as we come to the end of the ‘pandemic’
the ‘great and the good’ prove just how stupid they are
covid will last forever
and we need to live with it like flu
the virus is never going to go away
the public will have to get used to covid deaths
so what is an acceptable number of daily victims?
the covid ‘passport’ to enter sporting events is back again
couples face a £10,000 fine
if they don’t do a proper covid risk assessment on their wedding
vaccine shortage is now threatening the end of lockdown in England
and finally for today
Russia has now identified the Moscow variant
mask wearing will be compulsory forever
being a street busker is fun, until it isn’t
Following my earlier post today with a Monkees song from 1968, this from Donovan is actually one of the top tunes of that year, depending on which list you look at.
Donovan’s music and image was always a bit hippy and pot smoking for the people in my part of the world ~ until they went to university and became hippy, pot smoking students.
It’s a good song.
Marmy has his Californian hippy side
redolent of Mediterranean mists and sea-dew
Rosemary grows wild on the shores of the Mediterranean, and is widely cultivated in the more temperate areas of Europe and North America. This glossy shrub can be seen in decorative borders, kitchen gardens, herb gardens, and physic gardens, wherein medicinal plants are grown.
In Greek mythology rosemary is said to have been draped around the otherwise naked figure of Aphrodite when she came out of the sea. A more Christian legend is that the Virgin Mary draped her blue cloak over a white rosemary bush while she was resting on her way to Bethlehem and the flowers turned blue. The shrub was henceforth called ‘the Rose of Mary’.
Most decent cooks are familiar with this herb as an addition to meat dishes, lamb in particular. However, it can be used judiciously as a seasoning to a wide variety of recipes; soups, casseroles, salads, and stews. Use rosemary with chicken and other poultry, game (especially as its strong flavour enhances the strong flavours of game dishes), lamb, pork, beef steak, and fish, especially oily fish. It also adds flavour to otherwise bland grains, mushrooms, peas, potatoes, and greens, (especially good with spinach).
If you a drop of strong drink, then perhaps try this rosemary pomegranate grilled meyer-lemon sparkler. But beware, it’s much stronger than it looks. For some reason rosemary adds a lot to the taste of pomegranate juice.
Rosemary also goes very well with gin, try putting a sprig of the herb into a fresh bottle and letting it stand for a week or so.
A rosemary gin fizz is a very refreshing, if potent drink.
The main active ingredients in this herb are tannin and saponin. (There is also a little thujone, which is the active ingredient in wormwood, used to produce real absinthe.) Technically this adds up to rosemary being good for the immune system, blood circulation, reducing cancer forming free radicals, as an aid to digestion, enhancing memory and concentration, (especially after a stroke), staving off eye problems, and staving off aging of one’s brain, (dementia).
Rosemary can have a beneficial psychoactive effect, it will not get you very high, but it will make you feel both relaxed and alert, at one in the same time. As a sleep aid it can give you wild dreams. (Actually rosemary is a very mild ‘legal high’.)
Rosemary is best gathered in spring and summer, but as an evergreen it can be collected fresh at any time of the year. It dries very well.
the flowers are very much favoured by bees
I know of a place where the wild thyme grows
Thymus Vulgaris, garden thyme, is one of the four great medicinal and culinary herbs; parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme….. A herb is a plant where the leafy green and flowering parts are found useful in cooking and natural medicine. Whereas, a spice is produced from other parts of a plant; seeds, bark, roots, fruit…. Ergo ginger is a spice, whereas the ash tree is used both as a herb and a spice.
Trust me, thyme is most definitely a herb and an important ingredient in Mediterranean, Indian, and Caribbean recipes. Thyme is also a basic ingredient in perfumery.
In medicine, thyme should be treated with caution because, like all herbs, it contains some very powerful and complex chemicals, especially thymol. Interestingly the antiseptic thymol is a major ingredient of Listerine mouthwash and most alcohol-free hand sanitisers.
Other major and powerful compounds found in the common or garden thyme are; borneol, carvavrol, eucalyptol, menthene, thymene, and tannin. The major effects of these compounds are; antibiotic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, balsamic, carminative, and soporific. (Balsamic really means ‘elixir’)
Thyme tea, (usually made with dried leaves), is calming, helps most people to sleep, fights off coughs, reduces inflammations, and much reduces embarrassing night-time flatulence. As with most natural herb teas women of child-bearing age should take care as it increases blood flow to the uterus. Thyme in wine is good, and I use sprigs of thyme in both olive oil and apple cider vinegar, (makes a fabulous salad dressing) Thyme tea is a potent female aphrodisiac. Thyme and marijuana cookies should be treated with very great care indeed.
A sprig of thyme under the pillow is an aid to calm sleep, and a good bunch of thyme in your bath will help kill off very nasty things like toenail fungus, athletes foot, and the hookworm ancylostomiasis.
