Bicycle Day History
Bicycle Day seeks to commemorate the day Swiss chemist Albert Hofmann purposefully ingested LSD-25, or Lysergic Acid Diethylamide. In his research to create an anti-hemorrhaging drug using ergot fungus, Hofmann had accidentally been exposed to the synthetic chemical LSD. Noticing some adverse effects such as dizziness and restlessness, Hofmann decided to ingest what he believed to be a safe dose, .25 milligrams, a few days later.
Bicycle day recognizes Hofmann’s experience with LSD in 1943 and acknowledges it as the first acid trip. After ingestion, Hofmann became anxious and paranoid and asked his assistant to accompany him home. Together they biked to Hofmann’s home, hence the name of the day. After seeing a doctor and finding nothing wrong physically, Hofmann calmed down. He would later describe his experience, kaleidoscopic, fantastic images surged in on me, alternating, variegated, opening and then closing themselves in circles and spirals, exploding in color fountains… It was particularly remarkable how every acoustic perception became transformed into optical perceptions. Bicycle Day was created in 1985 by Northern Illinois University professor Thomas B. Roberts. He started the day as a celebration of the first intentional exposure to LSD. It is observed annually on April 19th.
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