Right around when I graduated from high school, I also graduated from the world of pot to psychedelics. I love smoking weed, and while at first it was really psychedelic and fun, after a while as it becomes more routine, its more relaxing and mellow, I still love it, it makes day to day life much more enjoyable without too much damage done, but when I want to get that new experience again, but in an even more powerful and thought provoking way, I eat mushrooms.
The first time I ate mushrooms, I ate only one gram, as the three of us decided to split an eighth because we’d rather all trip together than leave someone out. It was fun, a little trippy, very positive, but nothing major. I would continue to eat small ammounts the next few times, 1.5, then a half eighth, 2 grams….i was really frightened by the concept of ego loss at first, and I wanted to very gradually build myself up for it, because at the time, I feel I had significantly lower self esteem than I do now, and for some reason, I thought I wasn’t mentally stable enough to go through a real psychedelic experience. Ill add that I think my boost in self esteem has a lot to do with my recent experiences. After messing arround with less than 2 grams, getting very trippy effects but keeping it to a level where it wouldn’t get out of control, I decided to eat an eighth.
My good friend would also be eating an eighth, and the two girls that were with us would split an eighth. We were at my (parents’) house, nobody there but us. We have a nice trail that goes down into the closest thing to “woods” around here, and also connects to a city park, which is awesome at night.
This was my grounds a couple years back for just about all the pot my friends and I smoked. It’s a perfect design for a suburban neighborhood – a trail that goes down into the trees and shrubs down the hill, where the kids can sneak off to smoke weed and drink unnoticed. Anyways, im really confortable down there, and nature is awesome, so it’s the perfect place for me to be on mushrooms.
The trip got very intense, to levels that I never had imagined, I ended up finding a bench to lay down on and look at the stars and moon, and I held everyone up there for like an hour, they all wanted to go but I thought they were insane, I really wanted to stay there untill the sunrise, I saw no reason to leave, although it was freezing cold and I was wearing a t shirt, it didn’t bother me, I just could not understand how they could want to leave this – I came to the conclusion that in my state of mind, I was allowed a chance to stop all the running around in circles,a nd look at the stars….nobody ever stops to look at the stars, because they’re in too much of a hurry. I thought surely my friends, in the same state as me, would see the beauty of the sky and want to stay as well, I tried to explain it to them, but they didn’t see it like I did, so we left, maybe it wasn’t an hour….it could have been 20 minutes for 4 hours for all I know, we didn’t really keep track of time the whole night, so certain parts seem to have happened really quick, and other moments, the really amazing ones, seem drawn out in my memory, hours long. When we arrived back, we got into a rediculous situation that was driving me insane….one of the girls had taken an extremely large bong hit that made her cough…and cough….and continue to cough for fucking ever, at least 15 minutes, really loud, water didn’t help, and eventually she started hyperventilating. She said she needed air, and she walked out, and 5 minutes later when we went to find here, she was gone. My friend and I were pacing back and forth in my front yard at 4 in the morning, praying that this situation would not involve police. It was driving me insane, and I felt the complete opposite of the powerful feeling I felt looking at the stars – suddenly I felt useless, confused, hating myself, my mind racing on everything anyone said or did. My friend finally found here laying on the sidewalk behind her parked car. She swore he saved her life, and continued hyperventilating for the next half hour or so, untill she forgot to breathe heavy, and started laughing because she realized she was just tripping and she was going to be fine.
After this trip, I had a very different perspective. Life was very beautiful for the next few days, and I was refreshed, renewed, and my brain had been loaded with the wisdom of a hundred years but no way to translate it into anything very useful, except to be a more positive, confident person. Well, that actually is very useful.
I probably ate mushrooms one or two more times after this before I stumbled across the opportunity to take LSD. I had always said to myself, im not going to try acid untill im like 25, but after my mushroom experiences I was pretty confident that I could handle a hit. My friends and I each ended up taking 3-4 though, because it was extremely week and took about 4 hours to kick in.