Thyme of any variety is easy to grow, it prefers a well-drained gravelly soil in full sun. Collect your thyme in spring and early summer. Bees love thyme as the flowers are nectar-rich ~ real thyme honey has all of the properties you can find in the plant.
if you have a scrap of space, grow herbs
Sage is an Important herb, especially for adult women
Like most herbs, common or garden sage is a plant packed with complex organoleptic phytochemicals. These compounds are why herbs are great for flavouring food. Organoleptic means affecting the senses, and as we all know there are a lot more than 5 of those. It’s commonly held that humans have 13 senses, but that list may not even scratch the surface. For example, how do you always know when someone is staring at you? Not only that, the complicated stuff in the plants we commonly use as herbs would also seem to bypass the senses and work directly on the brain to affect a person’s mental state. The unregarded sage, Salvia Officinalis, is chock-full of interesting compounds which would be illegal if you tried to buy them over-the-counter.
As any organic chemist will tell you, if you add chemical compounds together, you will often create something that is more spellbinding, than the sum of the individual effects. That is also what happens when we ingest herbs. The separate ‘drugs’ in herbs are engaging, but in combination they can be enthralling. The unique combination of chemicals in sage has a particularly strong influence upon adult women.
The modern urban man with a bit of a garden, balcony, doorstep can easily grow sage. Like a lot of herbs it it very tolerant of poor soil and sun. Sage also comes in a host of varieties ~ different sizes, colours, leaf patterns, in fact you could make yourself a sage garden. Sage reaches a height of about 2 feet, can be pretty rampant, grows best in full sun in slightly acid soil, pH 5.5 to 6.5, and the old growth should be cut back by about half in early spring. The herbs to grow along with common sage are parsley and clary sage. Neither sage nor clary will grow well indoors.
While common sage, (Salvia officialis), is packed with psychotropic drugs, diviner’s sage, (Salvia divornorum), is so psychedelic that its legality is under consideration in some US states.
Two very important words of warning. Diviner’s sage really is a potentially potent hallucenogenic. Pregnant womenshould avoid clary sage, it can bring on child labour. In fact if you are thinking about using sage for medicinal purposes, then it may be best to have a word with your doctor before you start experimenting.
The effective parts of the plant for culinary and medicinal uses are the leaves and flowering tops, and these are best gathered in spring. The active compounds in sage include; asparagine, borneol, camphene, eucalyptol, oestrogens, pinene, salvene, saponin, tannin, and thujone. Thujone has a very similar effect on the human mind as does the THC in marijuana. If you can get hold of a plant, diviner’s sage, (a.k.a. Mexican Mint Sage), contains a lot of Salvinorin A which targets the brain’s kappa opoid receptors. Salvorin A is the strongest natural hallucenogenic. Basically, sage has similar stuff in it as the wormwood used in absinthe.
Sage is best picked fresh and used straight away. You can easily dry it for use all year around, but dried sage isn’t always as effective as the fresh article. Don’t pick it after early autumn, in fact don’t pick much sage after the flowers have all gone.
Sage, especially clary sage, (Salvia sciarea), is a woman’s herb. The other spices herbs and oils to use with it if it’s to help a woman with anything at all are; cinnamon, geranium, jasmine, sandalwood and lemongrass. Mixing these with a lot of alcohol is not necessarily a brilliant idea unless the effect you are looking for is euphoric desire. In that case, run your lady a tub and add sage oil or fresh sage leaves to the water. Get a couple of scented candles in jasmine or sandalwood. Mix your lady an aphrodisiac drink ~ creme de cacao and tequila are good with sage. Wash her hair and give her a head massage using fresh sage leaves or sage tincture ~ which also treats dandruff. If she’s a smoker give her a sage cigarette, which is also good for asthma.
a sage bed makes a great addition to any garden, or a garden all of its own
herbs demonstrate the earth’s nurturing love
there is a love called the herbs
which knows seasons and extraction
which chooses and uses through filtration
the pungent perfume of timed infusion
aromatic alchemical warmed fluids
medicinal herbs mystical magical uses
richly potent oils from maceration
concentrated to potions by decoction
glistening alcoholic secret distillation
Aphrodisiac attention to her golden skin
sensual memories of myriad loves
sage is a psychotropic aphrodisiac
sensual women should beware
its dreams of desire
first of all stop being a willing victim
if that’s you then perhaps you need to change
The first step in my total makeover plan New Age ~ New Me is giving up alcohol; or to say it a better way Living a Sober Life. If you misuse and abuse any substance; alcohol, drugs, prescription medication, over the counter medication, sugar, tobacco….. then your life revolves around that and it’s almost impossible to do anything else that matters a damn. And trust me, if you drink, smoke, or take drugs ~ then whatever you think or believe you are an addict. The same goes if you gamble, are promiscuous, steal, cheat, lie….. you are an addict and a victim of your own need for instant gratification.
