Skip to main content

mental health mondays :: walking the line

dom sent me this article earlier today. it's from pitchfork of all places, but it does bring up some interesting questions of the effect of illicit versus prescription drugs on music and musicians. of course, being the savvy readers you are, you're already aware that these lines have become increasingly blurry in the last decades, in particular where psychiatric meds are concerned.

after all, the line between drugs that people take for enjoyment and drugs that people take to make their brains work and feel better is particularly thin. cholesterol medications aren't likely to inspire the next "purple haze", but crazy meds well might, because, of course, they play with the parts of your brain that control things like pleasure, sensory perception and learning. in fact, many psychedelics and psychiatric meds have similar effects on the brain. club kid favourite mdma produces its fabled euphoria by encouraging the production of neurotransmitters serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine and by inhibiting their reuptake [a fancy way of saying that it makes them stick around longer in the brain]. antidepressants like zoloft, prozac, effexor and wellbutrin do exactly the same thing to keep people with depression from wanting to die, because euphoria is relative to your starting point. that's also why people with mental disorders seem to experience drugs very differently from those who don't. [also, this is why you want to be extremely careful taking any kind of drugs if you're already taking something for any kind of mental disorder. seriously, i know someone who shot his serotonin levels dangerously high by taking cold medication while on wellbutrin.]

increasingly, the biggest difference between drugs we take for fun and drugs we take for medicine is the quality of the supply. street-level crystal meth is usually made in highly unsanitary conditions, using fillers that are more likely to damage your internal organs than the drug itself. desoxyn is made in a pristine pharmaceutical laboratory under highly controlled conditions. [sorry kids, walter white isn't real.]

so if the drugs we get from doctors and the drugs we get from that slightly twitchy guy with greasy skin are really the same thing, who's to say that the next great period of psychedelic inspiration we get won't come with a prescription?

Comments

as long as you're here, why not read more?

wrong turn

as some of you are aware, i have a long-term project building a family tree. this has led me to some really interesting discoveries, like the fact that i am partly descended from crazy cat people, including the patron saint of crazy cat ladies, that a progenitor of mine once defeated a french naval assault with an army of scarecrows, that my well-established scottish roots are just as much norwegian as scottish, and that a relative of mine from the early middle ages let one rip with such ferocity that that's basically all he's remembered for. but this week, while i was in the midst of adding some newly obtained information, i found that some of my previous research had gone in an unexpected direction: the wrong one.

where possible, i try to track down stories of my better-known relatives and in doing so this week, i realised that i couldn't connect one of my greatĖ£ grandfathers to his son through any outside sources. what's worse that i found numerous sources that con…

dj kali & mr. dna @ casa del popolo post-punk night

last night was a blast! a big thank you to dj tyg for letting us guest star on her monthly night, because we had a great time. my set was a little more reminiscent of the sets that i used to do at katacombes [i.e., less prone to strange meanderings than what you normally hear at the caustic lounge]. i actually invited someone to the night with the promise "don't worry, it'll be normal". which also gives you an idea of what to expect at the caustic lounge. behold my marketing genius.

mr. dna started off putting the "punk" into the night [which i think technically means i was responsible for the post, which doesn't sound quite so exciting]. i'd say that he definitely had the edge in the bouncy energy department.

many thanks to those who stopped in throughout the night to share in the tunes, the booze and the remarkably tasty nachos and a special thank you to the ska boss who stuck it out until the end of the night and gave our weary bones a ride home…

eat the cup 2018, part seven :: oh, lionheart

it all seemed so magical: england's fresh-faced youngsters marching all the way through to a semi-final for the first time since 1990. everywhere, the delirious chants of "it's coming home". and then, deep into added time, the sad realization: it's not coming home. oh england, my lionheart.

now, if we're being really strict about things, my scottish ancestors would probably disown me for supporting England, because those are the bastards who drove them off their land and sent them packing to this country that's too hot in the summer and too cold in the winter. and indeed, shops in scotland have sold through their entire stock of croatian jerseys, as the natives rallied behind england's opponents in the semi-final. however, a few generations before they were starved and hounded from the lands they'd occupied for centuries, my particular brand of scottish ancestors would have encouraged me to support england [assuming that national football had even…