June 22nd, 2003


turkeyphant's Adventures In Wonderland I

                                                                      Anon, to sudden silence won,
                                                                          In fancy dream they pursue
                                                                      The dream-child moving through a land
                                                                          Of wonders wild and new,
                                                                      In friendly chat with bird or beast—
                                                                          And half believe it true.

                                                                      And ever, as the story drained
                                                                          The wells of fancy dry,
                                                                      And faintly strove that weary one
                                                                          To put the subject by,
                                                                      “The rest next time—” “It is next time!”
                                                                          The happy voices cry.

                                                                      Thus grew the tale of wonderland:
                                                                          Thus slowly, one by one,
                                                                      Its quaint events were hammered out—
                                                                          And now the tale is done,
                                                                      And home we steer, a merry crew,
                                                                          Beneath the setting sun.

                                                                      Alice! a childish story take,
                                                                          And with a gentle hand
                                                                      Lay it where Childhood’s dreams are twined
                                                                          In Memory’s mystic band,
                                                                      Like pilgrim’s withered wreath of flowers
                                                                          Plucked in a far-off land.

Prologue; an introduction to a day after the prefatory poem
      Alice was beginning to get very tired of sitting by her sister on the bank, and of having nothing to do: once or twice she had peeped into the book her sister was reading, but it had no pictures or conversations in it, “and what is the use of a book,” thought Alice, “without pictures or conversations?”
As the narrative begins, it is the duty of your humble raconteur to inform you that it was never intended for these events to be chronicled in this form. No text can ever do the pupils' experience justice and even userinfoturkeyphant promised himself that he would never try to describe it, never dilute its meaning with his poor writing skills and rein in its intensity and depth with the limits of language. But still, he felt he couldn't keep his vow, for it is almost worth breaking just to let the story be told. Let us admit it – this is something they couldn't keep to themselves. The experience is owed a detailed report, for this kind of event cannot be allowed to go by without a narrative. It's better to be watered down by the restrictions of words than to be lost forever in the mists of time. Nevertheless, userinfoturkeyphant felt it a necessity that he make but one fact clear. Without a single doubt and lacking in the tiniest hint of hyperbole, his superlative is really meant: that trip was certainly the most intense experience of his entire life. As for the job of describing it without resorting to the usual exaggeration or fabrication, that falls to the narrator. Here goes...

The build-up – preparing to step Through The Looking Glass
      Suddenly a White Rabbit with pink eyes ran close by her.
      There was nothing so
very remarkable in that; nor did Alice think it so very much out of the way to hear the Rabbit say to itself, “Oh dear! Oh dear! I shall be too late!” (when she thought it over afterwards, it occurred to her that she ought to have wondered at this, but at the time it all seemed quite natural); but when the Rabbit actually took a watch out of its waistcoat-pocket, and looked at it, and then hurried on, Alice started to her feet for it flashed across her mind that she had never before seen a rabbit with either a waistcoat-pocket or a watch to take out of it, and burning with curiosity, she ran across the field after it, and was just in time to see it pop down a large rabbit-hole under the hedge.
      In another moment down went Alice after it; never once considering how in the world she was going to get out again.
userinfoturkeyphant's last examination had just taken place. It was Pure Mathematics Module 2 and it had gone very differently to how he had planned, but he didn't care. In fact, he couldn't even seem to evoke any interest whatsoever in the outcome of the examinations. It didn't really seem to matter much that they were over – that only meant that lessons would resume soon and lie-ins would shortly be curtailed. But anyway, as the story goes, he was waiting outside the Shirley Hall for Val and Eric. Val had picked the first homegrown flush of psilocybe cubensis mushrooms a week earlier and had been drying them since.

It was still only ten o'clock, so Val led as they snuck into the Physics block and, shitting themselves the whole time regarding the prospect of discovery by Dr. Allday, weighed their stash with the super-accurate balances in McG's lab. It was found that they had about five point nine six grams in that clear plastic bag (if their memories are to be trusted). Once this was done, they met up with George who had an exam the next day and didn't want to do the 'shrooms. He thought that it would be foolish to tripping out when he ought to be cramming and, although he didn't say precisely that, it was implied.

And so it was decided that, what the hell, the three of them would do the 'shrooms right there and then. Eric first took them both to Val's room where he told tales of his first time taking 'shrooms and they swiftly coerced each other into taking the class A drugs. They didn't realise they were class A at the time, but the narrator thinks that saying things are illegal just makes them sound cooler.

Beginning the trip – Down The Rabbit-Hole
      The rabbit-hole went straight on like a tunnel for some way, and then dipped suddenly down, so suddenly that Alice had not a moment to think about stopping herself before she found herself falling down what seemed to be a very deep well.
      Either the well was very deep, or she fell very slowly, for she had plenty of time to look about her and to wonder what was going to happen next.
      Down, down, down. Would the fall
never come to an end? “I wonder how many miles I’ve fallen by this time?” she said aloud. “I must be getting somewhere near the centre of the earth. Let me see: that would be four thousand miles down, I think—” (for, you see, Alice had learnt several things of this sort in her lessons in the schoolroom, and though this was not a very good opportunity for showing off her knowledge, as there was no one to listen to her, still it was good practice to say it over).
...he found himself seeing mandelbrot arms arching away from the wispy edges of the clouds
Eric had warned the others of the foul taste, and they soon found that it really was rather bad. Eric even found himself retching after the first few mouthfuls, but the rest of them chewed and chewed to release the chemicals as instructed. userinfoturkeyphant wasn't sure whether this really mattered all that much, but didn't complain as he washed them down with orange juice and sliced white bread. Chocolate was avoided because, apparently, milk reduces the effect somewhat.

In preparation for the dangerous psychedelic trip and accompanying hallucinations, userinfoturkeyphant went out through the window onto a dodgy bit of roof that overlooked much of the school. The sun was shining, he had a free day to spend with his friends and lying back on the tiles he looked down on the people from forty feet up. Though he said nothing, he felt like he was the king of the whole fucking world.

It took quite a while after dropping the 'shrooms for the drug to kick in and, having done no research whatsoever, he didn't really know what to expect. He had put the initial premonitory butterflies down to the placebo effect, but soon he found himself seeing mandelbrot arms arching away from the wispy edges of the clouds. Then, when inclining his head toward the sun, he experienced some crazy kaleidoscoping closed eye visuals. But still he wasn't sure whether life always looked like this. Surely the clouds usually have weird images in them and you often do get dancing red patterns through your eyelids when you stare at gargantuan nuclear fusion reactors ninety three million miles away? Nevertheless, he was soon persuaded to come inside and then reflected on the mandelbrots he'd seen. It gave him an insight into the fundamentally fractal nature of the infinitely universe and everything within it. Yeah. Just think about that for a few moments... Forget everything you've read: userinfoturkeyphant knew that the universe is but a vast fractal pattern with a paradoxical and confusing nature Mauritis Cornelius Escher would be proud of.

