Two months ago, on the social media site Reddit, a user called Dolonotikz posted a picture of his new tattoo, along with a note rebuffing commenters who said he would regret it. The tattoo is a line structure of MDMA, the active ingredient in the club drug Ecstasy.
Except that it isn’t. The structure is wrong, with only two double bonds in what should be the central benzene ring. The photo quickly made its way onto the chemistry section of the site, where the Chemistry Reddit community proceeded to detail and debate the exact route by which the erroneous molecule would break down. Commenters also suggested ways that a skilled tattoo artist could correct the structure.
The Newscripts gang knew our readers could do better with structural accuracy, so we asked them to share their own chemical tattoos on Reddit, Twitter, and Facebook. Here are a few of our favorites.
Craig Bettenhausen wrote this week’s column. Please send comments and suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org.