Citation: S.M.. "Pixellated Dogs and Other Hallucinations: An Experience with DXM (exp133)". Erowid.org. Jul 30, 2001. erowid.org/exp/133
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Well, to begin this story, I'd like to give a little bit of my background. I was fairly inexperienced with any form of drugs in high school (with the exception of drinking alcohol and a few joints among some friends of mine), and I pretty much kept in the straight and narrow. After I graduated from high school, however, I felt the need to experiment with some psychedelics. For what reason, I'm not really sure. Curiosity, more than likely.
I heard about DXM from a friend of mine on the internet. I had wanted to try LSD, instead but someone told me DXM was more fun (at least from his personal experience). I wondered where I could acquire this aforementioned drug, and he told me that I could locate it in the medicine section of my local pharmacy. He also gave me the address of a very good FAQ (http://www.frognet.com/dxm) [Erowid Note: FAQ now available here
] so I could research it -- as well as keep from killing myself by downing a bottle or two of Nyquil.
I was a little apprehensive at first. I noticed all the warnings about 'brain damage' and 'kidney failure', which although rare, still frightened me. However, after reading through the entire FAQ, I found that you could do this drug safely, without falling prey to the DXM boogie man. So I resolved to try it.
I went to the local Big Bear and bought a 4oz bottle of Robotussin Maximum Strength. I didn't want to go too high on my first trip, so I only drank 2 ounces (which was 177mg... consistent with a low second plateau dose). I was so anxious that I was practically bouncing around the room in a childlike giddiness. However, after about 30 minutes, I was noticing no real effects. I was very disappointed. So I decided to go out for a drive. While I was driving, I noticed a slight nausea, and discovered it was very pleasurable to yawn. However, driving was making me sick so I resolved to find some place to stop. It was a clear night, so I decided to drive out to a local lake and lie out under the stars.
Once I had arrived at the lake, I began playing some music from my tape deck. I was amazed! It sounded glorious! Every note seemed to reverberate through me, and it seemed to have a hidden dimension that was now revealed to me. I must have sat there listening to music for a good 3 hours. I had a profoundly decent experience, as well as a drunken-stoned-like buzz in general. The next morning, I was in an excellent mood, probably better than I ever had been. Life seemed to have a new profound meaning to it.
I eventually discussed this experience with a few of my friends, and finally persuaded them to try it with me. We took a couple of trips (I didn't increase my dosage very greatly), spacing each trip by at least a week. We all had a blast. I would almost go as far as to say that it forged a new bond between a few of my friends and myself. They thanked me for telling them about this drug, since they had only gone as far as alcohol and marijuana.
Well, to get to my profound and inspiring trip, I'll skip ahead to the 5th time I tried it. I had purchased a container of Robotussin Honey Cough (the other flavors seemed to make me very nauseous now, but I could stand the taste of Honey Cough). I asked if my friends were up to tripping with me, but they declined, and said they had plans to drink that night. I told them it was ok, but that I wanted to trip anyways.
With some reluctance, I managed to chug that 4oz bottle of Honey Cough (10mg per 5ml, making 4 ounces roughly 236mg of DXM). I decided that it wouldn't be as much fun to just do a second plateau trip if no one else was doing it, so I said that I was going to go pick up some more HC. I drove to the store and returned with two more bottles. This took about 10 minutes, at which time I noticed I was beginning to get a little nauseous. I made the mistake of *running* from my car back to the house -- and realizing I left the bottles in my car, I *ran* back to the car, grabbed them, and *ran* back to the house again. All this exertion made me horribly nauseous, and I almost puked. If not for a swig of Pepto Bismol and some intense will power, I probably would have spilled my guts. But I managed to hold it in.
I came back in, and noticed I had reached the first plateau. My friends, who were drinking inside, saw the bottles and asked 'You're not going to drink all that, are you?'. I told them I had no intention of drinking both bottles, just one more, and the other would be for anyone else who was up for some.
After about 15 to 20 minutes of light conversation, I hit the second plateau, and said that I might want to take another bottle. My friends said I should probably wait, since I was still kind of nauseous (and they didn't want my lunch revisited on their nice carpet). After maybe another 5 minutes, everyone who was drinking starting talking about going to a party a few blocks away. I told them I couldn't go, because moving around would make me sick to my stomach. They agreed and decided to go without me.
After they all left, I went into the bathroom and poured the next bottle of Honey Cough into a drinking mug, and chugged the entire thing (increasing my dosage to 472mg of DXM, which is about 7.8mg/kg). I came back out, and was nauseous again, but not as badly this time. The general sick feeling went away after about 2 minutes this time.
