Stories from Dennis Driscoll > Fun with Acid
Fun with Acid
Stories from Dennis Driscoll
I last took acid when I was 19. I'd had all kinds of experiences
on it, and only 2 were bad. I first took acid when I was 14, which
was pretty my year of firsts for most drugs. Except for glue and
carbonna and alcohol with all came at 12.
Glue was an interesting drug. Much more encompassing then Carbonna,
which is dry cleaning fluid, and explained why your lungs felt
"clean" after inhaling it. There was nothing you could
do to get rid of the taste. With carbonna you'd pour some on a
handkerchief and put it to your nose and inhale. The high was
pretty immediate and also didn't last long, like most of the sniffed
drugs like poppers, which we called something else, I want to
say snappers, but I'm not sure that was it. But poppers was mainly
a rush. You'd inhale this stuff and get an enormous rush and within
minutes you'd be completely straight, but for a minute or two
you got an amzing rush and alot of time you face turned a bright
red. These drugs were made for heart patients and really didn't
appeal to me much. Carbonna was sort of a cross between poppers
and glue. Not having the heavy "dreams" you'd get from
glue but longer lasting than poppers. The first time I did carbonna
was at a kid, Alan White's, apartment across the street from my
Alan White was a single parent kid, his dad was raising him,
or trying. Alan was younger than me and into drugs heavier. He
hung out with this kid Stinky, who was generally a pain in the
ass. Stinky's best friend was one of the toughest guys around.
A big well built guy that was very protective of Stinky, so Stinky
would try to start fights with you so he could go tell his protector
who would come and beat your ass. Eventually this guy got hip
to Stinky's act and cut him loose.
Alan White's apartment was always open during the day for parties
cause he had no mom and his dad worked. So this is where I tried
carbonna. Soon after that I tried glue. Glue was the kind of drug
that took you to another place, a place where you had wild dreams
and all kinds of aural hallucinations. The most common being the
buzz. The buzz was a sound, sort of like an airplane engine, a
propeller driven engine, that got louder and louder. Also on glue
I would always hear someone calling my name, even though there
was never anyone really calling my name.
We had a few places to sniff glue in Ft Tryon Park. One place
was a paved road we called Bum's Road. It ran parrallel to Broadway,
from about Arden St up to near the Alley Cats. In the summer it
was covered in foliage and you couldn't be seen from the street
in the day or the night. The other spot was called the Indian
cave. It was a small cave that had steps, of course called the
Indian steps, that were cut out of the rock leading up to the
Indian Cave, which we also called the drinking cave. It wasn't
very big and it wasn't very deep but it was a cave.
The biggest problem with glue for me, besides the headaches
I started to develop after getting high, was the bad habit I had
of laying back with the glue bag over my face. Unlike carbonna
which were sniffed from a rag or handkerchief, glue was sniffed
from paper bags. Two number two bags to be exact. You'd take the
bags, one inside the other and crumble them up and got them pliable
so when you had them over your face and inhaled the bags would
contract and expand. You sort of look like a horse eating from
a feed bag. The problem is when you laid back deep into a glue
dream the glue would slide down the bag to rest on your face and
would dry there, so when you came out of your dream your face
was covered with crusty glue, VERY attractive. The favorite glue
was Prince's, Testors was ok, but Prince was the favorite. To
get glue you'd have to purchase a model. The only place that sold
you 2 tubes of glue with your model was called Fred the Idiots.
Fred was an immigrant that owned a small candy store and sold
29 cent models and 2 tubes of glue to kids. Then he would buy
the model back for 10 cents. So he really wasn't that much of
an idiot but that was his nick name.
I finally gave up glue because the glue started to give me headaches,
but one night I went to the park and one of the guys was sniffing
glue. For some reason a cheap high appealed to me and I headed
to Fred the Idiots for some glue. By this time I was a regular
and no longer had to buy a model, when you sniffed long enough
Fred would finally waive the pretense of selling you models. So
I got 2 tubes and head back to the steps where everyone was drinking.
I sat down on the steps, there had to be about 30 or 40 guys out
there, mainly wetheads, drinkers. George G and myself sat there
and pegged, pegging was sniffing glue. Time has no meaning when
you sniff glue and I was deep in a dream when I heard someone
yell out "the Cops!!!". My glue addled brain finally
woke up and I looked down to see a detective car sitting at the
bottom of the steps. I took my bag and threw it as far as I could,
but continued to sit there. After a minute the cops just laughed
and left. Now I'm sitting here totally alone with no idea what
time it was. I didn't own a watch and figured it was at least
3 o'clock in the morning started to shit a brick. My parents wanted
me home by midnight at that time and I thought I was screwed.
I sat there with my head in my hands wondering what I was gonna
tell my parents, when Danny Mancole came off Bum's Road. "Danny,
what fucking time is it? My parents are gonna kill me" He
looks at his watch and says, "its 9:35". "9:35??????????"
Slowly all the guys that ran when the cops came started to reappear.
Man that glue sure messed with your sense of time.
Similar to LSD actually. My worst LSD trip happened in 1969
just before Thanksgiving. I got the acid from a friend, Eddie
Hand, who later got shot in the head over essentially nothing
and died. Eddie wasn't an acid dealer, but I'd gone to grammar
school with him and he knew more of the hippies from Washington
Hgts than me so I had him cop for me alot. This was probably the
strongest acid I'd ever take, but when I got it from Eddie a piece
had been taken from the tab. I was a little pissed as I was gonna
split it with a guy named O'B who was good friends with Stinky.
