Citation: E4ME. "'We Have Art in the Living-Room Ceiling!': An Experience with MDMA (Ecstasy) (exp13295)". Erowid.org. Feb 26, 2005. erowid.org/exp/13295
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My story began as an anti-drug story, especially an anti-E one as I bought into the idea of death-wish teenagers splashed on news reports telling horror stories and showing pictures of bereaved friends and relatives. More so I was cleverly engineered by the media into thinking E is something you take to aid dance music. I had been tricked! One can read philosophy while doing E’s! Discuss politics, and even play a game of chess on an E. I am 27 and have only found out in the last few years exactly what E is about. It can save a life! If your life is spiraling towards a dead-end repetitive routine of work-home-TV-sleep-work-home-TV-sleep-work-home-TV-sleep then you are probably vegetating and in need of an E. It is one of the most useful drugs for those who want to “think” and have an experience that can be rewarding, philosophical, empathic, useful, interesting, amazing, fun, and just darn well different than a night in front of the TV watching another repeat.
I understand now that the crowds that flock to clubs are perhaps people that have worked all week, feel completely inhuman for little wage and just for one night want to feel a kind of “aliveness” as something opposite to what they feel in office-time. The club thing is not “my” thing however, I am a happy “recreational user” but however a person likes their E, one thing is for sure it is a drug that can match any other drug for its versatility, profound experiences, its visuals and duration. I am a Sociologist and for me I use it because I feel more “human” when I take it. I want to be social. I want to “care” about things that matter. I want to get home from work and forget about money. I want for one night to be “really” there in the present with the person I love also “really” there in the present and knowing what that “really” feels like. Until I took E I assumed I understood this simple thing. I was surprised when I learned exactly what it was. You see, when I take E, even for the first time the feeling is different to what I have felt before but there is a part of it where I am returned to something “familiar”. I always have a feeling of “being back” when I take it. This “familiar” thing is what I think it means to be human.
Although I am a graduate, pursuing a teaching career next year, I currently work in a call-centre within Manchester City centre (England). It is soul destroying. I do it because I have to. In this way, “E” has been my guardian angel. My partner and I have survived this business bullshit by taking ecstasy at weekends on an occasional basis. We order in batches when we can. I think this is a good way to be safe. When we have batches, we can afford to loose one by dropping only half, to kind of test the batch out. I have NEVER had a bad experience on E and I’m someone who has NEVER had a bad comedown. At the end of the night I just tend to slow down and it lets me sleep like I used to when I was a kid. Magic.
Since I have taken ecstasy, I have been so overwhelmed by my first experience that I have always kept a pill-diary. My advice to anyone who is thinking of doing this long-term like me is to keep a diary. Just because every experience is a memory and no experience on an E is ever the same. I have been lucky to learn something new each time when I take it. My first pill was a whitish/pinkish Medusa. Other pills I have taken have included white/slightly speckled Armani’s, white Supermen, white V2’s, whitish Mitsubishi’s, Small white Kangaroo’s, and a Plain White pill. There have been others but these listed are the most memorable to name a few.
My favourite time was on a hard white Armani’, having dropped only one. It was without doubt the most powerful one I have taken so far. This was the time I experienced actual physical changes on my face, it seemed somehow to reverse the ageing process, that is to say the small fine lines on my face along with a few wrinkles completely disappeared! This happened to my partner also. Our faces looked younger and when we kissed each other we noticed that our skin was sweating a sweet syrup tasting substance. The whole experience lasted a few days. Very strange but very amusing when we bumped into friends later in the week who said we looked really well and had we been on holiday? However by the end of the week having been back at work, those normal lines and wrinkles slowly returned to our faces and the mysterious sweet syrup tasting substance was gone. Unfortunately, this has never happened since. However it is the Plain White pill, not the Armani I want to discuss.