I felt totally wasted. But in a good way. Two of my friends (one who lives there, and his girlfriend) came back in to keep an eye on me. Actually, I think they came back to make out, but they *told* me they would keep an eye on me. It seemed like they were gone for about 10 minutes, but they told me they had just went into the hallway for about 3 minutes. They conversed with me for a good while during the trip, although I don't recall much of the actual conversation. I gave my friend the other bottle, and told him to use his discretion (intoxicated as it may be) of whether to allow me to consume it. I think I began to enter the transition stage a few minutes later.
[After this point, I am unable to timestamp any of the events, due to DXM's memory encoding nature]
We had a strobe light going, and any time it would flash, there would be these 'big black dots' right in front of my eyes. I laughed about it and perceived them as my pupils. It was unusual however, because they would not always move with my line of sight. They were more or less stationary, unless I *really* re-adjusted my vision. They eventually went away, after I stopped looking at the light. I think this was simply my loss of stereoscopic vision.
At some point, I decided that I wanted to consume the rest of the remaining bottle. My friend advised me against it, and told me if I was determined, to at least just take half. So I took his advice, and drank another 2 ounces of the syrup (putting my dosage to 590mg, which is about 9.7mg/kg). However, a few minutes later, and behind my friend's back, I drank the rest of the syrup (putting me at 11.7mg/kg). This was when I really started tripping.
I was utterly fascinated with the actions of my friends, as well as my own hands. They seemed so foreign to me, and looked so unusual and useless (as far as tools go). I don't remember much of what I said, and I'm told most of it was gibberish. I was still sitting up, so I decided to lie down.
Then the hallucinations started.
Hallucinations were vague and transparent in manner. If I re-adjusted my vision, it would 'phase in' and trigger a mild hallucination, usually if there was little or no light in the direction I was looking. I would see into walls, and see things hanging on them that weren't actually there. Most of the time, they were highly detailed, and I felt that if only my eyes would focus, I could get some meaning out of them. It never really happened. I felt somewhat angry at my eyes because they couldn't focus on anything. To give you an idea of the kind of hallucinations that ocurred, you can do this little trick. Take a camera with a flash bulb into a totally dark room. Now, looking straight ahead, take a picture with the flash on. The flash will reveal all the furniture and stuff in the room, which will be very bright at first, but will then fade into very detailed pictures of the objects. This is the picture burned into your retinas. However, in my hallucinations, the images would be totally arbitrary pieces of furniture and other objects, as well as imagined images, which had no way of getting into my retinas. This was somewhat concerning, but I realized I was tripping, so I had fun and went along with it.
If I had both eyes open, I found it very difficult to hallucinate from all the sensory input, since my stereoscopic vision was totally gone (e.g. seeing double). I would occasionally close one eye, which would boost me into a totally vivid yet non-spatial hallucination which would be dissolved slowly when I opened my other eye. I could merge with reality, but only if I moved from my current location. The more I stayed in one place, the more I hallucinated and transformed the environment.
At some point, I noticed that I now had the ability to concentrate thought enough to change my surroundings, totally fooling my senses into thinking I was somewhere I was not. I began staring at the wall across from me. I noticed how the paneling (although I didn't know it was paneling at the time) was in the shape of a window, so I thought it must actually be a window instead of a wall. Just then, the white wall slowly faded into a blackish-blue night sky color, and I could see billions of stars out beyond the now-transformed wall. I resolved that if the only thing I could see from this window were the stars, that I must be somewhere very high up in the night sky. Then I felt as if I was seated at the top of a very tall clear-window elevator. The perception of it seemed absolutely realistic, and the entire room seemed to be equally transformed to this delusion. At some point, my friend (who was lying on a bed directly in front of the wall) had shifted position, causing the illusion to be distorted in a manner I couldn't exactly call visual. It caused me to decide to snap out of the hallucination, and to tell him what I had seen. However, I only managed to blurt out 'Whoa, I just had a major hallucination.'
Across the room from me was a digital clock. I don't really think I noticed the clock at first, but eventually I began hallucinating in a most fascinating manner. I had my eyes closed (or at least, I perceived it as having my eyes closed) and I was having mild hallucinations which were
very dark (not evil, just not well illuminated). Eventually, I would notice these detailed red entities, which could best be described as 'electronic dogs'. They were red neon outlines of pixellated dogs, which would roll around and just generally 'frolic' with each other. After awhile, I tried to focus my non-responsive eyes in on them, in order to determine what kind of creatures they were. To my surprise, they suddenly melted into one another, and turned into the current time. The time then floated back to where it's normal position was, and the entire room faded back into focus. I would shut my eyes again, only to have the same process repeated. I imagine this was my loss of stereoscopic vision for the most part; but some of the motions that these images acted out would indicate my eyes were doing complete rotations in my eye sockets.