If you ever want to be better, to become self-aware, self-controlled, self-disciplined, empowered, and truly happy, then first of all you have to give up your addictions. No that’s not true, first of all you truly have to admit to yourself that you have a problem. Only when you really believe that you need to give up hanging around in bars, or drinking a bottle of wine at home every night, or smoking a pack of cigarettes a day can you begin to become a better version of yourself.
And giving up isn’t easy. For years I was a binge-drinker ~ every time I got upset, unhappy, or dissatisfied I would retreat into a bottle of booze to make myself feel better. It never worked. And yet I haven’t touched a drop since Christmas last year.
Here’s how did I did that;
- I came to believe that booze was ruining my life.
- I made a decision to stop drinking alcohol.
- I stopped buying and drinking booze.
It was an instant decision followed by instant action; and I believe that it has to be that way. There has been no help, no 12 step group, no counselors, no complicated programs, no tricks, no searching the internet to find an easy way to be sober, no anything ~ just me and some self-discipline. It’s easy; decide to stop whatever destructive behaviour gives you instant gratification, and then stop.
Except we know that it isn’t easy at all ~ it’s fucking hard.
But what would I rather become? A drooling incontinent who lives just for the next drink? Or a self-aware Renaissance Man who lives a very full and rewarding life?
So, every hour of every day I stay away from that first drink.
the things you think you like the most
are the things that will ruin your life
and then kill you
drinking alcohol is very bad for your brain
beer still gets you drunk, but it also makes you fat
For a lot of people alcohol becomes a crutch to allow them to handle the feelings, situations, and people they encounter in daily life. Lots of people I know use booze to become more outgoing, manage stress, combat depression, relax, and as an aid to sleep. However, alcohol isn’t a cure for shyness, stress, depression, anxiety, nor insomnia ~ except in the very short term, and if you only drink in moderation.
Taken in larger quantities, and over longer periods, alcohol does exactly the opposite of the things that you drank for in the first place. Add to that some worse effects of too much drink; recklessness, loss of morality and ethics, severe anxiety and depression, complete emotional immaturity, using other drugs, promiscuity, criminality ~ and one can see that drinking a lot for very long is a bad idea.
If you drink too much, for even one evening, the alcohol will affect your memory. Memory loss is a sure and certain effect of too much booze. You might not remember the night before at all, or only vaguely remember bits of it, and you might not believe it when your friends tell you what you did. Your brain will even invent false memories just to let you fill in the blanks.
Drinking to excess over long periods means the memory loss becomes permanent, along with nastier things like wet brain and dementia. Luckily most people die from alcohol related causes long before they lose their mind. Even better, if you stop drinking the memory loss and cognitive dysfunction will slowly reverse itself as the fog of booze clears and new brain cells grow to replace the ones killed off by alcohol.
I stopped drinking just after Christmas 2020. Now, instead of being a high-functioning binge-drinker I am becoming a Modern Renaissance Man with a near eidetic memory.
Which would I rather be; a drooling incontinent drunk, or a very cool guy, living a really great life to the fullest?
Alcohol has left the building.
people do things under the influence
that they would never do sober
here in England it’s day 353 of complete lockdown
some ways I’ve been able to stay fairly sane
stay away from booze, especially hard liquor, alcohol never helps anything
get plenty of rest during the day and 6 to 8 hours of good sleep every night
if you need to, try herbal sleep aids
otherwise avoid street drugs and powerful medication
eat in a healthy and nutritious way
take high-quality and appropriate food supplements
stay active, go outside, fresh air and exercise are important
anger and resentment against the unfairness is futile
even if you can’t meet anyone for a conversation
stay connected by phone and the internet
take enforced self-isolation one day at a time
personally, I found that prayer helps
remember, there is nothing whatsoever you can do except obey the stupid lockdown laws, regulations, and guidelines
if you learn self-control, you can master anything
waste in a wasteland
It’s Lent, which is all about abstinence and self-control. There doesn’t seem to be much self-discipline, self-control, or mastering difficult challenges about in the world today. Rather there seems to be a lot of neglect, waste, and self-indulgence. It’s waste of human life in a wasteland.
Addictions such as alcoholism, gambling, smoking, drug-taking, eating disorders, infidelity, and inappropriate casual sex seem to be rife ~ even among our senior politicians and bureaucrats, who are supposed to set an example to we ‘ordinary people in the street’, suffering the miseries of lockdown. I myself have had a drinking problem, but I am pleased to say that I haven’t touched a drop since Christmas. (There are none so self-righteous as a reformed addict.)
I am happy to tell you that I have learned self-discipline, self-control, and how to master difficult challenges. It wasn’t easy, but I am getting there.
All we have to learn is how to say ‘No’, especially to ourselves.
hanging around in bars is not an indication of self-control