Val wasn't feeling much. He only felt a bit strange, kinda like being stoned. But, as he looked to Eric, he knew the 'shrooms were really starting to affect him.

userinfoturkeyphant's body was light and felt like it were filled with helium. He felt he had no feet but the top of his ankles were tied down with string onto concrete shoes. His penis tingled and, when he joined the others outside, everything was suddenly uproariously funny. Hannah soon joined them, and he sat there blissfully pointing out patently obvious factoids before bursting into laughter. It was great – life was just fantastically great for him. None of them could stop laughing. He would look to the sky and state that the sun appeared yellowish or suddenly realise that ground is hard and the others would think for a moment, agree, and start giggling again. "Hey, people have two legs!" – he was tickled pink. Someone suggested food (it sounded like a good idea to userinfoturkeyphant, for none of them had eaten yet that morning) and so, at ten past twelve, they all trooped off into the dining hall early when only the gardeners and other assorted workers were dining.

It kicks in – A Mad Tea Party
      There was a table set out under a tree in front of the house, and the March Hare and the Hatter were having tea at it: a Dormouse was sitting between them, fast asleep.
      The table was a large one, but the three were all crowded round together at one corner of it. “No room! No room!” they cried out when they saw Alice coming. “There's
plenty of room!” said Alice indignantly, and she sat down in a large armchair at one end of the table.
      “Have some wine,” the March Hare said in an encouraging tone.
      Alice looked all round the table but there was nothing on it but tea. “I don't see any wine,” she remarked.
      “There isn't any,” said the March Hare.
This turned out to be a poor tactical decision. userinfoturkeyphant recalls that, as they entered the dining room after perambulating the rear entrance, the shrill laughter of the crazy man rung out. The man's manic delirium echoed throughout the wooden vessel that was empty but for the twenty or so workers quietly dining. userinfoturkeyphant would be sure to tell you that, just as Reigate has its Stow and its Robert, this school has a man working there – the son of one of the staff – who once had an accident befall him and has been severely mentally damaged since. The man performs his duties admirably and his appearance is completely normal but, admittedly, userinfoturkeyphant isn't aware of the details regarding him; only that the man has an unfortunate tendency to wander the school grounds laughing to himself for no apparent reason. He devotes thought to whether he wishes to learn the details of the man who laughs continuously with a crazy sort of guffaw that he can't help finding disconcerting, even scary. Even though he can't help it, userinfoturkeyphant often feels guilty as he finds himself cringing or stepping over to the other side of the road to avoid closer proximity with this man. And so, as the four of them literally fell into the dining hall giggling uncontrollably, it was a very uncomfortable moment to encounter this guy at such a time and userinfoturkeyphant could already sense something ominous about this midday meal.

While they obtained their nourishment, userinfoturkeyphant informed Eric that he would be consuming "'shroooooooms dude!" before asking for a huge fleshy fungus cap topped with bacon, cheese and breadcrumbs to be deposited on his otherwise clean plate. Eric didn't even notice. His eyes were fixed on the bubbling mixture in front of him. The heaters brought the thick concoction to a simmer as grotesque pockets of gas formed within. They expanded and warped as they rose toward him. He stared intently at the ebullition, unable to take his eyes off the delicate gargling. He only snapped away from the effervescence when the dining lady asked him what he wanted to eat.

As they sat down on an empty table at the far end of the hall, userinfoturkeyphant started giggling again and only stopped when he realised the man was still wandering about and laughing to himself. This made him, and I'm sure the others similarly, feel very uncomfortable as the psilocin was taking effect. He was torn between the inane giggling that the drug was beginning to induce and the respectful silence that was expected from him around the man. Every time the man walked by laughing, they started cracking up and trying to stop themselves simultaneously. They had to pretend they didn't notice how different the man was. It was torturous and, to make matters worse, userinfoturkeyphant's food tasted foul too. Getting up to collect a glass of water, he realised the mushrooms had really kicked in and, as he walked the length of the hall past all the men, he felt incredibly physically self-conscious and all the time the man's laughter was reverberating at a hundred miles an hour in his head. This self-consciousness wouldn't leave him for the rest of the day.

After a short while, food largely untouched, it was decided to leave as quickly as possible and escape that environment. And ergo he followed the others out. They almost ran to the door only too aware of how obvious it was that they were only leaving because the man was disquieting them. At last, they were free in the outdoors to laugh to themselves and begin to enjoy the trip, but not before userinfoturkeyphant caught a very scary porcine angle of Hannah and her plate of spaghetti.

He was just walking with the others again, enjoying the sun and planning the rest of the day, when the scary mad man emerged from behind them. He walked past and turn to address them with what the narrator can only assume to have been gibberish, given that no one remembers any of it. The narrator believes it likely to have been some remarks regarding his abnormal behaviour and basic thought processes. All that is known is that it was particularly freaky given the circumstances and left Eric cowering behind the others whispering how fucked up the trip was turning out to be. Val could hardly believe what had just happened and this was despite his not feeling the 'shrooms much, as he felt the effect fade away. Hannah just laughed at them all. They briefly returned to the house for some reason, a detour during which userinfoturkeyphant noticed the floor sloping up in places. That was before they all went marching out of the school gates into the sun and made for the secret place.

Visiting the secret place – beside the Pool Of Tears
      She found a little bottle and tied round the neck of the bottle was a paper label with the words “DRINK ME” beautifully printed on it in large letters.
      It was all very well to say “Drink me,” but the wise little Alice was not going to do
that in a hurry. “No, I’ll look first,” she said, “and see whether it’s marked ‘poison’ or not;” for she had never forgotten that, if you drink much from a bottle marked “poison,” it is almost certain to disagree with you, sooner or later.
      However, this bottle was
not marked “poison,” so Alice ventured to taste it, and finding it very nice, (it had, in fact, a sort of mixed flavour of cherry-tart, custard, pine-apple, roast turkey, toffee, and hot-buttered toast,) she very soon finished it off.
      “What a curious feeling!” said Alice, “I must be shutting up like a telescope.”
      And so she was indeed: she was now only ten inches high.
userinfoturkeyphant weaved his way through the pedestrians with Val, Eric and Hannah. They slowly progressed toward the secret place and it seemed that, on this very day, the most eclectic mix of fucking weird people were out in Canterbury. They came from nowhere – grannies with pink mohawks, perms from hell, kids with the most contorted faces you can imagine, kids with ears the size of hands and other kids with hands with more piercings he'd seen in any ear. Everyone who had a slight abnormality and his dog was out that afternoon, cruising past the traffic and giving the four of them weird looks. The 'shrooms were now playing with their visuals and, since the strangest people in the whole of Kent had decided to do their shopping that afternoon, userinfoturkeyphant wasn't sure how to explain what he was saying or who to blame. And then, Hannah very badly freaked him out by pulling the old tap-someone-on-the-wrong-shoulder trick which caused him to violently spin round and fail to discover what had happened. They turned left at the Super Noodle bar which was now painted a brighter yellow than he'd ever seen before and seemed to radiate more light that the sun.

