Thursday, June 29, 2006

Westmount horror

Westmount horror
Originally uploaded by IrenaS.
R and I are in the throws of house hunting at the moment. Do you think they'll be enough room for the two of us here?

Hooray...I had my two tests yesterday and celebrated with two pints, my first drink in months.

I have not smoked 2000 cigarettes.

I think todays number is the number two. Where's that Big Bird when you need him?

Off to the St Barts area to gather evidence againgst evil parking enforcement officers who knobbled R the other week.

Will be popping in to the Rising Sun (?) just by the famous St Barts Church where Burke and Hare (or some other body snatchers) used to get their victims drunk before clubbing them to death in the neighbouring cemetry. Quite an appropriate setting I suppose - if they ran into a Peeler they could say "we just dug him up honest Ossifer"

I'll be watching my step tonight though.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

(Thanks to eecue at flickr)

Tomorrow will be three weeks without any patches and consequently no nicotine at all. I have be getting some quite strong cravings which is odd since I haven't smoked for a good long while.

It's a bit like it used to be on a long train journey. You tried not to think about how long it would be before you finally got off and had a cigarette but you knew that time would eventually come. The journey has lasted two months or so and is going to last an indefinite amount of time longer but at the end of it there's going to be a cigarette to finish it off and reward myself with.

I'm getting a bit bored with all my replacements - tea coffee chocolate etc...They'd all go down a lot nicer with a cigarette except the chocolate which I barely touched when I smoked.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

These patches get everywhere.

As do these footballs

The better England have played the worse they’ve got. Look at Terry…great face-saving performance against Trinidad and Tobago. Then last night he’s a fully paid up member of Swede Aid.

I’m no expert but I think it is quite common for teams to use set pieces as score goal-scoring opportunities instead of tea-breaks.

Just as well I am still not allowed to drink.

R bought me a surprise present the other day. Two bottles of coffee syrup (Irish Cream and Hazelnut) and a combo coffee topping sprinkler. These products only seem to be available from their stores but Whittards sells pre-flavoured coffees and other things online

Sunday, June 18, 2006

fans_worldcup 171

fans_worldcup 171
Originally uploaded by Howie_Berlin.

These patches get everywhere.

I've just this moment remembered its Fathers Day Dad.

Also went to see Cocteau's Orphee today for a change from football and to catch up with JJ and his missus.

When the Orpheus character is hanging around in the bedroom of Death, Death kindly orders cigarettes and champagne to be sent up to him. I felt a big twinge of envy. Lucky sod. (He also starts drinking when he pops back to see his wife for no apparent reason)

I feel Orpheus-like at the moment drifting into strange dreams involving lovely beers and the occasional fag.

Better have a nice cuppa for the twentieth time today and bumble on.

The Quit-o-meter reads as - 2m 1w 2d 13:46 smoke-free, 1,770 cigs not smoked, £205.32 saved, 6d 03:30 life saved.

I like the look of that £205.32. Where is it though?

Tuesday, June 13, 2006


Originally uploaded by chikko629_fs.
These patches get everywhere.

I have reached beyond the two months 'not smoking' staging post. I have had 8 days without any nicotine whatsoever.

I must be in my third week without any alcohol.

And what do I think of all this? Not a lot. Its a bit like being dead except you can still watch the occassional bit of television and play around with your computer.

(As I write R is trying to emphasise the need for us to get a house by going around pretending to be bigger than she actually is.)

We tried an alternative to the pub last night. We went for a thing called a 'meal'. Apparently lots of people do this? It involved some pizza some tap water and some lettuce leaves. It took a bit of time for things to get going. A very long time. So long I am still waiting for it to kick in.

Pound per minute it was twice as expensive as the pub and considerably less jolly. On the plus side there is no hangover. In other words the only positive thing is an absence.


(Now Mr Z the friendly local off licensee was having a lovely time standing on the pavement in the evening breeze zonked out of his head and rabbiting nonsense at passers-by. He reminded me of some of his homeless customers who sometimes gather on the pavement opposite. Lucky chap)

Perhaps South Korea v Togo will cheer me up.

**A Reader Asks** What is the connection between the Market Porter and Reykjavik? The answer is that there isn't any I hope. Does that help?

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

"We have already given, in our collections, one of the letters, in which Mr. Hanway endeavours to show, that the consumption of tea is injurious to the interest of our country. We shall now endeavour to follow him, regularly, through all his observations on this modern luxury; but, it can scarcely be candid not to make a previous declaration, that he is to expect little justice from the author of this extract, a hardened and shameless tea-drinker, who has, for twenty years, diluted his meals with only the infusion of this fascinating plant; whose kettle has scarcely time to cool; who with tea amuses the evening, with tea solaces the midnight, and, with tea, welcomes the morning."

