Sugar gives you cancer.

Update on the job front. Manager has accepted my resignation gracefully although at this stage she still thinks she can persuade me otherwise. Nope. However I have cunningly averted her rage by suggesting that I might resume working there on a new contract after resigning this one. That is a possibility. I could consider working Saturday and Sunday just to get me out of the house. Working alone for long periods can drive you nuts.

The weekend would be the hard part for her to cover since the (mostly) youngsters she is likely to get applying are not going to want to work weekends. I can have Smoky-Drinky on Wednesday, the weekend means nothing to me. However I am going to let the resignation take full effect. I want to see how the company handle my final pay before deciding whether to go back. I have not heard good things on that score.

We are now at the stage where Mopman works mornings to mid afternoon and then I work the rest to closedown. It is far too much for what they are paying. Food grade cleaning is not a trivial job and if the company want the best, they are not going to get them on the wages they offer. Especially not at this workload.

On Panoptica, I have settled on the main character being 10538, with a quote from ELO’s ‘10538 Overture’ as a starting credit. That song was one of the things that set the story in motion, a long time ago. Everyone has a number, not a name. Nobody needs a name when every interaction involves your ID number. That’s all the identification you need. It also reinforces the ‘prison’ aspect of Panoptica.

Watch for that becoming law soon. Every time I say something about Panoptica, the Mail has the story the next day.

Right. Digressions out of the way, here’s the meaning of the title.

Now that we are to give up carbohydrates, especially sugar, the Church of Science has unearthed new scriptures to support their latest fatwa.

And… it’s crap. At least, the report on what is actually likely to be real science is crap. The real science does not look like it’s all that good either.

One. They used mice. Mice are not human. They do not react well to human diets.

Two. They used mutant mice who are genetically predisposed to a hereditary form of colon cancer. If you are part of a family where this cancer is hereditary you will need to take more care of your pipework than someone who is not at such hereditary risk. The findings can only apply to those who have a family history of the botty-lumps and strictly speaking, only if you and your family are genetically mutated mice. I don’t think they have WiFi in those cages but you never know. Perhaps the mice do read this. Perhaps there’ll be a comment one day of ‘Eeek, eek eek’.

If you do have such a history, get the arse camera inserted at the first opportunity. Caught early, this one is easy to snip out. Caught late and you get your arse sewn shut and the unfashionable version of the bum-bag on your side forever – if you’re lucky.

Three. Butyrate causes gut cell proliferation. This is very, very old news. It does not necessarily cause cancer but if you are genetically predisposed, it can make the lumps grow faster. Normally it just causes rapid gut cell shedding and replacement. In an environment permanently coated with digestive enzymes, decayed food, shit and bacteria, this is actually a good thing. Especially since many pathogenic bacteria start out by sticking to the gut surface. If you are rapidly shedding and replacing the surface cells, bye-bye pathogen.

The whole ‘butyrate causes cancer’ bollocks was comprehensively shattered at least twenty years ago. Here it is again, back to see us like the one that won’t flush.

Now it is linked to carbohydrate. It can’t be directly linked to sugar at once because free sugars are not going to make it to the colon. Starch will, especially retrograde starch (heated and cooled, as in frozen oven chips) but mostly that’s a good thing too. Well, unless it’s too much, in which case the gas production could get you banned from elevators and enclosed spaces, in case you burst them.

You need that butyrate from your gut bacteria. It encourages your gut to shed and replace its surface cells, and shed attached pathogens and orther nasties from the surface at the same time. If you have a family history of colon cancer you’d need to be a bit more careful about it but if you don’t, get them chips in the oven now.

In Scotland they send you tests for botty-lumps on your 50th birthday (happy birthday, please shit on the card and send it back) and every two years after that. In England and Wales they don’t start the poo tax until you are 60 (we want 10%, squeeze it out and hand it over). For most of us this is fine. For those who have families with a history of the botty lumps, get to a doctor at the very first sign of a red-spattered pan and demand the arse camera. Do not wait for their crappy birthday card.

It might only be haemorrhoids. Unpleasant but not dangerous. If the lumps are in the family, do not assume.

But butyrate does not cause cancer. It might make it worse if you have the wrong genes but it does not cause it.

When they get around to ‘sugar causes bowel cancer’, as they will, remember that your gut is a very long pipe and it’s grabbing everything it possibly can absorb, all the way down. The sugars are gone long before they get to the colon. Any not absorbed have been used by bacteria (which are present along the entire gut, yes, even in your acidic stomach).