This being a bright summer's day, the children were out playing when they passed the school. Thousands of individual shrieks from chasing, skipping and falling rushed past their ears as they walked on past the abandoned garages. They followed the fence round behind a stagnant pond and into the secret place – a small grassy clearing with a couple of trees right in the middle of Canterbury city centre. During their journey, userinfoturkeyphant had been gawping at everything in his view, full of wonder at all these uniquely new sights. Val had been there many times before, but he still couldn't bear to not to see in every direction at once. His eyes had to be dragged away as he turned every corner.

They sat there in that clearing soaking in the Nature that surrounded them. userinfoturkeyphant didn't know where to look, Val offered his complete attention to a tree trunk that he fixed his gaze to for over half an hour, Hannah said stupid things that pissed everyone off and Eric soon announced that he would be buggering off. Though, of course, it ought to be mentioned that Americans rarely use that particular turn of phrase to announce immanent departure. Eric was already starting to feel uncomfortably weird. It was truly fucking with his head by now, and he was worried. He wanted to go for a walk.

At the same time as this, userinfoturkeyphant remembered that he was with a really strange group of people – semi-outcasts of different ages who all had difficultly opening up and weirder eccentricities than the next. Clearly this affected his thoughts and he asked them all a question. "Why do I end up taking 'shrooms with the most fucked up group of people I know?" Actually, the student was just thinking how wonderful these people were yet how annoying it was that they never really shared themselves with each other. He really wanted just to join with them in this experience and trade ideas of what they were feeling. He wanted to learn how the drug was affecting them and somehow gain an insight into them as people in doing so. Everything about people seemed so absurd and so nonsensical.
The thousands of individual velvet blades each became a tiny verdant faerie person...

After Eric had left, userinfoturkeyphant felt uncomfortable as though he were encroaching on Val and Hannah as a couple. Though, as ever in these instances, Val gave no hint that he would prefer him to leave and userinfoturkeyphant even got the impression that his continued presence was wanted. Hannah sat by herself saying silly things and giggling at the two boys' newfound fascination with the world. The grass was long and a deep green. userinfoturkeyphant stared at it and, as he watched, it turned into people. The thousands of individual velvet blades each became a tiny verdant faerie person holding their arms up high and swaying en masse in the wind. The breeze fluttered over them and they waved with it. Ripples of moving air caused their graceful movement before his eyes.

He was sitting cross legged and was slight disconcerted when, upon gazing down at his legs for a few moments, noticed that his feet were rather bigger and closer to his body than they should have been. It appeared as though the lower half of his body had been folded up and, while beforehand he'd been seeing all the world at once through the wrong end of a pair of binoculars, his legs now seemed shrunken and, when stretched out, only a foot away from his stomach. He had shrunk down to half his usual height. userinfoturkeyphant managed to get up, however, and told the others he too was leaving – he wanted to explore the Earth.

Sensory overload
      She went on talking: “Dear, dear! How queer everything is to-day! And yesterday things went on just as usual. I wonder if I've been changed in the night? Let me think: was I the same when I got up this morning? I almost think I can remember feeling a little different. But if I'm not the same, the next question is, Who in the world am I? Ah, that's the great puzzle!”
      And she began thinking over all the children she knew that were of the same age as herself, to see if she could have changed for any of them.
And so he got up and walked and all the while he walked he was deep in thought. So much so, that he barely even noticed the strange vulgarities of the strange people he was sharing the pavements with. Once, he thought he saw Miss Astin walking down the street toward him and got rather worried about the number of rules he was currently breaking, but when she came closer, it turned out to be someone nothing like his physics teacher at all. In fact, later on he often found himself seeing familiar people approaching who later turned out to be far from familiar. More often than not, on closer inspection, he could not even understand how their visages could have confused him.

But anyway, userinfoturkeyphant was still walking and he couldn't have told you where he was headed or even where he went, for he was so deeply occupied with thought. His experience with 'shrooms led him to believe that they remove the automated layer that acts as a filter between your senses and your brain's interpretations. It felt like his impression of just having been born, when one's still trying to make sense of and interpret the barrage of chemical signals. Five different senses allow for information overload, so a child has to learn which inputs to discard and which to really pay attention to. Canterbury has the most diverse selection of the perverse and while the people out that day would seem pretty eccentric when sober, userinfoturkeyphant felt that, with the 'shrooms accentuating every tiny detail, he was still walking round what turned out to be the most super fucked up city in the entire word.

Graeme Carl has used mushrooms many times before. He wrote something about the sensations that they bring about on humans. The narrator has reproduced this description so that others could hope to understand the profound effect mushrooms have on a person's way of thinking. userinfoturkeyphant would later read it and realise that this extract gives a good idea about how he was feeling and what he was discovering.
In order for the human entity to survive, it must learn from an early age how to shut out the masses of information reaching the brain. This process of selective filtering allows us to become centred on a single thought. (Imagine being completely aware of all the signals coming into your body at one moment. Imagine being aware of every square inch of your skin and how it felt. Imagine being eternally aware of your tongue in your mouth, that itch on the end of your nose or the sound of the air conditioning hissing softly in the background. I believe that tripping brings back the awareness that has been shut out ever since we were three.

Have you ever noticed children walking into a shopping mall? If you notice next time, they appear to be tripping, staring wide eyed at all the amazing colours, walking along looking up at the ceiling and watching themselves in the mirrored surface. As children age, they gradually learn to shut out the onslaught of information, they no longer seem to notice the world as their younger siblings do! By the time adulthood is reached, these sensations are even lost to memory.
Everything userinfoturkeyphant saw turned to a total headfuck. "Man, this is far too crazy," he was thinking, "thank god I expected this coming." He could only presume what terrible things would happen to someone who'd had 'shrooms slipped into their food and started tripping out having no idea why it was happening. All the little things he'd barely even consciously notice because before the brain instantly edits them out were blown up out of all proportions. The tiny details that would sometimes make him go "hmmm" were enhanced and magnified eleventy billion times. He didn't know what to think, how to think even. His senses were being overwhelmed and he was even unsure of himself. He thought he was going crazy; he didn't have control over his own brain at all. All the symptoms of schizophrenia jumped out – circumstantialities, an expansion of the horizon of meaning, lengthy delusions, hallucinations, incoherence, catatonic behaviour and running commentaries. He began to become scared of himself and was so very glad that he understood and knew roughly what was happening. He truly appreciated it and gave thanks for being fairly sure that it found be over at some point.

At that moment, he suddenly realised everything at once. He saw through it all, he was the one, he was at one and godliness was all his. In the same way as Neo sees the symbols of the Matrix code, userinfoturkeyphant could now see and understand the fundamental machine code of nature. He could comprehend how the world ran. The 'shrooms had given him a greater understanding of everything and everyone else. All of a sudden he realised the single most important basic fact of existence: THE ONLY DIFFERENCE BETWEEN EVERY SINGLE ENTIRELY DIFFERENT INDIVIDUAL IS HOW THEIR BRAIN INTERPRETS THEIR SURROUNDING ENVIRONMENT. He was aware that it seemed simplistic and blinding obvious, but the more he thought about it, the greater profundity it leant itself.

