Monday, February 07, 2005

the time I took 50 ritalins

One time me & my neighbor Dan got all these Ritalins. They were from Chris, his old roommate from the dorms, who was a fucking story in himself. He was albino white, with cornsilk-fine platinum-blond hair down the back of his neck. He was one of those very computer-oriented guys from school: unbelievably socially awkward. He & Dan would occasionally hang out. They would get drunk, as was Dan's wont, and Chris would ask Dan to hit him, or choke him, or in one instance to throw him down into a thorny hedge. On this one Dan accomodated him. He tossed him into a bush in the freezing cold and Chris emerged triumphantly, screaming "I am a servant of Sauron!"

Anyway, he had ritalins. Tons of them. His parents had sent him to a psychiatrist due to his severe fucking-up in school and he had walked away with a mammoth prescription for the stuff, which he refused to touch because he felt it stifled his creativity. So we were able to buy his entire refill of 100 pills for 100 bucks. We took it home and started in on them.

It so happened that I had a paper due that week, a monster 6-month assignment on which I had of course done next to nothing. I did have a bunch of books from the library and a cursory knowledge of my subject: the tribal warfare styles of insurgencies in Afghanistan and Liberia. So on a coffee table stacked high with obscure history texts we began crushing the pills up with a rusty old dumbell and snorting them. And constantly eating them, too.

Now, the thing about ritalin is that when you first start doing it it feels just ever-so-slightly like cocaine. It gets you up and motivated, and it starts to make you think that everything is a good idea. It lacks, however, that balls-to-the wall coke euphoria... so chasing a coke high with Ritalin, you'll never quite get there. Just almost there. This didn't turn out to be such a bad thing in terms of productivity, because the more rids we'd crush up the more focused I got on that paper, and the thing was getting done. It was great, actually. I churned out 20 pages of perfectly researched wizardry in about 14 hours. Only as the sun was coming up did we look into the pill bottle and realize there was almost nothing left. 100 pills were gone after 15 hours.

That day I had to make it to class so I could turn the paper in. I was a half-animated corpse, staggering across campus, but I made it. Aside from everybody's face getting a little Jacob's Ladder everything was cool; I handed in the paper and felt that I had pulled off an amazing coup. It wasn't until I got home that the problems started.

First thing, and I don't mean to creep you out, but I started taking shits. Weird shits. Weird yellow shits that happened every five minutes, made up of clumps of little undigested pills accompanied by a hot stinging sluice of pure stomach acid. I would be sitting comfortably on the couch and then a supernatural chill would overtake my bowels and my guts would begin to spasm, desperate to spit out the poison. Then there was the wax. Ritalin will make you sweat a sort of waxy, viscous substance if you take one or two per day. If you take fifty, you become a fucking human candle, with this weird thick ooze encrusted on your skin. I would get up from a chair expecting to leave a perfect negative imprint of myself in a giant white mound, like a leaf in concrete. Then there was the skin color thing-- I looked in the mirror on one of my many trips to the can and noticed my skin had gone yellow. Not subtly yellow, like from a tanning machine but bright vomitous yellow like a summer squash. I was aghast at my hideous reflection. This was it-- I had given myself liver failure-- fifty fucking pills! I had acute jaundice, and I was going to die. I ran into the other room, grabbed my roomate and started shaking the shit out of him. Look at me, man! Get me to a hospital, for Christ's sake!

When he calmed me down I realized that the drug was actually fucking with my sight. Everything looked yellow.

After a couple days of jaw-grinding psychosis everything returned to normal. When I realized I would definitely survive I felt not only relief but also a smug self-satisfaction. I felt I had snuck one past the goalie. And in my little drug circle of whitebread college friends I would recount the tale like an Olympian, knowing that it had to be some kind of record.

Anyway, that's my ritalin story.


Blogger sleeve said...

Just out of curiousity, and I realize that this was not the point, but do you recall how you did on the paper?

It reminds me of freshman year, first semester, I had my take-home Art History final... My friend had sent me some weed and pills in the mail from home, because i lacked proper Pittsburgh connections. Little did I know back in 1994 what the pills, Rohypnols, were or that they'd later be dubbed "the daterape drug"... I thought they would help be stay up and write my paper. I convinced my roommates friend that this was the case.

After witnessing him pass out twenty minutes in our essays, I decided I better take a shower to keep myself awake, I barely remember writing the rest of it in my towel as I past out... I ended up getting a B+. my best final grade Freshman year.

7:54 AM  
Blogger Mr. Richard Lee said...

You get the same oily, yellow skin after smoking crystal meth. That's according to stuff I've read on the internet.

2:47 AM  
Blogger vulkoqq said...

I got an A on the paper. It was pre 9/11 and dealt largely with the Taliban, before they became such big stars.

4:25 AM  

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