Excerpt From Go Ask Alice

For you who have never read this book, it’s a personal diary of a 15 year old girl growing up in the late 1960s. This is her entry describing her first drug experience.

July 10
Dear Diary,
I don’t know whether I should be ashamed or elated. I only know that last night I had the most incredible experience of my life. It sounds morbid when I put it in words, but actually it was tremendous and wonderful and miraculous.
The kids at Jill’s were so friendly and relaxed and at ease that I immediately felt at home with them. They accepted me like I had always been one of their crowd and everyone seemed happy and unhurried. I loved the atmosphere. It was great, great, great. Anyway, a little while after we got there Jill and one of the boys brought out a tray of Coke and all the kids immediately sprawled out on the floor on cushions and curled up together on the sofa and chairs.
Jill winked at me and said, “Tonight we’re playing ‘Button, Button, Who’s got the button?’ You know, the game we used to play when we were kids.” Bill Thompson, who stretched out next to me, laughed, “Only it’s just too bad that now somebody has to baby-sit.”
… Everyone sipped their drinks slowly, and everyone seemed to be watching everyone else…
Suddenly I began to feel something strange inside myself like a storm. I remember that two or three records had played since we had had the drinks, and now everyone was beginning to look at me. The palms of my hands were sweating and I could feel droplets of moisture on my scalp at the back of my neck. The room seemed unusually quiet, and as Jill got up to close the window completely I thought, “They’re trying to poison me! Why, why would they try to poison me?”
My whole body was tense at every muscle and a feeling of weird apprehension swept over me, strangled me, suffocated me. When I opened my eyes, I realized that it was just Bill who had put his arm around my shoulder. “Lucky you,” he was saying in a slow-motioned record on the wrong speed voice, “But don’t worry, I’ll baby-sit you. This will be a good trip. Come on, relax, enjoy it, enjoy it.” He caressed my face and neck tenderly, and said, “Honestly, I won’t let anything bad happen to you.” Suddenly he seemed to be repeating himself over and over like a slow-motioned echo chamber. I started laughing, wildly, hysterically. It struck me as the funniest, most absurd thing I had ever heard. Then I noticed the strange shifting patterns on the ceiling. Bill pulled me down and my head rested on his lap as I watched the pattern change to swirling colors, great fields of reds, blues and yellows. I tried to share the beauty with the others, but my words came out soggy, wet and dripping or tasting of color. I pulled myself up and began walking, feeling a slight chill which crept inside as well as outside my body. I wanted to tell Bill, but all I could do was laugh.
Soon whole trains of thought started to appear between each word. I had found the perfect and true and original language, used by Adam and Eve, but when I tried to explain, the words I used had little to do with my thinking. I was losing it, it was slipping out of my grasp, this wonderful and priceless and true thing which must be saved for posterity. I felt terrible, and finally I couldn’t talk at all and slumped back onto the floor, closed my eyes and the music began to absorb me physically. I could smell it and touch it and feel it as well as hear it. Never had anything ever been so beautiful. I was a part of every single instrument, literally a part. Each note had a character, shape and color all of its own and seemed to be entirely separate from the rest of the score so that I could consider its relationship to the whole composition, before the next note sounded. My mind possessed the wisdoms of the ages, and there were no words adequate to describe them.
I looked at the magazine on the table, and I could see it in 100 dimensions. It was so beautiful I could not stand the sight of it and closed my eyes. Immediately I was floating into another sphere, another world, another state. Things rushed away from me and at me, taking my breath away like a drop in a fast elevator. I couldn’t tell what was real and what was unreal. Was I the table or the book or the music, or was I part of all of them, but it didn’t really matter, for whatever I was, I was wonderful. For the first time that I could remember in my whole life, I was completely uninhibited. I was dancing before the whole group, performing, showing off, and enjoying every second of it.
My senses were so up that I could hear someone breathing in the house next door and I could smell someone miles away making orange and red and green ribbed Jell-O.
After what seemed eternities I began to come down and the party started breaking up. I sort of asked Jill what happened and she said 10 out of the 14 bottles of Coke had LSD in them… Wow, am I glad I was one of the lucky ones… I drifted off into a seasick type of sleep, wrapped in a general sense of well-being, except for a slight headache that probably was the result of long and intense laughing. It was fun! It was ecstatic! It was glorious!… So I’m glad they did it to me, because now I can feel free and honest and virtuous about not having made the decision myself.