alimony is enough to support her and all her friends in any habit they happen to have. Boy, wouldn’t it be nice to have money like that! ! ! I think I’d live just the way she does, only better.

December 3

Last night was the worst night of my shitty, rotten, stinky, dreary fucked-up life, There were only four of us, and Shelia and Rod, her current “boyfriend,” introduced us to heroin. At first we were a little afraid, but they convinced us that the horror stories were just so many American myths — ha! But I guess I was pretty excited and the truth is I really couldn’t wait when I was watching them set up. Smack is a great sensation, different from anything I’d ever had before, I felt gentle and drowsy and wonderfully soft like I was floating above reality and the mundane things were lost forever in space. But just before I was too out of it to notice what was going on, I saw Shelia and that cocksucker she goes with lighting up and setting out Speed. I remember wondering why were they getting high when they had just set us out on this wonderful low, and it wasn’t until later I realized that the dirty sonsofbitches had taken turns raping us and treating us sadistically and brutally. That had been their planned strategy all along, the low-class shit eaters.

When Chris and I finally came down, we crippled our way back to the apartment and talked for a long time. We’ve had it! The garbage that goes with drugs makes the price too goddamned high for anyone to pay. This time we are really going to watch out for each other and help each other. I had condemned Richie for being a frigging homo, but maybe I should give even that mother a break. With the shit he was on everyday, it’s no wonder he was out of control.

Still December 3

Chris and I talked again and have decided to leave this screwed up scene. We’ve got seven hundred dollars counting yesterday’s pay, so we can maybe start a boutique in some not too great area. We’re certainly not going to chipper around anymore. We’ve both had enough of that!

I hate to leave Mr. Mellani. He’s been so kind and good and considerate of me, but neither Chis nor I can even stand the thought of seeing or hearing from that sadistic switch hitter Shelia again . . . . So I guess I’ll just leave another “thanks” and “I love you” note.

December 5

We’ve been spending ten hours a day looking for a place with no luck, now we’ve decided maybe we should start a shop over close to Berkeley. All the kids there wear lots of jewelry, and at least Chris got some of the suppliers’ names before she left, and I’m sure that I can do some original things just from having watched Mr. Mellani. That should make it a really fun shop with Chris doing the buying and the selling and me doing some original work.

December 6

Well, today we found it — our new home, It’s a tiny ground floor apartment really close to Berkeley, which has now become a commercial district so we can use the kitchen and bedroom for living, and the living room and the microscopic dining room for our show room and a workshop. Tomorrow we move in and start painting. We have a nice bay window only a few feet from the street which will make a fantastic display window, and if we repaint and recover the furniture it actually won’t be too bad. We’re going to do all sorts of mad things, like covering the old worn tabletops with felt, which is cheap, and putting fake leopard on the chairs and on part of one wall if we can afford it. It will be good to have a place to call home again and this one we’ll fix up to look loved and lived in. We didn’t spend one single penny on the other apartment.

December 9

I have been too busy to write. We have been working twenty hours a day. We both laugh about how much we would like a Dexie but neither one of us will weaken ever again. We haven’t done a thing to our living quarters but our show room looks adorable. Already a number of kids have stopped by to tell us how great it looks and to ask us when we’ll be open. We couldn’t afford carpeting so we’ve painted the floor candy cane pink and the walls we’ve done in pinks and white with all the accents in a warm soft red and purple. It looks simply great. Instead of using leopard we decided to use fake white fur and it’s simply scrumptious. Chris has been down at the wholesale houses all day and tomorrow we open with or without sleep.

December 10

Apparently Chris knew just what to buy because just today we’ve done twenty dollars worth of business. She’s going to have to go back to the market tomorrow.

December 12

The plumbing leaks and the toilet gets stopped up and we only have hot water part of the time, but it really doesn’t matter. Kids stop by to watch our TV which we have in the show room or just to sit around and rap. We cut the legs off the dining room chairs so they are only about a foot from the floor and with the five of them (one was broken beyond repair) we’ve got a nice little conversation area. Today one of the kids suggested we stock our refrigerator with a few cold drinks and then charge 50 cent; for them with TV privileges. I think we’re going to try it. In fact we’ve even considered getting a cheap second-hand stereo in a few weeks if things continue to go well. Our show room is really quite large and we really only need half of it for business.

Most of the kids seem to have plenty of money and they buy enough to surely allow them chair privileges for a while.

December 13

Today one of the boys who’s been in a number of times offered to sell us his stereo for twenty-five dollars because he’s going to build a new one. We were elated and are staying up tonight to refinish it with red velvet and gold thumb-tacks, Won’t the kids be surprised tomorrow! I’m glad I’m always so tired I fall asleep the minute I touch the bed, because I don’t want time to think, especially about Christmas.

December 15

This morning Chris left early to go to the wholesalers and I was listening to stereo while I cleaned up the showcases. Then “She’s Leaving Home,” began playing, and before I knew what was happening I had tears dripping down my face like two spigots had been turned on inside my head. Oh that song was written about me and all the others of thousands of girls like me trying to escape. Maybe after Christmas I’ll go home, maybe even before Christmas. This whole mess with Richie must surely be cleared up and I can go back and start in school at half year. Chris can have the whole shop and we should be fairly well established by then, or maybe she’ll want to go home with me, but I won’t even mention it for awhile.

