CONGRATULATIONS! YOU HAVE STUMBLED INTO "THE SHALLOW ZONE." WATCH OUT FOR THE ROCKS. SOME OF THEM ARE SHARP.
If you're looking for a blog with meaningful content on the important issues of the day, you've come to the wrong place. This is the shallows, my friend. Nothing but shallowness as far as the eye can see. Let someone else make sense of things. I like it here.

About Me

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I love my grown children, miss all the dogs I ever had, and I cry at the drop of a hat, I believe in true love, destiny, fairness, and compassion. If I could be anywhere right now, it would be the ocean. My favorite city is New York, but I am always longing for London and craving more time in Copenhagen. I'm drawn to desolate places, deserted buildings, and unknown byways. I don't care how society perceives me as long as my gut tells me that what I'm doing is right. I am interested in paranormal things, spiritual things, historical things, and things that glow at night. I like to drink, I smoke when I write, I can't stand small talk, and despite my quick temper, I would rather kiss than fight. I'm selfish with my writing time, a spendthrift with my love. My heart has been broken so many times that it's held together with super glue and duct tape. The upside is that, next time, I won't be tempted to give away what I no longer have to give. But I will let you buy me a Pink Squirrel.
MY SHALLOW MISSION STATEMENT

MY SHALLOW MISSION STATEMENT

MY SHALLOW MISSION STATEMENT
Not that there's any weight to it...
IN A WORLD FILLED WITH COMPLEX POLITICAL ISSUES, SOCIAL INEQUALITY, AND FINANCIAL UNCERTAINTY, I CONSIDER IT MY GIFT TO YOU, MY READER, TO OFFER THIS SHALLOW LITTLE HAVEN, WHERE NOTHING IS TOO SHALLOW, TOO INSIGNIFICANT, OR TOO RIDICULOUS TO JUSTIFY OUR ATTENTION. IN OTHER WORDS, IF IT'S NOT IMPORTANT....SO WHAT? NEITHER WAS MARILYN MONROE'S BRA SIZE. AND THAT STILL SELLS MAGAZINES, DOESN'T IT?
VIDEO OF THE MONTH

Thursday, May 31, 2012

WARNING: NOT THE USUAL SHALLOW DRIVEL



As wonderful as it is, most of the time, to wrap myself in a cloud of shallowness as I write these posts for my (presumably) shallow readers, this time around, I find myself compelled to peel off the protective veneer and write about something a bit more serious...namely, bath salts. In my last post, I wrote about the horrific incident in Florida in which a naked man was shot dead by police after he was witnessed near an off-ramp on the Miami causeway tearing off the flesh of another naked man's face and eating it. When first confronted by the police, the attacker, a 31-year-old homeless man called Rudy Eugene, allegedly growled at them and continued eating his victim's face. It took four bullets to put an end to the gruesome feast. Initially, the incident was blamed on a new strain of LSD that was believed to have driven Eugene to perform his horrible, cannibalistic act. But since that initial verdict, it has come to light that Eugene had, in fact, most likely ingested bath salts before the attack.

BATH SALTS...BUT NOT THE KIND YOU PUT IN YOUR BATH WATER

If you haven't heard of the synthetic drug known as "bath salts" before now...you're fortunate. But what you should know is that its name has nothing to do with the innocuous white or colored substance used in baths for the purpose of relaxation. The bath salts that Rudy Eugene, and thousands of others have snorted, smoked, or shot up ever since it first became available a couple of years ago, are without question one of the most dangerous drugs to surface since heroin. Unfortunately, I know a bit more about bath salts than I'd like because, for the past year and a half, a member of my family has been held hostage by the paranoia and the aggressive behavior which accompanies that paranoia. Thankfully, that family member is now in rehab and doing well, but the psychological and emotional scars remain, and no doubt will for some time. Still, having had a front seat to bath salts-fueled (mis) behavior all these months, it seems only right that I impart some of what I know about the drug to my readers. So, that's what I'm going to try to do.

FACE OF THE FLORIDA FACE EATER: RUDY EUGENE, 31, A VICTIM OF BATH SALTS?

Up until last July, in the state of Maine at least, it was perfectly legal to purchase bath salts. They were easy enough to get. Not only were they available in stores and head shops, if you knew the right people, you could have them delivered right to your flat or house. The aforementioned member of my family just happened to know the right people. At first, he only snorted them, "just to get a little extra energy". the same way you would snort speed or cocaine or Ritalin (if, of course, you did that sort of thing at all). At first, the result was the desired one: extra energy. But that initial result quickly spiraled into something more. Once the burst of energy wore off, my family member became almost instantly morose and sullen, sometimes to the point of becoming mildly aggressive. He began seeing things as well...or at least imagining that he did. He spoke of people outside the house who he believed were waiting to hurt him. On one occasion, when bath salts were still legal in our state, a couple of his friends came to visit him at our flat and decided to "try" bath salts as well. On returning home that night, they became convinced that a space alien was in their house, which prompted them to call the police, who, unable to locate the alleged space alien, ended up taking one of the friends to the local psychiatric ward where she was obliged to undergo a battery of tests in order to determine whether she was mentally stable enough to be released or required further treatment. Luckily, for her, she was determined to be of sound mind, but was warned not to take bath salts again. After all, just because something is legal doesn't mean that it's safe to snort up your nose. She was smart enough to follow the doctors' advice. But my family member had a different take on the situation. He thought that he'd discovered a new version of LSD, a mind-expanding chemical which he was convinced would allow him to access another dimension of reality. And he was right. It just turned out to be a reality better left unaccessed.

SHADOW PEOPLE: A SCOURGE FROM ANOTHER (BAD) DIMENSION?

Thus began the "Year of The Shadow People", as I've come to call it. As my family member's bath salt use progressed from simple snorting sessions to shooting up (a fact that was unknown to me until I happened to discover needles in his room), he became increasingly paranoid, mainly because, like crystal meth, the drug known as "bath salts" seems to trigger visions of shadowy figures (i.e. shadow people) lurking around with nefarious intent. Sometimes, passing by his room, I would hear him talking to friends about the shadow people, comparing notes on how to deal with them, as though they were actually real. What frightened me the most was that to my family member, as well as to his friends who were also using bath salts, the shadow people were real. The fact that they all saw them was more then a little unsettling. I kept thinking, what is it about bath salts that causes people who use it to see the exact same thing? Perhaps my family member was right about the drug allowing him to access a different dimension. But if it was a dimension populated by shadow people, what in God's name was the lure to continue to go there? It's a question to which I still haven't found a satisfactory answer. What I do know is that, as hideous and unspeakable as it is to think of one man eating another man's face, it's not one that I can dismiss as an aberration. Not when it comes to bath salts. Not when, last summer, a man of my family member's acquaintance became the first person in our city to "officially" die from bath salts after he was arrested, and in defiance of police, tore off his own testicles and hurled them across the room the uniformed "enemy". Not after another woman whom I had met was arrested after tearing a radiator out of a neighbor's bathroom wall and using it to barricade the bathroom door in an effort to keep nonexistent "killers" at bay. What Rudy Eugene did to his victim's face may have made headlines around the world, but, if nothing else, it should be seen as a wake-up call. Far from an isolated incident, it stands as an extreme example of what bath salts can drive those who use it to do. As I said at the beginning of this post, if you haven't heard of bath salts before now...you're fortunate. But now that you have, consider yourself forewarned. Bath salts aren't just bad. They're dangerous....and clearly not just to those who use them. Turns out that zombies are real. They're people on bath salts.

Skol! xoxoxxoxoxxoxoxoxoxxoxo

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