A shaky hand reaches for the almost empty Powerade that sits next to a pack of gum and cigarettes.
It is midnight. Midterms have just kicked in and so has the Adderall-like drug.
Joe Shmoe ruffles through his syllabi. Frustrated, he puts a reverse peace sign against his lips and puckers; the only sign his friend needs.
Outside, Shmoe smokes a Marlboro Light – the only thing that will separate these speeding students from the library’s fourth-floor wooden chairs and a computer’s blinking cursor.
Vyvanse – the drug expected to outsell the current most popular ADHD/ADD medicine, Adderall, within the next few years – is why mouths are dry and brains are revving.
“Now I understand what that dude meant,” Shmoe said. “This shit’s bomber than Adderall.”
Another smoke-breathing friend sharing the crisp midnight air agrees, and informs him that her cousin filled his “script,” and she has an extra.
“I have no cash,” he said. “Get you back tomorrow?”
“I have 20 pages to write – about five hours,” he said. “But that’s all ‘addy-ed’ out. It would take double the time without it.”
The group shuffles back inside. It’s 11 p.m., and the night has just begun.
Off campus, Sven Pslitiski sits on a more comfortable chair than the stiff library’s, and takes what he calls a “creativity cocktail.” He swallows the orange capsule of motivation, thinking of it not as a study buddy, but as the spark that will ignite political and philosophical reflection for his soon-to-be masterpiece.
“I don’t sleep Sunday nights,” he said. “I just pound out my ideas all night.”
Pslitiski said he doesn’t take Adderall for schoolwork unless it’s a big paper. He allots the mind quickness it induces for personal endeavors.
At another off-campus house, Cindy Loo took Adderall for the first time.
“What are your plans next this week? We should go to that meeting,” she said, “I’ve always wanted to get involved with that.”
Her addyed-out but head-in-book roommates regret introducing Loo to the drug and try to slip headphones on without looking rude.
“How’s your paper coming? You are really smart. What do you plan on doing after college, though? I can help you do your resume now if you want. What’s your paper on?”
She takes a breath.
“I don’t feel anything from this.”
Two hours later she doesn’t even want to take a break from her textbook to go to the bathroom.
Brenna McNamara is a junior philosophy major and columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected]