Citation: 77k. "Much More than a 2C-B Analogue: An Experience with 2C-I (exp6574)". Erowid.org. May 1, 2001. erowid.org/exp/6574
||(powder / crystals)
A Friday night in early 2001: I want to trip tonight, but I have no particular reason to trip. I remember that there is one chemical in my arsenal that I haven't tried yet: 2C-I. I have a friendly place to hang out tonight, so I decide that this is as good a time as any to explore a new drug. I'd been meaning to find time for it anyway.
I weigh out 20 mg of the slightly off-white, fluffy and voluminous powder (2C-I hydrochloride) and drive to my friends' house. When I arrive I eat the gelcap.
My expectations for 2C-I were guided by its strong chemical similarity to 2C-B. Friends who had taken 2C-I told me that it was surprisingly unlike 2C-B. They said it was deeper, more purely psychedelic, and less sensory. Still, it's hard to ignore what Shulgin calls the 'chemical suggestion'. I knew it would last longer, but I was expecting something that got me in touch with myself and my perceptions, like 2C-B does, as opposed to something that took me away from my ego, like mushrooms. I've had a lot of 2C-B experience and I have a good idea of what it does and how it works. So in this trip report I'll explain 2C-I by making comparisons with 2C-B.
30-40 minutes after eating the 2C-I, I feel the hints of real changes beginning. But they really don't develop into much. Once 2C-B says hello it keeps building right on up to its peak at about t+1:15, but 2C-I takes longer and is more complex. At t+1:15 I wonder if I've taken enough. This feeling persists until t+1:45, when I realize that things are getting more involved. During this comeup I make many comparisons with 2C-B, but I find myself more idenifying how 2C-I is not like 2C-B than how it is. There are almost no visuals, no real audio changes, and pretty straightforward thinking. I seem caught in the limbo of the t+1:00 half-tripping-state. I feel relaxed and my body feels a little fuzzy. Walking feels odd in a 2C-B way.
Finally at t+1:45 things accelerate. Some more people have shown up, and there are maybe 10 people here now. I think I'm the only tripping person, but the others are smoking cannabis and some have taken GHB. I have felt very comfortable so far, since I know all these people well.
I can tell that the 2C-I is getting stronger because as I follow people's conversations I find myself analyzing speech patterns, vocabulary, intonation and thought trains in a surprisingly different way than I usually do. This has fully developed by t+2:15 or so, when the 2C-I reaches its peak. I don't talk much myself, but when I do I analyze what I'm saying in the same way I analyze what other people are saying.
It is as if the pattern detectors in my brain are in high gear, and they are spitting out a continuous stream of stereotypes that match and label the way people speak and the things they say. This is really not that fun! I sense these stereotypes in a way that diminishes each person's individual worth. That is, I see that person A has a manner of speaking and thinking that is similar to persons B, C, and D, all of whom can be identified as belonging to social group X, and it seems unfortunate and shallow that person A is just another one of 'those type-X people' - with all the negatives that are attached to stereotyped social groups. It is hard to concentrate on why person A is unique.
And when I speak, I see this in myself too, and that's unpleasant. Fortunately I don't have much to say so I just keep quiet. It's very strange, because I recognize the standard psychedelic open-mindedness that lets me find patterns in my perceptions that my brain would ordinarily gloss over for my convenience, but these patterns are being presented with a disconcerting message that these patterns, and pattern-matching, are all there is to life.
In a way, this message is twisted and folded in my brain into: 'People are machines, and they work by having an enormous catalog of patterns which are modified and presented in response to external stimulus. People's uniqueness derives not from each person having something fundamentally different from the others, but from the stereotypes which make them up being combined in a unique way to yield a unique result.' On its own this message isn't really positive or negative, it's just insightful, but for whatever reason I perceive it as a total bummer.
To extend the metaphor: each person is a curve through spacetime, and that curve is defined by a system of equations; equations that are shared by everyone, just in different proportions. Instead of seeing the curve, I'm seeing the equations and their coefficients. This is sadly impersonal.
So at this point in my experience I'm not having that great of a time, but things like this do not lead to bad trips for me. I shift into a mode of studying why I feel the way I do, and I learn from it.
But then I remember something. I did something earlier that week that may have been a Career-Limiting Move. I forgot about it for a while, but I had been kicking myself for it, and now I remember it. It's inevitable, of course, that I start thinking about why I did what I did and what kind of statement it makes about me (stereotypes and all) that I chose to do it. I turn the pattern-recognition powers that I was using on other people towards myself. I don't like what I see - but I see some things that are new, and I am very glad that I have seen them.
Now it's t+3:30 or so and I am in damage-control mode. It's impossible to get these thoughts out of my head by sitting quietly in a chair, so I try to distract myself. Visuals are stronger now, but they are mostly colorful fringes and noise, like neutered 2C-B. Music is not that deep. My body does not feel as delocalized as it does with 2C-B. I recognize a common effect of almost all the 2C drugs I've taken - I am still in touch with the world. I can function. Unfortunately, I can't find much to take my mind off my introspection. Can't read a computer screen. So I take a close friend aside and I intentionally start a conversation that is as non-vacuous and intellectual as possible. This helps a lot.
People eventually start leaving, and that friend and I smoke some more cannabis. This smooths things out, and we decide to go to the grocery store. On the walk over I realize that I am feeling much better. And not long after that, at t+5:00 or so, it's clear that the 2C-I is weakening.
I spend the remaining hours in the way I usually do after a psychedelic's peak is over - smoking cannabis, eating junk food, and listening to music (which is now more interesting with the help of THC). I discuss my not-so-fun trip with my friend. At t+8:00 or so I can fall asleep, and I'm fine the next day.
20 mg was strong. On a mass basis, 2C-I is probably about 50% more potent than 2C-B; in terms of raw strength this felt like what a 30 mg 2C-B experience could be like. The iodine atom weighs more than a bromine, so on a molar basis 2C-I is even more potent. 16-17 mg would be a better starting point, I think. I wish I had more to say about the experience, but it was really dominated by negative thought-loops that made me too defensive to explore where things could go, or to remember smaller details that might otherwise have been more interesting.
It seems that my 2C-I trip followed the mold set by Dr. Shulgin and by my friends who have tried it. There was less of an outright sensory show and more of an analytical edge. It is surprisingly powerful. Don't be fooled by these halogenated phenethylamines! 2C-B is a blast on the surface, but there is a huge amount of complexity and potential inside. 2C-I seems to expose itself more; in fact, this inner complexity seems to be most of the drug's package. I can't characterize it too well, since I've only taken it once. Based on my experience and what my friends have said, I could see 2C-I being classified like 2C-E - maybe fun, maybe not, but too interesting to ignore.
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