Goatee Not Included

Have you ever considered the idea of dualistic culture? Mirror culture might be a good way of thinking of it too. Basically, I’m talking about how you have one part of culture creating a class of people that is a) exclusive and b) desirable. What this sometimes results in is  a cultural vacancy, a sort of holding area or crust just below the upper crust, if you will. Consider the Legal High market and all the products it contains. It’s not as though someone sat down and said “Hey, I want to find some bath salts to snort” or “I would really like to find a herbal incense sachet that can get me high”. Something instigated that. Namely, the want for (and apparent inability to get) weed and other drugs.  In addition to emulating the experience, the people who fall into this sort of mirror, not quite counter, zone often try to emulate the lifestyle and culture of the source as well. And while not every dude out there is going to throw on Fog Hat and take incense rips, without actually sniffing some bowls, you might have a hard time distinguishing the true stoners from those not quite as fortunate.

Which leads me to the question of the day, and it is one that I am genuinely interested in. Why, if you are among those who do, do you choose to go the incense or salt road over more traditional forms of inebriation? After all, it’s not as though this is something one accidentally falls into. Getting started with this stuff and continuing to use it is a conscious choice, and I wonder how many fans of these particular activities have truly examined their reasons.

I could see where there would be a multitude of reasons, but to my mind it seems that you could distill them down into a handful of overall archetypes, or general reasons why one might chose herbal incense and salts over their analogs, or really choose them at all.

A) Can’t Get It

The simplest and perhaps the most obvious reason, here you have people who for whatever reason can’t get the “real” stuff. Though it may be a simple explanation, the details that might qualify someone for this category are, however, legion. Perhaps you are too young to get real weed (which begs the question of how you’re able to get incense and salts), or you live in a geographic area where obtaining the real stuff is almost impossible. Florida, for example. Despite the party culture and beach atmosphere, apparently weed is almost impossible for most people to find down there. Hard drugs are apparently easier to come by. It makes sense, then, that someone wanting to pursue herbal inebriation would resort to synthetics.

B) Can’t Use It

Sometimes, it’s not a matter of availability. Sometimes, the man fucks you. Sometimes you find yourself in a position of having to choose between your health and your livelihood. Despite the fact that serious drugs (as in not weed) are out of your system in a long weekend and almost ubiquitously undetectable, a lot of employers still demand pre-hire and random drug screens of all their employees (although not the Post Office, apparently. Go figure). These people seek out some sort of legal (or legal-ish) alternative. In actuality, this subset is predominately where the whole market began: people looking for ways around the laws. And to be honest, ignoring for a second the fact that the tests are not only invasive, but also prone to false positives (Especially hair tests. Someone black or hispanic could challenge the results of a hair test just on the grounds that they are black or hispanic, as hair tests have been proven to deliver significant numbers of false positives because of the generally heavier composition of the hair of these ethnic groups), what do these tests really stop? What do they really accomplish? It isn’t as though they deter anyone from using the substances. I mean, if someone is going to come to work drunk or high, they’re going to come to work drunk or high regardless of any testing, and to be honest, I’d rather someone show up high than drunk any day of the week. One also can’t help but resent the implication of the tests, that somehow these companies or employers or whatever feel as though they have some right to dictate what you do or don’t do on your time away. As long as you, again, aren’t doing anything to impact your personal job performance, then who gives a flying fuck what you do in your spare time? They do, apparently.

C) Because It’s There

I’ll be honest, while I have to admit this section of people are out there, not only do I not get the mentality, I don’t think it really counts, at least not as far as incense is concerned. When it comes to salts, it makes sense that someone who, despite access to the real deal, might supplement their psychonautica with the artificial stuff. Some of the salts that one can find these days rival the original stuff in terms of effect and potency. I turn a sort of odd eye at the people who can get weed and still chose to partake of the incense. I mean, I have had my fair share of incense and even the good stuff can’t touch even decent pot, and given the choice, for a lot of reasons, I’d pick pot any day of the week.

So then I ask you, why do you partake? What of those categories do you fit into? Or am I missing something, is there a subset of the market that I’m just not aware of? I’m curious, and you know the best way to find out is simply ask.


About legalhighproviders

I'm a 20-something journalist appalled by the silliness of our country and it's laws. We persecute people for plants. So, ever the fan of better living through chemistry, I'm starting this blog so that my peers, friends, and the general internet can find reliable alternatives.

