Eight days after the West End premiere of the play based on his autobiography, Dandy in the Underworld, top-hatted London-based extreme artist and lifestylist Sebastian Horsley was found dead this morning at age 47 of an apparent heroin overdose.
Born to wealthy alcoholics, Horsley is best known for traveling to the Philippines to be crucified as part of his research for a set of paintings dealing with the topic. But besides his arcane fashion sense, penchant for whoring, and ability to make the scene—running with the likes of Nick Cave, Current 93, Coil and others—Horsley was an accomplished painter and writer, and a guy with a drawling accent who could hold court in a red velvet chair with the best of them.
The Soho Theatre cancelled tonight’s performance of Dandy…, but will continue on tomorrow. Our own Richard Metzger put it best when told the news: “How sad that the world has one less total pervert.”
Twenty-three years ago today, Fawn Hall became the most famous secretary in America. On June 8, 1987 Hall testified in the Iran-Contra hearings to helping her boss Lt. Col. Oliver North shred documents having to do with the affair, in which senior Reagan administration officials facilitated arm sales to Iran in order to fund the Nicaraguan contras.
Fawn Hall dated Contras politician Arturo Cruz, Jr. In one mishap, she transposed the digits of a Swiss bank account number, resulting in a contribution from the Sultan of Brunei to the Contras being lost. On November 25, 1986, she smuggled confidential papers out of her employer’s office hidden inside her leather boots…
Life after the hearings proved just as interesting for the late-20s Hall, who predictably pursued a modeling career and eventually met and married former post-Morrison Doors manager and archetypal L.A. music business maven Danny Sugerman. The Inside Edition clip below—hosted by a then-second-tier Bill O’Reilly—provides a snapshot of mid-‘90s tabloidism as the sordid strands of politics, drugs and entertainment tangle together deliciously. Sugerman later died of lung cancer in 2005 at age 50.
Since April, a persistent Internet meme (reported on today’s Huffington Post, in fact) has to do with ecstasy tabs pressed in the shape of President Obama’s head. Sounds plausible, there are even photographs of the items in question, but were they really ecstasy?
Probably not, according to a “pill reviewer” going under the pseudonym “dezmon” on a website called Pill Reports. Dezmon seems to think the Obama pills are nothing more than caffeine:
“went to a rave ... last saturday and took a red and yellow one of these. took three hours and never kicked in at all. i think they were straight caffeine or something cause i was dancing a lot but no high. after these failed i turned to a quad stack yellow lacoste with mescaline and molly.”
Another report on a website called Ecstasy Data seems to confirm dezmond’s “findings”:
“The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, Western Regional Laboratory (Asheville, North Carolina) received five tablets shaped like the heads of Ninja Turtles, Snoopy, and Barack Obama, suspected Ecstasy (see Photo 1). Analysis of the tablets by GC/MS revealed that the tablets contained BZP, TFMPP, and caffeine (the predominant compound). Clandestine tablet preparations containing BZP are common submissions; however, these were the first tablets of their kind to be submitted to the laboratory. Most tablets submitted are round and vary in imprint/stamps. These tablets were quite detailed.”
Bez from the Happy Mondays has nothing to do with this article.
Why would someone do this to themselves? I mean, no wonder! How the hell did this guy expect he’d end up after taking 40,000 E’s?
Doctors from London University have revealed details of what they believe is the largest amount of ecstasy ever consumed by a single person. Consultants from the addiction centre at St George’s Medical School, London, have published a case report of a British man estimated to have taken around 40,000 pills of MDMA, the active ingredient in ecstasy, over nine years. The heaviest previous lifetime intake on record is 2,000 pills. Though the man, who is now 37, stopped taking the drug seven years ago, he still suffers from severe physical and mental health side-effects, including extreme memory problems, paranoia, hallucinations and depression. He also suffers from painful muscle rigidity around his neck and jaw which often prevents him from opening his mouth. The doctors believe many of these symptoms may be permanent.
The man, known as Mr A in the report in the scientific journal Psychosomatics, started using ecstasy at 21. For the first two years his use was an average of five pills per weekend. Gradually this escalated until he was taking around three and a half pills a day. At the peak, the man was taking an estimated 25 pills every day for four years. After several severe collapses at parties, Mr A decided to stop taking ecstasy. For several months, he still felt he was under the influence of the drug, despite being bedridden.
His condition deteriorated and he began to experience recurrent tunnel vision and other problems including hallucinations, paranoia and muscle rigidity. “He came to us after deciding that he couldn’t go on any more,” said Dr Christos Kouimtsidis, the consultant psychiatrist at St George’s Medical School in Tooting who treated him for five months. “He was having trouble functioning in everyday life.”
The doctors discovered that the man was suffering from severe short-term memory problems of a type usually only seen in lifetime alcoholics. But evaluating the full extent of his condition was difficult as his concentration and attention was so impaired he was unable to follow the simple tasks involved in the test.
“This was an exceptional case. His long- term memory was fine but he could not remember day to day things - the time, the day, what was in his supermarket trolley,” said Dr Kouimtsidis. “More worryingly, he did not seem aware himself that he had these memory problems.”
Below, Pulp’s Jarvis Cocker sings his wryly observed outsider’s tale of being on E at a rave and not quite getting it, Sorted for E’s and Wizz:
Trailer for a new documentary film called DMT: The Spirit Molecule, based on the book of the same title by Dr. Rick Strassman MD. DMT or Dimethyltryptamine is one of the strongest hallucinogens known to man and each of us has a small amount of it floating around in our brains and blood stream. You can even make it yourself from a handful of a common type of lawn grass, distilled in a shot glass. The film features interviews with Dangerous Minds friends, author Douglas Rushkoff and visionary artist Alex Grey.
Smoking DMT, as the late Terence McKenna once said, is like getting shot out of a psychedelic canon. I agree. I’ve had some STRANGE experiences on the drug myself. It’s not for the timid, that’s for sure. DMT is not a drug you do for “fun” it’s a means of chemically connecting to an otherworldly “space” inhabited by strange and alien beings. Yes, you read that correctly. Think I’m joking? Smoke some, buster, then we’ll talk…
If you want a really good explanation of what the DMT experience is like, listen to this: