Citation: Anatoli Smorin. "Mental Molasses Swirl: An Experience with GHB & Cannabis (exp113127)". Erowid.org. May 10, 2019. erowid.org/exp/113127
Mental Molasses Swirl
| T+ 1:15
| T+ 1:24
| T+ 1:49
| T+ 3:20
In the realm of substance use I consider myself well seasoned. For slightly over a decade I have experimented with benzodiazepines, opioids, opiates, dissociatives, tryptamines, phenethylamines, and an array of stimulants. Many of these experiences include less common research chemicals, sometimes in unusual combinations with other substances.
I take 5000 IU of vitamin D3 daily along with 2400 mg of mesalamine for a lifelong stomach condition. I do not consider either of these to be a contributor factor in this experience.
In the writing of this report, I have used a combination of notes written during the actual experience, as well as voice recordings from the experience. I am confident that the timestamps provided are accurate to within + / Ė 60 seconds.
On the day of the experience described below I ate two meals. The first was a simple chicken sandwich at 12:35 PM [T Ė 07:01] and the second was a shrimp quesadilla at 2:08 PM [T Ė 05:28]. Given the onset time I experienced, I donít believe these meals had any significant affect on the action of the GHB.
My mindset going into the experience was even-keeled and upbeat. I had a heavy session at the gym after a very productive day at work. I have been struggling with some difficult projects that I finally made significant progress on. I also was presented with a job offer that is very promising. Iím proud and happy with todayís accomplishments.
The GHB used in this experienced was sourced from a reliable chemist. The GHB was of the sodium variety [Na-GHB]. The solution is set at 800 mg / 1 ml. At this concentration the solution is cloudy and moves notable more slowly than water. A 40 ml vial requires a few minutes of vigorous shaking to completely mix. Several trials showed that the solution consistently takes 7+ hours to settle completely. When settled, most of the vial is an opaque, slightly cloudy, (white) color. The vial is 6.5 cm tall and has a diameter of 2.5 cm and has a narrowing of interior containment space at its bottom. Measuring from the deepest point in the container, the lowest 1.5 cm is much cloudier (cannot see through) when settled.
I have experimented with this same batch of GHB relatively extensively. Prior to this batch I had done GHB several times but given my relative inexperience with the substance I began my latest usage with an allergy test level dosage. This was followed by a series of eight additional experiences over which I slowly increased my dosage. The intent of the titrated dosages was to avoid an unpleasantly strong experience and to home in on my personal ďsweet spotĒ for a medium intensity GHB experience. This was the third experience (from the set of nine) in which I felt significant effects and the first of which I felt worthy of writing about formally. I have not yet experienced an unrousable sleep induced by GHB, so my personal scale for the substanceís intensity is admittedly incomplete at this time.
T + 00:00 [7:36 PM]
Satisfied that the solution is thoroughly mixed I use a fresh and sterile needleless syringe to measure 2.50 ml [2000 mg] from the vial. I have my partner Kai double check my measuring before I discharge the syringe directly onto my tongue. The taste is distinctly salty. There is a hint of velvety smoothness accompanied by the sensation that the GHB is a bit thicker than water. The salty taste is more pleasant than ocean water but doesnít bring a smile to my face either. Compared the smaller dosages, the taste is a bit more off-putting simply given the additional volume I am consuming.
As has become my practice when administering GHB, I suck up clean water into the syringe barrel and squirt this into my mouth as well. I am able to detect the salty taste in diminishing amounts for the first two ďwashesĒ. I do this several more times to ensure I have ingested the entire measured dosage.
T + 00:06 [7:42 PM]
Iím a bit taken aback by the quick onset. Iím surpassing a Ī already. This is no placebo; things are starting. It is becoming easier to smile and my eyelids are hanging a little lower than normal. My mood is improving from its already good condition. Life is a little extra pleasant.
As I make a few notes in my notebook I detect very minor fine motor skill impairment. It is hard to tell if the decrease in writing accuracy (neatness of handwriting) is a physical thing or if it is more related to the mental relaxation that is causing me to care a little less about the cleanliness of the writing.
My cognitive abilities are minimally, if at all, affected. Iím doing some semi-technical reading and writing tasks on my computer without notable difficulties or altered thought processing.