It was New Years Eve 2001/For the year 2002 and my partner and I were not going to do anything special. However just by chance someone was selling E’s at work and I bought 4 that day. This was unexpected, we thought we had missed our chance and would have to make do with alcohol that night. Having done E for quite a while now I have noticed my dislike of alcohol grow quite considerably. Alcohol is a lonely drug for me, I think because it makes me so anti-social. On alcohol I hate to admit it but I become egotistic and I don’t listen to others and I can at times turn nasty. I lack clarity and I hate the way I smell the day after. E is such a clean drug for me and since taking E my alcohol consumption has reduced. Anyway, let me explain exactly what happened on this pill. In short it is particularly the latter part (the comedown part that I think will be of most interest).
As I came across these pills unexpectedly I had not done my usual preparation thing. My usual preparation thing is for one week before taking pills, eating lightly, avoiding alcohol, and getting plenty of sleep. I also clean the house from top to bottom because for me E makes me want to be clean. On the night, I buy sports drinks and eat a little fruit and that is it. I usually bring the duvet downstairs and the TV goes off and the music goes on. I am not into heavy head-banging tracks so the music my partner and I play is usually quite soft.
We dropped the Plain White Pill at about 8:30pm with water, and sat and had a chat about what luck it was that I had managed to get hold of 4 E’s for that night. I love E for this, for that “familiar” feeling of being able to talk in unloaded sentences easily with a loved one. At approximately 9ishpm my mouth was a little dry (normal for me) and I needed the loo (normal for me-I have never had a bad stomach, sickness or diahoreara after taking an E, but my body tends to like getting rid of everything it can, so I am always a little loose). I also felt cold (normal for me-I always feel a little cold about 15 minutes after dropping until I come up, I just either get a jumper or put the heating on). At about 9:30pmish I was coming up (normal for me-I have come up quicker before and later too. I have never come up quicker than 20minutes and I have never come up slower than 2hrs). The come-up is an exciting part for me as for me it “plays with light” and my hearing is always enhanced at that point. I tend to go to the bathroom and check my pupils of my eyes to see if they have gone bigger. I go quiet for a moment or two as I notice things like the light in the room changing or the music, or something that it has made me focus on and then I start to smile and I either say something to my partner like “This is so brilliant! I’m up, are you?”
Then I’m active when I’ve plateau-ed and want to get up and walk around and put on different tracks and just chat, chat and chat. When I hit the “familiar” I want to talk about it. Everything comes rushing out at 100mph. But this is great. It’s also a relief that I still have the ability to think so fast after a week in work where I am treated like a potatoe. It’s also the connections. Oh the endless connections between this and that, that come pouring out in entirely logical and methodical ways. On an E I can think like a scientist or a philosopher, I can understand perspectives like an artist, I can play with language like a poet, I can do so much. You also am given the gift of knowing how to stop hurting others and say what I really mean. I can be honest.
One thing I have to mention at this point is the come-up on an E. I think this drug is so “sophisticated” the way it works depending on my thoughts at the time. The come up this time for me was “subtle” , I hardly noticed the height I climbed. It was very smooth. Other times it is a pleasant “rocky” climb where I have made steep little steps that were continual till I plateau out into a calmness (I have never struggled on a come-up but there have been times where I have needed to be quiet and concentrate)
As we sat in the front room we could hear people walking along our street up to the little rural town where we live because of course it was New Years Eve and there was lots going on. I had been plateau-ing and so had my partner. My partner suggested a walk to a small local pub to see if we could find a mate of his (not normal for us-We tend to stay in once we have dropped and venture out only on the come down and even then for peaceful walks however it was New Years Eve). I got my coat and we walked to the pub. I noticed the cold feeling lovely.
As you may suspect the pub was very crowded and we stood and had a drink (nonalcoholic) and tried to look out for my partners friend. They were playing Kylie Minogue’s “Can’t get you out of My Head”, and for the first time ever I had a taste of what a club might feel like on an “E”. The vibrations were amazing. I felt vibrations move in waves up my body and the beat, my god the beat, was absolutely gorgeous. I could have stayed, but they then changed the set up and had this stand-up karaoke guy on, and I began to notice (annoyingly) that I was on an E with my boyfriend in the middle of a rural pub on New Years Eve with Karaoke. Thanks but no thanks. We made a speedy exit. With an hour to go until midnight we walked home.