December 17

It’s beginning to get a little monotonous for Chris and me. All the kids want to talk about is their hang-ups and how they feel when they’re using. I remember Dad’s father before he died talking on endlessly about his aches and his pains. These kids are beginning to hit at me the same way. They never talk about what they want out of life, or their families or anything, just who’s holding, how much bread they’ll get next year, and who has the least crumbs, at the moment, and will they cover. And the “crazies” are beginning to get to me too. I wonder if we really are going to have a full scaled revolution in this country. When they’re discussing it, it all seems pretty reasonable and exciting — destroying everything and starting again; a new country, a new love and sharing and peace. But when I’m alone it seems like another insane drugged scene. Oh, I’m so utterly confused. I can’t believe that soon it will have to be mother against daughter and father against son to make the new world. But maybe they’ll wear me down to their way of thinking by the time I’m in college, if I ever get there.

December 18

Today we just closed our doors and took off. It’s the first time we’ve both had out together in weeks and the kids and their hang ups were really beginning to bug us. We took a long leisurely bus ride and then splurged on an expensive many-coursed French dinner. It even felt good to be dressed up again after all the beating around in old pants and work clothes. But all the Christmas things in the windows and the stores make us both a little lonely inside although neither one of us says anything. I was even trying to pretend to myself that I wasn’t affected, but I guess to you dear Diary I can tell the truth. I’m lonely, I’m heartbroken, I hate this whole number and everything it stands for, I feel I’m wasting my life away. I want to go back to my family and my school. I don’t want to just sit listening to other kids who can go home for Christmas and who can write and phone when I can’t and why can’t I? I probably haven’t done anything that these kids haven’t done. All dopers are part-time sewer dwellers, the two go hand in hand together.

December 22

I called Mom. She was so glad to hear me I could hardly understand her through the tears, She offered to wire me money or have Daddy come and get me, but I told her we had enough and that we’d be back tonight on the first plane. Why didn’t we do this weeks, months, centuries ago? Stupid us!

December 23

Last night was like reaching heaven. The plane was late but Mom and Dad and Tim and Alexandria were all there to meet me, and we were all crying unashamedly and like babies. Gran and Gramps are flying in today to see me and to stay for Christmas. I guess it’s the greatest homecoming anyone ever had. I feel like the prodigal son being welcomed back into the fold, and I shall never ever go away again.

Chris’s mother and dad met her and they too were reunited in a downpour of tears. Chris’s leaving had one good result. It brought her mom and dad back together as. they said they hadn’t been in years.


I’m so grateful that Chris and I were successful in our little venture. Mark, one of the boys who hung out at our shop, took colored Polaroid shots which have quite impressed our families. Of course we’ve deleted from our lives our adventures in San Francisco, and Mom was pleased that we never did even get down to Haight-Ashbury, which is nothing now anyway.

This afternoon I called the operator and asked for phone numbers for both Richie and Ted, but she didn’t have a listing for either one. So I guess they’ve just dropped out of sight and I’m relieved. Now everyone just thinks we ran away because we wanted to be out on our own. I think I’ll check to see if they are still registered in school, just to make sure.

December 24

The house is alive with fragrance. We have baked cakes and pies and cookies and candies. Gran is a wonderful cook and I know I can learn many things from her and I’m really going to try. The tree is up and the house is trimmed and Christmas is going to be even greater this year than it has been before.

I called Chris today and she feels great. Her mom and dad and her crippled Aunt Doris who lives there are really going out of their way to be nice to her. Oh, it’s good to be home! I guess Mom was right, Chris and I used to dwell on the negative things. But not anymore!

December 25

Diary, today is Christmas and I am waiting for my family to wake up so that we can go empty our stockings and unwrap our presents. But first, and all by myself, I wanted to have my own special and sacred little part of this special and sacred day. I wanted to review and repent and recommit myself. No I can sing with the others, “Oh come all ye faithful, joyful and triumphant,” for I am triumphant, this time I really am!

December 26

The day after Christmas is usually a let down, but this year I enjoyed helping Mother and Gran clean up and put away and take out. I feel grown-up. I am no longer in the category with the children, I am one of the adults! And I love it! They have accepted me as an individual, as a personality, as an entity. I belong! I am important! I am somebody!

Adolescents have a very rocky insecure time. Grown-ups treat them like children and yet expect them to act like adults. They give them orders like little animals, then expect them to react like mature, and always rational, self-assured persons of legal stature. It is a difficult, lost, vacillating time. Perhaps I have passed over the worst part. I certainly hope so, because I surely would not have either the strength or the fortitude to get through that number again.

December 27

Christmas is still in the air. That something wonderful, something special time of year, when all things good are reborn upon earth. Oh, I love it, I love it, I love it. It is as though I have never been away.

December 28

I was looking through the Christmas cards and saw one from Roger’s folks. How dreadful that makes me feel. Wouldn’t it have been wonderful if their family and ours could have been related? But all possibility for that is now over and I must not torture myself. Besides it was probably only puppy love stuff.

December 29

Mom and Dad are planning a New Year’s party for all the people connected with Dad’s department. It sounds like fun. Gran is making her terrific broccoli and chicken casserole and she is also making her yeast orange rolls. Yum! She has promised to let me help her and Chris is coming over too.

December 30

It’s still holiday time and I’m elated all the livelong day and night!

