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Quotations about Drugs

Legends tell of herbs of such virtue, that they enable those who find and know how to use them to see the wonders of fairy-land. ~Henry James Slack (1818–1896), The Ministry of the Beautiful, 1850

Anyway, no drug, not even alcohol, causes the fundamental ills of society. If we're looking for the source of our troubles, we shouldn't test people for drugs, we should test them for stupidity, ignorance, greed and love of power. ~P. J. O'Rourke, Give War a Chance, 1992

Opium is the only vegetable substance which communicates the vegetable state to us. Through it, we get an idea of that other speed of plants. ~Jean Cocteau (1889–1963)

I once tried to snort Coke but the ice cubes got stuck in my nose. ~They Still Call Me Bruce, 1987, written by Johnny Yune, James Orr, & Ross Jeffries

Give me librium or give me meth. ~Mart Crowley, The Boys In the Band, 1968

It is difficult to live without opium after having known it because it is difficult, after knowing opium, to take earth seriously. And unless one is a saint, it is difficult to live without taking earth seriously. ~Jean Cocteau (1889–1963)

He does not need opium. He has the gift of reverie. ~Anaïs Nin

Everyone should have a morphine drip. There would be no more war. ~Two and a Half Men, "Why We Gave Up Women," 2012, written by Eddie Gorodetsky, Jim Patterson, and Don Reo  [S9, E22, Alan]

In the 1960s, people took acid to make the world weird. Now the world is weird, and people take Prozac to make it normal. ~Author unknown

Dr. Brennan:  But cannabis has been used for thousands of years in a medicinal capacity. Even the ancient Egyptians used marijuana to treat hemorrhoids.
Seeley Booth:  Which, you know, they probably got from sitting around being stoned all day.
~Bones, "The High in the Low," written by Keith Foglesong, 2014  [S9, E20]

...stupefying stimulants and memory-sponging joys... ~James Oppenheim, "Report on the Planet, Earth," War and Laughter, 1916

Cocaine is God's way of saying you're making too much money. ~Robin Williams

      Sherlock Holmes took his bottle from the corner of the mantelpiece, and his hypodermic syringe from its neat morocco case. With his long, white, nervous fingers he adjusted the delicate needle, and rolled back his left shirt-cuff. For some little time his eyes rested thoughtfully upon the sinewy forearm and wrist, all dotted and scarred with innumerable puncture-marks. Finally, he thrust the sharp point home, pressed down the tiny piston, and sank back into the velvet-lined arm-chair with a long sigh of satisfaction.
      'Which is it to-day,' I asked, 'morphine or cocaine?'
      'It is cocaine,' he said, 'a seven-per-cent solution. Would you care to try it?'
      'No, indeed,' I answered brusquely. 'My constitution cannot afford to throw any extra strain upon it.'
      He smiled at my vehemence. 'Perhaps you are right, Watson,' he said. 'I suppose that its influence is physically a bad one. I find it, however, so transcendently stimulating and clarifying to the mind that its secondary action is a matter of small moment.'
      'But consider!' I said earnestly. 'Count the cost! Your brain may be roused and excited, but a black reaction comes upon you. Surely the game is hardly worth the candle. Why should you, for a mere passing pleasure, risk the loss of your great powers?'
      'My mind,' he said, 'rebels at stagnation. Give me problems, give me work, give me the most abstruse cryptogram, or the most intricate analysis, and I am in my own proper atmosphere. I can dispense then with artificial stimulants. But I abhor the dull routine of existence. I crave for mental exaltation.' ~A. Conan Doyle, "The Science of Deduction," The Sign of Four, 1889  [a little altered —tg]

About my soberversary... It is absurd to measure sobriety in units of time. It is a state of being. One is either in it or out of it. In my case, I am in it — permanently. ~Elementary, "Dead Man's Switch," 2013, teleplay by Liz Friedman & Christopher Silber  [S1, E20, Sherlock Holmes to Joan Watson]

The opium smoker rises slowly like a balloon, turns again slowly and falls back on some dead moon whose weak pull prevents him from leaving. The return journey takes place at his own risk. The smoker first pays his ransom. Opium releases him, but the return is unattractive. However, having returned to his planet, a nostalgia remains. ~Jean Cocteau (1889–1963)

You know you're a grown-up when your houseplants are alive and you can't smoke any of them. ~Author unknown

Opium! dread agent of unimaginable pleasure and pain!... I shall be charged with mysticism... For it seemed to me as if then first I stood at a distance, and aloof from the uproar of life; as if the tumult, the fever, and the strife, were suspended; a respite granted from the secret burthens of the heart; a sabbath of repose; a resting from human labours. Here were the hopes which blossom in the paths of life, reconciled with the peace which is in the grave; motions of the intellect as unwearied as the heavens, yet for all anxieties a halcyon calm; a tranquility that seemed no product of inertia, but as if resulting from mighty and equal antagonisms; infinite activities, infinite repose. Oh! just, subtle, and mighty opium!... for the wounds that will never heal, and for "the pangs that tempt the spirit to rebel," bringest an assuaging balm; eloquent opium! that with thy potent rhetoric stealest away the purposes of wrath; and to the guilty man for one night givest back the hopes of his youth.... thou buildest upon the bosom of darkness, out of the fantastic imagery of the brain, cities and temples beyond the art of Phidias and Praxiteles... Thou only givest these gifts to man; and thou hast the keys of Paradise, oh, just, subtle, and mighty opium! ~Thomas De Quincey, "The Pleasures of Opium," Confessions of an English Opium-Eater, 1821

It is inhumane, in my opinion, to force people who have a genuine medical need for coffee to wait in line behind people who apparently view it as some kind of recreational activity. I bet this kind of thing does not happen to heroin addicts. I bet that when serious heroin addicts go to purchase their heroin, they do not tolerate waiting in line while some dilettante in front of them orders a hazelnut smack-a-cino with cinnamon sprinkles. ~Dave Barry, "Decaf Poopacino," Dave Barry Is Not Taking This Sitting Down!, 2000,

I will lift mine eyes unto the pills. Almost everyone takes them, from the humble aspirin to the multi-coloured, king-sized three deckers, which put you to sleep, wake you up, stimulate and soothe you all in one. It is an age of pills. ~Malcolm Muggeridge, 1962

Half the modern drugs could well be thrown out the window, except that the birds might eat them. ~Martin H. Fischer (1879–1962)

But the craving for drugs is certainly something which cannot be left to the unfettered operation of natural impulse. ~Bertrand Russell, "Causes of Unhappiness: Boredom and Excitement," The Conquest of Happiness, 1930

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published 2002 Jan 25
revised 2021 Sep 1
last saved 2024 Apr 22