I remember the first time that I ever took acid. To some people that would seem like a pretty stupid thing to do let alone admit to, but with hindsight I would actually rather that had been the first drug that I had ever ingested for recreation. The first drug I took, you see, was alcohol, which in actual fact proved to be the worst thing that I could ever have done. As far as society goes it is the legal drug for recreational use but I can tell you from sheer experience that it is in fact highly addictive and extremely mind altering.
“But hold on a minute, isn’t LSD a mind altering drug that makes you hallucinate?” is the chorus of voices of all those model citizens out there in law abiding society. Yes that’s true, I would not try and disillusion anyone of that fact, but I can say that I do know that there are some very subtle differences between the two and I can try to educate people to some degree. First thing that springs to mind is that it is not addictive, which is what a lot of people may believe, as all the controlled drugs are made out to be really horrible and destructive (and do these leaders really know? And if so how?). Yet the one that is accepted as the legal recreational drug is highly addictive and destructive. You won’t wake up the following day after an acid trip shaking with Delirium Tremors which is very likely with alcohol, even with minimal use/abuse. I’ve noticed just one heavy drinking session can result in this condition. LSD will not actually kill you from overdosing (I sure as heck haven’t heard of it although a massive dose will probably render you like Sid Barret!) whereas alcohol can do this to a person quite easily. Why do you think a hangover makes you feel so sick if your body isn’t overcome with a poison? LSD won’t make you look grey when you look at your reflection in a mirror the way that alcohol does (and this is definitely exacerbated by long term abuse.) Alcohol will stop you from eating properly too and again with extended misuse you will end up feeling too sick to even attempt solid food as all you want is more of the poison. Admittedly you won’t much feel like eating whilst actually tripping on acid (although I have witnessed some manage it, I never could) but when you come down and often before you crash out, you will probably want to eat a horse! Alcohol will change your thinking so much that after a time you will convince yourself that you MUST have more of the poison the following day. You do this as it is something that every drinker learns quite quickly and that is alcohol is the only thing that will make you feel better without coming back up, but you will lose the day to drunkenness again and keep it up until you pass out again. When you come down from LSD pretty much all you want to do (after eating the horse!) is to go to sleep because of all the energy you’ve just expelled from all the activity of the night.
That first night tripping for me showed me a whole new world. Yes there were many psychedelic colours, many bouts of giggling like schoolgirls and exceptional amounts of energy expended, but I hadn’t sat in some smoke filled, seedy bar all night getting completely legless, which at that time in my life was beginning to be a bit too often. I just wanted to be outside as if I wanted to commune with Nature. I’m sure that I may even have talked to a few trees that evening. Whether or not they spoke back to me or not can always be a subject of debate but at that time (and in my present memory) I definitely heard them. Certainly not as we converse as humans though in our man made concrete structure, this was natural, telepathic like sussurrations of energy flowing through my brain and perfectly understandable. If anybody has ever tried making sense of a drunken person, whether just bumping into them in the street or helping someone they know home from a party or something, then they’ll know as well as I do that their utterances are just ramblings of mad people which make no sense unless it’s another drunk person (but no guarantee) as this is the speech of the insane. Question : why do just about all drunk people think that they are invisible? I found that LSD in its own way is much more lucid and it seems (feels?) as if you’re tapping into psychic abilities. It appeared as if I was being shown the difference to two worlds; 1: the man made structure that we are all socialized into from birth and 2: that of the more Natural world, which even without any drugs of any sort, on a subconscious level actually seems as if it is the more real world. Everything in this more real world appears to be able to live and work in a completely symbiotic manner, from bugs to flowers, humans to the skies. The man made world always seems as if it is always at odds with everything in it. In fact, this concrete structure under the influence of LSD actually appeared to me like Toytown (Noddy, Larry the Lamb, etc.) and that particular “trip” occurred more than once as well as I wasn’t the only one to see it in this way, others did too. This image would also quite easily flitter into normal every day thinking whilst completely lucid and sober so is it a really powerful image or another glimpse of reality? Whilst drunk however, which I did often and would be falling down completely ratted drunk, it was extremely difficult to even remember where I was let alone remember the next day where I may have been, so to try and remember what anything would have looked like would never have happened. You certainly would not have been interacting with anyone or anything in a natural or symbiotic manner. In fact I would go as far to say that alcohol is an incredibly anti social drug (and feeling). For instance, I personally am quite a genteel and happy kind of person and in a lucid, sober state possess much patience and will always try to help others if I am able to. Whilst pissed though (despite early days when I was a “happy drunk”) I have it from very good authority that I have been quite violent (several times) and am generally a complete pain in the backside when in the company of others. A real pain in that I would just get on everyone’s nerves to the point that they would just want me away from them. Much of the time though I would have to be told this (by the same people), as in my waking hours I would have no recollection of these events. Funnily (ha bloody ha) the same people would not have any problem with my company in these sober hours, so it’s quite embarrassing to hear of your drunken exploits from friends as well as knowing that you have to take their word for it, as you have yet another blank spot in your memory. That makes me wonder if we would be able to cure a rather large proportion of our Friday night revellers in our city centres that we hear of in the news and see, if we are brave enough to venture out into them. I reckon that we should see the trouble makers looked up in a cell for the night to sleep it off. Then at a nice early hour so that the hangover has maximum effect bring them a cuppa (interesting to see if they can keep it down!) and CCTV footage of what they were up to the previous night and make them watch it, ALL of it! Now I will not kid myself as I realise that there will definitely be some die hards out there who will literally say, “So what?” But I bet my bottom dollar that there will be a huge proportion of these “revellers” who will be so embarrassed and appalled at what they see, that they will definitely think long and hard about whether or not to get that drunk again. After all, we learn by our mistakes don’t we? So people would learn a valuable lesson between use and abuse. I reckon that it might just be a cheaper way of dealing with the city centre “drunk as skunks” problem than the current measures in place. For Christ sakes, the police are supposed to ignore swearing these days as it’s such a big problem and that’s a law isn’t it? Just because someone is that pissed doesn’t mean that they should get away with it and yet recently it was deemed by the law makers that the police should ignore this law. I don’t know about you but I can’t stand somebody being obnoxiously rude to me and swearing profusely at me just because they feel like it.
