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Marijuana Time: Join the Army, See the World, Meet Interesting People and Smoke All Their Dope [Paperback]

Ken Lukowiak
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Book Description

7 Jun 2001
Anyone can survive a war - all you have to do is not get shot. But how the hell is a soldier supposed to survive the peace? Ken Lukowiak could handle Goose Green and Wireless Ridge: it was the life after that seemed so hard - so slow, so repetitive, so absurd. But then Belize came to his rescue, or rather Belize's number one product, marijuana. Smoked in industrial quantities, it can make military life seem almost bearable. And what better way could there be of seeing out service in this last armpit of empire than through a dizzy haze of pungent, potent dope smoke? The best of times, the worst of times, marijuana brings them all - and in the end it brings our hero to the joint in the form of Her Majesty's Prison, Shepton Mallett. But Lukowiak's not complaining: he's well and truly out of it - seems for as long as he can remember, he's been doing Marijuana Time.

Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Phoenix; New edition edition (7 Jun 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0753814110
  • ISBN-13: 978-0753814116
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 12.8 x 2.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 376,950 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Amazon Review

Ken Lubowiak is a class A exponent of the art of Literal-ture. He describes what he knows and, importantly, he does it very well. Despite the laddish cover, however, Lubowiak is no Howard Marks (Mr Nice, an ageing hipster for the pop-cult generation. More akin to K. Hawkeye Gross' Reefer Warrior, Marijuana Time describes his often hilarious experiences on a six-month posting in 1983 to Belize with the Paras, with nothing to do except skin up and party. The long days are palliated by a constant and increasingly compulsive supply of drugs and japes, until he starts using his position in the army post-room to send improbably large bundles of the stuff home--to his army flat in Aldershot. Finally caught, Marijuana Time now becomes Jailbird Time, but with no let-up from the weed. Whilst doing his stretch, his wife Carol has their baby, and the tale darkens. A spiral of bad luck and self-destructiveness leads him to a mushroom-inspired epiphanic moment and a born-again Christianity, but this doesn't last: he memorably attributes his lapse to his right hand not being submerged when he is baptised. The right hand, that is, that squeezed the trigger, rolled the joints, held the beer bottle, and wrote the betting slip. And there is no happy ending, at least for this book: he confesses on the final page to having not seen his wife or son in 10 years. And he's still rolling. While his experiences in the Falklands, the basis of his acclaimed book A Soldier's Song, inevitably inform his subsequent behaviour, it's to his credit that he refuses to indulge them, and blames none but himself. A born raconteur, he was certainly a very good soldier, with an intelligence and honesty that has been journalism's gain, as well as a surprisingly good memory, considering. If his chummy, spiky narration, particularly early on, twitches and puns too much, over-anxious to please, then this is compensated for somewhat when dark clouds replace the fug, and the paranoia becomes real. An entertaining, yet troubling, book. Just don't inhale. --David Vincent --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

The painfully funny true-life story of one man surviving a war, divorce, prison, drug addiction, gambling, a nervous breakdown and a drug dealer who will only deal in tracksuit tops. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
If everything had gone the way it was planned to go, then I wouldn't even have been in Belize in 1983, and so maybe, just maybe, none of what happened to me there would have. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cracking Read - What an Adventure 4 Sep 2011
By Ceej18
I first borrowed this book from a mate when I was about 15, really good read. I have since read it a few times (over a number of years) and is still as good as I remember it to be. Ken really did go on an adventure in Belize.

Well worth a read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Big Lebowski 20 April 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
If you like the mentality of the Dude and Huner S then you'll love this book, It's strangely written -a good thing.
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Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
After a traumatic time as a Para in the Falklands Ken is sent with his Company to Belize, The adventures he gets into after smoking and eventually sending packages of marijuana through the Services postal system starts as a series of hilarious events worthy of an Elmore Leonard/Hunter S. Thompson novel but ends in despair and heartache. To me, this goes to show how PTSD can really mess with your head and make you take more than rash decisions and that the veterans of all our wars and, without doubt, those to come, need support and guidance to get back to a 'normal' life.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
A classic piece of writing. Humorous in it's outlook and touching on the inside. A look at how life in the army of the eighties was enjoyed by one man and the effects of being posted to Belize.
A clever book that enables you to understand the first book by this author.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as a soldier's song... 29 Mar 2005
By A Customer
A Soldier's Song is one of the most profoundly moving and fantastic reads that I have ever had. Therefore, I couldn't wait to read this, the follow up.
It's funny and sad, tells you of life post Falklands and puts more pieces into the puzzle so one hand it's well worth a read. However, it's not as powerful and the dope smoking tales do drag on towards the end and lose the acid wit. Worth a read but don't expect too much.
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