Occasionally, when one of my friends would say something, I would be totally unaware that they had even spoken at all, if it hadn't have been for their mouth moving. Generally this applied only to one word responses -- if they were to spit out an entire sentence I would understand what they said for the most part.
At some point, I needed to take a piss, so I went into the bathroom. Avoiding the evil mirror, I made my way (very slowly) over to the toilet, and started going. I looked over to the shower, which was dark. After a couple of seconds it phased out and looked like someone was in it, and that the shower was actually a medium sized room. The illusion of a person standing behind the curtain seemed so realistic, I recall trying to speak to it, thinking it was one of my drunken friends playing a trick on me. I thought this only because I saw the curtain move. However, after I was done, I swatted at the curtain and saw that there was nothing there. So I went back into the room.
I recall thinking about both sex and murder. Both seemed very very curious for me, and the punishment for committing murder seemed totally frightening when compared to the crime. Time seemed ten-fold more important than life, and serving such a long period of time without freedom seemed utterly terrifying, when compared to the absolute freedom granted by death. This thought scared me intensely, because I thought it had turned me psychotic or something. Don't get me wrong -- It's not like I wanted to grab a knife and butcher my friends. Murder was still totally revolting, but for different reasons -- now it just didn't make any sense. I thought a good deal about suicide as well. Again, I didn't want to commit it, but I truly looked at it and thought about it. It felt as if it were a way to escape the hidden trivialities of life; the aspects that our brains conceal from us with every waking moment. This thought was very frightening (at least in retrospect) and I decided to stop thinking about such things. I recall some talk of sex, and it seemed totally arbitrary to me. I just 'didn't get it' for some reason. I also recall that I had virtually no sex drive at the time.
When, sometime during the night, I moved to the living room, I noticed that while staring at the carpet, it would take on different properties. At first it was just a basic rug. But after staring at it for a few seconds, it would seem to be covered with a 'purplish' electricity field, and would then convert to a different texture. At first, it turned into some broken and jagged bricks, and after about 15 seconds, it went back to normal. Then it became encapsulated in the electricity field and became the carpet from my room at home. This illusion lasted for what seemed like about 10 minutes. When I asked my friend if his carpet
had any textures on it, he said that it didn't. That eventually broke the hallucination and I decided to travel back to the previous room.
In the room, we had a small tape deck which was playing Metallica. I find great comfort in music while DXM tripping, because it tends to tie me to reality, as well as being more interesting than usual. However, music became less of a sensory input and more of a 'decoration' while I was at this stage. It's hard to explain. At some point, I recall stating that the music was like 'a poster on the wall'. It was totally one-dimensional and flat. It seemed as if it couldn't get very far from the speaker that was emitting it, without falling to the ground. This was very fascinating, and I found great delight upon realizing this.
I decided to go to sleep. It felt like it had been about 2 days since I first started. When I closed my eyes, I was still hallucinating. This didn't bother me, however -- I was having a blast. Suddenly, right in the middle of some other hallucination, I noticed I was able to separate myself from my body, and was truly able to view myself from the third person. This was extremely disturbing, since I have never looked in on myself from the outside before. Whenever I touched my face, my legs, or my arms, they felt alien and unusual. My skin felt as if it was not my own. I noticed that pain was totally gone in the form I had known, and was more of a signal from my body than a hurtful force. My friend advised me not to test this by hurting myself, and I took his advice.
I forget when, but I eventually fell asleep. When I woke up about 8 hours later, I was still tripping. I couldn't see very straight, and I still felt heavily intoxicated. It was now 12 noon on Sunday, and I had begun tripping on 9 PM Saturday! My pupils were practically the size of my entire eyeball, my skin was a flushed pale white, and I was totally spent. I had a hard time moving around without looking like a character from 'The Night of the Living Dead'. However, I resolved that I had to get home to rest up. Against better judgement, I bid farewell to my friends, and went to my car.
The drive home was frightening. Never drive under the influence of DXM (or under the influence of anything, for that matter). The landscape seemed to come up to greet me, and I felt like I was going about 2 miles per hour, despite that the speedometer said I was going 55. Finally, I got home, and crawled into bed. I watched a few movies (that I still can't remember), and slept for another 5 hours or so. When I got up, I was still slightly buzzed, and decided to sleep the rest of the night. When I got up the next day, I was totally re-energized, and felt as if I was on top of the world.
To tell you the truth, I had one of the greatest times of my life on this trip. But I wouldn't recommend it for a first trip. It would be easy to think you're dying if you're not prepared. I felt very enlightened from this experience, and had a fine afterglow for the next couple of days.
All in all, I would say that I love DXM, but not to the point of addiction. It's a great psychedelic, and I'm glad that I tried it, and feel wiser after having tried it.
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