Last summer, after talking with some friends about their experiences shrooming, I decided to do a little research on the affects.
Last summer, after talking with some friends about their experiences shrooming, I decided to do a little research on the affects. Feeling satisfied with this, I gathered a couple friends from college who were around over the summer. None of us had ever done shrooms before. This is our story....
We did it on a Satuday night. Mary-Anne came over early. We rented some
movies: Alice in Wonderland (the Disney version, not the Czech!), Emperor's New
Groove, and Fear and Loathing. I also had Sealab 2021 at home.
It's 6 o'clock and Noah will be another 20 minutes. We decide
to start eating while waiting for him. I bring out the
zip-lock bag. Hmmm... how do we do this? We each take a
couple. She wants to take it light and says that'll be it for
her. I'm more playful and eat a little extra. I had been told
that these would taste bad. It's true. They're gross. But
since it was dry, it wasn't so bad. We ate Frango mints to
cover the aftertaste.
About 6:30, Noah arrives. Mary-Anne and I are in good spirits.
Not sure if we're feeling anything yet, but laughing easily. I
hand a couple to Noah. He asks if this is the same amount we
ate. Hard to judge. We say about the same. But Noah makes the
mistake of drinking some water before eating them. The taste
is intensified, and Noah makes a terribly disgusted look as
he grudgingly chews and swallows. He leaves part of
it untouched though, refusing to eat any more, so I eat it myself.
At this point we're all just sort of joking around with each
other. Noah asks questions about what to expect. I offer a
vague range of possibilities. We're listening to music and
taking it easy, just talking and laughing. Fifteen minutes
later, Mary-Anne says the lamp in my room seems brighter. Not
noticing any difference, I roll my eyes at this and go to the
bathroom. I look at the toilet. The toilet is breathing. This
I come out of the bathroom. I tell them: It's happening. The
toilet's breathing. But they don't understand what I mean.
It's... breathing??? Yeah. It's inhaling. And then it's
exhaling. Like lungs. Breathing.
We decide to go outside, since at home we're still limited to
my room. For some reason, this takes a while. We're still
talking and getting distracted by image effects. Objects look
strange and seem to be moving. Noah and Mary-Anne are feeling
a little nauseous (for some reason, I don't). We drink some
water and hang out more. We notice also that our eyes and
noses are getting rheumy. Side effects. I look at the
remaining mushrooms and take out a large stem, saying I'll put
it in my shirt pocket. (I'm wearing a casual, button-shirt
with the sleeves rolled up.) But I don't see any pocket. I
announce that I don't have a pocket after all. But ten seconds
later, one appears. So I do have a pocket now. I put the stem
Finally, we go outside. There's a small park behind my
building, so we go out the back door into the alley. But I
forget that there's a fence all along this side. We'll have to
go around the block to get in. Okay, so we start walking along
the alley. Time seems to be slowing down. Everything looks
different, but not in any specific way to describe. It feels
like we're taking a journey just to walk down this alley. It's
also not so easy to walk. We're not feeling so coordinated,
but laughing just the same. I take the stem out of my pocket
and bite half of it. Mary-Anne says this is a bad idea. I respond
by gleefully eating the other half.
We decide that going all the way around to the park is too
much of a hassle. Plus they're feeling a little more nauseous.
We take my street to get back to my place. Along the way,
things get weirder. The trees along the sidewalk seem to fill
the scene. It's like we're traveling through a forest. At this
point we're not talking much; just quietly walking and looking
around. Then, behind us, something completely strange. An
African woman with three or four children (Mary-Anne and Noah
insist there were 10 of them.) One child is being carried on
her back. The others are following behind her. As she passes
us, she's scolding her children in an African language. Time
is moving slowly. We can hear every syllable she utters.
There's no other explanation: We are traveling through a
forest in Africa.
We stop and let them get far from us. It's too hard to keep
ourselves from laughing. It's just all too amusing. As we
continue walking, I realize that I can actually see the "air."
We go back inside, and into my room. Our pupils are gigantic.
The lamp light is filling the room. I have to turn off the
bathroom light anytime someone leaves it on, otherwise that
light floods into the room. We're staring around at my room.
The visuals are getting stronger. It's hard to get yourself to
move around. You just want to sit and watch. We finally turn
on the music again. Gypsy Kings. It's slow and calming. This
is good. Noah and I are lying on my bed. Mary-Anne is sitting
in a comfortable butterfly chair. Objects are dancing. They're
dancing to the music. Hallucinations are forming. I see mostly
mosaics. Aztec images. Some Egyptian. I also see symbols
floating and dancing. I look at the paintings in my room. They
come alive. They're breathing. Moving. Dancing. They're real.
Noah describes all of this as a fiesta. He's right. But he's
not looking at the paintings. He's afraid to look at them.
