Tag Archives: Booze

Become a Renaissance Being

The heart and soul of a Renaissance Man is creativity.

Creativity, curiosity, honesty, openness, kindness, understanding ~ these things and honour are what separates a truly superior Renaissance Man from the common herd.  There are a couple of other important attributes a superior man should possess in abundance; confidence and self-control ~ a Renaissance Man does not want, desire, nor need instant gratification to bolster his self-confidence.  The confidence of a Renaissance Man is assured and will brook no criticisms.

part-finished teardrop trailer kit

A superior man is creative and innovative, and creativity means to actually create something, if there is no physical end-product then all you are doing is daydreaming.  Almost everyone can daydream and come up with an idea or two, but few will go on to get those ideas down on paper, make a plan, and go on to create / build / make whatever it is the plan calls for, be it writing a book, creating a work of art, a boat, car, a tiny trailer, a kitchen, bathroom, or even a whole home.  Almost everyone goes no further than having an idea, they never follow through and do something tangible.  They are held back by a lack of confidence in themselves, laziness, fear, and the pressures of coping with a partner, family, friends, and coworkers.  These are excuses, not reasons.

Other reasons for not actually doing something real, for going no further than daydreaming, are; lack of money, time pressures, lack of space, not knowing how to do whatever it is they think they want to do…..  All of these are also just fucking pathetic excuses.  And then there are some other reasons people don’t do creative stuff; they drink too much, smoke too much, smoke pot, do street drugs, take too many unnecessary prescription and over-the-counter medications, gamble, spend too much time looking for cheap sex in bars……

Perhaps to be truly creative you first have to put your life in order.  It’s a fallacy that booze and drugs will help your creativity ~ all those things will do is help you daydream, right up to the point where you pass out.

Creative living and creativity is available to all of us  But how do we energise our creative abilities?

  • Do something, even if it’s just baby steps.  Make a start on your project, even if it’s just writing down your ideas. Get out of your comfort zone.  Pick up whatever tools you need to work on your project, from a hammer, to a brush, to a tablet.
  • Mindfullness.  Be aware of ourselves, be aware of our environment, be in the moment.
  • Fresh air, exercise, sunshine, movement in nature.  Get off your ass and take some physical activity to energise your body.  Most office workers do not move nearly enough during the day, and then they go home, sit on the sofa, and drink some booze in front of the TV.
  • Stop taking yourself too seriously.  Reawaken the inner child.  Be prepared to make mistakes. Be playful.

Some say that serious people don’t have time to waste on being creative.  And, that being mindful is just a ‘new-age’ gimmick.  All I know is that a really cool Renaissance Man creates his own reality.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

get out into nature

Healthier Food and Drink

The more you eat, the less flavour.  The less you eat, the more flavour.

There are literally thousands of diets out there, from the 5:2 diet, the Mediterranean diet, the Paleo diet, the Sushi diet, and even the simple calorie controlled diet.  These diets can get quite complicated and the professional aficionados would love us to buy their books explaining the benefits of these diets and giving us lots of recipes that we’re probably never going to cook.  As it happens I try to follow the tenants of a Mediterranean diet, simply because I like Mediterranean food.  Conversely I would never follow a Sushi diet because I hate sushi and I firmly believe that raw fish is inherently unhealthy, to the point of being dangerous.

honey salmon in foil

There is one basic truth about losing weight ~ eat less.  The average female office worker only needs about 2,000 calories a day, and the average male about 2,500.  A weight loss diet probably means a woman eating 1,500 calories a day, and a man about 2,000.  There are a myriad of calorie calculators on the internet.

However, after some study of diets, nutrition, and health, I can give you some basic guidelines about what you should include and avoid in all those calories.