December 31

Tonight will ring in a wonderful new year for me. How humbly grateful I am to be rid of the old one. It hardly seems real! I wish I could just tear it out of my life like pages from the calendar, at least the last six months. How, oh how, could it ever have happened to me? Me, from this good and fine and upstanding, loving family! But the new year is going to be different, filled with life and promise. I wish there were some way to literally and truly and completely and permanently blot my for real nightmares out, but since there isn’t, I must poke them way back into the darkest and most inaccessible corners and crevices of my brain, where perhaps they will eventually be covered over or become lost. But enough of this chitty-chat and writiewrite, I’ve gotta go downstairs and help Mom and Gran. We’ve got a million things to do before the party. Up, up and away.

January 1

Last night’s party was really fun. I hadn’t thought Dad’s friends could be so interesting, and funny. Some of the men were talking about outrageous cases that have been tried in court and the unbelievable decisions that have been handed down. One old eccentric multi-millionairess left every single cent of her money to two old overgrown alley cats who wore diamond encrusted collars while they scrambled around the house and prowled through the alleys. Part of her will specified that the cats not be controlled in any manner that would be against their natural instincts. So the court hired four full time cat sitters to watch them every minute of the day and night. I suspect the men who were telling the story exaggerated because it was so hilarious, but I’m not sure. Maybe they were just good storytellers.

Some of ‘the parents talked about the cuckoo things their kids have done, and Dad even proudly told some good things about me . . . imagine!

At midnight everyone put on paper hats and rang bells and gongs, etc., then we had our midnight supper, with Gran and Chris and Tim and me all helping.

We didn’t get to bed until almost four o’clock, but that was almost the best part. After all the guests left, the family and Chris and me all put on our pajamas and finished up the dishes and straightened up the house as relaxed and happy as anybody could possibly be. Gramps was washing the dishes with soapsuds up to his armpits and singing at the top of his voice. He insisted that the dishwasher was too slow when we had so many things to do, and Dad was prancing around and bringing in things and licking his fingers. It was really great! I wonder if the real guests had as much fun as Mom and Dad, and Gran and Gramps and Tim and I had had? Would Chris have preferred being with her own family if they hadn’t been out to another party? I guess those are just a few of the things we’ll never know, which aren’t important anyway.

January 4

Tomorrow I start school again. It seems like I’ve been gone ages, instead of just part of one term. But I will appreciate it now, I can tell you. I’m going to learn to Habla Español like a Spaniard. I used to think foreign languages were dumb, but now I realize that it’s very important to be able to communicate with people, with all people.

January 5

Chris is a senior, but we still had lunch together. It’s kind of a hassle getting resettled.

January 6

What a shock! Today Joe Driggs came up and asked if I was holding. I had really almost forgotten that so short a time ago I was a pusher. Oh, I hope the word doesn’t get any further, and that I can live it down. Actually Joe wouldn’t believe at first that I was clean. He was really in a bad way and begged me for some chalk or anything. I hope George doesn’t get the word.

January 7

Nothing was said today about drugs. I hope Joe gets the word back.

January 8

Chris and I have both been informed about a party this weekend but I’ve asked Mom if Chris can spend that time with me. I’m sure I won’t be tempted, but I just don’t want to take any chances. And I’ve also very truthfully (at least part truthfully) told Mom that a bunch of pretty fast kids are pushing us at school and we’d like family support for the next few weeks. Mom was most grateful that I had even confided in her and said she and Dad would try to plan something special for the next couple of weekends and see if Chris’s folks wouldn’t do the same for the two weeks after that. It was a nice warm feeling knowing that we were communicating, and much more than vocally! I really have a great family!

January 11

Our family and Chris spent the weekend in the mountains. It was everything that it possibly could have been! Dad borrowed the cabin from someone he works with and after we’d found out how to turn on the water and the furnace and everything it was really great. It snowed during the night and we all had to take turns shoveling out the car, but it was really lovely. Dad says he’s going to borrow or rent the cabin often. It makes a wonderful weekend retreat. It’s strange how he can always get off when he really feels he has to.

January 13

George asked me out for Friday night. He’s kind of nothing but I guess that’s the safest kind.

January 14

Lane met me during lunch and insisted that I get him a new contact. His connection has been busted and he’s really hurting. He twisted my arm until it is black and blue and made me promise I’d get him at least a lid for tonight. I don’t have any idea how to go about it. Chris suggested I get it from Joe, but I don’t want anything to do with any of that bunch. I’m so scared I’m almost sick, in fact I really am sick.

January 15

Dear knowing Mother! Lane called twice last night and insisted that he had to talk to me, but Mother sensed that something was wrong and told him I was ill and absolutely could not be disturbed. She’s even encouraged me to stay home from school today — imagine HER encouraging me to miss school when she’s always had such a big hang up about it. Anyway I do appreciate that she cares and I just wish I could confide in her. I wonder how much Lane really knows about Rich and me? ? ? ? ?

January 17

George took me to the dance at school but it was all ruined because Joe and Lane were on my head all night. George wanted to know what was going on, so I told him that Lane was jealous because he had asked me out and I turned him down. Thank heavens the music was loud and we weren’t able to do much talking. I wish they would leave me alone!

January 20

Dad will be all tied up next weekend so we won’t be able to get away, but at least we can keep busy. Mom said she would help me make a new vinyl, leather-looking suit.