Posted on May 1, 2012, in Miscellaneous, Opinion, Reviews. Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. 15 year veteran of a job that monitors individuals recently released from much more secure environments. These legals showed up in early 2010 and clear on all tests of said clients. Mephedrone/MDPV left by a client, curiosity, Friday afternoon and a now into a two year habit of daily use ……

    • You bring up an excellent point scewshuNV. It can be easily addicting, but what is your reasoning behind using it? I am married (no kids) and me and my wife are in college. We both maintain a 3.0 or higher. I am a musician and my wife and I enjoy gaming together. When we use incense it is not to get away from any problems. I do not think that life sucks and being high is the only way to deal with it. Alcoholism runs in my family, before I started my aromatherapy sessions I was drinking close to a 5th of hard liqour every night. My health was failing, and I was falling apart. I feel like I deserve to find my place of peace using whatever I deem desirable. I really feel for screwsshuNV and how he became addicted, but I firmly believe it is your personality that makes one that way. These products are not inherently dangerous, but the people using them are. They don’t know how to simply relax and enjoy the experience. These items should be a reward for a job well worked, or a day well done. Not something you habitually use for no reason. They are using the products as a way to escape life and thats why we have the addiction horror stories. He said his “curiosity” got him. No my friend, your impulsiveness got you. Something you had never seen or heard of before, you did no personal research (a 15 year veteran I know you have seen things like this before). You just took it. That was on you. I stay away from the salts and cleaners because I know that I would never use their analogues. With incense moderation is key…I get so tired of all the damn horror stories because you decided to roll a fat blunt of something you have never tried before. Stupidity is the biggest mitigating factor, and it is why the legal highs market is in such disarray. (Been sober from alcohol for 3 years now) The question was why do you use whatever? Honest answer:
      Its College. We’re Bored.

      • Dude his personality has little to do with it. If you’ve ever used mephedrone or read any literature about it you would know that it is highly addictive for just about everyone. Also, after dosing, the potential to want to redose is ENORMOUS. Similar to some cannabinoids, specifically the AM series. Please don’t lecture to this guy when you yourself are an addict. You claim to have previously been drinking a lot of liquor. Not drinking, and now using incense does not count as not being an addict. That is called cross addiction. I’m an addict too, so I’m not trying to judge. I’m just saying, don’t act like you know everything about this guy and why he CHOOSES do to what he does. It’s a very lofty thought process you have. Also, you have no right to judge him when you openly admit that you have kids and still choose to use substance. That is bullshit. period. If you want to get high, fine, but now that you have kids you’re wants for enjoyment of that kind DO NOT MATTER anymore. You’re a parent first and foremost. I have a far lower opinion of you and you’re wife than the guy you replied to for that reason alone. You are far worse than the guy you replied to. How dare you sit in your ivory tower and judge, when you are just as fucking guilty as him. You make me sick. I’m done with you. I really feel awful for your children. Get your shit together. Does that feel good? Being judged by someone who DOESN’T EVEN KNOW YOU. screwshuNV, I apologize for this asshole. Whether good or bad you’re choices are yours to make. I would never judge over something so trivial, especially when I, like the aforementioned asshole, do the same shit.

  2. Originally it was because the stuff was new and I was intrigued. Then it was because I was getting UA’s from work. Then the wave of bans hit, changing the market. I’ve drifted away from the salts and whatnot and I find that the new-generation incense blends aren’t really comparable to marijuana, but nonetheless enjoyable. The original JWH lineup was close, but each succeeding generation of blends move farther and farther from the starting point. Not towards anything unenjoyable, mind you.. just, away, into new territory. I still get UA’s sometimes, so the legal arena is where I will stay.

  3. Cuz I’m an addict and I like to get high.

  4. J you missed some key points in my thought process. I would be more than happy to explain them to you. First off I can tell that you did not fully read my comment. I said I have no kids. Secondly, Yes I understand that Mephedrone is highly addictive, but he says out of curiosity he tried it. Do you not think that if his curiosity would have led him to google he wouldn’t have tried it in the first place? Third, by definition yes I am addict, but aren’t we all? If its not incense its coca cola maybe it is brownies for someone. What about caffeine and energy drinks? My point was not to lecture, but I blame no one but myself for using incense. He shouldn’t blame curiosity. My point for talking about my alcohol addiction is that I was feeling the negative effects of it sooner than moderate incense use. I used to drink to escape my problems. I use incense because I enjoy the experience, and it is not a necessity like alcohol was. Again first and foremost I am a student, not a parent. I believe in the future when you want to reply to a comment make sure your base argument is correct first.

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