THE UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON
Research assistance provided by Rachel "Hendrix" Kessler and Novella "Lizard King" Carpenter.
1. The Parking Garage under Red Square
The large parking garage under the university (accessed by elevators from Meany Hall) makes a great makeshift speakeasy, remaining warm and dry all winter long. While the echoing walls might thrill those on LSD, the wide-open, car-friendly American splendor of the venue paints it first and foremost as a place for getting drunk and rowdy. Remember to bring cigarettes; they help take away the vomit taste!
2. The Study Closets at Haggett Hall
These are the isolation tanks for the academic set: little closets with doors, chairs, locks on the inside, and their own extinguishable lights. Settle in, bring your condoms, and go, go, go! (Or wait outside an occupied closet for the occupants to emerge, then go in and take a whiff!)
3. The Canoes on Lake Washington
In the spring, when the sun and birds come out and the Ecstasy dealers shift into high gear, there is no better place to spend an ecstatic afternoon than on the calm, cool surface of Lake Washington. In addition to the splendors of water, there are plenty of places to row ashore, strip naked, coat yourself with mud, and run through the undergrowth, panting and screaming, your eyes vibrating, your mouth dry as a plate of sand. Remember to wear your lifejacket!
4. The Sylvan Theater
Southeast of the U Dub's main fountain, hidden in a grove of trees next to the new engineering building and stretched between four enormous Grecian columns, is a snug, earthy glade that would do justice to Pan himself. This is the perfect place for a naked dance, an orgy, a circle jerk, or what have you. Bring a couple liters of wine and a bunch of "acquaintances."
5. The Air Vents near the Henry Library
You'll need bolt-cutters for this one, but for naughty adventure lovers, it's certainly worth the effort. These huge, surreal air vents run underneath the campus, beneath 15th Avenue and to God knows where else. Like catacombs, they are warm in the winter, and there may even be a Minotaur--or at least a homeless guy like the one who had lived there for 12 years before he was caught in 1993.
6. The Roof of the Atmospheric Sciences Building
This instrument-studded roof is Xanadu to the psychotropically indulgent. The strange, wondrous sculptures of various atmospheric testing devices are everywhere, and there is a nice view out over the Moorish University District. Special bonus: the massive "Foucault Pendulum" in the lobby, which varies its rotation based on the earth's latitude, as determined by our place in the celestial axis.... Whoa!
7. The Greenhouses by Pacific Street
A great place for the psychedelic contemplation of nature, these greenhouses boast a room with giant banana trees and cactuses. (Plus, Novella insists that last year, an enormous, rotting, flesh-smelling plant bloomed after 100 dormant years!)
8. The Nitrogen Tanks in Bagley Hall
Here lies the Holy Grail of all recreational drug users: Two large tanks of liquid nitrogen, their valves unlocked. I've heard many a tale about frozen shoes shattered into splinters; dissertations made into ice; leaves and flowers frozen into giant crystals. Who knows if they truly exist? Are you up for a crusade?
SEATTLE CENTRAL COMMUNITY COLLEGE/SEATTLE UNIVERSITY
Research assistance provided by Jeff DeRoche.
1. Broadway QFC
Any supermarket that is (a) open 24 hours a day; (b) so big you can get lost for at least an hour in its aisles; and (c) has a bulk-foods section--with nuts!--is, by my calculus, a perfect refuge for those on acid. I can pretty much guarantee that if you take drugs and visit this pleasure garden any weekend night after 3:00 a.m., you will be in good company: Just about everyone there except the acne-covered checkout boy is on something.
2. The Chapel of St. Ignatius
While the Jesuits are not renowned for their drug use, their campus houses at least one fully realized drug sanctuary: the stunning, utterly drug-friendly Chapel of St. Ignatius. This amazing, delicate, compact chapel serves the drug-addled rover in two ways. First, it is a great place to hang outdoors on a calm, warm evening, staring into the endless permutations of the gorgeous reflecting pool, with its huge cross overhead and shiny pennies underfoot. Second, this place is a lifesaver when you are (God forbid!) having a bad trip. The soft light, the nurturing quiet, and the heavy, heavy doors all serve to rid the mind of its woeful convictions that you have murdered people and are stuck in a living boneyard, surrounded by phantoms. So take a deep breath, light a candle at the portrait of the Virgin Mary, pray, and wait to come down.
3. The Parking Garage Across the Street from the Broadway Performance Hall
This is just a great place to get drunk. Plus, you can see the cops coming a mile away.
4. Swedish Hospital
Hospitals are excellent places for both lengthy drinking bouts and extended drug trips, the obvious advantage being the presence of trained medical personnel, should your blood alcohol content hit 3.0 or your spinal fluid be drained by too much MDMA. Swedish is pretty easy to get into at night--just walk in the emergency entrance like you have a friend in traction on the third floor.
5. As You Like It Metaphysical Library
Look, most of the people at this place are here because they took drugs in the early '80s and simply never left. Trust me, the higher you are, the more comfortable you'll be.
6. The International House of Pancakes
The only American commercial food institution dedicated to psychedelic drug users, IHOP is where we all land eventually. The booths are so comfortable, you might as well stay all night. Plus, eight different kinds of syrup!
FYI: Remember, while it is illegal to have controlled substances on your person (including booze), it is not illegal to be on controlled substances, as long as you're not "disorderly" (or driving). In other words, you cannot be arrested merely for being high, drunk, stoned, tripping, or what have you. Have fun.