Gentle and Kind
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1F-LSD is an entirely novel lysergamide of which I was fortunate enough to receive a sample. Though at first glance you may think the F denotes a Fluorine, in this case it actually stands for a “formyl” group, the same active group found in formic acid produced by ants. It came to me in the form of tabs dosed at ~100 μg. I didn’t have much to work with and the 1-substituted LSD analogues have all so far demonstrated consistent properties in terms of potency and effects, so I conjectured that it would be safe to dive right in with my standard lysergamide dose of 150 μg. I do not recommend ever doing this for novel substances, though I deemed it an acceptable risk for myself that I was ready to take responsibility for. I was also informed that it appeared to be less stable than other lysergamides, something to consider for anyone who may try to store it long term. I personally do not know if or when this chemical will be more widely available, but I was extremely grateful for the opportunity to try it out and create data on this entirely new compound. I hope it will be of benefit to future researchers.
Dose taken sublingually while at home. I pack my backpack and prepare to go for a long walk across town to a nice park by the river.
I set out and start walking. No noticeable effects yet.
I am still walking. It is a sweltering day in the middle of July, the sun radiating off the asphalt around me and the heat hanging heavy and muggy on the ground. The sky is patchy with swaths of clouds, the sun occasionally blasting through. An occasional breeze churns the soupy air, providing slight respite. I am dripping with sweat. It is now that I notice the first notes of the experience- a smooth sort of bubbling disorder in my body. Slight nausea, just a tiny bit of weightlessness. No visuals or sensory effects to note yet.
The city stinks. I keep catching whiffs of all sorts of dreadful odors- rotting flesh from roadkill stewing in sun-boiled oily puddles from a previous day’s rain. Piles of trash bake in the heat as trash pickup was delayed citywide this week. The languid breeze stirs this miasma around me as the glowering sun sinks lower into the sky. I walk past filthy blighted buildings, forgotten piles of overgrown waste and rubble strewn about under sooty freight train and highway viaducts, substations and rusting factories towering over the streets nearby. The lanes are wide and most commercial space is gas stations and auto repair shops- a place meant for driving and not walking. Everything is choked with urban weeds.
I am feeling a bit queasy, though not from the smells, I have a decent tolerance for bad smells. This is the typical jitters I get in my gut while coming up from psychedelics. I begin to see light visuals in the clouds- new textures and patterns gently traced through their forms, barely discernible. It feels as though my muscles are rising and churning, but not with the shock of overstimulation that many psychedelics can yield.
I reach my destination, a park by one of the main rivers that cuts through the city. It is next to a transfer station so the odor of summer garbage looms large. Some people are hanging around a skatepark under a bridge but I don’t feel uncomfortable walking past them even as the drug seeps more and more into my head. Nevertheless, I find a nice secluded spot by the water: the remains of a crumbled concrete retaining wall where I can stretch out and rest undisturbed. I am definitely tripping now, feeling it primarily in my body as the normal queasiness and stimulation that psychedelics give me- I notice it that it isn’t the usual uncomfortable overstimulation that rocks me with tremors, nor is it the painful debilitating nausea I sometimes get. It is all entirely tolerable.
I watch birds of prey circle overhead- a screeching osprey circles above the river while an occasional red-tailed hawk darts between the trees across the water. I am surrounded on all sides by trees and life and it feels so idyllic and peaceful. The water itself is a swirling opaque sludge with rafts of trash and oily slime drifting by, to be expected of a main artery through a major city on a summer day after a rain.
I try to stare into the clouds and focus on the visuals- still unremarkable, still faint ghostly images that only appear when I focus on them. With my eyes closed I see little but shifting spots of color. Something is definitely coursing through me right now, but it escapes solid definition, elusive like a fly avoiding being swatted. Cognitively, I am mostly ruminating about my life and circumstances. I feel good. My internal voice sounds more coherent and articulate than it normally does. I smoke a joint of some mids that I had leftover (note: I almost always smoke a bit of cannabis with psychedelics. In my extensive experience I have tried psychedelics both alone and with cannabis- as a frequent daily cannabis user, it does not affect the nature of the trip for me, it only seems to increase visual potency and take the edge off of the body load. This may be different for other people, but for me personally its effects are near-negligible.)
The smoke hangs low over the water near me, I am reclined and basking in the sun. I feel so good and content, so relaxed and hedonistic. It’s such a nice day to do this. As these are fairly weak mids I barely notice any affect from it at all beyond a bit of suppression of the nausea. But it feels good to smoke something. I watch birds sing and flit around me. I think about how old I am, how much life I may still potentially have, what the far future may look like, for me personally. My thoughts flow freely and easily. The visuals steadily become deeper and better defined, but are still relatively slight. The clouds hovering overhead pick up a sickly iridescent sheen around their edges and through their curves. A slight warm drizzle begins to come down.
