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what does cocaine taste like? (1 Viewer)

andrew markworthy

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Before any of the moderators have a heart attack over this question, let me explain. ;)

In movies you often see cops break open a bag of mysterious powder, stick their finger in, lick it and then say 'cocaine'/'heroine' or whatever. How do they know? And why don't they feel any effects of the drug?
 

Moe Maishlish

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Well, if you'ved watched Starsky & Hutch, then you would KNOW that it obviously tastes like artificial sweetner!

I get all my information from Ben Stiller movies! :D

(Obviously... ;))

Moe.
 

Kyle McKnight

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Cocaine numbs the mouth, a little bitter and them numbness. You'd have to ingest more than "tasting" it for it to affect you...or so they say. Don't know about H though.
 

AjayM

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And from what I've heard cops would never taste it anyways, at least so says the drug cops and US Marshall guys. They say when they do a "deal" they usually bring some type of chem pack (we've seen those in movies as well) that will test the merchandise.

Andrew
 

Gary Seven

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In the late seventies, I lived in Bolivia for a couple of years. I have seen more cocaine in that time then most coke addicts will see in their entire life. What a party that era was.

Yes... it takes more than a mere taste to feel the effects. It's addictive qualities vary by the addictive nature of the individual using it.

Never tried smack.
 

Seth--L

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Do cops really do this? The first thing you learn in 10th grade high school chemistry is to NEVER taste or sniff (closely) any unknown substance or powder.
 

MikeSerrano

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If they do, I'm surprised that you don't hear about criminals hiding (in plain sight) a very well sealed bag of rat poison or anthrax for a narc to "taste".

-Mike
 

Mark Leiter

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***Police "chem pack" test kit Contents***

1 - 4" straw
1 - table spoon
1 - butane lighter
1 - syringe
1 - belt

Standard Police Instructions:

Step 1: 4" straw is to be used to test the purity of found white powder. If numbing of the face occurs and you start reminiscing about the glory days of "Studio 54". Then Cocaine is present. If no effects are felt then precede to step 2.

Step 2: Place a generous amount of powder in question on spoon and follow instructions as described in the movie "Trainspotting". If you wake up 8 hours later and know exactly what The Beatles "Sgt. Pepper's" album is talking about and though you don't quite remember what happed you are sure you had the best feeling of your life and would do anything to get that feeling back. Then most likely you've experienced smack for the first (but probably not last time.) proceed immediately to rehab.
 

Mike Graham

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Whenever I see a cop taste a drug to verify its authenticity, or even worse yet, some lone character run into a building without any backup, I have to cringe! Haven't we outgrown these cliches?
 

Henry Gale

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Seth,
10th grade chemistry may not be a universal experience.

andrew,
Yep, it's bitter, so is crank and smack. Is that bitter taste a guarantee that you're getting what you want? Dealers who lace their baby sugar with quinine hope you think so.

Just say no.
 

Alex-Mic.

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May 16, 2003
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I found this online if it helps.

I've seen dozens of police/drug movies and TV shows in my time, but one thing has always bugged me. What exactly are police tasting cocaine for? Does it have some kind of easily identifiable flavor and if so what is it? I would be very grateful of you could solve this for me, even if you have to break the law to do it. --James Stringer, Buffalo, New York

SDSTAFF Hawk replies:

We never break the law at the Straight Dope. Lawbreaking is for amateurs.

Cocaine has no flavor, in and of itself. It's possible to detect the flavors of its cutting agents, such as sugar, flour, cornstarch, or baking soda. But that's not why you would taste cocaine. Tasting is a quick-and-dirty method of cocaine identification. Like the related drugs novocaine, benzocaine, and lidocaine, cocaine is an anesthetic, so it will numb the tongue.

That said, I've never known anyone to do this, ever, and I've been in the forensic pathology business for a long time. The reality is that it's dangerous. The cutting agents are usually harmless, but you don't want to be the one who got the coke that was cut with poison. Further, such trace amounts could show up in the person's next urine drug screen, and a positive for cocaine metabolites in the urine would warrant disciplinary action. There'd be no way for anyone to tell an "on-the-spot drug tester" from a recreational user.
 

Rob Willey

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Rob

Although you're a lot more likely to notice the anesthetic effect on your gums than on your tongue.

Rob
 

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