  • Drink 3 pints of fresh clean water every day.
  • Eating a little every couple of hours avoids and cures adrenal fatigue.
  • Wild foods are good ~ especially healthy grains such as wild rice.  Eat organic food whenever you can.
  • Try not to eat processed and canned foods.
  • Eating fresh fruits and vegetables is vital to our health.  Apples, Banana, Broccoli, Cauliflower, Carrots, Celery, Grapes, Leeks, Pears, Potato (especially potato skins), Spinach, & etc..  Avoid too much citrus fruit, it messes with the acid balance of our gut.
  • Adding herbs and spices adds important phytochemicals to our food.  Fresh parsley, basil, and rosemary are especially good.
  • Eat grass-fed beef, free-range chicken, lamb, wild salmon, net caught ocean fish, shrimp, crab, and lobster.  Avoid too much pork, (and if you eat pork make damn certain it’s properly cooked).  Avoid farmed fish, (especially tilapia which is cheap whitefish), cheap chicken, bacon, and turkey.  Eat shellfish at your peril.
  • Don’t drink a lot of fresh milk, don’t put cream or half-and-half in your coffee, and don’t eat a lot of yogurt or cheese.
  • Take vitamin and mineral supplements; B4, B12, Folate, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Zinc, (and if you are a menstruating woman take Iron supplements).
  • Do not ever eat anything made with modern wheat; bread, cake, cookies, pasta, tortillas…..
  • Avoid too much; complex carbohydrates, caffeine, sugar, and salt.
  • Don’t drink too much coffee or ordinary tea, try green tea instead.
  • Don’t drink diet sodas, or use artificial sweeteners.  In fact really cut down on drinking any soda at all.
  • Really, really avoid too much alcohol.  One bottle of red wine a week is a good limit, (or if you can’t live with that, two bottles a week).  Do not regularly get buzzed, and regularly would be once a month.

You may think that’s all too damn difficult, and probably expensive.  Well, it takes effort to follow any guidelines,  and good organic food carries a price premium, but really, how much is a healthier and longer life worth to you?

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

cauliflower is a surprisingly versatile vegetable

 

Food on Friday ~ New Year’s

What the New Year brings to our tables will depend on what we bring to the New Year.

Next Year I will have a new focus for each week’s food on Friday ~ concentrating on recipes, foods, and dishes to enhance our wellbeing, health, and happiness.  I have no doubt whatsoever that the great cooks I have featured thus far in this series of blog posts will be more than up to the challenge of our creating a healthier lifestyle, while still retaining each of their unique signature styles.

But, for this last Food on Friday of 2018, I want to show you some recipes and dishes which will be great to offer your guests at whatever New Year’s get-together or wild party you are hosting.

No part would be complete without a great cheese board, so from San Diego cook Averie Sunshine we have ideas on just how to make the best cheese board.  I really like that Averie uses prosciutto on her cheese boards!  Me, I like to have a soft blue cheese, or maybe just a good old English Stilton.  There are as many wines to drink with cheese as there are cheeses, but with Stilton it should be a good warm port.

The Very Best Cheese Board

Should you want to drink beer at New Year, then what about having these spinach and artichoke stuffed soft pretzels to go with your brew?  From Tieghan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest.  Of course, what we English call beer and the fizzy pop the rest of the world drinks are two very different ales.

Spinach and Artichoke Stuffed Soft Pretzels

So, if you live by the sea, then you should serve a dish that reflects that.  I guess none of you live on the Chesapeake, but from Dianes Kitchen I offer you this Chesapeake Crab Strata.  Serve it like slices of pizza.  Here in the North East of England we get some really great crab from the cold North Sea.  Some say you should drink a Pinot Grigo with crab, but I would always prefer a cold Verdicchio.

Chesapeake Crab Strata

After my recent trip to Albuquerque I said that I would never eat meatloaf again ~ but brought to us by Elise Bauer at Simply Recipies here’s an idea for bbq meatloaf bites.  Now I know that the chef, Nick Evans, intended these to be part of a meal for kids ~ but after a few drinks all men are just kids anyhow.  As far as I’m concerned you can drink whatever the fuck hell you like with meatloaf….. personally I would choose a red Cotes du Rhone Villages.

BBQ Meatloaf Bites

From Chungah at Damn Delicious there’s this new recipe collection; 15 best quick and easy New Year’s Eve appetisers…..  My favourite dish here is this really clean-looking dish of lemon garlic shrimp kabobs ~ try these with a really cold vodka martini.

