This morning on my way to work, there was a man standing in the intersection, handing something out. He was an older man, with a funny-looking hat, and I stiffened, afraid he was going to try to give me some weird pamphlet. But then I saw the words "Westlake Hardware," so I thought maybe he was handing out coupons. I let him approach my car, and as he got close, I saw he was holding a sign that said "Spring is here," and his hat had plants growing out of it.
Then he handed me a packet of flower seeds, and I took them. I thought, "Now, that's alright! That is an okay little PR stunt. Who can argue with flowers?" It put a smile on my face.
But then as I glanced at the seed packet, I saw that he had handed me morning glory seeds, and my smile got even bigger. Morning glory seeds are known in some circles for their psychoactive qualities. They contain an alkaloid called R-lysergic and D-isolysergic acids. The acids are similar to ingredients found in LSD.
Indians in the 16th century called them ololiugui and ingested them for their hallucinogenic effects. Hippies in the 60's did the same, and apparently teenagers still turn to the seed when they want a legal psychedelic high. Garden stores have reported teenagers and college students coming in and buying up packets of morning glory seeds, and some stores have taken to monitoring any suspicious seed-buying activity.
So I sat in traffic, chuckling over the morning glory man, out there pushing his morning glory seeds.