Instead, he's staring at my blank ceiling. He says it looks
like an iTunes visual display. But I'm distracted by other
things. I look at our reflection from the television in
the corner (it's turned off). I can see Noah in the
reflection, moving his feet. But the reflection isn't showing
what he's doing. The reflection is a different Noah. As if
there are two Noahs. This is too strange. Meanwhile, Mary-Anne
is looking around, mostly at her arms and hands. I don't see
what she sees. I just see her looking at her hands. I go back
to looking at the mosaics, at dancing cups, and at the
paintings. The music sounds strange, and it often feels like
it's repeating itself. And each 5 second pause between songs
feels like a full minute.
Some time passes, and I want to change the music. But the
shrooms are hitting Noah pretty strongly. He doesn't want
anything to change. If I suggest a change, Noah makes a
shooshing sound. (He'll later claim that one time he could see
the sound waves leaving his mouth.) We're having trouble talking,
even thinking. The music keeps confusing us, and Noah thinks
I'm doing something. An example of our logic at this moment:
Noah: "Okay, there's two different options. Option A and
Option B. Option A you changed the music but you've changed
it back. Or Option B we stick with Option A."
Me: "Option A."
He takes the remote for my iPod speaker system and places it away from me, on
his side of the bed. But later he's not satisfied that this is safe enough, so he
puts it next to me. This makes sense to him at the time.
Later on, he begins getting worried. He wants someone else
around who can make sure we're safe. I have to explain that I
can't get my dad. Noah goes back and forth between being
happily absorbed and being fitfully worried.
I step outside my room to see if my dad is
gone. Everything is so strange now. I have to go back and
forth through the apartment three times just to be sure. He's
gone. I tell the others.
But Noah's getting more anxious now. He calls a friend of
ours, Bryan. (Bryan had actually said he would stop by to hang
out with us.) Noah insists on giving Bryan the directions, but
Noah's completely confused and not making any sense over the
phone. His sense of logic is breaking down.
Mary-Anne and I go into the living room to talk. We decide we
have to get Bryan over here. Problem is, she doesn't have his
number, my cell phone is dead, and we're not about to approach
Noah at the moment. I know that I have Bryan's number written
on a piece of paper. But where is it? We go into my study,
where my phone is. We look around. Everything feels like an
eternity. We can't find the number. I grab the phone anyway.
Conveniently, now I also have the piece of paper with the
number. We're dumbfounded. How did this happen? We call Bryan
and give him directions. Now we wait. It'll be 15 minutes
before he arrives, but it might as well be an hour.
Mary-Anne and I go to the living room. Noah's still in my
room. He's not making any noises, so we feel more at ease. She
goes to turn on the television, but the cable isn't working
tonight. So we get static. Really loud static. I freak out and
turn it off. We hear Noah complain about the noise from my
room. Now everything's quiet again. Mary-Anne wants to watch
one of the movies then. But they're in my room. This seems
like a difficult journey. Too difficult for now.
She's feeling hungry and gets some food from the kitchen.
Pickles, of all things. Oh well. We're talking. Bryan arrives.
Mary-Anne and Bryan are talking. Bryan's talking about the lab
research he was doing that day. He works with rats, injecting
them with different drugs (emphetamine, cocaine, others....).
He talks about how he pricked himself with tranquilizer by
accident this time. It's difficult to follow the conversation.
Mary-Anne seems to be in pretty good shape, but everything to
me is still bizarre. And I'm shaken by this idea that Bryan
has a drug in him. I didn't quite understand. Was he okay? I
needed someone around who had a grip with reality. Sights were
different. Sounds were different. And the way things felt was
different too. There's no confidence from others who had this
going on too. But most importantly, while most difficult to
explain, is that we were different. Our minds were altered.
The world around us was different, but we weren't just
observers! We were a part of this world.
We put on the movie Fear and Loathing. Not much later, Noah
comes out of my room. He's standing in front of us, breathing
deeply and holding his knees. He's okay. But still shaken. He
sits down. I'm worried that he's angry with me, and I curl up
in the sofa. But he seems okay. He keeps saying, "Wow.... That was
crazy...." He and Mary-Anne are getting over it, though still
feeling effects. I'm still in another world. The movie is
freaking me out. I've never seen it before, and I can't tell
if the hallucinations are part of the movie or in my head.
Noah also gets uncomfortable. We plead to Mary-Anne to let us
watch Emperor's New Groove, which she's reluctant to watch.
But seeing our agony, she agrees.
