JUNKe Life


Among the covers…
November 29, 2008, 5:23 pm
Filed under: Good Stuff, Websites

Enormous collection of William S. Burroughs’ book covers are compiled here. Below is the Penguin UK 1977 cover – the first edition of Junky I read.

Junky UK Penguin 1977

I loaned my copy to my friend, Duncan the Garbage Gobbler, and haven’t seen it since. Dunc got his nickname not due to a voracious appetite for food but because of the non-discriminating nature of his drug consumption.



See Saw in the Setting Sun…
November 29, 2008, 3:40 pm
Filed under: JUNKe life

Yesterday we drove for an hour and a half to score. And then drove an hour and a half back home to get well. It’s funny how relative things can get. I remember years back when a cross-town drive to score and get back home took 30 minutes and it seemed like an eternity, whereas yester day’s three hour drive seemed like a pleasant Sunday picnic. What does that say? I suppose it means I must have developed some patience while attaining this older age I currently reside in.

children-on-see-saw

A couple days ago I received a call informing me of the time and place to make yester day’s pickup. Before leaving I double-checked and got a confirmation that everything was good to go. As a result, I enjoyed the drive. I didn’t have to worry whether I’d be able to score or not.

Driving back home after scoring is usually a real contrast from the drive to score. The trip to the dealers is usually tense with worry, with long silent periods punctuated with desperate little prayers (“shit I hope he’s home”) or scrambled back up plans (“let’s try Joe Blows if so-and-so ain’t home”). Nothing but worry and nail-biting. But once the buy is made and the dope is safe and secure in one’s pocket the trip back home is all joy and anticipation (“thank gawd that worked out”).

Nowadays I usually get several weeks supply at a time. So instead of the daily ups and downs of drug seeking, I’m on a much more expansive see saw of emotions. Initially there’s not a worry whatsoever because the size of the bag or the bottom of the pill bottle seems so far away it seems like there’s enough to last forever. As a result, my carefully thought out schedule for dosing immediately goes in the garbage and there’s several days of “let’s treat ourselves today”. It doesn’t matter how unrealistic such thinking is, I inevitably engage in it.

And just as inevitably, the bottom of the bag becomes in sight. Ah yes! this isn’t going to last forever, is it? Well, that peak was nice, but the pendulum does swing, and down it starts to got. Ok, let’s figure out what’s left. Time to figure out a new dosing schedule. Let’s see… if I do four hits per day, of so-and-so amount per hit, this is gonna last such-and such time. Okie dokie, 12 days left. Aha, that’s not too shabby.

Opps, 12 days seemed distant enough that I decided to indulge myself for a couple extra days. Now there should be ten days left, but there’s only eight. And that’s eight if I stick to the dose schedule, which I haven’t stuck to one day yet. Opps! Oh well… these things have a way of working out… somehow. Even if, in reality, its just that I’m digging myself into a deeper, and deeper, and… deeper hole.

Damn! I just realized I’m going to run out before I can resupply. I thought he said see him on the 25th, but that was last month, and this month he said the 28th. Shit! That’s still seven days off, and I’ve got to find a way to carry me through them extra three days. I suppose if worst comes to worst I’ll just have to score at regular street prices. Which means I’ll spend for three days what I could normally purchase a week’s worth.

At least I’m not worrying about getting sick. Going cold turkey isn’t really a concern. Well, maybe its a bit of a concern, but these days are sure easier then when I used to be worried about where my every next fix would come from. Still and all, this past week has sure been a lot more stressful than the previous one. Now I do a hit and see the pile get smaller each time. The previous week it seemed to not diminish whatsoever. It’s funny how that goes…

Now I score and I’m not fully relieved. I want to be more sensible this time. Show a little restraint. Try not to increase my habit too much. Maybe even cut back a bit. But that idea lasts a day or two before I decide that I’m going to get a bit of a buzz on today. And the next day, and the day after. Ah, those are the days of great relief. In fact, I still get good and high, so long as I do enough. The days drift by in cosy comfort, the future seemingly distant enough that it is no cause for concern.

MushroomSeeSaw

Suddenly tomorrow is today, and I wish I could postpone today for tomorrow. But I can’t. My habit is relentless, and demanding everyday. This is indeed a see saw, up and down, up and down, impossible to get off, and in danger of falling off. Last week was a lot better than time week.

And this week will be a lot better than last. Today is fine. Tomorrow will be fine as well. And next week will be here sooner than I think today.