As I’m quietly relaxing and enjoying my surroundings, a red tailed hawk suddenly swoops down talons just a foot over my exposed tummy and tackles a rat that I hadn’t even noticed was snooping around right next to me. It sits on its prey for a second, gives me a knowing look, then takes off across the river, carrying its catch underneath it. It was one of the coolest things I had ever seen, it was exhilarating that I had been still enough that this mighty predator trusted me to be an accomplice to its hunt. I could feel the wind from its wings, if I had been sitting upright it probably would’ve clipped me in the face with one. Absolutely incredible.
As I’m reeling from this I begin to notice the visuals become more apparent- fronds and fans sprout through the sky, forms reminiscent of dendritic manganese crystals, but pulsing with dull color. The clouds have an advancing front of writhing, curving branched forms forming an expanding front of pulsing color, leaving fields of iridescent sparkling bubbles in their wake. An energetic euphoria wells up inside of me I am so content to be here right now, no responsibilities to worry about, a beautiful patch of filthy nature in an industrial heart of the city, the sun and warmth beating down on me, so much life still managing to struggle and fight to exist around me. What a beautiful and idyllic day, despite all the filth and trash drifting by, despite the landfill odor that hangs in the air. With other lysergamides I usually have distinctly patterned visuals taking the form of faces, figures, animals, all in the style of many different kinds of indigenous American art. These visuals from this however are more freeform, unbounded and seemingly organic and improvised.
I’m watching more and more hawks that seem to have appeared across the river, they flit from tree to tree and circle above, soaring without flapping their wings, subtly adjusting themselves so they can ride updrafts and circle with minimal effort. One grabs something from a tree. What incredible, impressive, competent creatures, so perfectly adapted for hunting and killing.
Closing my eyes yields symmetrical visuals - blobs of gradated color, like a thermal vision of a Rorschach test, eternally shifting and morphing and forming into new shapes.
I’m thinking about ecosystems, the relations between predators and prey, that that rat lived a full life of a few years scrounging in the shadows before one bad day where it made the mistake of venturing out into the open, inviting a sudden death from above. How all of our fates had suddenly collided, how it was just another normal day of that hawk deciding to be the portal between another animal’s life and death, as it had likely done to hundreds of other creatures that had live full lives before.
As I ruminate and meditate more and more on my lovely dirty bit of concrete by the fetid water, I find myself thinking more and more about things in their entirety, thinking about their origins and the entire courses of their existence and their influence into the future beyond their physical presence. It is a pleasant and calm trip, there is no rush or stress or excess nervous energy, I am shaking a bit but it is not the overclocked intensity that psychedelics can sometimes instill. I’m doing just as I need to be doing.
Visuals begin to project into the sky with greater force, fountains of branching patterns blossoming up into the apex of the great dome above with electric buoyancy. Dull colored waves roll through the clouds, a subtle iridescent gradient running between their peaks and troughs. The sky is so discretely layered, it all looks so deep and well defined and detailed, like setpieces. It feels very unreal.
I got bored of lying in one spot so I decided to get up and explore more of the park. There are all sorts of joggers and passersby, people exercising after their working days, taking their dogs and children out to get some fresh air. I avoid contact with most people beyond passing glances. I don’t feel particularly awkward actually, it might have even been pleasant to stop and talk to these strangers, but I avoid it anyway. This is a fairly lucid and functional experience so far. I end up on another bridge on the other side of the park. This one has turreted guard towers with little recessed spaces next to them where I can hide from passing traffic. I eat a snack and smoke a little bit more weed, which seems to breathe just a little more life into the visuals. I look out over the river, at the city skyline, nice cooling gusts waft by as the sound of traffic in the background reverberates and echoes into the summer sky. The clouds sigh and heave with color while the towering glass buildings pulse with reflected golden light from the West. I am in the same part of town as my weed dealer so I decide I’m lucid enough to hit him up and set up a purchase.
I have to walk a couple of blocks to meet him. We talk on the phone briefly, the first I’ve spoken out loud during this experience. My voice sounds awkward and ungainly, but I am able to communicate outwardly without issue. I am definitely still feeling the drug as I walk, though I am definitely on the downturn now. There is a bounce and a spring in my step, my limbs feel both heavy and light. Visuals have begun to die down. Brief moments of seeing passersby or catching snippets of their conversations sear into my memory, as often happens with psychedelics. It feels like the world around me is sagging to my weight like a gravity well, but I am very very comfortable with this experience and its intensity. As I walk through a college campus en route to meet him, I become immersed in thinking about the novelty of this experience, how I am one of just a few people in the world so far to have tasted this drug, how the exact pattern of thoughts and neurotransmitter flow through my brain may be entirely unique to this substance and how it is something I have technically never experienced before. I love this sense of discovery and novelty and it makes the experience all the more exciting.
