Sometimes you do a bunch of drugs and it's not that awesome. We asked some people to tell us about their worst times getting high and… Jesus Christ.
Decadent Western culture tends to portray intensely awful drug experiences as a good laugh, to the point where there's a movie where some guys get roofied and wake up in a trashed hotel room, bloodied, with teeth missing and a tiger in the bathroom and it's a nearly universally enjoyed lighthearted comedy. But sometimes you do a bunch of drugs and it's not all that hilarious. We asked some people to tell us about their worst times getting high and… Jesus Christ.
Anne: This time when I smoked pot with two of my friends, and we went to Central Park and I had no clue what was going on. And then I started losing track of where we were, I had to have my friends order me a pizza.
Wait, you ordered a pizza while you were still in Central Park?
Not in the park, somehow we got to a pizza place. It was very scary. It was the most horrifying thing ever.
What was so scary?
I kept seeing people, and they'd go in slow motion. It freaked me out because I thought, "They're all looking!" And I didn't know where I was going and neither did my friends… I kept stopping at benches—it didn't make much sense.
But was it a fun day?
It wasn't fun. I didn't like it. But that was the only time it wasn't fun.
Don: I don't know if I can answer that.
Of course I don't think that you do drugs. How about a "friend" who has had a bad time on drugs?
Oh! So, this guy, John, he smoked salvia and was completely out of it for 15 minutes and thought he was dying. It was in a car, he was rolling around. He almost seemed like he had a stroke.
What was the aftermath of that?
He threw up and was all right a few days later.
Sandz: Let me think about it. I guess my worst experience would be waking up in the middle of a dance floor, like regaining consciousness.
When I regained consciousness, my eyes were closed but I could hear people talking, and I knew that I should open my eyes so that they'd know I wasn't dead. When I opened my eyes, I saw a whole bunch of people standing around me with their jaws unhinged, staring at someone on the floor who had apparently just crashed right there.
What were you on?
It was just mushrooms that made you faint?
Yep. Well, it was because I took them, and then immediately went to the club, so the half hour that it takes for them to start kicking in was the half an hour it took for me to get there, and then I started coming on them right when I was inside, and the peak was... NGGGHAaa. I told my friends that I just needed to go and sit down for a while and that was the next thing I remembered. I think that would be the worst thing that's happened to me on drugs.
Coming out of it, did you still dance at the club?
Oh, yeah! After sitting down for an hour, sweating and panting, I went back out and continued dancing.
Leah: One time somebody rolled a joint but there was definitely something else in it. I felt obligated to finish it solo. I then spent the rest of the night thinking that I had peed in my pants at a party full of strangers. And then I locked myself in a bathroom.
Were you able to get out?
Oh yeah, I mean, I intentionally sequestered myself in a bathroom due to paranoia.
How long did it take for you to come out of it?
I would say a good four or five hours, but it seemed like days, and I kind of slept it off, I think. I passed out in my paranoid state.
Did you ever find out what it was laced with?
No, but this kid was notorious for smoking crack-weed, so...
Brian: I guess getting sick on heroin the only time I ever tried it. I vomited all night, and I vomited all the next morning.
Why did you try heroin?
Well, I drank an entire bottle of whiskey, and my roommate came home and asked me if I wanted to try an opiate. So I said "sure" and then I regretted it.
Did you inject it? No, no, we snorted it. Shit, I felt good for about 30 minutes after that, but then I was puking my brains out for, like, an hour. Then I threw up all the next day.
Do you recommend it?
I guess to some people, if they like opiates. I mean, it felt good for a while, but I thought it felt worse than it felt good.
Pariusz: That's a very good question. About one year ago, I passed out, I had, what do they call the... the brain trauma?
I think so. I drank with my friend for a few hours, and I lost control. I don't know how I went from his apartment to my home. I was so drunk that for a few days after, I had trouble getting re-oriented. I don't drink that much ever. I drink on Easter, and on that holiday, you know, the big December 24th…
Christmas. And the US holiday, Thanksgiving. Just three or four times a year. But this time, my friend invited me over, it'd been a long time since we'd had a conversation. He had, you won't believe this, moonshine—in New York. That moonshine was 140 proof. I don't even remember the night. The next day, I noticed I had a few marks on my head.
So, the experience really changed your drinking habits?
Since then I just have one bottle of beer, one glass of wine, one drink of brandy with grape juice—that's it, no more! If there were one hundred bottles of top-shelf vodka right here, I'd take one shot, and walk away. That's how dramatic it was.