The narrator everyone just to think for a moment – we are identical in all but this one aspect. Think about what that interpretation actually means. This knowledge washed over him in eddy currents and flowed within like a spring of enlightenment. The cogs that make up the working of life were superimposed by his corneas onto all he saw. Warm blood flowed through his veins as he looked around in every direction and was overcome by how much sense it all made. He understood it all and, through this, possessed everything.

With mushrooms, userinfoturkeyphant saw that we can change the way we think, the way we interpret living. It is possible to become a completely different person (or, maybe, that's only his reaction to the drug?). He discovered that the sole difference between the typical King's pupil, the laughing man, Stephen Hawking, the pikey on the streets of Reigate, Hitler, Marx, TD, Gandhi, Gonk, a randomly chosen Afghan child, a Kenyan prisoner and himself is the way in which they interpret the information around them. The way they are affected by their senses. The way they are affected by creation.
The Mexicans call it God’s Flesh ... within the psilocybin and psilocin [lies] a cure for humanity.

He understood everyone else through being able to think like someone different. If only all people could realise this, if only people could understand. The 'shrooms had enabled him to transcend everything in the universe. He had a complete understanding of everything, but knew it couldn't last. After making that one groundbreaking discovery, it was a race against time to learn as much as he could. He had to discover it all before he forgot. Have you ever read Flowers For Algernon? The narrator feel the reader should be informed that, in it, a retarded man has his IQ surgically tripled and struggles to come to terms with the way he was treated in his old life. He sees how other less intelligent people such as he used to be are constantly mocked and finds he can no longer relate to people as a genius. Then, after he learns more and soon has become by far the most intelligent person ever to walk to earth, he learns that his knowledge will soon fade away and be lost forever. The effect isn't permanent and he'll shortly be the stupid man who everybody used to laugh at without him even realising. He was in a feverish hustle to find a way to provide permanence to his IQ boost before he's no longer even literate. It's a touching tale that gives an insight into the mind of the mentally challenged. But, during that time, userinfoturkeyphant knew exactly how it felt and the sense of urgency was overwhelming. But still, he'd learned one thing he was sure he would never forget. He had become convinced that mushrooms are the answer to all the world's problems.

The Mexicans call it God's Flesh. It's easy to see why. For when he was on the 'shrooms, he was convinced that within the psilocybin and psilocin lay the answer to all the world's problems; a cure for humanity. This drug allowed an insight into other people's psyches and would surely eliminate all misunderstanding and the causes of all suffering. Now all the had to do is find out that this is the truth. Nevertheless, the knowledge left him very happy indeed.

Realisation of one's own mental state
      The Caterpillar and Alice looked at each other for some time in silence: at last the Caterpillar took the hookah out of its mouth and addressed her in a languid, sleepy voice.
      “Who are
you?” said the Caterpillar.
      This was not an encouraging opening for a conversation. Alice replied, rather shyly, “I—I hardly know, sir, just at present—at least I know who I
was this morning, but I think I must have changed several times since then.
      “What do you mean by that?” said the Caterpillar sternly. “Explain yourself!”
      “I can’t explain
myself, I am afraid, sir,” said Alice, “because I’m not myself, you see.”
And still userinfoturkeyphant's mind kept on rolling. At this point he began to get scared. He no longer had much control and wasn't sure how much longer it would all last. His watch told him it was about ninety minutes since he ingested the 'shrooms but time meant nothing to him and he had no recollection of it passing. He began to wonder whether things would ever stop feeling like this. Would it ever end so that he could return to a world where he was capable of human contact? Would he ever be able to communicate his discovery to everyone? He just wanted to be normal again, but could feel his former self slipping away. What would happen if he could never go back? What if it turned out that this would never end? His brain was highlighting the way everyone you pass gives you a cursory glance and he was turning toward irrational paranoia. He wondered how many more hours of experiencing life like this it would take before he gave up and did whatever came to mind first. Could he reject society's grooming and return to pure animal humanity? Was it really possible for him to rid himself of seventeen years of mental corruption by civilization? By Western civilization?

There was no chance of a coherent exchange with other human beings and, after being limited by his brain in such a way, he would inevitably appear to the other no different from all the other crazy people who were mocked by the normals. Within a couple of days, there would be no escape from those determined to "help" him by converting him back to normality, back to a world where his most pressing worry was picking a university course and whether he wanted to take a gap year. He was really freaking out, not being sure himself whether life would ever be the same again.

For those moments he thought hew knew what it was like to be a so-called mentally ill person. To be trapped in your mind or even trapped in your body. For those moments he too was trapped. He too was crazy. "Certainly," he thought, "I would appear to be a lot more crazy that the laughing man if I saw thing like this all the time." If anything, he thought himself far crazier than him, Robert or anyone else. He saw how it works, how it really isn't his fault or choice or anything. He just wanted to be normal again but could never know whether that was possible. And then he looked up and carried on walking.

Scary and skewed walking and visions
      “In that direction,” the Cat said, waving its right paw around, “lives a Hatter: and in that direction,” waving the other paw, “lives a March Hare. Visit either you like: they’re both mad.”
      “But I don’t like to go among mad people,” Alice remarked.
      “Oh, you can’t help that,” said the Cat: “we’re all mad here. I’m mad. You’re mad.”
At one moment, he found himself in a close-cum-estate kind of thing. About ten yards too late, he realised he'd begun to walk down a dead end. Immediately he started in the middle of the road and stopped to look around and decide what course of action to follow next. As he turned to take the branching road to his left, a concerned looking woman walked up to him as though she was about to ask if he needed any help. Obviously he looked confused and shouldn't have been there. He was certain he appeared ostensibly as though he were tripping and she wanted to help him away, lest anything unbecoming occur on the road on which she lived. She approached and he prayed that she wouldn't get him busted by policemen or school teachers. He found that she came right up to him, appeared to look him in the eyes and then, just as he was about to mouth some excuse to her, she walked off completely naturally to the left as though she'd never had any intention of approaching him at all. And he could no longer remember whether it was that clear at all that he was acting strangely and that she was likely to approach him or, whether she always turned corners like that and he'd imagined it all.

But anyway, he walked some more and thought some more and then walked some more again. He can't recall where he went, but does remember that he repeatedly planned to and then forgot to return to his room for some gel so he'd look passably respectable whilst out in town. As he walked the streets, he looked into cars and the reflections on the windscreens played with the driver's faces and passengers so they seemed to have dogs' faces or were otherwise grossly contorted. His only reaction was to absurdly find it all somehow slightly humorous.

Some time later Hannah had called him and he found himself back in the secret place with Val and Hannah. He tried to explain what had happened but Val still seemed reluctant to share his experiences with userinfoturkeyphant and so he was unable to tell whether his feelings were remotely normal or not. Val decided he wanted to go wander off alone for a while and, meanwhile, Hannah remained with userinfoturkeyphant laughing at everything he said and every announcement he felt the need to make. She also seemed to be horribly flirty now her boyfriend was absent and this worried userinfoturkeyphant somewhat and continued to cause him some slight discomfort. Still, his mind was soon lost in the trees and grass and sky and he noticed that his vision had become particularly screwy. Everything seemed to be squashed up in the z-direction so that the trees were all swollen and as fat as Namibian baobab trunks despite only being about nine feet tall. To userinfoturkeyphant, the high street was twice as long as usual, Hannah's face had become comically plump and chubby, while his own body had become short and obese too. It was all rather eerie. He also saw some delicate spider webs on a tree that he'd never noticed previously. The silk was just so perfectly woven that he became engrossed in just observing its beauty and, if it weren't for Hannah calling him, would probably have fallen into a trance just watching the webs in the sun.