Waiting on a corner for my dealer now. I had to pick up money from 2 separate ATMs; being indoors again was a disorienting affair but I managed to keep my head. The change of setting seemed to intensify the effects a bit. I read about news stories on my phone - the big story of the day is the scandal with a bunch of high-profile twitter accounts being hacked. I get lost in thinking about the possible ramifications of that. I wait for about 20 minutes before he shows up. Interacting is awkward and I now have a big stinky bag of cannabis in my backpack. I set out for home as its starting to get late. For most of the walk home I am entirely lost in thought. I walk by little scenes of conflict, of people interacting or hanging out at tables outside of restaurants. These provide punctuated moments in my memory that bust through my immersion in my own thoughts, little vignettes that break up the monotony of my walk and stick in my memory. My thoughts are manic, fantasies about things I can do to fulfill my wants and needs in this world.
I arrive back home finally, my partner is there waiting for me. I am feeling the drug a bit more intensely again just from changing my setting, though I am certainly well into the comedown now. I take a shower, yet another opportunity to become lost in thought. My back and legs feel very sore. I eat dinner with my partner shortly after - nausea has passed and all the walking has made me intensely hungry. Despite this, it takes a long time for me to eat. Being in a nice air conditioned house with someone I love is extremely pleasant and a wonderful way to cap off my long pleasant day. Talking feels awkward at first but it slowly becomes more comfortable as I continue to do it, like jumping into cold water and eventually adjusting to it. I still feel pretty out of it and lost in thought but I am able to interact pretty normally.
I work from home as an entomologist now - I am equipped with a dissecting scope and a litany of beautiful insect specimens that I can look at very closely. This combined with my current state presents an exciting opportunity I have never had before - look closely at insects while tripping.
Unfortunately, the visuals have mostly passed at this point, no matter how much I try and focus on them - just a bit of blurring and drifting and zooming, but nothing particularly exciting. Nonetheless, looking at the exquisite details and textures on each little insect is exhilarating. There is so much beauty contained in these little things, each one like its own alien landscape. I feel so lucky to be able to do this, to have all of these fulfilling activities at my disposal. I think of what I’ve done with my life to bring me to this point, where I can do so many things I love and am passionate about. I feel so completely and utterly content.
I am now doing other activities I love - playing my favorite videogames. I play some Super Smash Bros. Melee online but give up after getting decisively wrecked again and again. I also play some Chivalry: Medieval Warfare, another one of my favorite games. I am certainly still altered and playing games certainly feels different, though I am also mostly coming down and starting to feel slower and groggier as the stimulation drains from the experience.
I would say I’m back to baseline now. I mostly just feel tired, residual alteration has been smoothed out. I go to sleep without issue about 2 hours later.
Conclusion / Aftermath
Theoretically, there is very strong evidence that indole N-substituted lysergamides (1P-LSD, 1A-LSD, 1B-LSD, 1cP-LSD, ALD-52 etc.) are simply prodrugs for LSD, and would not be considered functionally distinct. There is particularly strong evidence supporting 1P-LSD and ALD-52 as a prodrugs to LSD (Grumann et al. 2020, Halberstadt et al. 2019), and a strong suggestion that this pattern continues with 1B-LSD (Halberstadt et al. 2019). There is no specific data to suggest this is the case for other indole N-substituted lysergamides and there is 0 existing data on 1F-LSD, but it is highly likely that it may also be a prodrug for LSD. Curiously, in my personal experience, I have noticed subjective differences between all of the indole N-substituted lysergamides I have tried. 1F-LSD was no exception to this rule- I would characterize it by conjecturing a lower potency and shorter duration than LSD or other indole N-substitutions, though this requires a larger sample size to say so with confidence.
It had a distinct visual character- while for me many other lysergamides create aforementioned discrete and distinct contained visuals following animal forms and resembling various kinds of indigenous American art, 1F-LSD had a character of more organic, free flowing visuals, with less color. The headspace was subtle and euphoric, given to earnest but pleasant and merciful introspection, with a lot of holistic reflection on contentedness and the passage of time. There was also distinctly little body load or anxiety, a gentle, blissful trip that came and went quickly and didn’t impose itself at any point. While with other similar compounds, particularly 1-cP-LSD, the visuals stuck around well into the comedown, with 1F-LSD, they were one of the first aspects of the experience to recede. All in all it is a pleasant and fun compound that’s good for a day out. It didn’t particularly stand out relative to other similar compounds but some may find use in its uniquely pleasant and gentle character. This may also all just be the subjectivity of a single experience based on the set and setting of what very well may have just been transformed to regular LSD inside of my body. Only more data and research will tell!