February 9, 2016 · 2:14 pm
The following passage from Infinite Jest was very interesting, especially in light of recent states making marijuana legal and the wider push to legalize it throughout the United States.
Everybody who raised their hand to share concurred on the insidious ways marijuana had ravaged their bodies, minds, and spirits; marijuana destroys slowly but thoroughly was the consensus. Ken Erdedy’s joggling foot knocked over his coffee not once but twice as the NAs took turns concurring on the hideous psychic fallout they’d all endured both in active marijuana-dependency and then in marijuana-detox: the social isolation, anxious lassitude, and the hyperself-consciousness that then reinforced the withdrawal and anxiety – the increasing emotional abstraction, poverty of affect, and then total emotional catalepsy – the obsessive analyzing, finally the paralytic stasis that results from the obsessive analysis of all possible implications of both getting up from the couch and not getting up from the couch – and then the endless symptomatic gauntlet of Withdrawal from delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol: i.e. pot-detox: the loss of appetite, the mania and insomnia, the chronic fatigue and nightmares, the impotence and cessation of menses and lactation, the circadian arrhythmia, the sudden sauna-type sweats and mental confusion and fine-motor tremors, the particularly nasty excess production of saliva – several beginners still holding institutional drool-cups just under their chins – the generalized anxiety and foreboding of dread, and the shame of feeling like neither M.D.s nor the hard-drug NAs themselves showed much empathy or compassion for the ‘addict’ brought down by what was supposed to be nature’s humblest buzz, the benignest Substance around.
(pp. 503 – 504)
I do not want to get into a deep debate about whether marijuana should be legal or not. For me, that is not the issue and not what is important about this passage in the text. For me, what is important is the insidious nature of addiction, and the focus should be on the fact that people can become addicted to anything, provided that thing effectively changes the way one feels and thinks.
Some people fail to recognize the obvious: if you do something on a regular basis and then stop doing whatever it is that you are doing, you will experience a form of withdrawal. If you exercise every day for years and one day stop, it will have a physical and mental effect on you. If you drink soda every day and suddenly stop completely, you will go through withdrawal. If you meditated every day for most of your life and then quit, it would impact you physically, mentally, and spiritually. To think that you can use a drug every day and not suffer withdrawal when you stop is naïve and foolish.
I’ve heard plenty of people argue that marijuana is not addictive. I don’t believe it. Almost everything is addictive. I’m sure we all know people who are addicted to watching certain 24-hour news stations.
Filed under Literature
Tagged as addict, addiction, America, analysis, anxiety, book reviews, books, detox, drugs, emotion, infinite jest, legalization, literature, marijuana, media, news, pop culture, pot, psychology, reading, review, society, symptoms, Wallace, withdrawal
February 15, 2015 · 8:22 pm
So this is the second half of the story that began with issue 19 (click here for my review of that one). My expectations were pretty low based on how weak the previous issue was, but I have to say that this did not even meet my lowered expectations; in fact, it pretty much sucked. In the previous issue, people were using a genetically modified type of marijuana called G-23 that has a “Jacob’s Ladder” effect. In this issue, it is asserted that the marijuana is laced with alien DNA. I have to say that it was about the dumbest story imaginable. It belongs in a Cheech and Chong comic, or the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers. Bottom line, unless you just want to fill the space in your comic collection, don’t waste your money on this. It’s not often that I consider something I read to be so dismal that I cannot find anything redeeming about it, but this is one of those times.
You have been duly warned.
Filed under Uncategorized
Tagged as aliens, cheech, chong, comics, DNA, Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers, geek, graphic novel, jacob's ladder, marijuana, nerd, pop culture, reading, review, sci-fi, science fiction, x-files
December 4, 2014 · 7:15 am
I have to say that I found this issue to be only mildly entertaining. The story is based around a conspiracy that the government was growing some genetically modified marijuana called G-23 that has a “Jacob’s Ladder” effect on individuals. Of course, some enterprising freaks manage to acquire this and have a rave with some consequences. Honestly, the story felt hackneyed to me, like I’ve heard it a hundred times before, all told in much more engaging versions. Also, I wasn’t crazy about the artwork, especially the renderings of the Lone Gunmen. I have to say, upon finishing it, I felt slightly annoyed that the story is to be continued in the next issue.
It seems like the writers were trying to appeal to the stoner crowd, and frankly, the stoner genre just does not appeal to me. If I wanted to read that type of comic, I’d go and read the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers. At least they were somewhat funny.
I realize this is kind of a harsh review and usually I try to find something positive to say about the things I read, but I am finding it hard to do that this morning. I think it’s the fact that the last several issues in the Season 10 series have been so good, that the contrast here just makes issue #19 seem that much worse. Anyway, issue #20 will be titled “Tripped” so my expectations are already low. I guess the good thing is I probably won’t be disappointed.
Thanks for stopping by, and read on!
Filed under Uncategorized
Tagged as art, comics, conspiracy, criticism, drugs, freak brothers, G-23, geek, government, graphic novel, jacob's ladder, lone gunmen, marijuana, nerd, reading, review, sci-fi, science fiction, writing, x-files
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