Lemon Garlic Shrimp Kabobs

And finanally for 2018, from Country Living Magazine, we have a collection of 40 unbelievably easy New Year’s Eve appetisers.   From this collection I like the look of these smoked salmon and cream cheese cucumber bites.  Just how easy is that?  If you want to show some real class, then you drink single malt whisky with smoked salmon and cream cheese.

Smoked Salmon and Cream Cheese Cucumber Bites

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

not many are man enough to drink Laphroaig

Monochrome Monday~ Drinking

So set ’em up Joe, there’s no one in the place, ‘cept you and me.

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jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

Scenes on Sunday ~ York

Now is the winter of our discontent
Made glorious summer by this son of York;

These days ancient English City of York is full of bicycles, churches, tourists, and pubs ~ mostly pubs.  And mostly not a  lot of Shakespeare.

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jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalknet

 

unless you are a very attractive American woman, don’t ask to taste a load of different beers before you buy a pint.

Food on Friday ~ Booze

Alcohol gives you infinite patience for stupidity.

Some of you may be giving up alcohol for lent, or to lose weight, or to control your cholesterol ~ in which case here are some cool drinks you may well be missing out on.

Or, some of you may be determined to have a good time now that we are really in the deep dark depths of winter ~ in which case here are some cool drinks to help you get the party going.

Whatever, please drink responsibly. Don’t end up feeling as though you need to give up booze for good and all.

First this week, and bearing in mind that we have just had Valentine’s Day, San Diego girl Averie Sunshine offers us this very aloholic kiss on the lips cocktail.  Who could possibly say no?

Kiss On The Lips Cocktail

Continuing the St. Valentine’s Day theme, Tieghan Gerard from Half Baked Harvest offers us this delicious looking rose and ginger paloma.  Nice if you like tequila and roses ~ who doesn’t?

Rose and Ginger Paloma

I’m not certain I’d ever have tried this cocktail from Jessica Merchant at How Sweet Eats, but having seen some of the things The Girl Riding Shotgun drinks I’m pretty certain that spicy blood orange beergaritas will find a few takers, at least in Orange County anyhow. Highly alcoholic.

Spicy Blood Orange Beergaritas

Another blood orange cocktail, this time from Andrea at Cooking With A Wallflower; blood orange vodka soda ~ or you could substitute tequila for the vodka, if you don’t like vodka.  This is just so easy, but please squeeze the fresh orange juice for yourself.

Blood Orange Vodka Soda

One of the things about booze is that it plays havoc with your cholesterol levels and the triglycerides in your blood.  This recipe for Mumbai mules from the Bojon Gourmet could help a little, as it contains cumin, which is good for you.

Image courtesy of Alanna Taylor Tobin | The Bojon Gourmet

Mumbai Mules

On a really cold winter’s day there’s not much better to come home to than a hot toddy.  Cookie + kate have a very easy recipe for a classic hot toddy ~ and you can make this as strong as you like.  Also, try making a hot toddy with dark rum for a completely different and interesting flavour.  My favourite was always Woods 100 Old Navy Rum.

Classic Hot Toddy

I like recipe collections, and I hope that you do too.  From the chi-chi Town and Country Magazine we have a collection of 21 winter cocktails to help you survive the cold.  From their collection I’ve chosen to feature a Porto Santo, which rivals a Long Island Iced Tea for a total booze-fest.  You could always get your guy to take you to the Island of Madeira to try your first Porto Santo cocktail.

Porto Santo

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

I hope that you,

and all the great drinks’ mixers

featured this week

had a lovely St. Valentine’s Day.

 

Driving Dangerously

rta

~

Booze, Prescription Drugs, Street Drugs, Excessive Speed, Failing to Stop, Using A Cell Phone, Reading, Unroadworthy Vehicle, No Insurance, No Licence….

I firmly believe that almost all drivers have driven while they shouldn’t, or in cars that they shouldn’t be driving, or without the proper documentation, or done something they shouldn’t be doing while they were driving.  (oral sex, or searching for a pack of cigarettes in your purse, for example )

The most common really stupid thing drivers do is use their cell / mobile to talk / text / surf the internet / watch sports while they are driving.  And, don’t try to tell me you’ve never done that, because I won’t believe you.

