One day around ’98, I was hanging out in my apartment with my roommate when our friend Geri showed up to hang out and smoke some weed.
“The craziest thing happened to me on the way over here. Check this out.” And Geri pulled out a condom, tied at the top, filled with about twelve little pills. “I was walking through the strip-mall at the bottom of the hill and passed this guy and he held out his hand as to give me a high-five. I didn’t want to be rude so I gave the guy a quick high-five as I was walking and he just slipped this into my hand. I’d never seen the guy before in my life. So I just kept on walking. I didn’t want to stop and ask, cuz I thought maybe the cops were watching him or something and he wanted to get rid of it… but I don’t know… what if he thought I was somebody else… he could be a dealer who just gave them to the wrong person… or maybe he’s just a nice guy who decided to give me some free drugs.”
So my roommate Kasper, and our other buddy Jean, immediately suggested that we start taking some and see what they are.
“We should just have one person take one,” I suggested. “Just in case there’s something nasty in them.”
So Jean and Kasper both laughed at my paranoia. “What do you think the guy poisoned them or something – put some PCP in there?”
“You never know; there’s nothing stopping them from doing something to those pills—“
“If you go through the drive-through, do you worry that your hamburger was poisoned?”
And I did see their point. If someone wanted to do something nasty like that they’d find a less expected way to do it. And I also wanted to try the drugs. Maybe they were something good…
But I had to leave to go to my mom’s house, for a reason I do not recall, so I could not partake. Instead I watched my three friends each take a single pill. They wanted to pop another one, but I insisted that they stick to one each in case they were really potent or something.
So I took off on my motor-scooter to visit my mom. When I got there, I obviously didn’t mention the condom-pills, but for some reason she decided to launch into a speech about my drug use. I found her lecture kind of ridiculous because she kept giving examples of problems associated with drugs that I’d never even tried. I had no interest in coke or heroin or meth or any of those things. I just wanted to smoke pot, maybe take a few mushrooms here and there and maybe occasionally have some fun with some prescription pain-killers or something, but no matter what I said, I couldn’t seem to convince her that I was not rapidly destroying my life.
She insisted everyone who smokes pot eventually becomes a heroin or meth addict. I tried to argue, but she just kept insisting that you can’t just stick with the soft drugs.
So I finally said, “Well, we’ll have to wait and see. In ten years when I’m still smoking pot and doing just fine for myself, you’ll see that you have no idea what you’re talking about.”
“You’ll be dead in less than a year,” she said.
“What?” I asked. “You really believe that?”
“Of course,” she replied. “There’s no way anyone can survive the way you’re going. You think you can survive ten years as a pot smoker?” She put her head in her hands. “You’re absolutely out of your mind if you think you can survive like this…”
It was quite painful to see her that fearful, and I must admit that I understand why most people don’t tell their parents about their drug use because they don’t want to cause this kind of irrational panic.
Now, as a side note I should mention that this happened over ten years ago, and I have been smoking pot regularly ever since and have not changed my drug-use nor risk-taking policies. I’m now a programmer whose built web-applications that have been seen by millions of people, and I’ve written a few novels. I’m not dead in a ditch, and I’m still smoking pot.
So I left not too long after arriving, went home and got an update on the mystery-pills. “Here,” Kasper said. “Take three.”
And Geri and Jean both agreed that I needed to take three.
“It’s only been like forty-five minutes,” I said. “You’ve already taken three each?”
“Yeah, they weren’t doing nothing.”
“How do you know they don’t take a long time to kick in?”
“Bah! They’re fine. Three is good and fun, but one or two, you’re just not going to feel it. What do you really think is gonna happen?”
And I just tried to think about it logically for a second. Almost every day I would go to a restaurant and get food from someone I had never met. When you go to McDonald’s you never watch the food preparation. You have no way to know they haven’t slipped something malicious into your burger, but you trust that they won’t because there’s just no reason for them to do it.
And I thought about riding my motor scooter through traffic. At any moment I could have been caught by a mirror and thrown in front of a truck and died, yet I hadn’t given the danger a second thought.
And I realized that yes, there was a chance these drugs were tainted or something, but the chances of dying in a car accident on a Tuesday afternoon were far greater. And I didn’t want to live like my mom, terrified that a demon would pop out of my drugs and change my personality.
So I popped three pills. Forty-five minutes later I started feeling very relaxed and comfortable, and felt funny, pleasurable sensations throughout my body, which lasted into the night. We hung out, laughed, watched TV, cooked some dinner, and ultimately had a very pleasant evening.
And that was it. End of story.
Sorry if you wanted a big dramatic vomit-filled hang-over, or a baby crawling on the ceiling or the vision of bugs all over my flesh. Nope. None of that happened. We simply had a nice, fun, relaxing evening.