Noah and I have both seen this before. We're excited. Though for some
reason the DVD won't let us skip the Disney previews. I
keep trying the remote but it won't let me. I feel frustrated,
not knowing if this is the movie's fault or my own. But
Mary-Anne tries too and says it's part of the movie. Suddenly
I get an urge to check my room, to see that everything is
okay. I get up and run to my room. Something feels wet. Did a
cup of water spill over? But there's no cups on the floor. The
bathroom door is open, with the light on. The light is
painfully bright. I run to turn it off. I'm back in my
bedroom. Now there's a cup on the floor. But it's full. I put
it on a shelf. There's so many bottles of water everywhere. It
makes me uncomfortable. And the floor still feels wet. I go
back to the living room.
The movie has started. Bryan and Mary-Anne ask what the movie
is about, and Noah and I try to explain. But the task is too
difficult. We're trying to remember. He turns into a Llama....
Who is he....? He's the Emperor. Why does he change....? Well,
he changes because he changes. No, he changes because she
changes him. She does it. Because she's his advisor and he
doesn't appreciate her. But how does she change her? She just
does. Oh, she uses the potion. But now, why does she want to
change him into a Llama? That's strange.
And at just that moment in the movie, the character says
exactly this: What? A Llama? Why is he a Llama? He's supposed
to be dead!
So that was strange. Even stranger, every time I looked at the
movie, it was always her talking with her guard, Kronk. How
was this happening? Nothing was as it felt it should be. At
this point, it was mainly my logic and connection with
time/reality that was obscured. Not many hallucinations. But
then suddenly something on the screen would come alive. Not
everything together. Just certain things. At one point Noah
and I jump up. We hear something that sounds like a fire
alarm, coming from my room. We run to my room. It turns out to
be his cell phone, which was on silent, vibrating on the bed.
Bryan and Mary-Anne didn't hear a thing. We had super-acute
hearing. (They would tell us later that they couldn't follow
the movie because the volume was way too soft.) While in my
room, somehow the music starts playing again. It sounds very
loud. Noah and I are confused. We turn it off. We continue
watching the movie, but then I start getting very
uncomfortable with the idea that someone has turned into a
Llama. I suddenly begin to wonder where my keys are. I go to
my bedroom and check my pockets. But my pockets are empty. I
go to the bathroom and then come back out. When I'm in the
hallway, I check my pockets and they're full again. I have my
keys. All is well.
Not long after, we decide that it won't be so good if my dad
suddenly shows up. It's 11:30. My dad could be back soon, or
he could be back in a couple hours. This uncertainty was too
troublesome. We talk some more, and eventually Bryan takes
Noah and Mary-Anne with him. I can come too, but the logic at
the moment tells me I'm supposed to stay. But before leaving,
they go to my room to get their stuff. The floor is wet. I dry
it with a towel. But we can't find any cups lying around. I
decide to let it be. I'm meanwhile distracted by the floor.
There are footprints on the floor, and they're moving around.
My bed is breathing, and my room is way larger than it was before.
They're gone, and I feel odd. I decide to straighten up. I
want everything to look normal, so I start throwing away the
water. But everything becomes its own task. Every room I enter
demands it's own attention. I'm talking to my surroundings and to myself.
Trying to figure out what I'm doing. Going over a huge process to reach
a conclusion, then going somewhere else and forgetting why.
And then I get the idea to come up with an answer, and go
through the same steps to get to the same conclusion, or
I find myself counting and identifying things. Those are two
cups. One is full, and one is mostly not full. The one that is
full is not unfull, and the one that is mostly not full is
also not full. All of this takes a long time.
Then I decided I should watch something. Or maybe hear
something. Which one? I put on the television. It's Cowboy
Bebop: The Movie. The scene I turn on has Spike at bazaar,
asking some guy about his business.
He sells drugs. I had turned on the movie at the one moment
when there's any mention of drugs whatsoever. But the movie is
too slow. I'm not interested in it. I try music, but it feels
out of place. I want to interact with something, not sit by.
I go online. (And yes, my computer screen was alive, even
3D.) I check facebook. I have a message. It's from Caroline (a friend of mine).
Here's her message:
"fun jeff! How are you doing?! I hope you have had an awesome
summer...are you an O-aide? We must party together when we get
back...and I suppose other people can come to. Miss you! See
you soon Mister! I'll take a rum and coke..."
Of all the nights, I get this message at just this moment. There's no such thing
as a mere coincidence anymore. Anything strange is REALLY strange.
Eventually I decided to go to sleep, and when I woke up, I was back. No more
dancing cups. No more living paintings. Not even breathing toilets. Actually, it
was a little sad, but I felt relaxed and in good-spirits. There's probably a lot
more to say about this. In the end, all I can tell people is that for a good five or
six hours, the three of us were literally insane. No matter how many stories you
might hear, it's not something a person can understand without going through
it. Tripping... is an experience. Different from anything else. Wonderful or even
frightning, but definitely different....