Texting while driving increases the risk of accident 23.2 times over unimpaired driving.  ~  Virginia Tech Transportation Institute

But, and without a shadow of a doubt, the worst road crime is driving while intoxicated.  A hell of a lot of other illegal stuff can be put down to people drinking and driving ~ excessive speed for example.  And, driving under the influence of booze is not just dumb, it’s amoral, criminal, and dangerous.

I really don’t believe anyone who says they have never driven while intoxicated, or under the influence of prescription / illegal drugs.  Everyone who drives and who also sometimes drinks booze, or sometimes takes some form of mind-altering drugs, (including prescription painkillers), has driven when they shouldn’t.

There’s no question that we need tougher drunk-driving laws.  We need to take a lesson from European countries where driving isn’t a right but a privilege.  ~  Jesse Ventura.

Back in the day I knew an alcoholic who had been a very senior police officer in charge of road traffic accidents.  He shared that almost all really bad accidents involved a drunk driver.  He also shared that it wasn’t seeing so many deaths, or even the dead and horribly maimed children, that had pushed him over the edge into depression and booze.  What really destroyed him was the decapitations, bodies without heads and heads without bodies.

If you are involved in a road traffic accident and you suspect / know the other driver has been breaking the law ~ texting while he rear-ended your car for example ~ then call the police, and take a shed-load of pictures.  You may get lucky, and the police might shoot arrest the miscreant,

If you are the guilty driver, then don’t expect any sympathy whatsoever, from anyone except another dumb criminal

Think about this ~ do you want to be the one to run down a child, destroying her life and the lives of her family in the process?

~

rta1jackcollier7@talktalk.net

liebster-12

Under The Influence

TOO MUCH BOOZE CAUSES SEVERE PROBLEMS

Most people like to take a drink now and then.  Mankind has been consuming alcohol for thousands of years, and mostly it merely adds to conviviality.  Drink too much of the falling-down water too often and you could create a lot of problems for yourself and others.  How much is too much?  If you have ever done more than one of the following, more than once, then you drink too much.

  • Inappropriate behaviour.  Everything from insulting the boss at the office party to persisting to make very unwanted advances to a girl who has already said no.
  • Throwing up.  Vomiting after too much booze and the wrong sort of food is a common event.
  • Falling down in the street.  There’s a reason alcohol is sometimes called falling-down water.
  • Inappropriate sexual behaviour.  Girls who get drunk sometimes also sleep around ~ most men just want an easy lay.  Lack of money to buy drink makes people date inappropriately, become involved in the sex trade, sleep around, find a sugar daddy or a cougar…
  • Dishonesty.  Hiding booze, stealing booze, lying about how much you have had to drink, denial, lying about where you have been, drinking in secret, protecting your supply, making promises you have no intention of keeping, stealing cash, selling your stuff, selling other people’s stuff, and for studs and women, selling your body.
  • Complaints from family and friends.  The; Don’t you think you’ve had enough?  Ignore this and go on drinking, and you will lose your family and friends.
  • Sexually Transmitted Infections.  A direct result of too many sexual partners is that your chances of contracting everything from thrush to gonorrhea are increased dramatically.
  • Violence.  Drink and violence go hand in hand because booze suppresses the part of the brain that keeps humans under some sort of control.  Get drunk, sleep with the wrong person, and you could end up dead.
  • Weight gain.  In the early stages of drinking too much, one may also eat a lot of junk food and take no exercise.  These things can lead to visceral fat ~ the classic beer belly.
  • Drinking in dingy dives.  The person who drinks to much will eventually stop using smart wine bars and find that they use dingy pubs and scruffy dives instead.  Along with this will go drinking with some very dubious people.  You will have given up your gym membership.  By now you will probably have tried switching from Scotch to light beer, and totally given up on vodka and tequila.
  • Drinking in the morning.  If you take a beer when you get up in the morning, then you have a problem.  If you take a slug of vodka when you get up in the morning, then you have a really serious problem.
  • Insomnia.  We can’t stay awake when we drink, and we can’t sleep when we don’t drink.  We get up in the middle of the night to take a drink.
  • Lack of interest in hobbies and pastimes.  Actually this is not true for the problem drinker has an all-consuming hobby ~ alcohol.
  • Poor personal appearance.  Too busy drinking, and anyhow in the pub we now drink in everyone is unshaven and dressed in scruffy clothes, taking a shower is just too much effort.
  • Serious accidents.  Because booze suppresses that part of the brain which stops us from being reckless and stupid, we do things like take our eyes off the road to fiddle with the radio while driving at 100 miles per hour.
  • Alcoholic poisoning.  This can kill you.
  • Multiple addiction.  Many who drink too much are also addicted to smoking, gambling, casual sex, prescription drugs, street drugs, reckless behaviour.
  • Visits to hospital emergency rooms.  Friday and Saturday nights hospitals are full of the casualties of the drinking war.
  • Serious injury to yourself and others.  Funny how women who drink and drive always seem to hit something vulnerable, like a school bus queue.  Men who drink and drive just kill themselves.
  • Trouble with the police.  Everything from fighting in the street to rolling your car at 100 mph, while as drunk as a Lord.
  • Imprisonment or mandatory attention at a course for problem drinkers / drunk drivers / practitioners of domestic violence.
  • Losing friends and family.  It your loved ones are telling you that you drink to much, eventually you will lose them.
  • Lost time.  Drinking a lot will make you forget what you have been doing.  Drinking far too much will give you very frightening alcoholic blackouts.
Hungover-Denzel-Washington

