is apparently available for sale in supermarkets and "convenience stores".
I am clearly a very ill-informed cat. I had no idea that you could buy a small canister of this and get a short "euphoric" high.
What I do know is that our dental service - a large one attached to our health fund - is now offering nitrous oxide or "laughing gas" in an attempt to cater for cowardly cats like me. That surprised me.It also disturbed me.
I detest going to the dentist - although I like my dentist as a person I do not like what she does to me. But I doubt I will be indulging in "laughing gas". It is also unlikely that my dentist will offer it to me as an option. We would both be wary of the likely effect on my coordination.
Apparently though some people use it as a sort of recreational drug. The sale of it close to the "night club strip" in the CBD apparently confirms this. It is illegal. The real purpose of these little canisters apparently has something to do with whipping cream - presumably the artificial sort. On the rare occasions I whip cream I tend to do it with an old fashioned, indeed old, hand held rotary beater.
Why do people need to do this? I seriously wonder if there is something wrong with them or with me. I have never spent a night wandering the city, calling into a "nightclub", getting drunk and taking drugs. That would not represent "fun" to me at all. Yet thousands of people do it, some on a regular basis. It is the high point of their week.
Uncontrolled use of nitrous oxide can lead to brain damage, damaged eyesight, and memory loss - or so I am told. I would not want to risk any of those things. All I can assume is that, as with other drugs, the potential "pleasure" outweighs the risk for those who indulge.
I think I will reaffirm my "scaredy cat" status. It's no laughing matter.