A detour to a trip: the Korova Milkbar
      “Well then,” the Cat went on, “you see a dog growls when it’s angry and wags its tail when it’s pleased. Now I growl when I’m pleased and wag my tail when I’m angry. Therefore I’m mad.”
He decided to head back to school and to go back to his room for gel and money. And so userinfoturkeyphant walked calmly back to his room and narrowly avoided the evil Mr. Parker on the way back. He went in his room and slumped at his desk in front of the computer and put on a nice WinAMP playlist. The songs began to gently fade in very slowly but then, brothers, it came. Oh, bliss, bliss and heaven. He lay all nagoy to the ceiling, his gulliver on his rookers, glazzies closed, rot open in bliss, slooshying the sluice of lovely sounds. He remained absolutely still and oh, it was gorgeousness and gorgeosity made flesh. The trombones crunched redgold and the trumpets three-wise silverflamed, and the timps rolled through his guts and out again crunched like candy thunder. Oh, it was wonder of wonders. A bird of like rarest spun heavenmetal, or like silvery wine flowing in a spaceship, gravity all nonsense now, came a violin solo above all other strings and those strings were like a cage of silk around his bed. Flute and oboe bored, like worms of platinum, into the thick thick toffee gold and silver. For a few minutes he revelled in the minute strange scratches and ticks he heard in the extremities of the frequency range of his songs. Sounds he'd never experienced before popped out at once from the highest treble and he felt very pleased with himself.

userinfoturkeyphant then contemplated updating his journal with nonsensical garbage for future nostalgic value. He changed his mind several times before realising there'd never be enough time, he could never convey the feelings without risking corruption and various other things including the fact he felt like watching a DVD. He was rather content with the trip's progression, but impatient. Although his brain was still running at a hundred miles an hour, he wanted more visual stimuli. Rooting through his films, he noticed that the bass from McD's subwoofer actually seemed to cause the walls to pound and reverberate several inches: they were beating in time. Still, he was thrilled when he found his A Clockwork Orange disc. A perfect film for watching during a trip, he thought. He'd always wanted to say he'd done this. And so he settled down to watch, marvelling at a new level of genius he found in the work.

All the while he made notes in biro on a sheet of A4, trying to recorded every thought that came to him. The film panned out in a completely different way than ever before and he began to be able see through the protagonist's eyes. Alex had it all right; Alex was perhaps the only man in the world to understand in the same way userinfoturkeyphant did. They both saw through to Old Bog Himself And All His Angels And Saints. And, in doing so, they saw each other. He recalled Burgess's written introduction to the book and thought how wrong the author had been. He, however, felt that he could understand one's ideas being so. "Or, anyhow, when unenlightened, one may easily feel inclined that way," userinfoturkeyphant quietly thought to himself. Still, he realised with certainty that Alex is the only one who even remotely understands the world. He suddenly felt a complete affinity for him and began to feel himself seeing everything.

This omniscience was briefly interrupted when Sam Nussey burst into the room. By then, userinfoturkeyphant had given up writing notes in tetra-coloured ink and, instead, was lying on his bed trying to soak all all all of it in. Sam proclaimed his love for the film but userinfoturkeyphant awkwardly realised that this child had no idea how to even go about appreciating such a marvellous work. He couldn't bear to struggle to absorb Alex's divinity with an ignorant impostor in the room pretending to like something for all the wrong reasons. That, and he didn't want to give himself away for fear of severe punishments relating to his drug ingestion. Thus, he had to somehow explain that he'd prefer to watch the film alone without offending his concomitant nor arousing suspicion due to unnatural behaviour. Happily, Sam left the room with little questioning and userinfoturkeyphant could resume his previous functions. He wondered to himself whether he could find someone he could persuade to give him some weed, for he was curious about what would happen. He felt that maybe something it was something to consider for next time.

Meanwhile Eric was sitting alone, also thinking of weed. This was his second time taking 'shrooms – the first had been a fun filled afternoon giggling on a sunny Californian beach with his chums in America. This trip was rapidly turning out very different though. He didn't have to suffer through any of the first-timers' worries about whether normality would ever resume, yet he had much more pressing worries. The drug brutally highlighted the mild depression that had dogged him for the last few weeks. He fucking hated the King's School for its claustrophobic and draconian restrictiveness (fuck it, he felt, he's almost nineteen years old and he's banned from enjoying a cigarette or evening in the pub). He fucking hated it for the wankers who inhabited it and the way the pupils couldn't even see how wrong it all was. Eric is an intelligent man and was doing well in his schoolwork, but he was frequently in trouble and he blamed this on his weed habit. He'd tried giving up a couple of times before, but it was just all too easy to relapse. Today, he was sitting there presented with his mind at large and thinking back to yesterday's joint. He just had to stop wasting his life away through that drug; he was almost addicted. And the 'shrooms in his brain took control and made him get carried away as he was overwhelmed with depression. He couldn't see a way out from rotting away smoking so much shit. When he bumped into Val, he was shaking and having a really bad time. As he collapsed onto a bed, all he said was, "Fuck dude, just now I actually had to stop myself committing suicide." It was fucking bad, man.


turkeyphant's Adventures In Wonderland II

Stuck in the White Rabbit's house seeking a pair of gloves and a fan
      Alice began to feel very uneasy: to be sure she had not as yet had any dispute with the Queen, but she knew that it might happen any minute, “and then,” thought she, “what would become of me? They’re dreadfully fond of beheading people here: the great wonder is that there’s anyone left alive!”
The cracked paint began to bubble ... as though the stone itself were boiling like a thick broth.
userinfoturkeyphant decided to spend some time in undoubtedly the most fucked up room in the house to try and glean some deep sensory experience from Val's densely postered walls. Sitting there with so many eclectic stimuli and weird vents for a somewhat disturbed soul surrounding him, he found it weird that his vision was drawn to the one bare patch of flaking white pigment. Val's room is covered with the nonsensical and absurd in a way that would easily even make Danny proud, but all he could see through the mental magnifying glass was this one plain section of wall. And there, right before his glazed eyes, the cracked paint began to bubble out of the wall as though the stone itself were boiling like a thick broth or sorcerer's concoction. He watched closely, and still the whiteness bubbled up and swelled and just made him feel dizzy. Running back to his room, userinfoturkeyphant was dismayed to find Charlemagne waiting there for him. Despite userinfoturkeyphant acting drunkenly, Charlemagne couldn't seem to work out what was causing his strangeness and, in fact, barely even noticed anything particularly different. He grabbed his gel and went to the sink to apply it to his hair.

