7. 48 hour Simpsons marathon
A Reddit user known as “doobieschnauzer” recently embarked on a 48 hour Simpsons marathon, while under the influence of LSD and then shared his observations about the universal and existential nature of the various characters and settings in the show. It is a fun and interesting read that raises some interesting points about a beloved animated cultural institution. From the post: “We are all Homer--We all feel unappreciated when we don't deserve to. We're all mercurial and willfully ignorant. We all try to numb the pain of a life that'll never satisfy us, to the point of hurting our brains.”
6. Doc Ellis Pitching a no hitter on LSD
In 1970, the Pittsburgh Pirate Pitcher forgot what day it was and ingested LSD, only to find out later that he was scheduled to pitch. Ellis ended up pitching a no-hitter, leading the Pirates to a 2-0 win. He later said of the game, “I started having a crazy idea in the fourth inning that Richard Nixon was the home plate umpire, and once I thought I was pitching a baseball to Jimi Hendrix, who to me was holding a guitar and swinging it over the plate.”
Here's the legendary animation that breaks down the entire story:
5. Hunter S. Thompson, and the birth of Gonzo Journalism
In 1970, Hunter S. Thompson and illustrator Ralph Steadman covered the Kentucky Derby for Scanlan’s Monthly magazine. The article was a rambling stream of consciousness documenting the drunken scene that surrounded the race, which gave very little attention to the specifics of the actual horse race. Thompson would further explore the genre in his book, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, a study in both Gonzo Journalism and narcotic excess. Thompson’s life and career were constantly guided by excess biographer E. Jean Carroll, whom documented his daily consumption in 1993.
4. John Pemberton Invents Coca-Cola
Pemberton was injured fighting in the Civil War and became addicted to Morphine as a result of his injuries. Later while trying to get off of Morphine, Pemberton would experiment with making what he called Pemberton’s French Wine Cola, an alcoholic beverage that contained cocaine. Later while trying to make a nonalcoholic version of the drink Coca-Cola was invented.
3. Sigmund Freud, The Father of Psychoanalysis
Sigmund Freud is widely known as the father of psychoanalysis and before he did much of his work in that field he was fascinated with the effects of cocaine. He believed it to be a miracle drug. Freud wrote extensively on the drug and although stopped publicly recommending the drug after issues of addiction and overdose began to surround the use of cocaine, he continued to use it while writing much of his influential work.
Dr. Francis Crick who was one of the doctors to discover the double helix structure of DNA told colleagues that he would regularly give himself small doses of LSD because he believed it increased his thinking power. If this were the only major DNA discovery made with the aid of LSD that would be impressive enough, but in 1993, Dr. Kary Banks Mullis won the Nobel Prize for Chemistry for inventing a way to isolate and test small portions of DNA called PCR. Dr. Mullis gives LSD credit for helping him make his discovery saying, “I could sit on a DNA molecule and watch the polymers go by. I learnt that partly on psychedelic drugs”.
1. Albert Hoffman’s Bike Ride
The number 1, and by far most meta entry on the list is Albert Hoffman’s bike ride. Did you know that Albert Hoffman was on LSD when he discovered LSD?!? While experimenting with a chemical known as lysergic acid, Hoffman inadvertently touched a specimen and ingested LSD. Later that day while riding his bicycle home from work he began to feel dizzy along with what he called a stimulated imagination. This important accidental discovery would later pave the way for major advances in the field of DNA, journalism, playing baseball, and watching the Simpsons. Albert Hoffman’s bike ride is commemorated to this day as “Bicycle day” by hallucinogenic enthusiasts around the world.