January 21

Gloria and Babs met me after school and walked part of the way home with me. I didn’t know how to get rid of them without being completely hostile, but I wish they’d all get off my back. Mom drove by just as we got to the corner of Elm and I waved her down. It was too much! The entire drive home she kept saying what nice girls Gloria and Babs are and how good it would be for me to have many friends instead of just concentrating on Chris. Oh if she only knew, if she only knew!

January 24

Oh damn, damn, damn, it’s happened again. I don’t know whether to scream with glory or cover myself with ashes and sackcloth, whatever that means. Anyone who says pot and acid are not addicting is a damn, stupid, raving idiot, unenlightened fool! I’ve been on them since July 10, and when I’ve been off I’ve been scared to death to even think of anything that even looks or seems like dope. All the time pretending to myself that I could take it or leave it!

All the dumb, idiot kids who think they are only chipping are in reality just existing from one experience to the other, After you’ve had it, there isn’t even life without drugs. It’s a prodding, colorless, dissonant bare existence. It stinks. And I’m glad I’m back. Glad! Glad! Glad! I’ve never had it better than I had it last night. Each new time is the best time and Chris feels the same way. Last night when she called and asked me to come over, I knew something terrible had happened. She sounded like she didn’t know what to do, But when I got there and smelled that incredible smell, I just sat down on the floor of her room with her and cried and smoked. It was beautiful and wonderful and we’d been without it for so long. I’ll never be able to express how really great it is.

Later I called Mother and told her I was spending the night with Chris because she felt a little depressed. Depressed? No one in the world but a doper could know the true opposite of depressed.

January 26

Chris feels a little guilty but I’m delighted that we’re turned on again, we belong to the world! The world belongs to us! Poor old George is going to have to go the way of all squares. He drove by to pick me up for school and I couldn’t have been less interested. I don’t even need him for a chauffeur anymore.

January 30

I talked to Lane today and he’s really amazing. He’s got a new connection and he can get me anything I want. So I told him I like uppers best. Who needs to go down when you can go up? Right?

February 6

Life is really unbelievable now. Time seems so endless yet everything goes so fast. I love it!

P.S. Mother’s really glad that I’m “in” again. She likes to hear the telephone ringing for me. Isn’t that too much!

Februrary 13

Lane was hit last night. I don’t know how they found out about him but I guess he was pushing too much too fast to those little teeny boppers of his. I’m just grateful I wasn’t there. Being so sweet and innocent and naive, my parents don’t let my stay out late on week nights. They are trying to protect me from the big bad bogie man. I’m not really too worried about Lane. He’s barely sixteen so they probably won’t give him too much of a problem — probably slap his hands.

February 18

Our supply has dried up somewhat with Lane on good behavior, but Chris and I are very resourceful. Anyway we’re managing.

I think I’m going to start taking the pill. It’s a lot easier than worrying. I bet the pill is harder to get than drugs — which shows you how screwed up this world really is!

February 23

Dear Diary,

Oh, wow! They raided Chris’s house last night while her folks and her aunt were out, but Chris and I played the game. The big blue badge just stood shaking his head while Chris and I swore to our parents it was our very first time and that nothing had really happened. Thank God they arrived while we still had our brains together. I wonder how they knew we were there? ? ? ?

February 24

This is the funniest thing I have ever heard: Mom is worried and hinting that something might have happened to her little baby in those words she can’t bring herself to use. She wants me to go see Doctor Langley for a checkup, isn’t that a laugh?

It took me a while to plead ignorance and innocence with my eyes opened as wide as they would go. I pretended I didn’t even know what she was talking about, and do you know, she finally wound up actually feeling guilty for ever even suspecting such a thing.


We’re all on probation, and are not supposed to see each other and Mom and Dad are sending me to a headshrinker beginning next Monday. I guess that was all part of the bargain to keep me out of court, The rumor is that Lane has been sent away someplace, to a lock-in, dry-out school I think. Actually this was his third bust. I didn’t know that. Well, at least he can’t think I had anything to do with it since I too got caught up in the drag. At least this is my first charge. I guess actually I’m pretty lucky.

February 27

You’d think I was six years old the way Mom and Dad are watching me. I have to come straight home from school as if I were a baby. This morning when I left Mom’s parting words were, “Come straight home after school.” Wow! Like I’m going to get stoned at 3:30—it doesn’t sound so bad at that.


After dinner I was going to walk down to the drugstore to get some colored pencils to finish my map and as I started out the door Mom called to Tim and told him to go with me. That is really too much! Having my little brother watching me! He didn’t like the idea any better than I did. I almost felt like telling him why she wanted him to go with me! It would serve him right. It would serve them all right. I know what I ought to do, I ought to turn him on! Maybe I will! Maybe I’ll surprise him with a trip on a piece of candy. Wow! I just wish I could be sure it would be a bummer.

March 1

I’m about to blow. This whole set-up is beginning to bug me until my nerves are all crawling. I can hardly even go to the bathroom by myself.

March 2

Today I went to the headshrinker’s, a fat ugly little man who doesn’t even have enough balls to lose weight. Man, I almost recommended some amphetamines — they’d cut his appetite and give him a blast at the same time. That’s probably what he needs, sitting there peering over his glasses waiting for me to tell him some gory details. He’s almost worse than anything else that’s happened to me.

March 5

Jackie slipped me a couple of co-pilots in English when she passed out the test papers. Tonight after everyone goes to bed I’ll get high all by myself. I can hardly wait!