Returning to his room, userinfoturkeyphant found Charlemagne still there. Hannah had turned up and he cunningly persuaded her to take his laundry downstairs for him as he was still terrified of encountering the cleaning ladies working downstairs. He reached up to dislodge a stray lock of hair, only to find his whole head covered in gel. He must have inadvertently used up a whole pot of the greasy cosmetic in a rather unliberal application of beauty product. As he gingerly moved his fingers through his hair and teased each individual strand, he realised that his entire scalp was saturated in the foul substance. He asked Charlemagne if it seemed that he'd used too much – Charlemagne replied negatively and simply mocked his concern. Still, he continued to feel in there in his hair and it disgusted him. It felt as though he'd washed his hair in a vat of old chip fat and he desperately wiped his head against his dressing gown, scratching at his the top of it and trying to rub the gel out. But it was all still there and so he rushed to the sink again and washed it off his fingers and out of his hair. Looking up into the mirror, he was given a shock as he was greeted by an apparition that actually scared him with its grotesque ugliness. His face was warped with Kai's Power Goo, his hair slick and greasy like an olive oil bottle and his complexion blotted with hundreds of bursting spots that had been magnified by the 'shrooms' influence. He reeled into the glass, but that only made the reflection worse and his repulsiveness at once became tangible as it floated, suspended in the air. It was foul and he immediately ran back to his room in terror.

There, he annoyed Charlemagne who bellowed, "what's wrong with you?" until he buggered off and then userinfoturkeyphant sank into the deepest pits of paranoia. He realised that he and the droogs that had colluded with him faced very real and very serious consequences should their extra-curricular activities become known by the authorities. He became obsessed with the notion of avoiding capture and fretted over every possibility, remotely conceivable or not. Which course of action could he take that would be least likely to result in his arrest and expulsion as a result? Every possible happening was carefully cogitated over, and he considered every conceivable combination of events. And all the while he was trying to be rational to carefully and objectively think things through, the drug would tug at his brain and drag him in a thousand directions at once through those big brown eyes that were seeing googolplex times as much as usual.

He was terrified of what might happen to him that day and truly thought he would be thrown in jail if he went into town. Certainly, if Mr. Dath walked into his room their would be no concealing the symptoms of a liberated brain and he would instantly be apprehended and swiftly dealt with according to the draconian drug regulations. He could only imagine what would happen – smoking cigarettes is an incredibly serious offence and, if you're caught in possession of some dope or pills, you should expect to be instantly expelled. Would he be better off just lying in his room with the lights out and hope that nobody would notice his absence or come to look for him until it was all over? He wasn't sure whether he'd had enough of it already, and it was scary that he had no control over the trip's duration. And anyway, surely they'd come to find him for roll call? Factor in the possibility of people coming in to visit him and, although they probably wouldn't directly inform the authorities, teachers and other staff would surely find out due to the velocity of gossip in this loudmouthed school. He was just so scared about being confronted by people. He was not sure how he'd react nor whether he'd have that much control over his brain's new perspective.

What if he barricaded the door? Dath would either burst in and demand to see him and shout in his face (which he could never bare) or, wouldn't it just encourage McD to knock down the door and find out what he was doing? In a school so devoid of compassion and the notion of privacy, how likely would it be that people would just assume he was in a bad mood and leave him be? It was a possibility, but carried exceedingly high risks.

So, what were the alternatives? He could wander about town, but he wasn't sure he could bear so many people looking at him as he went past and he couldn't endure the fear that was caused by the certainty that they could all see what was happening to him; what was really going on inside that supercharged head. Maybe he could lock himself in the toilet, or was that too suspicious? How about just going off to the secret place and staying there for a few hours? No: primary school teaching assistants go out there to smoke and there was sure to be some nosey git creeping around there to find him. What about the park? Maybe: he'd have to be sure he didn't collapse and allow curious policemen to approach him. It would surely be a lot worse when they realised he wasn't just some passed-out warm-weather drunk. It was a big risk because he really couldn't risk getting busted by the cops who would then inevitably inform the school.

Shit, what is to be done, what is to be done?

He could think of nothing else and drove himself crazy worrying about what to do. It was a real dilemma and he couldn't think of anything worse. It was torturous sitting there and shitting himself about what to do. To others, it would seem nonsensical, paranoid and sensationalist, but it was probably only natural that his only reaction was so absurd – the new sensations were causing a type of delirium. "I'm screwed," he thought, for he truly had no idea what to do. And still A Clockwork Orange kept rolling and he had no idea what the time was.

Picture album film-strip
      Alice sighed wearily. “I think you might do something better with the time,” she said, “than wasting it asking riddles that have no answers.”
      “If you knew Time as well as I do,” said the Hatter, “you wouldn’t talk about wasting
it. It’s him.”
      “I don’t know what you mean,” said Alice.
      “Of course you don’t!” the Hatter said tossing his head contemptuously. “I dare say you never even spoke to Time!”
Then Val phoned and told him to come to Westgate park – they were all there waiting for him. Val's experience with psilocin had been very different to that of userinfoturkeyphant and Eric. His trip started off with weird feelings preempting something unknown, giggles and hilarious realisations of the blindingly obvious. When they visited the secret place, he was intrigued with nature and even got some open-eye visuals but after only a couple of hours after ingestion, his come-down began. By the time the call was received, Val was feeling, to all intents and purposes, ordinary. Of course, as you are aware, ladies and gentlemen, userinfoturkeyphant was still having the time of his life.
He yearned for a record of the kaleidoscopic visuals that graced his retinae and the inside of his eyelids. He hoped he could live the phantasmagoria again...

And so, he quickly grabbed a pile of stuff (money: no bank card and only two pounds because he daren't risk more in this state; mobile; no water; no food; free Polaroid camera to photograph the things he saw) and ran out of the door. He stopped to consider again whether he should grab his digital camera to document his journey. All that day he'd been wishing he could take snapshots of everything he was seeing. A cool mark on the pavement, a deranged person's expression, a mouldy milk carton or just a piece of paper that was slightly lopsided. Fuck, it was all just so fascinating to him – every corner introduced another marvellously fulfilling sight and he wasn't even sure how much of it was due to him seeing things or just being able to see in a different way. There were a million photo opportunities in every yard. He longed for a photographic diary of his trip. He yearned for a record of the kaleidoscopic visuals that graced his retinae and the inside of his eyelids. He hoped he could live the phantasmagoria again and revel in the skewed magnificence once more in the future. The wonderscapes could be captured by no camera, but nor could they ever be forgotten. It was so tempting, but the rational part that still remained persuaded him that even this trip wasn't worth a £400 camera. Afterward, he would wonder whether he really made the right decision. Still, he placed it down on the desk, tentatively checked his hair with a brush of his hand and, with that, bolted through the door.

On his way out, he glanced at a mirror and almost jumped in horror when he saw that his pupils had encroached upon his irises and had even begun to envelop the whites of his eyes. They were just so damn huge as they sought out the maximum amount of sensory information, and he couldn't help thinking that they looked pretty damn cool. After quickly returning to his room and surreally taking a stray shirt down to the laundry ladies (the experience only convinced him that he couldn't cope with human contact under this influence) he was in town again.

