New website

Hello…

Is there anybody there..?

Probably not.. but just in case – I have a new website which incorporates the subject matter of this blog as well as music, comedy and whatever else pops into my psyche. I still plan on posting links about Psychedelics, so if you have been following and wish to get more, please now go over here:

Psychedelicacies

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OK… I admit it…

I’ve become one of “those guys”.

One of those guys who starts a blog and lets the muscle of self-expression slowly atrophy, all the while promising that soon there will be updates.. soon..

Honestly, I am thinking of launching a personal website soon and incorporating this into it so that there’s a bit more of an umbrella of randomness and not purely psychedelic. So stay tuned (assuming you were tuned already).

Change

It seems that much of my life up until this point has involved resistance to change. Yet change is inevitable. We often cannot leave a shop without it.

Silliness has crept into this post already, for of course I am not really talking about coins, but about the impermanence of all that we encounter on a daily basis; manifest in the moaning becry of those mourning their youth, or in an a regretful comment on the speed at which the years appear to be passing – and I have to admit to both, even at my relatively spritely age – it seems to be a problem. But we really can’t stop it. So we might as well get with it.

There seems to be a choice: to embrace or to resist the flow of life. Surely, things can’t be that simple, can they? The choice echoes a similar one  described by the great Bill Hicks:

“..it’s just a ride. And we can change it any time we want. It’s only a choice. No effort, no work, no job, no savings of money. Just a simple choice, right now, between fear and love.”

That quote is from his 1993 show, Revelations. It is part of a longer piece that he used to close his act. If you haven’t seen it, I couldn’t recommend a better way to spend 3 and a half minutes. The first time I saw that show it brought me to tears, and I can pinpoint the moment when I first heard ‘Just a Ride’ as the moment when I realised what I wanted to do with the lion’s share of my time on this planet.

It wasn’t until a couple of years later that I drew up the courage to seriously pursue this course. It is just recently that I have understood what he meant.

For to me, the choices are the same. To embrace change is to make new connections, to expand the sphere of what we will consider as being linked to us. To me it means greater velocity of motion, leading to greater interdependence and to greater unity. Conversely, to resist change is to stagnate. It is to fester, to close off our sphere of dependence and to atrophy in connection with the the rest of the universe. These appear to me as different definitions for the duality of love and fear. What else is fear but the feeling of being alone, of separation and isolation from that which makes us whole?

Fittingly, the more I seem to embrace change in my own life, the closer I seem to get to happiness and to acceptance of the state of affairs I find myself in. My dreams suddenly appear in front of me with an open path, and it feels as though the ride on which I am a passenger could be heading exactly where I most want it to go.

I would love to hear about your take on change.

On Losing One’s Shit

I had a humbling experience recently: A cold slice of humble pie, but without the pie – just cold. Pie would have been an improvement – even cold pie (so long as it was fruit-based). But I will move on, as the pie was not really the point. What I’m trying to say is that I lost my shit, both physically and mentally, and now I feel chastened.

There is a time in life for finding one’s shit, and so it goes that there too must be a time for losing it. I am not talking about the (relatively) measured response to, say, finding out your dog has fleas, or that your spouse is seeing somebody behind your back, or that you have burnt a pie (Damn, I knew I should have eaten before writing this) .

I am talking about when you lose your shit on drugs. Also known as HAVING A BAD TIME.

Now, if I were to try to recount all of the times this has happened to me, I would need a much bigger cup of coffee to write this post. For although they are finite in number (unlike, say, pi), they are numerous. If I discount alcohol, however, which everyone knows is a drink not a drug, then the number of occasions can be counted on one hand.

Here I will list the circumstances of these occasions, which I have turned into maxims based on the lessons that I learnt:

1.  If you are going to take a psychoactive drug that you have never taken before, and that you know very little about, dosing is not a competition. Taking unmeasured, generous, nay, greedy dips into a wrap of said substance may result in you being too high to interact with another human being. Subsequently, you may be dumped by your friends on your driving instructor (who sold you the drug), and unwittingly chat bollocks to him and his friends for 2 hours, before doing the macarena with him in a festival café.

2. If you are going to take a psychoactive drug that you have taken before, and that you know enough about, make sure that when you are advised by your friends to not place all substances in your possession in near identical, unlabelled wraps of paper in the same pocket, that you heed their warning. Such behaviour will help to avoid swallowing an unmeasured and excessive dose of a completely different drug in error, leading to complete disconnection from everyone that you meet at a night out that has been planned for several months. It may also prevent the loss of your wallet, phone, keys and glasses as well as antisocial stumbling into anyone within a 2 metre radius. If this advice is ignored, please be sure to thank and apologise your friends for shepherding you away from law enforcement officials, preventing you from falling down/up several sets of stairs, and the general embarrasment/worry that will have resulted from hanging out with an incomprehensible, sweating, ghostly mess for the evening.

3. If you are going to take a psychoactive drug that you have taken before, and that you know enough about, and of which you are sure of the correct dosage, don’t do so several hours after receiving some bad news, even if you ‘know how to handle it’. Smoking some weed that is known to be paranoia-inducing before the peak of such an experience may result in you freaking out and leaving the house to go for a walk in the cold and wet winter’s evening. If the change of setting to an unknown, dark and unfriendly environment should cause you to get wigged out by all the cars which are ‘moving way too fast’, return home immediately. Do not continue wandering the streets until corporate billboards have unsettled you to the point of forgetting you have drugged yourself, instead believing that you have been abducted without realising by the government and are living in a Truman-Show-like false reality populated by paid stooges. Upon such a false realisation, try not to throw your hat, scarf, gloves, keys and jacket to the ground, remove your shirt and run back to your house, which by this point you may also be convinced is a fake. As your housemate talks you down and convinces you that I might be better to go back and find your keys, try to rationalise against the idea that he is also a paid stooge whose primary job is to convince you of the authenticity of the false world you now believe yourself to be in.

If as a result of this sort of behaviour, you lock yourself out of your room and have to spend the night on the sofa, consider this a let off and decide to be more responsible in future.

In summary: stay safe, kids. Know your dosage, get your set and setting spot on and make sure you are surrounded by good people. Otherwise you might end up HAVING A BAD TIME, then writing therapeutic blog posts about your fuck-ups that are weighted disproportionately in favour of pie.