Sun, 03 Sep 2000

Dear Mister Wonderful,

Okay, in response to your fun list of things accomplished without the use of LSD, we'd like to know--what great achievements have been accomplished by utter, stone-cold sobriety? (Besides a psychotic episode, that is.) And is it advisable to maintain such a state indefinitely?

--John Lilly


Dear MK-Ultra,

The fact is, utter sobriety is a difficult state to achieve. I mean, even if you're not Mister Wonderful.

Every substance we take into our bodies affects us, despite the fact that only some of them are slanderously labeled "drugs". And I'm not just talking alcohol, caffeine and nicotine here. Third graders know that those three are "really drugs". Fourth graders have forgotten this, of course, because of all the free crack samples. But my point is that sugar, salt, spicy red peppers, mangoes, baby seal meat, marinara sauce, human blood, pupusas, olive oil, bull semen, all of it, anything we eat - it all gets into the blood stream one way or another and messes with your head. They're drugs, okay?

Some drugs are just better.

Feeling warm and happy after a good meal? Feeling energy-rushed after a five-alarm enchilada? Crying over wasabi? Craving fried chicken? Sighing deeply after you eat the last Cheez-It? Giddy with pleasure at the thought of pesto sauce with your pasta? You. Are. On. Drugs.

Is this getting through? Here, I'll get scientific: Dopamines. Seratonin. Adrenaline (Epinephrine). I'll get political: Drug classification is nonsensical and arbitrary. TV zones you out more than pot. Liquid Drano will kill you faster than heroin. Why aren't these illegal, Senator?

Okay, back to the query. To achieve utter sobriety, you'd have to purge your body of basically everything. That means you drink water and swallow a thirty foot rag to run through your system. For about a month. And you put out your eyes so you won't catch a glimpse of a sunset (known to have the effect of lithium on the brain). And you block up your ears in case someone plays Beethoven nearby, making you cry or fill with joy. Better be breathing filtered air, too. Okay stick figure, what ya gonna do now?

That's right. Nothing. Mankind achieves, grows, advances and causes only when they are a part of - and transformed by - the environment. That means intoxication. Smoke the universe, baby.