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Drug Guide for the Playa 2000
by Tokyo Rico

Have a few beers. Or have some wine. Or get buzzed on a shot or two. Just don't get really drunk! I've seen playa-dwellers mix just about every narcotic cocktail there is, and without question the most horrifying, most out-of-control, most dangerous, and most pathetic bummers I've ever witnessed were the result of folks getting down-on-your-knees drunk in the desert. Think about it ÷ do you really want to risk uncontrollable vomiting in an environment where it's already difficult to stay hydrated?

I think of good ol' friendly weed as a drug that makes you all warm and cozy. So I'm always surprised when I find it actually doesn't suck to be a little doped-up in the desert, even on a hot day. In fact, the dreamy, floaty sensation can make an otherwise high-speed, mile-a-minute event slow down for a few blissful hours.

Try ingestion (via brownie or other buttery medium) over inhalation, as the high lasts longer and won't dry your throat up any more than it already is from breathing dusty desert air. Careful, though ÷ eating too much can result in an almost hallucinogenic experience. Nice if that's what you're after, but if that's what you're after, why not try an actual hallucinogen? Also, last year I loaded up on a few special brownies, biked out to the trash fence, sat cross legged in the dust contemplating my navel, and came dangerously close to falling asleep. Which would have sucked, seeing as I hadn't applied sunscreen.

If it's really ecstasy, then you're in for a fine time. Year after year, it remains PISS CLEAR's drug of choice out on the playa. A few words regarding safety and comfort, however:

A) Test your pills! There are little liquid drop things called "marquis reagent testing kits" that can tell you if you've been slipped a bogus pill of some evil drug masquerading as E. Berkeley-based DanceSafe distributes a lot of these kits, and I heard they may even have a testing booth on the playa this year, so look for them.

B) Drink water. You should be doing this anyway because you're in the middle of the fucking desert, but now you're in the middle of the fucking desert and you're high on a drug that speeds up your heart rate and increases your blood pressure and dehydrates you, so drink more water.

C) Dance, fine, have fun. But take a rest every now and then, will ya? Don't make your heart explode.

D) Have some 5htp tablets on hand to cushion the emotional crash. 5htp is legally available at health stores, and will supposedly help replenish some of the serotonin your little tab of E squeezed from your brain's axons. Some people take a few 5htp tabs before dosing, then a few after. Others just take a few after. Others take one per hour for many hours, starting as soon as they feel themselves coming down. I dunno, pick one.تتت

An organic drug with organic effects ÷ mushrooms render nature's wonders that much more wonderful. A small amount will make you feel silly and playful, a fat dose gives you a peek into God's brain, which, let me tell you is very, very pretty. People tend to take hallucinogens at night, but 'shrooms are especially fun in the daytime, as they make colors almost blindingly vibrant. Great thing about 'shrooms, too, is that the trip is relatively short ÷ usually about five or six hours ÷ and afterwards you can sleep if you want, unlike acid, to which I always have to give practically a whole day. I've also found that I get ridiculously horny a few hours after coming down from these happy fungi, which one year resulted in me necking with two total strangers I found lounging on a bed fronting the Esplanade. The strangers happened to be on mushrooms, too, so I guess this aphrodisiac effect is not peculiar to me.

I don't do this stuff any more because it resulted in bummers about 50% of the time. All I can say is, once you've dosed, hang on and keep telling yourself "It's all in my head, it's all in my head." Unless the idea of so much stuff being in your head freaks you out. Then stop telling yourself that and listen to some Jefferson Airplane. At least that's what Hunter S. Thompson would do.

Do not inhale this stuff while standing and especially not while dancing, unless you don't like your face and want to fall flat on it a lot. A friend once told me nitrous is good to do if you're having a bad hallucinogen trip ÷ for 30 long seconds, the universe around you quadruples in size, and when it's over you can say to yourself, "Well, at least I'm not that high."

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