Ibogaine… an alternative way to consider yourself as a dependant user
November 25, 2008, 7:38 pm
Filed under: Dope, Good Stuff

Ibogaine is touted by some advocates as a potential “cure” for drug dependency, particularly heroin addiction. I’ve always been quite skeptical when I read about this or that drug being championed as the new cure-all. I figure if something actually worked to cure heroin addiction that it would be widely known. After all, we’ve been suffering for more than a century when trying to kick an opiate habit and we’ve been searching high and low for some sort of painless procedure to get that monkey off our backs. So if there was something that actually worked, well, one would expect it to be celebrated like all get go! Therefore, my initial reaction to ibogaine was “yeah, right, and pigs fly too”.

Ibogaine is proposed for the treatment of chemical dependence. Claims for this antiaddictive drug include significant reduction in opioid withdrawal and interruption of drug craving behavior. The Ibogaine Dossier is the oldest internet source dedicated to information on this substance. Within the Dossier you will find reports on subjects as diverse as ibogaine’s use in African religion to cutting edge neuroscience.
The Ibogaine Dossier

Recently I was lucky to be able to speak at length with a couple of the main proponents of ibogaine treatment. As I listened to their rap my initial skepticism was replaced by genuine interest in their tales. They weren’t coming across as pie-eyed converts manically hyping ibogaine as some sort of magic cure. Instead they spoke carefully and precisely about ibogaine as a natually occuring psychoactive plant that contains some very interesting properties. They talked about ibogaine with a healthy respect reverence for its effects, and counseled serious consideration prior to embarking upon an ibogaine experience. They spoke of ibogaine much as the early proponents of LSD and other psychedelics spoke of those drugs. They talked about guided trips, under the care and attention of an experienced helper who was both intimately familiar with, and carefully trained in, ibogaine treatment.

It appears ibogaine is useful for dealing with heroin dependency for two reasons: 1) it is a stimulant and as such its stimulant properties can alleviate some of the cold turkey sickness of withdrawing from heroin, and 2) it has some psychedelic qualities which as useful for self-observation, self-awareness and self-analysis. What I found intriguing was that it is gentle as a inner trip and therefore avoids the intense loss of self which LSD can effect. Rather than directly embarking on a trip which can be mind-blowing in that one so directly experiences the full impact of one’s psychology as an immediate participant in it, on ibogaine one tends to be able to observe one’s self from the outside and from a safe distance be an observer things about one’s self.

Although ibogaine came to my attention because its advocates speak about its effectiveness as a drug treatment procedure, I found myself interested in it as a tool for self-observation in and of itself. I’m less interested in it as a tool for overcoming addiction, and fascinated in it as a gentle psychedelic.



A new dawn…
November 10, 2008, 10:14 am
Filed under: Stuff

Hope is a precious commodity. Hope can keep one going in the face of harsh and painful conditions. Hope can sustain one through the roughest of circumstances. Hope can win an election. Yes it can!

Prezelect

Eventually hope can turn to despair if its promise is not eventually fulfilled with concrete improvements because hope, despite its magic, cannot fill a hungry belly or wipe out a lethal virus. We cannot overcome by hope alone.

The election of Barack Obama as the next President of the U.S.A. has brought hope to people the world over. Across the globe people hit the streets in celebration. Mr. Obama’s victory is felt as a victory for downtrodden people everywhere. But will this hope be fulfilled?

In his initial speech upon winning Mr. Obama began to temper people’s hope with clear words about the long and difficult road ahead. He understands that unrealistic expectations can only lead to let down and cynicism and thereby even the modest opportunities which are possible will become unrealized if people become demoralized and deactivated.

What can drug users hope for from Obama’s Presidency? Can we expect more compassionate open ears will listen to us when we speak out? Surely that is the least we can hope for. So let’s organize ourselves and make sure drug users’ voices are a strong part of the dialogue about what needs to get done.

Speaking of organizing ourselves, I recently had the privilege of attending IDUD 2008 – International Drug Users Day – in Copenhagen, Denmark. Hosted by the Danish Drug Users Union, nearly 100 user activists from around the globe – literally – came together for discussions and celebrations of user culture and our collective struggle for human rights and safe conditions.

The most important lesson arising from this incredible gathering of drug users is that we can raise our voices in every community in this world. To do this takes bravery and commitment, and lots of hard work, but it is a task that only we can do. No one can truly speak for users but us ourselves. Have a look at some of your peers already speaking out for user rights: IDUD 2008 Photos