Gather round kiddies and Uncle Mikey will tell you of a time when many of us old codgers believed that the evolution of the species could be — and would be — kick-hurled by a little chemical called lysergic acid diethlyamide, a.k.a. LSD, or acid, as we furry freaky folk called it on the street. When we “dropped” it, meaning ingested by tablet or on wafer-thin paper called blotter, not only would walls melt, but we'd go on “trips” that suggested — nay, insisted — that there was more to human consciousness than what our parents, teachers and politicians told us. Communal groups of hippies sprung up all over the planet, bound by the use and advocacy of acid. The single mightiest of these visionary gangs was the Brotherhood of Eternal Love, a bunch of ocean-splashed surfers based out of Laguna Beach who distributed vast quantities of the holy sacrament, as well as grass and hashish. They befriended Dr. Timothy Leary and had all kinds of plans to change the world. Yes, kids, sounds quaint in the 21st century, where stasis (at best) and regression (at worst) are the names of the games. Intrepid reporter Nicholas Schou of our sister paper the O.C. Weekly has been assiduously unearthing the extraordinary adventures of the Brotherhood for years and Orange Sunshine: The Brotherhood of Eternal Love and Its Quest to Spread Peace, Love, and Acid to the World (Thomas Dunne Books), his history of the so-called “Hippie Mafia,” is so thrilling and astonishing that its text is preceded by the author's note: “This is a true story.” Come here Uncle Nick read from his book and take heed. It's never too late to demand the impossible.

Wed., June 30, 7 p.m., 2010

LA Weekly