Like here I am in Denver. When I was high I just walked out and hitch-hiked here, but now it seems crazy quiet and unreal, maybe that’s because it’s still early. I hope so, I’ve only got the twenty dollars that I took from Dad’s pants, but no source.


I’m sharing a place with a couple of kids I met, but they think it’s kind of dull here so we’re going to go to Oregon and see what’s happening in Coos Bay. We’ve got enough acid to keep us all stoned for the next two weeks or forever, and that’s all that counts.

March . . .

I haven’t any clothes except these I had on when I left home and I’m getting so damned dirty I think they’ve grown on me. It was snowing in Denver, but it’s so penetratingly damp here in Oregon it’s a hell of a sight worse. I’ve got a fucking head cold and I feel miserable, and my period has started and I don’t have any Tampax. Hell, I wish I had a shot,


Last night I slept in the park curled under a shrub and today it’s drizzling and I can’t find any of the kids I came from Denver with. Finally I went into a church and asked the janitor or whatever he was what I should do. He told me to sit here till it stopped raining, then go down to some kind of Salvation Army type place. I guess I have no choice since I know I’ve got a fever and I’m dripping wet and so filthy and smelly I can hardly stand myself. I’m trying to use some paper towels from the wash room for Kotex, and man that is some damned inconvenience. Oh, if I only had an upper.

This is a nice church. It’s small and quiet and clean. I feel dreadfully out of place here, and I’m beginning to feel so damned lonely I’ve got to get out of here. Guess I’ll try finding the mission or whatever the hell it is in the rain. I just hope I don’t lose the bloody goddamned paper towels in the center of some street.


This is really a great place! It really is! They let me have a shower and gave me some clean old square clothes and some Kotex and fed me even though I told them I wouldn’t go by their hard stooled rules. They wanted me to stay here a few days and let them contact my parents to work out something so that we could bridge our differences. But my parents aren’t about to let me use acid and pot and I’m not about to give them up! This guy was really nice. He is even driving me up to a health clinic to get something for my cold. I really feel lousy, maybe the good doctor will give me something to make me feel better, like wow! Anything! I wish the other old jerk would hurry up doing whatever he is doing so we could go.

It’s still the . . . whatever it is. I met a girl, Doris, in the doctor’s waiting room who said I could come share her pad since the couple she lived with and her boyfriend split during the night. Then the doc gave me a shot and a bottle of vitamins, imagine vitamins! He said my body is run down and malnourished, like that of most of the other kids he sees. He really was nice though. He just acted like he cared and told me to come back in a few days. I told him I didn’t have any bread and he just laughed and said he’d have been surprised if I had.


At last the bitchin’ rain has quit. Doris and I walked all through Coos Bay. They’ve really got some shops! I told her about the place Chris and I had opened and Doris wants to get a place when we get a few crumbs, but somehow it doesn’t really seem very important anymore. Doris has a whole can of pot so we’ll have joints for a long time. We were kind of stoned and everything seemed up even though my ass is still dragging.


It’s good enough to just be alive. I love Coos Bay, and I love acid! The people here, at least here in our section of town, are beautiful. They understand life and they understand me. I can talk like I want and dress like I want and nobody cares. Looking at the posters in the store windows, and even walking around past the Greyhound bus station to watch who is coming in is groovie. We went by a place where they make posters and I’m going to help Doris cover the walls when we get a few crumbs together. We stopped at a Coffee House and the Digger Free Store and the Psychedelic Shop. Tomorrow we’re going to see the rest of the sights. Doris has been here a couple of months and she knows everything and everybody. I was amazed when I found out that she was only fourteen. I thought she was a very small and immature eighteen or nineteen.


Last night Doris was really low. We’ve run out of pot and money and we’re both hungry and the damnable rain has started puking up again. This little one room has only the one burner stove which doesn’t seem to give out any heat at all. My ears and sinus cavities (see, I know, I watch TV, or used to) all feel like they’ve been poured full of concrete, and my chest must surely be bound with a steel band. We’d walk someplace and try to get a free meal or thug something but it’s hardly worth the effort in the rain, so I guess we’ll just eat noodles and dry cereal again. We’ve talked about how we hated the tourists and the phonies and the beggars here, but I think I’ll go join the ranks tomorrow and try to beg enough bread for a little food and a fix. Doris and I really need both.


Oh, to be stoned, to have someone tie me off and give me a shot of anything. I’ve heard paregoric is great. Oh hell, I wish I had enough anything to end the whole shitty mess.

I’ve been asleep and I don’t know if it’s the same day or week or year, but who the hell cares anyway?

The goddamned rain is even worse than yesterday. It’s like the whole sky is pissing on us. I tried to go out once, but my cold is so bad I was chilled to my ass before I’d even gotten to the goddamned corner, so I came back and went to bed with my clothes on, trying to curl up enough so my body heat would at least keep me from dying. I guess I’ve got a high fever, because I keep drifting off — that’s the only beJesus thing that keeps me from croaking. Oh, I need a fix so bad! I want to scream and pound my head against the wall and climb the damned dusty, faded stringy curtains. I’ve got to get out of here. I’ve got to get the hell out of here before I really blow my cool all the way. I’m scared and lonely and I’m sick. I’m as sick as I’ve ever been in my life.

