The Nation's Health + [Weed]

Gin, Drugs & Friday Nights In

"41 year old female, fainted, dizzy, vomiting"

We pulled up outside the gated community with blue flashing lights, lighting up every surface of the buildings. A man in a top hat appeared and opened the gates. I was amazed people still wear top hats! I had wrongly assumed they went out of fashion around the time Sherlock Holmes hung up his pipe, clearly I just haven't been hanging around the right part of town! He directed us to the building we needed and told us that we required the penthouse. The only saving grace for me here, was that if someone can afford a man in a top hat to open their gate, they can afford a lift!

We headed across the marble floor in the quite magnificent foyer and headed into the lift, which by the way, was bigger than my kitchen! The doors opened and we knocked on the only door in front of us. The door quickly opened and a very friendly, eccentric woman invited us in.

"I'm so so sorry to have called you, but I didn't know what to do! She just isn't getting better!"

"That's not a problem, what's going on today?"

"Well, we've had a few gins and a bit of.....you know.....wacky backy." she said with a really weird wink!

She didn't need to tell me, I could smell it, but she clearly wasn't au fait with talking about it or using current lingo! I assured her that I didn't mind if she had it or had been using it, and that I could still see it hidden under the table on the chair! She looked mortified and the blood rushed from her face!

"Right, who are we here to see, and what's happened?!"

"Oh yes, of course, she's in here."

Lying on the floor with a huge grin on her face was our patient. She was stoned. Very very stoned!

"I don't understand, it's the same stuff we normally smoke."

"Do you smoke a lot?!"

"Oh god no, once a month. The first friday of every month she comes round and we have a few gins, a few joints and watch crap TV. We've done it for the last 25 years, she's never had a reaction like this. Never"

"So what happened?"

"We were just sharing a joint and suddenly all the colour rushed out of her face and she just dropped to the floor. Then she came round and vomited and has been really dizzy ever since."

"She's had a whitey!"

"A what?!"



Whitey: An undesirable reaction to smoking cannabis common amongst lightweights and first-time tokers. Symptoms include dizzyness, clammy skin, nausea and vomiting.

It gets its name from the paleness of the sufferer as the blood drains out the capillaries under the skin due to a decrease in blood pressure.


"Oh man, I don't know what you put in that joint, but it gave me one hell of a whitey." (Urban Dictionary)

I explained the symptoms to her and pointed out that lack of food etc could add to an adverse reaction not seen previously! Sure enough, her blood sugar was slightly low so we got our stoned patient to try drinking a sweet drink and eating wine gums. Unfortunately, she felt too sick to put food in her mouth. I popped a cannula in her hand and gave her some anti-sickness medicine. Within about 20 minutes, the nausea had passed and she was able to drink and eat food to get her sugar levels up. Problem solved!

They really were a lovely pair of people. You could see the great bond a lifetime of friendship had created and we sat there talking education, music, family and recreational drugs! It was thoroughly enjoyable. I suppose I often associate drug use with our less friendly customers, in not such welcoming surroundings. It has never been the behaviour that I have judged so much, but the way that I have been treated. Good manners and good conversations go a long way, and in this job it is sadly a rarity! I left the stoned ladies at home to giggle about their ambulance experience! I also left with a half bag of wine gums that they donated to my night shift! I would rather had had some gin! ;)