Before he started walking, he looked at his watch once more. Time was passing and he couldn't begin to understand why, how or even what Time was. His watch remained adamant, however, and just said there was anything up to four hours left. Whatever that meant.

The plateau of plateaux
      “It was much pleasanter at home,” thought poor Alice, “ when one wasn't always growing larger and smaller and being ordered about by mice and rabbits. I almost wish I hadn’t gone down the rabbit-hole—and yet—and yet—it’s rather curious, you know, this sort of life!”
And so he walked through the town and through the people. And as he walked, he saw again all the massive accentuations of diminutive details you usually never notice. All the people he walked past had huge carrot noses, gigantic furrowed eyebrows and mouths that looked like they'd been melted like beeswax. They had utterly unnatural hairstyles and foreheads that were so huge he wondered whether Fiona felt threatened. It was fucking scary as the streets of Canterbury, which he'd always remembered as being faintly normal, were suddenly inhabited by extras from Star Trek and Babylon 5. It seemed that the make-up artists had really pulled out the stops this time. Once-quiet side roads and secluded avenues were now crowded with the casts of every major horror movie and/or space drama of the last decade. And the weird thing was, they scared him shitless even though he could see exactly what his brain was doing. Say someone has an Ian de Boat-style abnormally large nose – well this meant that he saw it three times its actual size. Every pimple, scar or slight blemish was emphasised and exaggerated so much that his brain made freaks out of everyone. No matter which way he looked, the inhabitants of Canterbury no longer seemed to come from Earth. But still, he looked down at his feet and kept on walking, trying to ignore the leering stares of these newly discovered aliens.

He'd been plodding through town for about ten minutes before he remembered he was meant to be heading toward Westgate Park. "Westgate, Westgate..." – he thought it over for a few seconds. "Right, that's over that way," and he set off in a slightly altered direction. After another five minutes, he found he'd gone deeper into town and had found himself on the high street. It was at this point that he realised he had absolutely no idea where Westgate Park was situated any longer. He'd completely forgotten how to get there and he was worried. Bloody worried. Somehow he managed to retrace his steps and, standing in familiar territory outside the school gates, followed an inkling and set off again toward where he hoped Westgate would still be. He would only realise later that, although it wasn't the optimal route, he could still have easily reached the park from the high street.
He [was] only catching Doppler-shifted morsels of a thousand different conversations all at once.

As it was, he was thinking of all the "people" looking at him as he walked. He felt stupid carrying the bulky Polaroid camera, but realised he shouldn't be thinking straight enough to feel self-conscious about stupid little things as usual. He didn't think he really cared about other people's perceptions of him. But he still felt everyone looking at him. All day, as he'd been walking, he heard the hundreds of snippets of sound and noise going so very fast past his hypersensitive ears. It was actually quite similar to the sensory overload portrayed in tripping scenes in films. His supercharged sound-receptor organs were impatient and only concentrated on each conversation he passed for a split second. But while it was there, he heard every word and every artifact of the voices that passed out of their throats. It was like walking through a busy market with all the stall owners clamouring for your attention and shouting out the benefits of their myriad various wares. He felt as if he were driving past everyone at warp speed, only catching Doppler-shifted morsels of a thousand different conversations all at once.

He imagined more people looking at him and ideated that they could see inside him and see the crazy thoughts that were going through his head. He thought they could tell he was tripping, and that they were out to get him. Or something. He'd been wanted to run for ages but hadn't yet. Then, suddenly, for some reason, he burst into a sprint and tore past them all like he didn't care. They didn't even have enough time to look at his face. And he knew it was too hot to run and he'd soon break into an uncomfortable sweat, but he couldn't stop dashing onward.

Beautiful Velocity accompanied by the Red Queen
      “A slow sort of country!” said the Queen. “Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place. If you want to get somewhere else, you must run at least twice as fast as that!”
As he ran he suddenly noticed he'd been talking to himself out loud. Now, this usually happens anyway – he subconsciously talks to himself under his breath drugs or not – but it slightly scared him at the time, especially considering the volume with which he was speaking. He was articulating his thoughts in order to try and make sense of them through enunciation.

He ran past the river and there was only a low wall between it and him. He felt himself being drawn to it and wanting to throw himself in. The water looked nothing like what it was. The surface was growing up toward him and the warm colours and light green weeds seemed to blend together while the liquid didn't even flow and it turned pastel coloured. The water all seemed to blend together and the colours merged and the matter itself merged and all the while it seemed to draw him closer. He wondered what would happen if he fell in. Would he snap out of it or just forget how to swim and wildly flail about? Still he was leaning to it as he ran and it scared him that he seemed to have no control over whether he fell in or not. The water looked refreshing, but there were sharp rocks beneath the surface and he was terrified of going in. Once, he brushed against the wall and his head cleared for a moment allowing him to push himself away and run off in the other direction. He successfully navigated several roads before finding himself in the tranquil landscaped surroundings of the park. And all the while, he'd been trying to think fast enough to work it all out before this benediction ran out.

He slowed down and walked through the park's lawns and beds when he got there. Val had phoned again and told userinfoturkeyphant to meet him and Eric at the very end of the park in a large, open field. And so he walked through the beautiful park on his own, envying all the lucky people out enjoying themselves picnicking with friends in the sun. He saw vividly bright flowers that Eric had previously passed. Eric however, had turned back to look at the city. There he saw a true surrealist landscape. The ancient ruins of the old City gate seamlessly blended into sooty Victorian terraces, a modern road from a thriving metropolis and a stately garden while the grounds of an eighteen century mansion completed the view. The scene was royally fucked up. Only in Canterbury, England could you see such a fantastically haphazard cityscape encompassing four centuries all within thirty yards of each other.

As he walked through the gardens his brain continued to play with him. He could feel gallons of sweat pouring down his body and soaking his shirt coming from every single pore. He looked down at his bare arms and the veins bulged out hideously like worms. He saw an old woman lying motionless on the gently graduated grass. A sudden fear saturated his body as he was convinced he'd killed her at some time under the influence of the 'shrooms. Moving on, he caught sight of a tree that seemed to have every single branch completely covered in pigeons. For some reason, he thought of Zeuxis and Parrhasius in Pliny's Natural History.

He walked along the river still only barely preventing himself from falling in. He passed under the graffiti bridge he had only recently tried to photograph. On passing through to the other side, the whole playground opened up to him and seemed to be full of pikeys. Unfaltering, he walked on and crossed a fairytale bridge to a wide open meadow. Here, a man was walking his dog and, as he passed his shoulder, the man seemed to give him a strange look. userinfoturkeyphant looked up and saw a scary dark building that must have been a prison. The BT logo on the side did nothing to reassure him – if he couldn't find Val soon, he may have to spend some time in that threatening looking '70s concrete jailhouse. But anyway, he kept walking until he found himself on a main road. He crossed this and crossed another river until he found himself in the third graveyard of the day. Everywhere he went, no matter how unlikely it would seem (high street, primary school, main road) he found a graveyard. Before he ventured out onto the road again, he realised that he'd been here before. He recognised the housing from a walk he once went on with Theodore. Nevertheless, looking down the main road he realised he was far away from the park and instead of finding Val and Eric was actually heading out of Canterbury itself.