It was about 11pmish and we got in had a drink and dropped our last pill. I came up quicker this time within 30 minutes and we just listened to music. I was rushing when the clocks struck and endless cheers rolled down the streets. Dropping this last pill had intensified the experience for me. I could see patterns on the walls and different colours moving everywhere. The experience had changed from a just-feel-good thing to a trippy thing. (normal for me-I have noticed that when I drop a second pill things go trippy on most experiences). I was chatty and we talked in the “familiar”. We hugged each other and kissed (extremely Normal for us) and it was like any other run-of-the-mill E experience that I value, until I started to come down.
At around 2am we made a cup of tea and sat with some gentle music and chatted quietly. I relaxed in a big armchair and just happened to stare up at the ceiling. I carried on sipping my tea but looked up again because something had caught my attention. I thought I saw some interesting patterns and colours. I told my partner that I could see interesting stuff but he was now coming down quite fast and wanted to close his eyes and relax. So I didn’t hassle him, but instead I sat back and carried on looking. Then something absolutely amazing happened that I just don’t understand.
On the living-room ceiling there was playing a kind of projected video show of famous paintings in a kind of motion and in some sort of order which would play and then pause and then go back to the beginning and repeat the sequence. I didn’t have to concentrate to make these pictures appear, it was not a case of “trying” to see these pictures, they just kept appearing. I don’t know that much about art. I did do A level Art at Sixth Form and I did recognize however the paintings as being from the Impressionist Period. I must stress how IMPORTANT this is. What I could see on the ceiling was EXACTLY how these pictures had been painted, not a confused version of these made up by my own brain! Here is to name a few of the pictures I saw BRUSH STROKE FOR BRUSH STROKE on my living- room ceiling in the plaster.
Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte-by Georges Seurat
Bathing at Asnieres-by George Seurat
Impression, Sunrise-by Claude Monet
At the Races-by Edgar Degas
Wild Poppies-by Claude Monet
The Umbrellas-by Auguste Renoir
The Dance Foyer at the Opera-by Edgar Degas
What was interesting about this experience was the way these pictures and about 45 others presented themselves. The first picture would dissolve into the plaster on the ceiling and then the next picture would appear out of the dissolving one and so on. I also saw movement in each picture. For example At the Races, by Edgar Degas is a painting of a racecourse where one particular jockey is not in line. I saw how the horse “moved” out of line into the position it was painted in. I also saw a number of Japanese feudal-type paintings depicting war scenes. With these pictures I saw feudal battle lords preparing their armies. I saw horses moving about and then the picture would dissolve and another would appear just as interesting. However, I do not know whom they are by so I have not listed them. I saw about 15 of these kinds. I would like to point out that I have never taken Acid or intend to. However this is what I would describe as the trippiest E I have ever had. What I’m interested in is the fact that it was getting on for 4am and these pictures were still presenting themselves to me. All in all I saw about 50 different paintings that would repeat a particular order. Each time moving in the way it moved last time.
What was also present, and tends to follow me around from E to E experience is a pattern I keep seeing. The pattern is from a tablecloth I remember from childhood that my Grandmother owned. It is a floral pattern that breaks down to a hexagon if I stare at it long enough. It appears on everything I look at. That night that was there too like an old friend. Around 4:30am my partner was asleep and I was getting there too, so I went to bed. The next day I got out of bed excited saying something like “We have Art in the living-room ceiling!”.
My explanation of this experience starts in this way. I am always amazed by all of my experiences with E. All of them have had something valuable to offer me. Having checked at the library the following week some of these paintings I saw that night, I could have been knocked over by a feather when I found out that I had seen them exactly as the original artist had painted them brush stroke for brush stroke. I wonder whether each of us has a photographic memory that records what it wants to. I wonder whether the E reacted with those photographed pictures in my head that I must have recorded while doing A level Art and showed me what I once saw. Wow! That’s cool! I am in awe of this drug. The fact that it can do this. The fact that I can write this and want to share this with others is even more incredible. E has changed my life for the better. A couple of weeks ago I tried Coke for the first time. I was so disappointed. Nothing compares to E. When I stop taking E, if I stop, I will miss it......
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