The acid was orange and sort of wedge shaped so it was called
orange wedge. O'B and I split what we had and Eddie took the other
little piece he had taken and went to see the Rolling Stones at
Madison Sq. Garden. If I was smart I'd have gone with him. But
instead I told my parents I was going to a concert and would be
home at 2AM and stayed in Inwood.
We dropped the acid around 8PM, and went to the pool room, Not
the best place to trip. Some of our friends were there high on
dope and some of them were drunk, and the drunks always thought
it was fun to mess with guys tripping. So we tried not to let
on we were tripping. But it quickly became obvious something was
up because I couldn't sit in one place, and kept moving around
the pool room. The was this one really freaky guy there who's
name totally escapes me but he was gross. After I started to really
get off he got in an argument with another friend of mine. I was
having the most intense hallucinations I'd EVER had, and this
asshole yells at my friend and tells him to suck his dick, and
he whips it out. It was huge, I think it was the drugs but the
last thing I needed to see was this greasy junkie waving this
enormous dick around. So i go to the other side of the poolroom.
When I get there, this guy Tony B, another wethead, maces a friend
of his for a joke. The guy he maced screamed put his hands to
his eyes and when he lowered them his eyes were watering really
bad and his face was all red, again I don't know if it was the
drugs or what. But the next thing I know Tony finds out I'm tripping.
He comes and sits down next to me and calls my name, I see out
of the corner of my eye the mace. This asshole is going to mace
me in the middle of the most intense acid trip I'd ever taken.
I got up and ran to the back of the poolroom, with him yelling
after me, asking why I ran, whats wrong with me. I finally decide
to get out of the poolroom. Me and O'B walk through the projects,
where he lived. Up until now my hallucinations consisted mainly
of walls melting and little things like that, more distortions
of reality but not really hallucinations of things that weren't
really there, but this trip was different. The colors were very
bright, peoples faces took on cartoon qualities.
I decided to walk down the block I lived on. Not too smart as
I'm supposed to be at a concert. When I walk down Arden St, there
was some graffiti that was day glow in appearance, and bright
pink. Things didn't look right. So an urge hits me to go into
my apartment just to make sure I still lived there. That was a
really really big mistake.
I enter the house and my parents and my younger brother are
in the living room watching TV. They look at me and wonder why
I'm home so early. I tell them I had a headache and decided to
come home. After a couple of minutes I told them I was going to
Now sleeping on acid is almost impossible. I go into my room
and take my clothes off and get into bed. The poster of Janis
Joplin on my wall is now dancing! After about 30 seconds I'm convinced
I can't sleep and I'm on an acid trip with no return ticket. I
really felt I wasn't coming back and I was going to be like this
forever, which was not an appealing thought. So I go out to the
livingroom and tell my parents " I have to talk to you, I
took some acid and I don't think I'm coming back, call a doctor!"
They couldn't believe I was telling them this and sent my brother
to his room. For the next, gee I have no idea how long, but they
interviewed me about my drug history. Being in the state I was
in, I told them every drug I'd ever taken and where I got the
acid I took that night. I told them about pot and pills , they
already knew I drank, and worst of all I told them about heroin.
All they could say was "Look at his pupils" which were
HUGE! Up to this point I'd only taken heroin 3 or 4 times had
no habit and had only skin popped. I didn't even have a mark on
my arms, I tried in vain to point out where I'd injected the dope
and there were no marks. I said to them, "look,look right
here" and put my arm under the light but there were no marks.
Pretty bad. Finally I go to bed and after awhile get to sleep.
When I woke in the morning I was fine. Completely back to normal
or at least as normal as I was before this trip. But everything
had changed. I went out to the kitchen where my mother was. All
she said was " We remember lastnight".
Three days later, my parents picked me up at school and told
me we were going to a drug program. They decided to tsake me to
the Rockefeller Program, which was really just jail. It was a
program designed to take care of the overcrowding in the prison
system. So if you were caught with drugs and about to be sentenced
Rikers island you could copout to the Rockefeller program. When
you copped out you were signing 6 years of your life away. You'd
go out to Staten Island and do, I think 6 months there. Then you
were released and would have to report for drug testing every
few days a week at a facility they called Edgecombe. Invariably,
everyone that got out of the Rockefeller program's first 6 month
sentence went immediatley to the cooker. Then there urines were
dirty and the guy took the dope knew it so he wouldn't report
for the test. That day a warrant was put out for the guy and when
caught he'd do 90 days at Edgecombe, which was called the snakepit.
It was too small for the amount of people in there and people
slept on floors and anywhere they could. This went on until your
six years were up.
This was the place my parents were taking me. They didn't understand
what type of place they were sending me to. When you were signed
up more or less voluntarily you only got 3 years, but I weas still
in high school and hadn't even had my first habit yet. Luckily
my parents couldn't find the place, a cop we'd asked for directions
told us it was in the Bronx, where my school was. But it was actually
in Mahattan in Harlem. So because we couldn't find it my parents
gave up on the idea, for the moment. This was really my lucky
day. But things had definitely changed! Dennis Driscoll
PS, Alan White died at the age of 13 after some black guys,
who had ripped him off for some seconals, threatened to fuck him
up at school, after their friends who took the stolen seconal
got caught being high in class and had their stomaches pumped.
Alan was so afraid of these black kids he took his remaining 52
seconals and died that night. RIP Alan! He was really a good kid.
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