Excerpt from Samuel Johnson's Review of Hanway's Journal of Eight Days Journey

And its not any old tea Hanway's worried about - it is Green Tea. It came as a bit of a surprise to me that for the first 100 years or so your English cuppa was made from Green Tea and was served without milk.

I had been under the impression that the tea plant was indigenous to both China and India and the Brits came to drink it as a result of the colonisation of India. In Victorian times when it arrived in England people even used it for
sandwiches they were so ignorant of its proper use. I was completely wrong. People certainly knew what to do with a tea leaf long before Queen Vic. Maybe I wasn't paying sufficient attention in my History lesson. Or maybe the problem was that I was paying attention in the lesson but my teacher was rubbish and I have carried his rubbish around for the last 33 years.

Tea is such an interesting subject. Stay awake at the back there. If you have the time do read a bit more of Johnson's

I like the whole health scare thing and the way Hanway's got everything arse about face. He was right about gin but I just love the use of the stats here:

I am now informed, that in certain hospitals, where the number of the sick used to be about 5600 in 14 years,

From 1704 to 1718, they increased to 8189;
From 1718 to 1734, still augmented to 12,710;
And from 1734 to 1749, multiplied to 38,147.

"What a dreadful spectre does this exhibit!

My dear Hanway.... What hospitals pray tell again? Certain ones?...Oh I see ...certain ones.

Though I doubt Green Tea in either its Original or Plus forms is a magic cure for anything I do think its a bit daft to liken it to gin as Hanway does.

I'm off to have a medicinal/non-medicinal Greeny right now to fight against this flu thing. I'll then snuggle up with a copy of the Review.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

(Thanks to psi_lock at flickr)

Another visit to Dr SH. last night. I don't think I've ever visited a doctor with such frequency. It was R's idea I should go. It was so much of R's idea that she came with me. In fact I think she could have gone instead of me and left me in my sick-bed.

R was asking the doctor a question at some point when Dr SH interrupted her. “I think I better take his pulse in case he expires in front of me”

R disappeared and Dr S.H. checked my throat and seemed very concerned about me. He was concerned about me sweating though that was just me overdressing. I had been zonked out all day and had no idea it was a warm summer's day before leaving the flat. He told me to take plenty of rest and ibuprofen.

I note he didn't ask me to take lots of Green Tea Plus. I only say that because I stumbled across this marvel when browsing for smoking related information.

Green Tea Plus gets around many of the problems of giving up smoking. It does this by making you give up illness. Here's a bit from the article

“Numerous studies have shown that Green Tea can help reduce your cancer and cardiovascular risk. Green tea can boost your immune system by fighting free radicals. AND HERE'S THE BEST NEWS --- cigarette smokers who drink up to six cups of green tea daily suffer 40 to 50 percent less damage from the toxins caused by cigarette smoke!”

Something makes me doubt the authenticity of this product.

“Fast between the Brahmaputra and the Yang Tse Rivers lie the nurturing valleys of the much sought after Green Tea Plus plant” ???

It doesn't sound right to me. And I should know as I have visited the Bramah Museum of Tea and Coffee between Waterloo and London Bridge.

It's a private collection of tea and coffee related odds and sods and worth a visit if you want to know a bit about what you're drinking. It is very much “tea and coffee from an English point of view”. I couldn't find any references to tea drinking in the Middle East. I think it cost £6 each. We thought it was worth it but it's no freebie.

If the Green Tea Plus won't do it smokers should can give this a try. (Is there a relationship between that and my sweating so much at the doctors?) Or they can combine both methods?

Sunday, June 04, 2006

New Day Zero Plus One

Yesterday was going to be a big day of celebrations. However it didn’t work out quite as I hoped. I got hit by a flu/cold bug late on Friday night.

What was there to celebrate? – my first day without patches of course. There was going to be a ceremonial ripping off of the last one. Non-alcoholic jollity would ensue. Hoorah.

Instead of that a miserable bug.

Mind you there’s nothing to stop me cracking open a bottle.

1m 3w 5d 06:07 smoke-free, 1,409 cigs not smoked, £163.44 saved, 4d 21:25 life saved

(Thanks to ikelee from Flickr for the bubbly)

Thursday, June 01, 2006

The end is nigh. The citadel of the enemy lies in ruins, the future overlords prepare themselves for power and Bruno Ganz is feeling an Oscar coming on.

My penultimate patch oozes its low tar essence into my upper arm and all is uncertainty. Whither now matey-face?

No more Mr K? No more desperate cravings? The gradual reduction of sugar and caffeine? Normality returning?

I feel blog-panic coming on.

Oooh I need a cigarette.

Ah ha. There is hope after all.

I’m off to prepare the fireworks for the New Day Zero.