When it comes to getting high, there are plenty of illicit substances to be wary of, each with their own harmful effects. And, as the opioid crisis continues to worsen, there are many legal substances that can be abused with deadly results.
However, you might not be aware of the potential dangers lurking in your everyday household products. While all of the following substances are “legal” ways to get high, they are no less dangerous, and in some cases, even more so, since all it can take is one dose to kill someone, do serious permanent damage, or create an addiction.
While anyone can attempt to create these “homemade highs,” children and teenagers are particularly at risk, because they often have far easier access to these items. Rather than trying to go out and get illegal drugs, they have not just one but several potential tools to get high sitting in their kitchens and bathrooms. They also may be under the false impression that getting high on household products is somehow safer than the alternative.
Are DIY drugs truly, mind-alteringly legit? Can you actually go online and purchase mushroom spores or plant seeds that, once harvested, will admit you through the jungly, ivy-thick doors of perception?
Making booze out of ketchup and sugar packets, bloated bacteria colonies, and even one’s own crotch isn’t easy, or anything you should probably ever consider doing, no matter how hard up you are. Unless, of course, you want to know how to make toilet wine so you can open your own Boutique Brooklyn (or Silverlake) watering hole, where thirsty regulars can drink wine directly from toilets while Tweeting about how authentic the experience is.
Read on to find out more than you ever wanted to know about DIY alcohol so nasty it’s more like a weapon, and various other homemade drug “solutions” that have altered everyone from bored suburban kids to ISIS militants.
Jenkem (Just FYI Is Made From Wee And Poo)
There are industry standards, no matter how harrowing the endeavor in question might be. Drug mules, for example, at least empty their colons before putting their stashes up in them, for practical purposes as much as sanitary ones. But when you’re dealing with jenkem, described by this article as an inhalant used in very poor parts of the world … and in the New York prison system … as a cheap high, all bets are off.
Author and former prisoner Daniel Ginis describes the substance thus: “To make it takes guts — literally. You just need a bottle to fill with piss and sh*t, time to let it ferment and methane gas to form, and the courage to inhale it.”
No word on what kind of high this produces, but it’s obviously not great, because jenkem use and production are rare. “While I did watch a mentally ill man collect the raw materials for jenkem in a dormitory once, it was certainly not a common sight,” Ginis writes, apparently by way of reassurance.
Products made with human body fluids aren’t unheard of. In 2011, for example, British ice cream makers made headlines when they tried to launch Baby Gaga, a product crafted from meticulously screened breast milk.
In 2016, a Polish brewery decided to take it a step further by attempting to fund a beer derived from vaginal yeast. “Yoni” is the Sanskrit term for vagina, and the company in question, The Order of Yoni, sought to germinate their DIY product, Bottled Instinct, from the loins of Czech model Alexandra Brendlova, pictured above with the beer. (“We selected a beautiful, very intelligent woman for our first beer, and she personifies beauty, intelligence and will be an inspiration for our future models,” a spokesperson said).
That’s all well and good, but beer brewed in someone’s crotch is still a pretty universally unappetizing proposition. Besides, Yoni has already been beaten to the punch: way back in 2005, a bold entrepreneur named Toi Sennhauser introduced that year’s Oktoberfest to Original Pussy Beer, a brew developed in her very own “little oven,” to quote Divine from Pink Flamingos.
Waste not, want not. That’s the philosophy of some enterprising meth addicts, who believe that one addict’s pee is another addict’s second chance at a fix. In other words, urine extraction labs are very much a thing: some people “drink the meth-tainted urine to get high, while others use the cooking process to filter the drug back out,” according to reports.
It’s sad, to be sure, but it doesn’t get more DIY than that. To turn the famous Frank Zappa lyric around, “watch out where the huskies go/and don’t you smoke that yellow snow.”
A Crack Stick
A crack stick might strike you as a variation of street pixie-stick, or as something requiring complex materials, a basic knowledge of “cooking” techniques, a lot of Pyrex, and a funnel. But none of the above would be true. Crack sticks … an enterprising way to get blizted out of your skull in prison … don’t actually contain crack at all, and they require very few ingredients.
An article published in The Daily Mail in 2016 detailed the undercover experience of two journalists who spent months in an American prison. During this time, they witnessed the smoking of the sticks, which are nothing more than crushed up e-cigarette filters wrapped in coffee-soaked toilet paper.
In Saudi Arabia, where alcohol is banned, you really have to go out of your way to find anything intoxicating. And that means anything, up to and including cosmetics and mouthwash, the alcoholic versions of which are prohibited in the country.
