I remember a short story which I think was set in the 70's in California about an alien who was dangerous but who was friendly but who had to hideout or something like that. A young surfer chick, I think it was, befriends him and starts helping him out and at some point they discover together that he can get really high on oregano. In the end she betrays him and leaves him somewhere, totally wasted on oregano and in some sort of predicament, simply because she had finally gotten bored and had decided to move on to something else. I don't remember what became of him. Does anyone remember a story like that? Cheers

  • 4
    Not quite what you're looking for, but Harry Turtledove's Worldwar series has a race of aliens that get high on ginger. – neilfein Mar 28 '17 at 18:13

Amanda and the Alien by Robert Silverberg.

The alien, making no reply, began taking spices out of the spice rack. Delicately it licked its finger, touched it to the oregano, tasted it, tried the cumin.
“I feel excited. These powders—”
“They’re turning you on? Which one?”
“This, I think.” It pointed to the oregano. “It was either the first one or the second.”
“Yeah,” Amanda said. “Oregano. It can really make you fly.” She wondered whether the alien would get violent when zonked.

Amanda evetually gets bored and reports the alien to the police:

She was bored with the alien. The game had worn thin very quickly. And it was crazy, she thought, to spend the whole weekend cooped up with a dangerous extraterrestrial creature when there wasn’t going to be any fun in it for her. She knew now that there couldn’t be any fun at all. And besides, in a day or two the alien was going to get hungry again.
“I’ve got your alien,” she said. “Sitting in my living room, stoned out of its head on oregano. Yes, I’m absolutely certain. It was disguised as a Chicana girl first, Concepcion Flores, but then it attacked my boyfriend, Charley Taylor, and—yes, yes, I’m safe. I’m locked in the john. Just get somebody over here fast—okay. I’ll stay on the line—what happened was, I spotted it downtown outside the video center, and it insisted on coming home with me—”

I have a copy of the story in the anthology Alien Contact edited by Marty Halpern.


Flicking through the preface to the story I see it has been made into a film.

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    I cringed when reading the IMDB description However, the police is on his trail. – Peter M Mar 28 '17 at 12:05
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    I still remember reading this in Omni when it was first published. – Ross Presser Mar 28 '17 at 21:58

Things from Outer Space, edited by Hank Davis

I did a Google search, and found this. A quote:

When she came down the alien was more than half blown away on the oregano.

(more later)

It matches - the alien gets high on oregano, and then she gets bored and betrays him.

  • I can't copy paste from Google books on mobile; maybe someone can help? – Mithrandir Mar 28 '17 at 9:56

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