Wednesday, May 18, 2016

woo hoo woo hoo hoo

"He turned on, he tuned in, and he has finally dropped out: Albert Hofmann, the Swiss chemist who invented LSD, and experienced the first “bad trip,” in 1943, has died at the age of 102. That’s 873 in freak-out years." (Item from Whatever it is I'm Against It blog)

A little over a year prior to my birth in 1944, an an unknown Swiss chemist experienced history's first bad acid trip. As with most such trips, he had no idea what was happening to him, or why. 

On Monday, April 19, 1943, Hofman deliberately took .25 mg (250 micrograms) of the drug after experiencing minor effects the previous Friday when working with LSD, probably resulting from tiny amounts of it entering his body through the pores.

"What happened on April 19 became known to the psychedelic counterculture as Bicycle Day: Hofmann's wild, two and a half mile cycle ride home - no car being available because it was wartime."

"I had to struggle to speak intelligibly. I asked my laboratory assistant to escort me home. On the way, my condition began to assume threatening forms. Everything in my field of vision wavered and was distorted as if seen in a curved mirror. I also had the sensation of being unable to move from the spot. Nevertheless, my assistant later told me that we had travelled very rapidly.

As he rode home, the pioneer tripper assumed, as have generations that followed, that everything would be OK once he got there, but alas, it was not 2 B. "My surroundings had now transformed themselves in more terrifying ways. Everything in the room spun around, and the familiar objects and pieces of furniture assumed grotesque, threatening forms. They were in continuous motion, animated, as if driven by an inner restlessness."

His wife and kids were away on vacation, but a neighbor stopped by and brought Hofman some milk. He quickly gulped down more than  2 liters.

"...the neighbour was no longer 'Mrs R,' but a malevolent, insidious witch with a coloured mask...Even worse than these demonic transformations of the outer world, were the alterations I perceived in myself, in my inner being. Every exertion of my will, every attempt to put an end to the disintegration of the outer world and the dissolution of my ego, seemed to be wasted effort.

"A demon had invaded me, had taken possession of my body, mind, and soul. I jumped up and screamed, trying to free myself from him, but then sank down again and lay helpless on the sofa. The substance, with which I had wanted to experiment, had vanquished me. It was the demon that scornfully triumphed over my will."
A few hours later of course, everything was hunky-dory, the demon invasions were over, and life very curiously returned to what passed for normal during the 20th century and WWII. This is something subsequent generations of trippers have known: If you drop a tab and your home is invaded by  raptors which tear you to pieces then eat you, don't worry; ain't no big ting brudda. It's all in your mind, so just give it a couple hours.


The 4th para is in quotes because it is taken in its entirety from this article in the Guardian (UK)

The quoted material following para #4 is from Hofman's autobio, LSD: My Problem 

A note on the artwork. This piece was originally executed as the cover for a 12" LP. 
LSDemon – 666% Under Voice Records and Crew presents 666% the debut release by LSDemon (Freak AKA Alejandro Aguilar), a darkpsy producer and graphic artist from Costa Rica. The sound on this release is dark, mischievous, and powerful, featuring music created in the last two years. Establishing a theme, the front cover was done by the artist to introduce us to the psychedelic trip we are about to embark upon.

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