I have often heard of the “gateway drug” of pot, usually by people who’ve never actually tried it and like to quote from bone-headed “scientists” who also haven’t tried it. With that said, if you are one of those who once you get a taste of one drug, you’re a kid in the proverbial candy store until you tried them all… then you were already like that from the start. As to whether that was genetic or environmental is still unknown. I was fine with just pot and my cigarettes… and booze (wow) for the most part.
It could have been the dorm-mate for whom we had to take a rotation to either hold down or supervise until their really bad acid trip passed. Back then, you could get some seriously dangerous shit mixed in and it was a gamble to buy the stuff. I wasn’t really interested in it either. I didn’t like the idea of my faculties any more warped than they already were.
I did, however, try mushrooms. My former brother-in-law had brought me some for my birthday they had grown themselves (I often wonder if it was my lax attitude that made them tell me their deviant activities or my bad influence, since this was after the divorce). They went over all the reactions and side effects I might have with it, and we and the small group of people we had gathered dove in. My roommate and I felt nothing, were bored and decided to hit the clubs. The rest of the group looked like an old folk’s home an hour after medication time.
We had been playing pool (almost billiards to my chaps to the east) for about two hours when we suddenly looked at one another and started laughing hysterically. It was the single most hilarious night of my life. I didn’t see anything weird, I felt pretty normal, but every damn thing was funny. Of course, me and my constant ineptitude only made my laughter that much worse. I was in a tiny cramped bathroom, pretty buzzed from the copious amounts of alcohol… Why I felt the need to tie my shoe while my pants were still down is beyond me, but I propped my foot on the sink and went to go to it, but the floor was a bit slick (let’s not think too much on that shall we), and I fell backwards, my head hit the light-switch and I spent the next ten minutes on my back in a dark, nasty bathroom laughing my ass off with my pants down.
Ever heard the term “what goes up must come down?” this apparently works with drugs as well and I got a firsthand look on why people continue to do them. They want to stay up. I was home, washed until the hot water heater had been bled dry and introducing the remaining conscious members we’d left behind the nuances of the carpet picnic and the awesomeness that is summer sausage, sharp cheddar, hot mustard and raspberry ham on a thick cracker, still sniggering at nothing, when this tight white hot ball of rage from deep down did a slow rush over me.
I hated everything and everyone. I wanted to say awful things I didn’t mean, I wanted to get violent again. I remember trying to explain what was happening to me in a slow, broken way, so at least those around me could make a choice to leave or perhaps lock me in a closet til it passed. It took an epic amount of self control, and I think I popped a couple benadryl and conked out because I knew it was just going to get ugly for me to stay conscious any longer. It really was the best decision I could have made. So yeah, no further interest in mushrooms again either.
Now I will completely agree it was complete escapism for me, but it was also a part of me that figured if Grand thought I was so awful, I might has well do something to earn the title. It’s a very confusing bit of contradictions. I know I did it because I was rebelling against the perfection that was being expected of me. I would have done anything to not be what Grand wanted me to be, but at the same time… I didn’t ever want to get caught.
If Grand had wanted me to be a mafia drug lord, I probably would have been a straight A student and joined a coalition against drugs and weapons… but kept all evidence of such locked away.
To me, that sounds like a pretty normal m.o. for a teenager. I grew out of it, especially as Grand’s hold became nonexistent and it finally struck me that anything I did would have no further repercussions from them, because I was a muthafuckin’ adult who paid my own bills ‘n’ shit.
When you have run away from something long enough, then realize it cannot do anything to you any longer… ever felt the need to taunt it?
When this hit me as fact, I slowly savored the moments where I would direct conversations with Grand to the past and just slowly remark on the things I did get away with. The shock and horror than ensued was amazingly satisfying.
“Oh hey, Grand, remember that time we visited your mom in the nursing home and you commented on how cheerful I seemed? I was high as balls. Same for the family reunion. I had to smoke to put up with your shit.”
“Oh yeah, me and (cousin) used to make bombs in their room, why do you think I have so much cannon fuse around here? You didn’t know?… huh….”
“What I pretty much spent most of my first year college tipsy and/or stoned and made a pretty damn good GPA. Though it does make me wonder if it would have been better if I hadn’t… though I probably would have knifed a guy.”
“I smuggled in some 70 lbs of booze when I came back from Germany… didn’t even last a year.”
I slowly painted a picture of a somewhat unstable deviant. At first there was shock and horror, but then… for the first time, Grand had to acknowledge what they knew about me and realized I was riddling some of it with bullshit to skew the image. It made me wonder if that’s not how I should have handled it back then, I just didn’t have the guts.
I once even asked Grand why, even when I was perfectly old enough, they had never once left me home alone (I had always had some sort of older personage entrusted with the duty of watching me like a jailer), even for the briefest of trips.
Grand said they feared that I would have a wild party while they were gone.
I was stunned. I stared at them for a long while and uttered words that would come back to haunt me years later when I asked Spawn if they wanted to have some friends over for their birthday…
“Why the hell would I want a bunch of people up in my house, breaking my shit?”
That was my wild party side, folks. Embrace the majesty.