I tried not to let myself think of home till Doris got started on her screwing life’s history, and now I’m really falling apart at the seams. God, if I had enough money I would go back where I came from or at least call. Tomorrow I’ll go back to the church and ask them to call my folks. I don’t know why I’ve acted like such an ass when I’ve always had it so good. Poor Doris has had nothing but shit since she was ten years old. Her mother was married four times by the time Doris was ten and had humped with who knows how many men in between. And when Doris had just turned eleven her current stepfather started having sex with her but good, and the poor little stupid bastard didn’t even know what to do about it because he threatened to kill her if she ever told her mother or anyone else, So she put up with the sonofabitch balling her till she was twelve, Then one day when he had hurt her pretty bad she told her gym teacher why she couldn’t do the exercises. The teacher had her taken away and put into a juvenile home till they could find a foster home. But even that wasn’t much better, because both the teenage brothers gave it to her and later on an older teenage girl tuned her in and turned her on drugs, then took her the homo route. Since then she’s pulled down her pants and hopped into bed with anyone who would turn down the covers, or part the bushes. Oh Father, I’ve got to get out of the cesspool! It’s sucking me down and drowning me! I’ve got to get the hell out of here while I still can. Tomorrow! Tomorrow for sure! After the goddamned rain stops!


Who the hell cares? At last the goddamned rain has stopped! The sky is as blue as it was ever meant to be, which I gather is unusual for this area. Doris and I are both going to cut out of this asinine assed place. There’s going to be a rally in Southern California. Wow! Here we come!


I’m actually and literally and completely sick to my stomach. I want to puke all over the shitty world. Most of the way down we rode with a big fat assed, baby screwing truck driver who picked us up and got his kicks by physically hurting Doris and watching her cry. When he stopped for gas we both sneaked out even though he had threatened us. Man, what a mother . . . We finally got another ride with some of our kind and while they shared their grass with us it must have been some home grown stuff, because it was so fuckin weak it could barely get us off terra firm.


The rally itself was great, acid and booze and pot as free as the air. Even now colors are still dripping down over me and the crack in the window is beautiful. This life is beautiful. It’s so goddamned beautiful I can hardly stand it. And I’m a glorious part of it! Everybody else is just taking up space. Goddamned stupid people. I’d like to shove life down all their throats and then maybe they’d understand what it’s all about.

Near the door a fat girl with long stringy blonde hair is getting to her knees on a green upon green upon purple robe. She’s got a guy with her and he has a ring in his nose and multi-colored designs on his shaven head. They keep saying “love” to each other. It’s beautiful to watch. Color intermingled with color. People intermingled with people. Color and people intercoursing together.


I don’t know what or when or where or who it is! I only know that I am now a Priestess of Satan trying to maintain after a freak-out to test how free everybody was and to take our vows.

Dear Diary,

I feel awfully bitched and pissed off at everybody. I’m really confused. I’ve been the digger here, but now when I face a girl it’s like facing a boy. I get all excited and turned-on. I want to screw with the girl, you know, and then I get all tensed-up and scared. I feel goddamned good in a way and goddamned bad in a way. I want to get married and have a family, but I’m afraid. I’d rather be liked by a guy than a girl. I’d rather screw with a guy, but I can’t. I guess I’ve had a bit of a bummer, Sometimes I want one of the girls to kiss me. I want her to touch me, to have her sleep under me, but then I feel terrible. I get guilty and it makes me sick. Then I think of my mother. I think of screaming at her and telling her to make room for me because I’m coming home and I feel like a man. Then I get sick and I just want anybody and I should be out doing my digging. I’m really sick. I’m really way out of it.

Dear Diary,

It’s a thousand light years later, lunar time.

Everybody’s been storytelling except me. I don’t have any stories worth telling. All I can do is draw pictures of monsters and internal organs and hate.


Another day, another blow job. The fuzz has clamped down till the town is mother dry. If I don’t give Big Ass a blow he’ll cut off my supply. Hell, I’m shaking on the inside more than I’m shaking on the outside. What a bastard world without drugs! The dirty ofay who wants me to lay it on him knows my ass is dragging, but he’s doling out the only supply I know about, I’m almost ready to take on the Fat Cats, the Rich Philistines, or even the whole public for one good shot. Goddamn Big Ass makes me do it before he gives me the load. Everybody is just lying around here like they’re dead and Little Jacon is yelling, “Mama, Daddy can’t come now. He’s humping Carla.” I’ve got to get out of this shit hole.


I don’t know what the hell hour or day or even year it is, or even what town. I guess I’ve had a blackout or they’ve been passing some bad pills. The girl on the grass beside me is white-faced and Mona Lisa like and she’s preggers. I asked her what she was going to do with the baby and she just said, “It will belong to everybody. We’ll all share her.”

I wanted to go and find someone who’s holding, but the baby thing really bugged me. So I asked her for an upper and she just shook her head like a stupid, blank, and I realized that she’s completely burned out. Behind that beautiful stoned face is a big dried-up bunch of ashes and she’s lying there like a stupid dumb shit who can’t do anything.

Well, at least I’m not burned out and I’m not preg. Or maybe I am. I couldn’t take the goddamn pill even if I had it. No doper can take the pill because they don’t know what the hell day it is. So maybe I am pregnant. So what. There’s a pre-med drop out wandering around somewhere who will take care of it. Or maybe some goddamn prick would stomp on me during a freak out and I’d lose it anyway. Or maybe the son-of-a-bitch bomb will go off tomorrow. Who knows?