While my internal mental processing feels relatively normal, the sensations intruding into my braincase are aberrant. My notebook reads: ďTopsey, turvey & floatey.Ē Light at first, then slowly magnifying, a ďwashingĒ tidal feeling forces onto me. It feels like my head is half filled with mid-viscosity syrup, somewhere between the consistency of Aunt Jemimaís Maple Syrup and the real deal from a tree somewhere in Vermont. The brain molasses lurks from one side of my head to the other. It acts as though Iím alternating the angle of my head, one ear towards the ground followed by the other. The internal squishy sensation completes a ďU-shapedĒ movement about every three seconds. I am finding this uncomfortable and the sensation of movement within my body while I sit perfectly still is a tad disorienting. Thankfully, the cranium syrup quells itself for the time being.
The computer screen is slightly more reflective than normal. Typically I can focus on the screenís content without being distracted by any reflection on the physical screen itself. Currently however I am noticing the reflections of my fingers as they type. Itís unclear if Iím seeing it more, or just more easily distracted by something I normally tune out.
T + 00:13 [7:49 PM]
The disappearance of the unusual movement inside my head signifies an initial settling of effects. The rise up from baseline to this point (Iíd quantify as a +) has been slightly unsettling. I have not had any of my most common or familiar unpleasant substance effects yet however: no nausea or paranoia to speak of. Feeling the intoxicating looseness coming on so fast and seemingly out of nowhere is markedly unique. The most similar substance I have experimented with regularly is probably alcohol (ethanol varieties) but I struggle to say the two are similar. This feels slightly colder and less friendly to me. Perhaps Iím just taken aback at feeling some of these semi-familiar sensations without continually consuming a substance like I would with alcohol.
T + 00:14 [7:50 PM]
I do feel sort of drunk. Itís not identical to alcohol-induced drunkenness but itís difficult to put a finger on how exactly it feels different. There is a pulsing head rush going on that is different than ethanol products that usually give a more constant buzz. The rush feels more similar to light amyl nitrite inhalation than a shot or two of alcohol. I have no internal warmth like I get from a few shots of whiskey
The rush feels more similar to light amyl nitrite inhalation than a shot or two of alcohol. I have no internal warmth like I get from a few shots of whiskey
or other hard alcoholic product.
My thoughts are interrupted by the arrival of the mental molasses swirling around inside my head once again. The feeling begins suddenly and I greet it with steady deep breaths in an attempt to keep the effects under control. I am disliking the ďdizzy but not dizzyĒ feeling more and more.
I monitor the unpleasant-ometer in my brain and take a few quick notes. Iím hyper aware of the physical movement of my eyes, and contrastingly getting little feedback from anywhere else on my body.
Mentally I still feel very analytical and aware. I feel clearheaded and capable. This is quite the juxtaposition to my physical condition. I liken this to being physically drunk from alcohol but lucid enough to fully witness some of the effects such as head and eye pressure. Noticing the ďdrunk sensationĒ while sober is very different experience than the alcoholic drunk where things can become clouded.
T + 00:19 [7:55 PM]
Iím still not enthralled with the experience thus far. I catch myself wondering how much longer this experience will be. Given the duration Iím expecting, and current place in my eveningís timeline, I try and pretend this thought never occurred.
Moving my eyes and head seems to induce and intensify the unpleasantness. Upon noticing this, I make a conscious effort to be as still as I can.
T + 00:21 [7:57 PM]
A slight sedation is draping over my thoughts. The effect is gentle, like a silk sheet, compared to the down comforter type weight of benzodiazepines or opioids. A strong desire to lie down emerges with this new layer of mental effect.
I jot down a note about the fact that I am being lazy with note taking for a minute. Lying down was THE MOVE. The altitude adjustment was either perfectly timed or the reason behind the shift in mood. Iím very comfortable. Nothing more, nothing less. I donít have any nodding or heavy intoxication: only an ďachievable while soberĒ amount of comfort and relaxation. It feels like I have moved my internal clock ahead eight hours or so and Iím sleepy in a very natural way.
No visual effects are occurring at this point, with eyes open or closed. I find myself still as a stone lying on the couch with Kai occupying the other end on her computer. A seeping burning sensation emanates from inside my shoulders. It is not the warm tingling an opioid might deliver, nor is it exterior sensitivity like an entactogen or tryptamine could supply, and it also differs from the cool anesthesia of a dissociative. This feels more like a dull grinding of bone where my humerus fits into the socket of my shoulder. It has a satisfying quality, like an itch being scratched.