But the most important thing about this experience was the setting: we had borrowed a friend’s chevy suburban, loaded up our camping gear, and headed off to a campground in a very remote area, with really secluded campspots if you know your way around, so it was perfect. We had intended to start the trip early, so by dark, it was at least past the peak, but the shit took about 4 hours, maybe 5 to kick in, and by that time, we had eaten all of it, because we were getting worried it was bunk. But surely enough, when it really started getting pitch black, I started to notice trees dancing, lights flashing in the sky, and a very mellow body feeling, not at all like mushrooms. I was experiencing awesome visual efffects, but for the most part, I felt really normal. This probably means the acid was really weak, but I don’t know, it got pretty insane. We all got scared by 10 or 11, after we had been using the suburban’s headlights to frequently light up our surroundings because we were all freaking out, when I think back on it, its hilarious, but at the time, it was absolutely necessary to start the car up every 15 minutes to recharge the battery (we had the radio on for listening at our fire) and turn on the headlights and make sure the pitch black around us was still real. Our backup plan in the beginning was to put the back rows of seats down in the suburban, lay our sleeping bags in there, and smoke pot and listen to music if the outside got to be too much. I guess it was inevitable, because it sounded like a really good idea once we were all hallucinating out in the dark. So we hop in the suburban, and put on the 10 cd changer, that was loaded up by the dude we borrowed the car from. He must have known we were eating acid or something, because the line up was fucking awesome, and it was my first time hearing any of it: Pink floyd’s Dark side of the moon, wish you were here, both sides of the wall, echoes, and then some led zeppelin, which was very relieving after the psychological breakdown we all experienced listening to floyd on acid. It was nothing short of completely amazing and beautiful, and I had a new found love for pink floyd. I saw on the run, in the form of bright colored patterns superimposed on everything, it was the song, I saw it moving and making the sounds, it was incredible. The airplane crash at the end had us all shaken – every moment of it was incredible. We were all peaking out the windows, watching faces in trees, watching this huge tree up the hill grow, watching the scary night on acid from the protection of our big steel box, to a soundtrack. My friends and I would all get nervous and tense as a song was ending, wondering what insane sound effects pink floyd was going to use to distort my perception next. The trip was entirely formed on pink floyd – I feel that if we had never smoked weed and listened to this incredible music, the trip would have stayed simple and mildly visual like it was at first. The intense moments of my trip were the intense moments of the music. I remember holding my hand up in front of my face, and watching all of the skin turn grey and decay, right down to the bone, then after a blink it was normal again. Acid is the holy grail. Acid is life changing experience, acid is the deffinition of psychedelic, of hallucinogen. Acid is perfect. Mushrooms make my body feel out of proportion, weird intestine feelings, strange and scary thoughts that race by so fast you cant escape it – it becomes a loop of negativity that you dwell on untill something very positive can snap you out of it. I got this to some degree on acid, but overall it was much more happy, and the mellow body feeling made me feel much more comfortable with my tripping mind – it seemed a lot less stressful than the usual mushroom trip. This doesn’t really make sense though, because for the next few days afterwards, I felt entirely depressed and ‘hung over’. I just wanted to sit there alone with silence. I didn’t want to go to work, I didn’t want to smoke weed because it made me hallucinate, I didn’t want to watch tv, or write about my amazing experience, because in comparison, life seemed very boring and routine. I wanted to go back to that state of mind, total vacation, out in the woods without a worry except what the next pink floyd song would be.
So I have come to the conclusion that while acid is probably a lot more fun, mushrooms are much more valuable, as visuals are trippy but what you really get insight from out of such an experience is your new perception of reality, and your new consciousness, your new and very alien but also very familiar thought process. It reminds me of being a kid – it is very uncertain, you never now if your going to go up or down next, but when you do, you go way up , or way down.
Later I moved out into an apartment with too many people probably, but it seemed like a good idea at the time. I was always the first one to suggest mushrooms, and always the one who pushed it to the point where we all bought them and ate them together, and the experiences really brought us together. For a while we were all hippys, living in a flashback, eating mushrooms and listening to good music and that’s was all life was about. I think I ate mushrooms like 5 times in one month, it became too much. The experiences got routine, overall pretty negative, and the environment of our tiny, cramped messy apartment became very depressing in the long run, and it led me to become introverted and self conscious on all of my trips, and I finally realized that I just need to go see nature, fresh air, percieve the world, not a tiny apartment with black lights and posters and some insane mind-bending music. On one trip, my friend showed me one of his favorite bands…the butthole surfers. The cd was called ‘electric larry land’ and had some strange scribbly drawings on it. The 6th track, ‘my brothers wife” is the first thing I ever listened to that alone could scare me. I felt it coming out of the speakers and creeping up on me, drowning my brain with unnatural sounds that made just sitting there and listening to it confusing. This routine use of mushrooms in the same place was doing the same thing to mushrooms that it had done to marijuana, except instead of becoming mellow and enjoyable, the trips were weird and without any of the profound insight that had made me fall in love with mushrooms in the beginning.
So here I am and I havent eaten a psychedelic in a few months, im craving another trip, I want to go to the woods again, or the desert. I am very serious about this concept…I want to go do it right now. But my friends are a little less enthusiastic about it. Whenever we eat shrooms, we all love it, but it seems strange to them to go out of the way collecting some money and making plans to take a little trip out to nature to trip and find something. I think it is necessary for me to do this once in a while, as since I’ve become an ‘adult’ and left high school, every trip has been a significant step forward in my psychological growth. I know people change a lot in these years, but for me, these changes seem to be defined by my psychedelic experiences – I really am renewed, and changed, after each one – every time I suddenly ‘figure out everything’ in the middle my peak while listening to dark side of the moon, I really do bring something good with me, that I will hold on to for a long time in the future, something that will define a part of who I am, when I finally figure that out.
It’s a beautiful thing. Psychedelics for everyone.