I will now attempt to describe the effects of spending an evening under the influence of LSD. One particular tab I remember getting was scored in an oft frequented pub where I had gone with the intention of getting absolutely shit faced on alcohol (much like those Friday night revellers I was talking about!) It happened to be a particularly strong batch too and it didn’t take long to feel the effects at all. The optics behind the bar began twinkling and sparkling like lights were shining through them, all sound perception trebled and my guts felt like I was taking off like a jumbo jet! I didn’t even want the rest of the pint that was in my hand; instead I put it on the bar and just got out of there quick! I did stop by coke machine down the road though, there were no people there, and took a couple of cans with me for my wander. Interesting how after having the intention of getting rat arsed though, within twenty minutes of taking an illegal drug (and supposedly evil) I did not want any more alcohol at all! (Maybe the government makes it illegal to make us use alcohol which carries a very heavy tax revenue!) I spent the rest of the night just walking and rambling in a meandering fashion along the beach, watching the stars and smoking a little of another illegal substance at intervals (when the visuals weren’t too vivid so I could see to roll that is!) I must stress here, quite profusely, that at no point in the night did I want to fight or make trouble with anything or anyone. I even bumped into a couple of souls along the way, conversation was a touch limited admittedly, but there was no adverse behaviour and certainly no hassle between parties. When I did encounter these groups this limited conversation was different to the alcohol limiting of chat, as it seems as if your thoughts are flying so quickly through your brain that your mouth will never physically be able to get this flow out from your mind coherently. If you concentrate really hard though then you will manage to communicate but this amount of concentration will often end up with you laughing quite uncontrollably for bouts of 15-20 minutes at a time and this could look to someone sober like the act of a lunatic, albeit a nice, harmless loony! This is probably actually the only reason though that you will want to keep away from people thus allowing you that chance to get out into the rural areas and commune with Nature. It was absolutely fantastic by the beach as the shore and the breakers would have a kind of hypnotic effect making one feel really chilled and at peace. How often do any of us actually feel that sensation during our busy lives in man-made suburbia? And I think most importantly I did not want to obliterate my brain with copious amounts of that legal poison, alcohol. All senses are enlightened and something as simple as touching or looking at a blade of grass becomes an almost Divine experience. I spent the entire night (until daylight) seemingly rambling in a meandering fashion and yet funnily enough, as if subconsciously, I ended up where I needed to be I.E. back home where I could go to bed for sleep. I quite often will bring forth a memory of other nights spent in this manner and always wonder why alcohol had such a strong pull on me, as being up all night under the influence of something illegal and supposedly so bad never got me into any trouble the way that man’s legal recreational drug did so many times in my life. In fact all of the criminal record from my past (thankfully all spent) is actually down to alcohol, so there is definitely alarm bells ringing for me and yet it is still the legal recreation (let’s not forget about that major tax revenue for the government!) If I have ever spent the night away from where I live on alcohol it has more often than not been somewhere I should not supposed to be and it has never really given me the same sense of well being that acid (or mushrooms) has. The only reason that I can come up with for years of alcohol abuse is that I really liked being pissed (absolutely ratted!) and the thing to remember here is that whenever you hear a heavy drinker say that, “I’m only having a drink” they do not mean like somebody who can go to the pub and have just one or two, they mean that having a drink is to feel well and truly intoxicated. I know now though that it is far better to remember experience and so with hindsight it does seem absolutely and utterly crazy to want to block out our human senses and experiences and most alkies that I have known do it for the same reasons that I outline here, to reach oblivion. So when do we wake up as a race (collective conscious) and take stock of some of our seemingly crazy rules and laws and instead try and teach each other? I (and many others I’m sure) know from practical experience that some of the things we are socialised into and told are wrong actually aren’t. I wonder sometimes if maybe these rules and regulations were written by an alcoholic!