One would assume such restrictions would generate a thriving and diverse black market, and perhaps they do (although Saudi officials really like cutting people’s heads off, so it’s probably a market to avoid). Captagon is often used in place of drugs and alcohol for a buzz; it’s a now-recalled amphetamine … marketed under the generic name fenethylline … that was originally used as a treatment for depression and narcolepsy. The drug can be synthesized in a variety of ways, and it’s imported to (and manufactured in) the Middle East in vast quantities.
This variation on bathtub crank is all the rage. As this article puts it, “Like crystal meth, [it] can be produced extremely cheaply almost anywhere, even using materials which can be bought over the counter.”
Young people use the drug as a stimulant, and to aid with weight loss. The article states, “Obesity has risen in Saudi Arabia in recent years, and body image has become more important. Socializing also often goes on late into the night, but young Saudis are still expected to present themselves at school or university very early in the morning.” (It must be working, because a whopping 30% of worldwide illegal amphetamine seizures in 2013 were in Saudi Arabia).
Captagon is also commonly referred to as the “jihad pill,” and is supposedly used by ISIS militants to keep them cranked up and ready for battle. (A Newsweek article from May 2017 discusses cases of hundreds of thousands of doses of Captogon being seized in Europe, en route to ISIS).
Pruno (also called hooch), Mad Dog’s far uglier and more gut-curdling cousin, may never see the lush rolling hills of Napa Valley wine country, but it’s definitely caused plenty of rolling hills of nausea in prisons and jails all over the world. All you need is a resealable bag, some peeled oranges, a can of fruit cocktail, a bunch of sugar cubes, some ketchup packets, and tap water, all squeezed into a paste, packed in the bag, and stored “someplace dark.”
What’s this process like? The Modern Drunkard’s Hank Soboski sums it up like this: “I unwrapped the towels to discover [the bag] had ballooned up nicely … this, I surmised, was due to the gasses given off by the fermentation process … by day five, it looked as if my baby was thinking about exploding into something I didn’t care to clean up.”
What was the final product like? “Aside from tasting like moldy and rotted fruit, it tingled against my tongue as vast bacteria colonies rose up and counter-attacked.To put it bluntly, classic Pruno tastes like a bottle of Thunderbird filtered through a dumpster full of rotted garbage.”
Never let it be said that fortune favors the mold.
Botulism is a concern with Pruno: the Center for Disease Control and Prevention noted toilet-wine associated outbreaks of the condition in 2004, 2005, and 2012. In each case, it was assumed that bad potatoes were to blame: one prison involved in these statistics went so far as to ban spuds from its kitchens to prevent future incidents.
Make Your Own Mescaline And Mushrooms Through Online Ordering
You might not think you’d find an article on making drugs in the Tech Insider section of Business Insider. Yet there it is, in all its glory, offering plenty of solutions for those on the hunt for DIY ways to get high.
The piece details alternative ways of producing mushrooms and mescaline. (The cactus the latter is derived from, San Pedro, or Echinopsis pachanoi, can be purchased online; you can even get a powdered version of the plant). The legality of San Pedro is a bit difficult to pin down, however. According to an article in The Desert Sun newspaper, it’s legal to own as a decorative plant, but illegal to extract mescaline from as of 2015.
As for mushrooms, psychedelic varieties are illegal, but you can always purchase spores for such fungus through various online retailers and grow them yourself.
Improvised Prison Cigarettes
In prison, tobacco is as perpetually in-demand as any other drug. And because cigarettes can be just as hard to come by, they sometimes have to be reinvented. Those in the know claim that all you need is envelopes, a paperback book, toilet paper, tea bags, cotton balls, and spinach (or some other herb like dried oregano) to get the job done.
You’re basically making a cigarette from scratch, and you can find out how by reading the tutorial; but keep in mind the smoke is probably going to taste “acrid and assy” and give you “migraines for hours, and a stupid feeling that will linger for all eternity.”
Enterprising Amateur Botanists Can Find Psychotropic Drugs At The Local Garden Store
Good old blotter acid has never been expensive or hard to come by, but if you’re still into that sort of thing and you’re in a dry market, your local gardening store might just yield paydirt. In 2016, a Boston teen was hospitalized after ingesting too many morning glory seeds, which he combined with Hawaiian baby woodrose seeds and sleepy grass seeds, both of which are said to contain “hallucinogenic compounds” (The store subsequently pulled the items off its shelves).
The above seeds are also known for bringing on nausea and excruciating stomach pain, by the way, which are conditions that are apt to spiral you into a psychedelic nightmare and ruin your trip. In other words, don’t try this at home: meditating until you’re able to get high off your own DMT is probably a much better option.