Usage over time.

sayarsan's picture

As the usage tracker on this site develops it is good fun seeing the various drugs we use and their frequency being plotted in a table. The biggest shame for me is that I couldn't have started doing this when I started taking drugs. From the days of my youth I have been of the opinion that my drug taking was something of a research assignment although at the time I seriously doubt if anyoune could have convinced me it was ok to publish anything pre-mortem. What a wasted youth not in terms of the wastage caused by taking drugs so much as that caused by taking drugs in a virtual vacuum. In many instances I was taking a drug the first time for me and for the first time for anybody I knew which made it something worth recording for the useful knowledge the experience might provide to others inclined to do likewise.
From typical beginnings in 1972 smoking pot at a grade 12 form party and the next few years when hallucinogens especially LSD and mushrooms were the drugs of choice I never seemed to know anyone who had a great deal of knowledge about what they were doing except for the odd medical student whose knowledge usually stemmed from textbooks and only rarely was tempered by experience until I embarked on a campaign of opiate use in the face of serious injury and tragedy. Opiates are different from hippy drugs, the effects, the people and their reasons for using all add up to a very different picture and the way society looks at them and their users is very different too. Instead of being eccentric or at worst a little deviant the user is criminal and at worst evil which is a terrible way to look at the hapless fools who use them. Hapless fools they usually are at least in the first place, my Mother warned me that "you never know if you will become an addict until after you have tried them" and being a nurse she was right. The funny thing being that the first coupla times i tried 'em was fun but expensive and not good enough to get worked up about until brain experienced circumstances which indicated their use in a big way. Addiction is an occupational hazard and can be avoided but it takes a long time to learn and the means to do so aren't that easy to come by in a state of prohibition.
I was a little late when I started to do busts in order to get drugs and was envious of the stories recounted by old hands who told of cans (ampoules) of Di-Acetyl Morphine found in an unlocked drawer of an old pharmacy, left over from the 50's and still good to the last drop, the wooden drug cupboards in the days before microwave and infrared alarms. Still we did manage to get our hands on a wide variety of synthetic and semi-synthetic opiates including one which ruined the major surface veins on the arms of about three of us. The same drug (Themalon) had an idiosyncratic effect on the breathing so the first person to shoot it up, they were hype-tabs, went into a coughing fit and as an asthmatic felt he was on deaths door for a few minutes. Ketamine was a first from Vet Sc. back in 76 and we also got PCP (Angel Dust) but in my ignorance threw it away due to an urban myth. Apart from the risk the drugs were free and although I never got any large quantities there was always more than a few shots; grams of Special K, 100's mg's of morphine, pethidine and sadly grams of barbiturates which still rank as a vile drug in my estimation unless of course they are used clinically.
An interesting exercise despite the dangers but unfortunately damn near impossible for anyone else to benefit from the experiences I should be grateful I am still alive. Perhaps the biggest shame is that although I tried opium in 1973 nobody knew what they were doing and we didn't feel a thing and it wasn't until more than 20 years later I learned what a useful drug it is and how easy to control from the users perspective. So easy to produce, so hard to get it's one of the most closely guarded secrets in the drug world.

randomness