When I look around here at all the ass draggers, I really think that we are a bunch of gutless wonders. We get pissed off when someone tells us what to do, but we don’t know what to do unless some fat bastard tells us. Let somebody else think for us and do for us and act for us. Let them build the roads and the cars and the houses, run the lights and the gas and the water and the sewers. We’ll just sit here on our blistered tails with our minds exploding and our hands out. God, I sound like a goddamn Establish-mentarian, and I haven’t even got a pill to take the taste out of my mouth or drive the bull shit thoughts away.


A raindrop just splashed on my forehead and it was like a tear from heaven. Are the clouds and the skies really weeping over me? Am I really alone in the whole wide gray world? Is it possible that even God is crying for me? Oh no no . . . no . . . I’m losing my mind. Please God, help me.


I gather from the sky that it is early morning. I’ve been reading a paper that the wind blew up beside me. It says one girl had her baby in the park, another had a miscarriage and two unidentified boys died during the night from O.D.’s. Oh, how I wish one of them had been me!

Another day

I finally talked to an old priest who really understands young people. We had an endlessly long talk about why young people leave home, then he called my Mom and Dad. While I waited for him to get the call through I looked at myself in the mirror. I can’t believe that I have changed so little. I expected to look old and hollow and gray, but I guess it’s only me on the inside that has shriveled and deteriorated. Mom answered the phone in the family room, and Dad ran upstairs to get the extension, and the three of us almost drowned out the connection. I can’t understand how they can possibly still love me and still want me but they do! They do! They do! They were glad to hear from me and to know I am all right. And there were no recriminations or scoldings or lectures or anything. It’s strange that when something happens to me Dad always leaves everything in the whole world and comes. I think if he were a peace mission involving all humanity in all the galaxies he would leave to come to me. He loves me! He loves me! He loves me! He truly does! I just wish I could love myself. I don’t know how I can treat my family like I have. But I’m going to make it all up to them, I’m through with all the shit. I’m not even going to talk about it or write, about it or even think about it anymore. I am going to spend the rest of my entire life trying to please them.

Dear Diary,

I couldn’t sleep, so I’ve been wandering the streets. I look kind of square because I don’t want to seem weird when my parents get here. I’ve got my hair tied back in a ponytail and I traded clothes with the most conservative girl I could find, and I’m wearing an old pair of white tennies I found in the gutter. At first the kids I talked to in the coffee house seemed a little up-tight because of the way I looked, but when I told them I’d called my folks to come and get me they all seemed glad.

It seems inconceivable that all the time Chris and I were in Berkeley we didn’t find out anything about any of the kids. It was just one big tearing down everything and everybody vacuum. Tonight I learned about Mike and Marie and Heidi and Lilac and many others. I’ll probably use up the rest of the pages writing about them, but that’s good because I want to get a fresh new clean book when I get home. You, dear Diary, will be my past. Then one I will buy when we get home will be my future. So now I must hurry and write about the people I have met just this night. It simply amazes me that so many parents and kids have trouble over their hair! My parents were always bugging me about mine. They wanted me to curl it or cut it or get it out of my eyes, or tie it back etc., etc., etc. Sometimes I think that was our biggest bone of contention. I met Mike at the coffee house, and after explaining my situation and my current curiosity about why kids run away he became very communicative and told me that hair had been one of his problems too. In fact his dad had become so angry that twice he had forcibly shaved his head and sideburns. Mike said his parents were taking away all his freedom and power of decision. He was becoming dehumanized, mechanized, forced into the mold of his father. He was not even allowed to decide which classes he wanted to take in school! He said he wanted art, but his parents thought only weaklings and bums were artists. Finally he ran away to preserve his personality and sanity. So I told Mike about the church and their efforts to bring about a new and human arrangement between my parents and me. I hope he goes there.

Then I talked to Alice, who I met just sitting stoned on the curb. She didn’t know whether she was running away from something or running to something, but she admitted that deep in her heart she wanted to go home.

The others I talked to, the ones who had homes, all seemed to want to go back, but felt they couldn’t because that would mean giving up their identity. It made me think about the hundreds of thousands of kids who have run away and are wandering around all over the place. Where do they come from? Where do they even manage to crash for the night? Most of them don’t have any money and don’t have anywhere to go.

I think I’ll go into child guidance when I get out of school. Or maybe I should become a psychologist. At least I’d be able to understand where kids are at and maybe that would help compensate for what I’ve done to my family and myself. Perhaps it was even right for me to go through all this suffering so that I could be more understanding and tolerant of the rest of humanity.

Oh dear wonderful, trusting, friendly Diary, that’s exactly what I’ll do. I’ll spend the rest of my life helping people who are just like me! I feel so good and happy. I finally have something to do for the rest of my life. Wow! I’m through with drugs too. I’ve used the hard stuff only a few times and I don’t like it. I don’t like any of it. The uppers or the downers. I’m through with the whole mess, Absolutely and completely and forever, really I am.


I have just read the stuff I wrote in the last few weeks and I am being drowned in my own tears, suffocated, submerged, inundated, overpowered. They are a lie! A bitter, evil cursed lie! I could never have written things like that! I could never have done things like that! It was another person, someone else! It must have been! It had to be! Someone evil and foul and degenerate wrote in my book, took over my life. Yes, they did, they did! But even as I write I know I am telling even a bigger lie! Or am I? Has my mind been damaged? Was it really just a nightmare and it seems real? I think I’ve mixed up things which are true and things which are not. All of it couldn’t be true. I must be insane.

