a small, self-incriminating survey

Unlike many of my friends, Dr. Hofmann’s problem child, D-Lysergic Acid Diethylamide, has not played a large part in my adult or even adolescent life. I never did it in college or after, and for the most part haven’t felt the urge: I did it exactly once in High School (note to feds: that would be long past the statute of limitations expiration. note to mom: I’m fine, and I made honor roll that semester), and while I basically enjoyed the experience, the come-down and hangover were so time-consuming (three days and change) that I never felt motivated to repeat it.

But everything is grist for the subconscious’ mill, and a few nights back, I had what for me is a fairly typical anxiety dream: “Oh no, I have to do something important/responsible, and I’m overdue/underprepared/naked!” Only this time, the specfic scenario was unusual: in the dream, I’d just taken a fairly substantial dose of LSD, and realized shortly afterward that oops, I actually had to be at work the next morning. As the dream unfolded, I made a quick, panicked inventory of my options, trying to figure out if there was some way I could forestall the inevitable, when of course I realize…I’m already tripping. Oh bother.

What was interesting, however, and what prompted this post, was how I realized that I was already tripping. It wasn’t any obvious melty visual effect or other deformation of reality. It was a taste, or maybe a smell. A burning/ozone/electric taste in the back of my nose and throat. It’s hard to describe because it was synaesthetic: it wasn’t really the taste of anything tastable at all, it was the taste of something buzzing.

I woke up, remembering the taste, and to my surprise the memory was familiar: I’d tasted the same thing the time I actually did LSD in waking life. I’d completely forgotten it for all these years afterward, but apparently my brain had considered it worthy of long-term storage, because there it was, still filed away, still waiting.

Since then, I’ve asked a couple of friends who’ve also experimented with ergot’s freaky relative, and about two-thirds of them have reported tasting or smelling the same…thing. So I’m curious, dear readers: how about you?

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