What you do not want ~ an alcoholic pilot

  • Lost jobs.  There is a thing called a functioning alcoholic, these people are rare.  Mostly if you are hungover or drunk on the job you will be unable to do the job, then you will lose your job.
  • Mental illness.  Paranoia, depression, anxiety, dementia.  Self-medicating with booze is a bad idea.  Alcoholic depression is something you do not want, trust me, I know.
  • Self-harm and Suicide.  Alcoholic depression can lead to attempted suicide.  Sometimes attempted suicide leads to death.
  • Heart Disease.  Excess alcohol is directly linked to heart disease and an increased risk of strokes.  This is not something you want to suffer, unless you are in the grip of alcoholic depression.
  • Diabetes.  Visceral Fat is a sign that you are well on the way to type 2 diabetes.  You do not want to get diabetes.  Before it kills you, then you may well lose both legs.
  • Cancer.  Alcohol increases your risk of getting the 7 different types of the Big C.  Excessive alcohol causes cancer of the liver, bowels, breasts, mouth, upper throat, food pipe and the voice box.  You cannot live without your liver.  Alcohol has also been linked to kidney cancer and non-Hogkin lymphoma, but in this case booze reduces the risk of getting the diseases.
  • Big_Liver_Tumor

    A very diseased liver being removed

    Liver Disease.  Too much booze is bad for the liver, everybody know that.  In fact the liver just loves alcohol, and will process booze to the exclusion of everything else, until all the booze is out of your body.  Some symptoms of liver problems are; feeling sick, weight loss, jaundice, swollen ankles and stomach, confusion, vomiting blood, blood in the stool.  The stages of liver disease are; fatty liver, hepatitis, cirrhosis, death.  A diseased liver is not a pretty sight.

  • Alcohol can cause the alcoholic to lose everything in life.  Dignity, health, jobs, marriage, friends, family, money, safety and security, freedom, health, sanity, life itself.

As I said, if you have done more than one of those things more than once you may well have a problem with your drinking.  If you still do not recognise your problem, try taking a questionnaire such as  that offered by Alcoholic’s Anonymous.

There are no soft and easy answers to this.  If you even think you drink too much, or your family and friends say you drink too much, then stop drinking too much before it’s too late.  If you firmly recognise yourself in the comments I made above, then sorry, your only answer is to give up booze.  This is almost impossible.  Try and find some help.  Start with your doctor.  Eventually, if you are a real boozer and do not stop, you will die an early death.  Before that you will lose everything good that life has to offer.  It’s your choice.

 

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