Exactly six months ago, David Brooks wrote a column arguing against the legalization of marijuana because after smoking pot "for a little while in my teenage years," he's now over it. At the time, it seemed like a pretty edgy drug admission for a New York Times columnist, but with the paper's top editors caught up in their own squabbling, their staffers are acting out by experimenting with more intense forms of weed.
In her latest column, Maureen Dowd worries about Colorado "unleashing a drug as potent as marijuana on a horde of tourists of all ages and tolerance levels seeking a mellow buzz." Dowd knows the dangers firsthand, because while sitting alone in a Denver hotel room recently, she "nibbled off the end" of a pot candy bar, "and then, when nothing happened, nibbled some more." She was left "curled up in a hallucinatory state for the next eight hours."
Dowd reports that she felt nothing for the first hour, and then her plan to experiment with the newly legal substance — in the name of journalism, of course — went horribly awry:
But then I felt a scary shudder go through my body and brain. I barely made it from the desk to the bed, where I lay curled up in a hallucinatory state for the next eight hours. I was thirsty but couldn’t move to get water. Or even turn off the lights. I was panting and paranoid, sure that when the room-service waiter knocked and I didn’t answer, he’d call the police and have me arrested for being unable to handle my candy.
I strained to remember where I was or even what I was wearing, touching my green corduroy jeans and staring at the exposed-brick wall. As my paranoia deepened, I became convinced that I had died and no one was telling me.
The drug wore off "distressingly slowly," but obviously Dowd survived and was able to recount her cautionary tale in the pages of the Times (she says there was no recommended dose on the label, but admits "I should have known better").
The internet, however, may never recover. "Maureen Dowd" was trending on Twitter Tuesday night, and the potent combination of weed and a Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times columnist appeared to be more than some people could handle. You can sample the Twitter reaction below, but please pace yourselves. We can't accept responsibility if you spend the next eight hours touching your corduroys and tweeting about Paul Krugman taking peyote.
Okay I read the Maureen Dowd column. Honestly? It's way better if you imagine Peggy Noonan wrote it.— Liliana Segura (@LilianaSegura) June 4, 2014
"I really want to get high with Maureen Dowd." - said no one ever.— HumanityCritic (@HumanityCritic) June 4, 2014
That awkward moment when Roger Sterling, on LSD, hallucinates a Maureen Dowd column.— Howard Mortman (@HowardMortman) June 4, 2014
Next week: Maureen Dowd takes sixteen times the recommended dose of Acetaminophen; warns world of dangers in her final column.— James Ball (@jamesrbuk) June 4, 2014
Maureen Dowd ate a pot candy bar and is now so paranoid, she thinks everyone is talking about her. Oh wait…you all ARE!— Damian Holbrook (@TVGMDamian) June 4, 2014
A Maureen Dowd on pot column gives me hope for a Peggy Noonan on mescaline column.— Leah Reich (@ohheygreat) June 4, 2014
Next column: Maureen dowd tries dub step.— Quiet Batperson (@Nick_McGurk) June 4, 2014
"If you think about it, we're ALL strapped to the roof of Mitt Romney's car, in a way." -- high Gail Collins— Dan Amira (@DanAmira) June 4, 2014
The NYT news alerts are pretty useless if they didn't send one about this Maureen Dowd column— Megan Hess (@mhess4) June 4, 2014
Maureen Dowd, setting a standard for being impaired on the job that even I can't hope to meet.— Drunk Predator Drone (@drunkenpredator) June 4, 2014
Get offa Maureen Dowd's Technicolor Dream lawn.— Chris Oestereich (@costrike) June 4, 2014
the David Brooks column on the sad state of an America where Maureen Dowd gets too high from edible pot is going to be so good— Kelsey D. Atherton (@AthertonKD) June 4, 2014
Let @NYTimesDowd eat brownies— Ryan James Girdusky (@RyJamesG) June 4, 2014