BY: JACK M.
Marijuana is now almost as commonplace as tobacco, and in many experts’ opinions, probably a whole lot less harmful – in fact, maybe quite the opposite. You may have tried, with varying degrees of success (or failure), Special K, psilocybin or E. And if you’re among the more daring and experimental out there, you’ve maybe dabbled with acid or ayahuasca.
However, unless you have a death wish or consider yourself indestructible, here are a few things that you’d be well-advised to stay away from. And if anyone offers you some, don’t walk away. Run. Run fast.
Etorphine is an opioid, like morphine or heroin. But comparing it to smack is like comparing a leisurely jaunt on your grandmother’s bicycle to a pedal-to-the-metal spin in a Hennessey Venom GT. It is many hundreds of times more potent than smack, which may make a little more sense when you realize what one of the few legal uses of etorphine is…to immobilize elephants. In fact, it is so powerful that momentary skin contact is enough to overdose on.
Dimethylheptylpyran, or DMHP, is a synthetic version of THC, the active ingredient in cannabis. But the pale yellow liquid, which was originally developed by the U.S. military as a chemical weapon, has the kick of an angry mule. While the main effects of good quality marijuana will last for up to three hours, DMHP’s will last for up to three days. There’s a good chance you’ll end up being hauled away in an ambulance to the emergency room of your local hospital, but the most dangerous side effect is life-threatening low blood pressure (hypotension) and a loss of muscle control, which can be fatal.
Use of DMHP can result in life-threatening hypotension and a loss of muscle control.
Fentanyl has been in the news a lot over the past year or so, and for all the wrong reasons. Also known as China Girl or China White, it’s a fast-acting opioid that has fifty times the potency of pure heroin, and that alone should raise a whole sea of red flags. It has a very long list of very nasty side effects, but the most serious is death due to the inability to breathe. Enough said.
Fentanyl has fifty times the potency of pure heroin. Its most serious side effect is death due to the inability to breathe
Flakka, also known as gravel, is a relatively new drug doing the rounds in North America, and it has been assigned Schedule 1 status. The active ingredient (alpha-pyrrolidinovalerophenone) is a cousin to that found in equally-notorious bath salts. It typically comes in crystal form. It can be smoked, vaped or injected, and its effects can last from a few hours to a few days. Unlike pot or even LSD, flakka’s downsides include rapid rise in body temperature, kidney failure and extreme psychosis. And users are frequently given to uncontrollable bouts of violence and rage.
Flakka’s downsides include rapid rise in body temperature, kidney failure, extreme psychosis and uncontrollable bouts of violence and rage.
Bromo-dragonfly is a kissing cousin of ecstasy, and the few who have tried it and lived to tell the story have described it as doing acid that has been on an acid trip of its own. One survivor even said, “It was like being dragged to hell and back again. Many times.” While the effects of LSD can last for a few hours, a walk down bromo-dragonfly lane will send you off into some weird place for three or more days. Other than the inconvenience of death, one of the many ugly side effects of this drug is necrosis (killing) of tissue, resulting in the need for amputation.
As one user put it, bromo-dragonfly “was like being dragged to hell and back again. Many times.”
Phencyclidine is better known by its street names PCP or angel dust. It’s been around for well over half a century, and although its use has dropped in the last decade or so, it’s still out there, still being used and is no less deadly than it was 50 years ago. High doses of PCP can cause convulsions, coma and death, but even low doses have been attributed to mood disorder, numbness, acute anxiety, amnesia, suicidal impulses and a sense of invulnerability.