For many students, college is the perfect environment to explore the world of drugs. Unfortunately, most collegiate drug explorers rely on really shitty guides, such as their equally inexperienced friends and Ray Liotta movies.

Outside of alcohol (the stupidest drug ever, really), stimulants are the most dangerous drug genre to navigate responsibly. College students have plenty of plausible reasons to indulge in central nervous system amplification: staying up late studying, writing, or just getting into passionate, cerebral debates about class stratification, existentialism, or why Radiohead is so beautiful that you want to carve that weeping bear logo from Amnesiac into your arm. Thankfully, I'm here to offer encouragement, along with a few general guidelines.

Three rules to remember:

1. Don't shoot drugs, and don't share needles if you do. Same goes for straws. Using a dollar bill that's just been up someone else's nose is not only gross, it's a fabulous way to get Hepatitis C.

2. Recognize that self-discipline will only get you so far, particularly with the smokable and snortable substances on this list. If you can't stop when you want to, you need to stop doing the drug.

3. Be sure to listen to the Rolling Stones' Exile on Main Street. It sounds brilliant when you're wired to the gills.











$1.50-$3 a cup

$2 for six tablets at Asian mini-marts

$3-$7 for 12 tablets at the drugstore

About $20 a gram

Wildly variable, invariably cheap, typically $5-$20 $60-$100 a gram, plus the cost of flammable accessories $60-$100 a gram
WHAT'S GOOD The ability to function normally within modern society. A pleasantly discombobulated, gently stimulated state. Cheap as hell, with a consistently reliable buzz. Just the ticket if you want to wring a couple more hours out of your evening.


Inexpensive; inspires long-lasting wiredness, fastidious housecleaning, and an initially voracious appetite for studying and discussing "important" or "artistic" ideas.

Quite the head rush, much more impressive than anything above; the illicit and humorous thrill that you're stupid enough to smoke crack.

Stratospheric head rush, slightly longer than crack and much more giddy.


Romantic thoughts about living some sort of retro-hip Stevie Nicks/David Bowie lifestyle for one evening; good quality stuff brings on serious euphoria and will make your face so numb you could theoretically bang your skull on cinder blocks.


Withdrawal headaches,

scary breath.


Discombob-ulation ain't for everyone, and some people just fall asleep.

Not good for all-night action; makes some people uncomfortably light-headed; and if you drink, you WILL want to drink more than you normally would. The highly repulsive metallic odor that comes off your skin as you sweat the stuff out; the inevitable fact that you will become a twitchy asshole if you keep doing it. A ridiculously short-lived high; the embarrassment that you are stupid enough to smoke crack; very unfoxy brown teeth.

Freakishly common heart attacks and hot, exploding glass lacerating your face (see Richard Pryor, John Belushi et al.).

Pathetic Behind the Music scenarios become a clichéd reality, yet no one has blown any drugs up your ass; guys have the rather nasty side effect of a temporarily shrunken penis (really).



After you've gotten adequately wired for the day, chew some of that "ice" gum, the kind that freezes pool balls; do your best to patronize small, noncorporate coffee houses.


Mix heavily with pot and watch public television or the Discovery Channel; you can usually double the suggested dose, but don't triple it, dumbass.


Don't take on a totally empty stomach, or you'll have some serious nausea to wrestle with. NEVER take more than one, especially if you've been drinking--you'll tax out your bladder and do something lame, like pee on yourself.

It can be used relatively safely on occasion, for catastrophically important studying binges, but too much leads to really unpleasant things like hallucinations of bubbling carpet, and super-ugly jaw-clenching habits.

I would suggest purchasing N.W.A.'s Straight Outta Compton and a carton of whippets instead.

Freebasing is wasteful and smelly. Save some, and share a line with a friend, you idiot.

"Special occasion" is the key here--coke can be fun if it's a genuine treat. The only problem: Once you get a taste for the stuff, you'll find yourself inventing all sorts of "special occasions." As a protective measure, I suggest you watch Requiem for a Dream, which makes all drugs seem repugnant, at least for a while.