I sit up to hydrate with a full glass of water. A light ringing tinnitus has begun. It is mildly annoying but I sometimes experience this when sober and certainly do when under the influence of other substances, so I donít take great offense to the sound's presence.
T + 00:39 [8:15 PM]
The turbulent swirling inside my head continues to subside the longer I lie down, leaving behind a much more controllable and enjoyable experience. With my head still and free of foreign interior movement I casually look through my phone, giggling more easily than normal. Kai is still in the room with me and we chat a bit about what Iím feeling and what our plans are for the evening. I am not overly social or anti-social. As we make plans I have the feeling this substance would lend itself to whatever the scenario called for. I am pleased however with our decision to remain home and watch a movie.
The waves of effects are pronounced and unmistakable. I almost feel back to a Ī now. The enjoyable effects of the GHB are significantly subtler than the more pronounced disagreeable ones.
The enjoyable effects of the GHB are significantly subtler than the more pronounced disagreeable ones.
Iíve sat up a few times while chatting with Kai and each time I have a nearly immediate desire to lie back down. Upon getting lateral, I re-realize how wonderfully comfortable lying down is. The combination of the GHB and staying still in a position I associate with calmness (a relaxed fetal position with a few pillows under my head) is undeniably excellent. It feels like time, place, and substance are all at their prime intersection here.
T + 00:55 [8:31 PM]
The warm granular grinding inside my shoulders has swelled up to the forefront of my sensory awareness. It continues to be most prominent around joints, occurring in my elbows now in additional to my shoulders. I draw the connection that these areas were worked the hardest in todayís rock climbing session.
I havenít consumed alcohol in the past few days, something Iíve done on purpose for reasons unrelated to my GHB consumption. I note a lack of desire to drink now compared to earlier today and yesterday.
A minor headache is forming and it reminds me to hydrate with some water. Other than the twinge of headache, I donít have much going on physically. My body temperature and breathing feel normal. My resting heart rate is at 55 BPM (not a large decrease from my sober normal of around 65). My lower body is sort of numb in the sense that I canít notice much effect in this portion of my body. My legs feel completely average: not warm, not cold, not numb, and not buzzing.
Kai has put on a movie, in the occult detective fiction genre. I donít watch it intently but I have no issues interpreting the plot; my thoughts feel normally paced and coherent.
T + 01:02 [8:38 PM]
Bang! Iím suddenly a bit more alert, aware, and awake Ė am I coming down now?
T + 01:15 [8:51 PM]
I take a small hit of cannabis in oil form via a vaporizer. The inhale lasts about two and a half second and produces a visible but light cloud of smoke upon exhale.
T + 01:24 [9:00 PM]
I havenít felt much interaction between the initial dosage of cannabis and the GHB yet. I decide to take three additional vape hits of cannabis. Each of these hits is smaller than the first of the evening.
I have a little internal debate about re-dosing. On one hand, Iím curious to find out if the come-up was unenjoyable because it was the initial departure from baseline. If I could increase the sedation and euphoria from the substance, Iíd gladly do that. However, the risk of an even more severe case of the internal spins is far more off-putting than the potential benefits of consuming more GHB. I also get the feeling this substance would be difficult to re-dose correctly (in a way that produces the desired outcome). Iíd venture that a few unpleasant experiences or lots of careful titration would be required to dial in re-dosing. In the end I decide to ride out my original single dose, for better or for worse.
I havenít moved much in a while so I get up to pet my dog Gee and do some light stretching. I feel a touch of inebriation in the form of deteriorated balance as I maneuver around the room upright. While seated I did not even have a slight hint of this.
T + 01:49 [9:25 PM]
I am significantly on the tail end of the effects of GHB at this point. I know it is lingering in my system still, and will continue to do so for a while longer, but the drop from the peak intensity has been nearly as sharp as the initial rise up to that peak. I add a sequence of three hits of cannabis oil from the vaporizer in hopes of pulling back some of the comfort and serenity. These inhalations are about three and a half second long each and the exhales result in pretty decent sized clouds of smoke.
Either the earlier cannabis ingestion is ramping up more slowly than normal or these last larger hits are hitting hard and fast. Just a few minutes after the last cannabis ingestion, I am seeing very light and smooth visual trails behind fast moving objects (my hands and fingers). Their path through the air is illuminated by extra high definition clarity in the space they had just previously occupied.