Meanwhile, Val and Eric were with James Jamónvía, David Griffiths, Alexandre Cohen-Santi and some other French kid on exchange called Guillaume. They were sitting peaceful by the grassy riverside smoking tobacco and marijuana and enjoying the dregs of a tepid carton of juice together. It was hot and some of them had taken off their shirts to lounge about in the sun, happily skipping an afternoon of school. Eric was just beginning to come down and Val was feeling completely normal by now. He persuaded James to call userinfoturkeyphant to try and find out where he was.

userinfoturkeyphant was still wandering about the main road trying to think what to do. When he received James' phone call, he was moping around the graveyard again, not thinking anything comprehendible at all. James carefully and kindly instructed him back across the river, the road and the meadow where he met the man and dog. All the while userinfoturkeyphant was getting rather worried. He was desperate to find familiar faces and to feel safe, but kept wondering where the hell they could be. Looking for them, he took a secluded path and went across a broad bridge and down a slope into a large field enclosed by trees. To his horror he looked up and, instead of seeing his smiling friends greeting him, userinfoturkeyphant was confronted with six foot nettles as far as the eye could see. There were maze-like meandering pathways cut into the diabolic plants, but none were wide enough to pass through without incurring painful stings. He almost screamed as he turned and ran back to the meadow. When he went across the arch bridge again, instead of being placed on a slight mound, it seemed to be situated at the apex of a small mountain and he struggled to climb the steep ascent and even had to strain his neck to look up to it.

Eventually, userinfoturkeyphant found the secret pathway from the playground to the vast field in which the others were waiting. He walked by the river to meet them and was amazed at the pastelly nature of the water again, as well as the way it effectively seemed that the surface level was actually higher than the top of the banks. James and Dave came up to meet him, but he was just too surprised that, from here, he could see the "prison" and a huge metal cylinder he'd always found beautiful before. And so, that was how he found himself sitting down with the others by the riverside at about three thirty or something like that. He used up the last few Polaroid photos he had left taking pictures of them all sitting there in utterly laid-back stoned relaxation. There were memories to cherish and he took the perfect photographs to record the day for posterity. Strangely enough, one completely borked up forming weird psychedelic patterns instead of a focussed image and one of Eric looking stoned turned out very overexposed. Everyone was being very quiet and soon only Val, Eric and he remained. Eric was still recovering from his trip a bit and, in his excitement, userinfoturkeyphant was unable to extract details of any of Eric's psychedelic phantasmagorias and experiences. Val was adamant that he hadn't felt anything and they sat there for a while, just enjoying being together, enjoying the grass, the water, the cloudy sky and the sun.

The come down and THE END
      “Wake up, Alice dear!” said her sister. “Why, what a long sleep you’ve had!”
      “Oh, I’ve had such a curious dream!” said Alice.
      Alice got up and ran off, thinking while she ran, as well she might, what a wonderful dream it had been.
This chronicle is coming to an end and this seems to be the moment for userinfoturkeyphant to confess that he is the narrator. But, before describing the closing scenes, he would wish anyhow to justify his undertaking and to set it down that he expressly made a point of adopting the tone of an impartial observer. While the narrative naturally has the necessity of centring around his observations, thoughts and actions, he feels that, even with the mushrooms' influence, he was well placed for giving a true account of all he saw, heard and sensed. But, in doing so, he has tried to keep within the limits that seemed desirable. For instance, in a general way, he has confined himself to describing only such things as he was able to see for himself, and refrained from attributing to his companions sentiments that, when all is said and done, they were bound not to have. And, as for documents, he has only used such as chance, or mischance put in his way.
...they sat outside on the street for a while, drenched in euphoria, simply considering the beauty of life.

But anyway, after sitting there with Val and Eric for a while, they realised that it had all suddenly died off. They were used to the nature of the trip in which the effects came in strong waves, but this time it only seemed to be fading away. They all decided to head off. They walked back and Eric and userinfoturkeyphant shared their experiences as they went, gleefully remarking at anything they saw that conjured up memories. After userinfoturkeyphant purchased them all some refreshments (the only time he's been happy to recklessly spend money) they sat outside on the street for a while, drenched in euphoria, simply considering the beauty of life. Val had to wait for a haircut he would have later and asked Eric to wait and accompany him. As they sat, more weird people walked past and, although this time their faces weren't hideously warped by the drug, it caused them all to reflect upon where all these strange people had come from this day. There were two old hunchbacked men with wrinkled faces on the opposite side of the road who moved in such a strenuous yet utterly unnatural way that Eric was sure he'd have been totally freaked out coming across them when he was tripping. userinfoturkeyphant also remembered that he'd seen some girl with pink hair and a young dude with a German army jacket at least three separate times during his travels. He was feeling fine by now and, after bidding the others valedictions, set off back to school again. He was desperate to be left alone with his thoughts once more on a quiet walk back with time to reflect on the day's experience.

Once at school, userinfoturkeyphant browsed the internet, showered and generally tried to come to terms with it all before supper. He sighed, lay back and thought about what a wonderful, wonderful day it had been. And then Charlemagne walked in and revealed that everyone had just discovered his journal that afternoon (in accordance with Murphy's Law, the latest entry had been some über angsty cuss-fest of all the people at school) and, not only that, he had read the sheet of crazed gurglings and rambles that userinfoturkeyphant had scribbled down about 'shrooms whilst watching A Clockwork Orange. userinfoturkeyphant was tired and became very upset and pissed off but soon calmed down, even though, in frantically friendifying all his entries, a few were deleted due to poor Java skills.

Still at the end of the day, at the end of this amazing experience, he only feels one thing overall. He feels that perhaps he's weak-willed (hell, he knows he is), but damn, he can't wait until he gets hold of some more of this shit. Afterward, he can never really understand that level of transcendence he had reached and he still feels anyone who's never done 'shrooms really has no idea at all. He had seen like a god, he had tasted the deity. Truly he had.


Though, really he felt, it doesn't ever end. This epiphanic revalation would affect the rest of his life to come...


[This took several weeks to complete at a standard I could be semi-content with. I am severely indebted to countless wordsmiths, all of which possess much greater skill than I. Despite having to rely on my own conjuring skill to attempt to recreate my experience, I am aware of my multifarious influences. While I am not conscious of them all, I hope I have not shied from displaying them with complete transparency throughout the text. While I am unable to fully acknowledge all those who deserve citation, I admit that I have shamelessly lifted entire passages from Messrs. Camus and Burgess whose marvellous literary dexterity I could only fail to emulate. Finally, as I'm sure you, dear reader, found all too apparent, I have based a lot of this chronicle around the work of a certain Charles Lutwidge Dodgson whose passages are liberally interspersed throughout. My deepest gratitude goes to all who have assisted me.]

We shall by morning
Inherit the earth.
Our foot's in the door.