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'70s Flashback: When Howard Stern Took LSD

Howard Stern was a guest on the latest episode of My Next Guest Needs No Introduction with David Letterman on Netflix. This commentary by Stern about his one and only acid trip when he was a student at Boston University in the mid-'70s was part of the interview that appeared on Facebook Watch:

I remember going to college I would take anything and put it in my mouth. I wanted to try everything.

But taking LSD was the biggest mistake of my life.

I beg people not to do this drug.

First of all, there's no directions with it.

It was 9 o'clock at night. I'd smoked marijuana all day and I was going to take LSD at 9 o'clock at night for no other reason than I wanted to see what it is.

I take this white piece of paper and I put it on my tongue. I didn't know you were supposed to cut it into fourths, that you're supposed to take a quarter of it.

Within minutes - I don't even know how to describe the chemical reaction - the posters on the wall began to move. The whole wall moved. I was looking in the mirror and suddenly turned purple. I would smoke cigarettes in those days and I'd see the smoke running through my veins and I freaked out. I looked at the clock. I couldn't read the time because the numbers closed up on me. This is what schizophrenics I imagine must experience. You can't tell reality from this fantasy world and it's scary. It scared me.

My friend Lou walked me downstairs and outside. He asked a couple of drug addicts who lived on my dorm floor what do you do? They said put on the Grateful Dead and let him listen to that. And he did. Suddenly, I'm like, "Lou, you've got to turn this off. I hate the Dead and just because I was on acid it's scaring me." He walked me up and down the Charles River for several hours in the middle of the night. I got home eventually. We were exhausted.

I got sick for weeks after that. Sick, physically ill, sore throat - my whole body chemistry was off. I don't know at what point in my life when I started to become obsessive complulsive – about germs and touching things for good luck and all that kind of stuff – but I somehow attribute this change in brain chemistry and I wish I could take back that moment.

It scares me because I think I could've lost my mind – of maybe I did lose my mind back then.

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Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of CelebStoner.com, editor-in-chief of Freedom Leaf, co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness, and the former editor of High Times.