In Dedication to Drugs, Laughter, and The Meaningless Things That Keep Us Here

What you want your drugs to do is take away the feeling of feeling alive. No one’s going to understand. Who cares. I wrote this for junkies and addicts. What you want your drugs to do is take away the pain of Being itself. To build a catacomb inside the tomb of Life. To build a little death inside the living day since, it is the living day that you have learned to call a Problem. It is the prescription to an analysis you’ve made to yourself, perhaps not so long ago, perhaps unconsciously to yourself in the quiet pause and calm of a night.

You said: “My issue

is not a fraction

of the way of the world.

My issue

is the



No one’s going to understand. No one understands everything. This is why when you said, “My issues is with Everything,” no one understood. Everyone laughed, so you laughed too. You found that laughter had no meaning, and for this you were grateful since, everything with a hint of meaning drip naked in a darkness you could see, you could feel, with the intensity of each passing moment.

            I wanted to kill myself laughing… .

– Frantz Fanon, Black Skin, White Masks, 91

What you want your drugs to do is take away a little bit of Everything. To slow its pace, to pause its rate, to chip away at its common sensibility. You see, the thing about drugs is, they are a little bit of a part of Everything, and yet, they dwindle in an ambivalence of meaning and nothingness. Jacques Derrida, French Philosopher and deconstructionist once stated, “Already one must conclude that the concept of drugs is not a scientific concept, but is rather instituted on the basis of moral or political evaluations: it carries in itself both norm and prohibition, allowing no possibility of description or certification — it is a decree, a buzzword (mot d’ordre).” And whereas though Derrida speaks to the arbitrariness of the concept, one only can think that such a “non-specialist” consideration comes from someone who had never truly embraced the feeling of having had felt being alive as-is stripped from you. This is to say that scientifically or not, morally or politically or not, there lies in the uses of the “drug” a psychedelic intimacy that one physiologically experiences-with its contents. This psychedelic intimacy is death. The meaning of the drug is death. Just a little death. A little gift of death, that might dwindle the spirit of being alive when such a spirit is pain. What you want your drugs to do is fill in the void of laughter when you can no longer kill yourself with joy. Your drugs are a little taste of a laughter, and laughter, like drugs, are a little taste of death – a little taste beyond meaning.

rather than being meaningless posturing, this strange exercise actually performs a theoretical point. The ‘unpleasant, weird effect of such short circuits shows that they play a symptomal role in our symbolic universes: they bring home the implicit, tacit prohibitions on which these universes rely’.28 The structure of the joke, in other words, for Žižek already performs theoretical work, its incommensurable, illogic-cal nature points to the gaps in our own symbolic universe.

– Broderick Chow, The Tickling Object: On Zizek and Comedy

Either way, the joke is on us. These gaps in our own symbolic universes leave no space for speech for a being like me – not even in the gaps, not even in the void. I am not tired of being alive, I am tired of Being. One lacks the grammar of capacity that inaugurates the sense in which one’s suffering can be communicable at all. Instead one hits a wall – again, and again, and again like there’s nothing left to say even though so much has barely even been said.

The ground, up till now a bridle steed, begins to rock with laughter. Are these nymphomaniacs virgins? Black magic, primitive mentality, animism and animal eroticism – all this surges toward me. All this typifies people who have not kept pace with the evolution of humanity, Or, if you prefer, they constitute third-rate humanity.

– Frantz Fanon, Black Skin, White Masks, 105

Either way, the joke is on us. Locked in this paraconsistent logic one finds nothing universal nor quite knowable at all. Just a sensibility in one’s flesh, just a quiver in one’s skin. Just a rush and an attack. Just a pause and return. Just a back and a forth. You want your drugs for when “laughter had become out of the question.” When you “couldn’t take it any longer,” when the “legends, stories, history, and especially the historicity,” became to much to bear. What you want your drugs to do is take that splintering that occurs by way of simply trying to be alive and turn it into a little death that feels better than Being. To exist in triple as a psychedalic intimacy, to take up the room in a cloud, “opaque, transparent and absent, vanished,” (Fanon, 92). No one’s going to understand. Who cares.

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