T + 01:57 [9:33 PM]
The cannabis seems to have brought back some of the sedating effects of the GHB. Just as before, I feel slightly ďwrongĒ when sitting up. Almost without thinking I stretch out on the couch and feel immediately better, like everything is right in the world as long as I am lying down.
Almost without thinking I stretch out on the couch and feel immediately better, like everything is right in the world as long as I am lying down.
There is no rush of comfort or physical euphoria, just a calm and dull sense that things are all right and Iím very happy and comfortable.
Not having as good a view of the movie from my new position doesnít bother me in the slightest. I can still hear the audio, but am able to tune it out quite easily as I shut my eyes and turn my thoughts and perception inwards.
I feel like Iím at a solid + rating on the Shulgin Rating Scale. A quick display of visual activity on my eyelids confirms things are still happening. An expanse of perfectly smooth dome shapes undulate in perfect unison, like deep-sea waves rising and falling. This oceanic space of identical domes is grey, speckled with black, and its liquid has the consistency of molten metals. A radiating hexagonal pattern streaks over the rounded sea of bumps. As the geometric patterning moves across the seascape, it changes the previously smooth domes permanently. They are now cut clean and sharp, each a hexagonal shape with a flat top surface. The specks of black color now shimmer and glisten like a polished marble rock. The environment feels and looks much less organic now. The change happens in about 3 seconds.
The whole scene, while grand in scale, reaching to impossible horizons in all directions, was faint and hard to see. Everything is dark and has a cold feel to it. There are no true colors to witness, just the mix of deep velvet greyish black. The vision didnít seem to cover my whole visual field but I couldnít see the edge where it meshed into the background of nothingness. There are a few random spots of red in the sky above my odd geometric ocean. The red is similar in appearance to phosphene visuals one can get when pressing on one's eyelids.
T + 02:19 [9:55 PM]
Moving about the house feels covertly strange. It as if Iím moving through the space differently, or Iím aware of my steps, arm swinging, and general movement more than normal. The attention to these motions that normally blur into the background makes them feel slightly foreign, similar to the phenomenon of semantic satiation where a word repeated multiple times can begin to sound wrong or unusual.
The cessation effect on my desire for alcohol has disappeared. I could totally go for a drink now. I elect not to indulge this desire as a measure of harm reduction. I have mixed in low dosages of alcohol several hours after GHB ingestion with success in the past, but given this is my highest dosage to date, I elect to avoid the possibility of unwanted extreme potentiation.
T + 02:21 [9:57 PM]
Iím pleased with the addition of cannabis to the experience. I am flicking my fingers and swinging my forearms as I lay on the couch enjoying the increasingly visible trails behind my movements. Faster movements provide more of a color stretch behind my appendages than the air disturbance I saw earlier. The trails are small in the grand scheme of trails, stretching perhaps a few inches behind my hand and fading rapidly and completely in less than a half of a second. Without the cannabis I suspect I would feel nearly baseline.
T + 02:58 [10:34 PM]
Our movie has come to an end and I decide to transition towards bed. Gee and I go outside for a breath of fresh air and so she can go to the bathroom. The brisk mountain air is delicate and seemingly the perfect temperature despite my knowledge that it is relatively windy and cold outside. I have no tactile enhancement to speak of though as the breeze makes its way across my face and arms. It feels nice, but not anything more enhanced than sober life.
Upon returning inside, I retrieve my notebook, laptop, large vessel of water, and vaporizer on my way into the bedroom. After the cold air outside and the beginning of my familiar routine of getting ready for bed I am feeling pretty sober. I feel drained of energy and tired, but not yet sleepy.
My headache is pretty much nonexistent as I snuggle into the bed. The continual hydration throughout the evening seems to have prevented the cranial irritation that I have experienced on many of my previous GHB experiments.
T + 03:20 [10:56 PM]
The experience has dwindled into a normal evening at this point. I feel slightly stoned from smoking but canít detect any remaining effects from the GHB. I struggle with diagnosed insomnia and debate taking some zolpidem at this point. I decide to test the waters and see if the GHB might assist in sleep even so far after ingestion. I take five medium/large hits off the vaporizer, each of these hits larger than any others I have taken today thus far.