I have lamented until I am dehydrated, but calling myself a wretched fool, a beggarly, worthless, miserable, paltry, mean, pitiful, unfortunate, woebegone, tormented, afflicted, shabby, disreputable, deplorable human being isn’t going to help me either. I have two choices; I must either commit suicide or try to rectify my life by helping others. That is the path I must take, for I cannot bring further disgrace and suffering upon my family. There is nothing more to say, dear Diary, except I love you, and I love life and I love God. Oh I do. I really do.

Reading Group Guide

A Reading Group Guide to

Go Ask Alice

By Anonymous

About the Book

She doesn’t want to get hooked on drugs. Every time after she uses, she feels guilty and low and vows to stay away. But she just can’t resist the way the drugs make her feel—beautiful and popular and connected to the world around her. And since nobody understands how alone and miserable she is without the drugs, how can they possibly understand how much she needs them? We may not know her name, but we can imagine how she feels as her diary records a descent into drug-induced madness.

Discussion Questions

1. Every time the narrator has something important happen in her life—a summer with her grandparents, her family’s move, an invitation to a big party—she focuses on her weight and clothing. How does this affect the way she sees herself, and how she relates to others? Do you see any connection or foreshadowing to events that happen later in the book?

2. As her family prepares to move, the narrator says, “‘Even now I’m not really sure which parts of myself are real and which parts are things I’ve gotten from books.’” What do you think she means by this? As time passes, what else does she use to define who she is? Are her methods healthy? Do you think she ever discovers her authentic self? Explain your answers.

3. How do you define identity? What or who contributes to the way you see yourself? How do you go about learning more about yourself?

4. The narrator does not feel like she fits in with her family, nor does she belong to any groups at school. What causes her to feel so separated and different? Do these reasons change throughout the course of the story? How do you feel about her? Why do you think she is misunderstood?

5. Describe the narrator’s relationship with her family, especially with her mother. Do you find anything unusual about their relationship?

6. The narrator makes friends at different times throughout the book, but none of them are in her life for very long. Why do these different friendships end? What does each person—Jill, Gerta, Beth, Chris—mean to the writer? Is she a good friend to each of them? Who do you think is the best friend to have? Explain your answers using evidence from the book.

7. As a reader, think about your role as an outside observer. What might you say to the narrator that she might not understand or notice about her own life? Do you agree with her interpretations of the people and events around her? Where else, besides drugs, could she have turned to address her problems?

8. The narrator spends time justifying her actions; for example, she says she only sells drugs to kids who would buy them anyway, and that she didn’t realize she was dropping acid the first time. What are some of her other excuses? Do you think she really believes all of these? Do you think any of her actions are justified? Explain your answers.

9. Why is it so hard for her to remain clean? Why do her former friends give her such a hard time? How might her situation change if she had someone she trusted to support her?

10. What do you notice about the tone and style of the narrator’s diary entries the second time she runs away from home? What do you think causes these changes? Explain your answers.

11. Why is the narrator so obsessed with death and what happens to bodies after they are buried? Do you think these thoughts affect the acid trip that lands her in the hospital?

12. How do you feel about the book’s ending? Do you think it fits with the rest of the story? Explain your answers.

13. There has been some debate about the authorship of this book, with some believing that it is not an actual diary, but a fictionalized account created by an editor or writer. Who do you think wrote the book? Do you think it’s an authentic portrayal of what it’s like to be a teenager in these circumstances? Would you feel differently about the book if you discovered it wasn't a real diary?

14. Go Ask Alice was written fifty years ago. Do you think it is still relevant today? How has life changed for young people today? What things are the same? Think about outlets like social media and how that impacts the way people portray themselves. Explain your answers.

Extension Activities

1. Many communities have a helpline for people to call when they feel they have no one to talk to. Check into opportunities with helplines or community groups and consider volunteering. Talk to your school about starting a peer-counseling group. You can help others just by listening to their stories.

2. Choose your favorite scene from the book and rewrite it from the perspective of one of the other characters, keeping with the diary format. How does it change your view of the situation?

3. The narrator tries to change her image several times throughout the story. Create a timeline that matches the narrator’s physical transformations with the events going on in her life. Include an illustration of the character at each stage. Do you notice any parallels or relationships between the two? What does this add to your understanding of the narrator? Think about building a similar timeline for your own life. Do you think you would make any surprising connections about yourself?

4. The narrator looks for ways to feel more connected, both to other people and to the world she lives in. Find something that makes you feel like you belong, and make it a part of your life. How might you involve others in your interests? How might you connect with your community?

5. Read another book that deals with teenagers and drugs, such as Crank by Ellen Hopkins and Smack by Melvin Burgess. Then write an essay comparing and contrasting the book to Go Ask Alice.

This guide has been provided by Simon & Schuster for classroom, library, and reading group use. It may be reproduced in its entirety or excerpted for these purposes. For more Simon & Schuster guides and classroom materials, please visit or

About The Author

A Simon & Schuster author.

Product Details

  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (December 8, 2020)
  • Length: 176 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781534483675
  • Grades: 7 and up
  • Ages: 12 - 99

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Awards and Honors

  • School Library Journal Best Books of the Year
  • ALA Best Books For Young Adults
  • Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults
  • Christopher Award
  • ALA Best of the Best Books for Young Adults

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