I lie in bed without much change from my standard sober state when going to sleep. I make some mental to-do lists and think about the day that just finished and what the next one will hold. I try and silence the thoughts and keep my eyes shut. There are some faint but fast paced closed eyed visuals spinning across my eyelids. My favorite snippet of the ever rotating and evolving visuals is a simple cartoon bear, shaped very similar to the well known ďdancing bearsĒ of the Grateful Dead. The singular bear is pulsing neon orange. As it begins to move in a circle, like it is walking around a globe, copies of it multiply behind it until there is a continual train of multiple bears. By the time the circle is complete each bear is a different neon color. By the second rotation around each bear is growing extra outlines around its now innermost shape. Each additional ring formed outside the original bear is a different neon color. On paper this sounds fantastic, but this is the most vivid of all the closed eyed visuals that occurred over the relatively extended period of time I spent with my eyes closed. In the moment it is actually pretty dull and short-lived. During my last GHB experience (a combination with cannabis edibles) I experienced more vivid closed-eyed visuals, which became annoying as I attempted to sleep. Tonight they fade and are not distracting. Even tonight however is more visual activity than I would experience with this amount of cannabis on its own and Iím not sleep deprived enough to make that a factor. Besides the visual effects, I feel notably less of the normal cannabis effects than I would if I smoked this much sober. My thought patterns seem unaffected, I have no increased appetite, no giggles, and no paranoia (some of my most common cannabis-induced effects).
I make a few trips to the bathroom, thanks to my excessive water consumption all evening. In between these more awake moments Iím attempting to sleep. Iím not having immediate success but I donít find this as frustrating as normal. Iím also not motivated to pick up a book or get up and do something as I might normally be. My last time check before falling asleep is 1:02 AM [T + 05:26].
Was the juice worth the squeeze? Did the positives of the experience outweigh the negatives? Since I expanded upon my first-hand knowledge of GHB, absolutely. This was the most GHB I have ever taken in a single dosage and Iím happy to have had this experience. Was it enjoyable enough to repeat? The jury is still out. The come-up (T + 00:00 Ė T + 00:30) was not much fun. I decidedly did not take any positives away from the ďspinny headĒ condition that dominated this portion of my evening. During this time I wished the experience would end and was writing off GHB as something I could enjoy. Later on (T + 00:30 Ė T + 01:15) the relaxing and restful qualities of the substance made me re-think my snap judgment on the worth of the compound.
Overall the effects in this experience were simple, not extraordinary. I did find the combination of cannabis to be interesting. Closed-eyed visuals seemed to be a direct result of the cannabis vaporization. I do not know if higher dosages of GHB would produce similar visuals for me and the cannabis simply boosted the level of the overall experience intensity or if the cannabis synergized with the GHB to produce the visuals. Based on previous lower-dosage GHB experiences that also included cannabis, I believe the latter is true. Cannabis edibles in particular added an extended period of visuals late into the evening during one of my previous experiences. I found this annoying as they prevented sleep and were not as beautiful as other substancesí closed-eyed visuals.
Overall I found the evening on GHB to be the lethargic. There were some synthetic ďadditional gravityĒ type sensations, where lying down and being still was by far the most enjoyable way to spend the peak of the experience. I did not feel especially social on this dosage of GHB. On much lighter trials with the substance (500 mg Ė 1200 mg) I did note some mild increased interest in talking to people around me. This did not compare to even a threshold or low dose of stimulants. I also had no increased libido as I have read about other people experiencing while using GHB.
My initial intention of getting to know GHB was to see if I could find a calorie-free substitute for ethanol. I discovered early on that GHB did not produce similar enough effects, for me, to make replacing ethanol with GHB a feasible idea in most situations. I still continued my GHB trials to get a better understanding of the compound. I do intend to continue dosing GHB on rare occasions but it wonít likely become something I use often. When I have the proper supervision, I plan to reach a GHB-induced unrousable state out of pure curiosity of what this feels like. It intrigues me to compare what that experience will be like to ones I have had on propofol and other substances with strong anesthetic qualities.
For some reason I find myself wanting to like GHB, but so far havenít had overtly positive reactions to my ingestion of the substance. I will continue to titrate dosages higher to see if I eventually reach new effects. All in all, this particular experience was pretty middle of the road. Another aspect of GHB I still wish to investigate is the multiple dosage administration method. I am curious if I can lessen the uncomfortable come-up by taking several more spread out doses. Using a similar method, Iíd be very pleased if I found it possible to extend the parts of the experience that I did enjoy. I have some more exploration to do with GHB, and Iím looking forward to it with mediocre enthusiasm.
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