The last paragraph of the article, a direct quote from the research paper, is true. They foiund that a lot of carbohydrate makes bowel cancer worse in mice genetically predisposed to bowel cancer. That is all the experiment could conclude.

Now sit back and watch it spin.


Doctors to be fitted with X-ray eyes in future.

Doctors who don’t spot a cancer within ten seconds of seeing a patient are to be publically humiliated and chastised by an idiot in government who couldn’t diagnose a missing head.

I was under the impression that doctors (the medical kind, not the proper ones) were human beings with all the inherent flaws of that species. Feeling a bit tired one day, a bit distracted another day, seeing a set of symptoms that match a particular infection they have seen before – but also matching a cancer they have not seen before.

Cancer can be said to be common if you include all the little benign ones that nobody pays any attention to, like that mole that hasn’t changed in fifty years. If it changes, especially if it gets all uppity and decides it wants to be a bigger percentage of your body mass, then get it checked out. As long as it does what normal moles do – nothing at all – leave it alone.

Deadly cancers are not common. They get more common when you get old because, you know, you’ve been driving that body around for 90 years and bits are going to wear out. Specifically, that immune system that has, all along, been dealing with cells that try to turn cancerous and finally decides ‘sod it, I’m going to let one grow to see what it does’.

By the time the immune system thinks ‘Oh. That’s what it does,’ it’s far too late.

Some cancers form lumps you can feel. Breast and testicular cancers can be felt from the outside, but even then, the lump might be a cyst or an abscess and not cancerous at all (but still unpleasant). Pancreatic cancer is a tough one. The pancreas is right in the middle, under your stomach, and has no pain receptors. A cancer in there won’t show symptoms until it’s well advanced. There is no way to feel for lumps without drilling a hole big enough to put your hand into.

“Well, the good news is that he didn’t have pancreatic cancer.”

“But, Doc, he’s dead.”

“Yeah, that happens a lot. We’re starting to think it might be the wrong type of drill.”

Okay, let’s look at it from the medic’s point of view. You might be the thirtieth he’s seen today and the other twenty-nine might have been hypochondriacs, shirkers looking for sick notes, and smokophobes I have talked with. Doctors see a lot of people convinced they have cancer when they don’t, thanks to the incessant scare stories put out by the media, charities, and cruel buggers fed up with hand-waving harridans. Faced with some vague symptoms described in a vague way by someone with no medical training and with only Blair’s vague idea of education to help them articulate, what is the doctor to do?

If he assumes it might be cancer every time then the consultants are going to come round to his surgery and stitch his fingers to his toes and his tongue to his navel. They do that when they are annoyed. It’s never reported, the BMA hush it up, but that’s what they do.

If they assume it might not be cancer then if it is, the patient might die. What they tend to do is say ‘Come back in a week or so and we’ll see if it’s better or worse’ because if it’s just a general malaise or a low-level infection it should have started to clear up by then.

But some cancers progress slowly. There might not be any change after a couple of weeks. It’s not better but it’s no worse either. There are no lumps in evidence, no bleeding from anywhere, nothing to definitely diagnose anything at all. Unless it’s leukaemia, the blood tests might not show anything. Perhaps they show an elevated white blood cell count – could mean anything: infection, cancer, stress, anything.

The complaints about having to make multiple visits to a doctor before cancer is suspected are unfounded. It can take multiple visits before cancer is even suspected. It is not as common as the charities dependent on it pretend. It is especially not common in the young. There are many, many things that can cause vague feelings of unwellness, fatigue and internal pain. Curries and whisky, if overdone, can cause that, but if it’s a case of  curryitis whiskalia, no need to trouble the doctor. It usually clears up by the afternoon.

Add into this the vague terms used by many patients who end every sentence with ‘innit’ and the absence of any surface evidence of damage and the waves of hypochondriacs and sick-note scroungers and it starts to become easy to see why doctors can sometimes miss a real case.

Then there is The Question.

“Do you smoke?”

Answer ‘No’ and cancer goes straight to the bottom of the list of possibilities. This is not the doctor’s fault. According to the NHS, if you live your life as directed by the Healthist religion, there can never be anything wrong with you and you will never die. NHS doctors have that drummed into them.

The same goes for “How much alcohol do you drink?” Answer ‘None at all’ and a whole range of possibilites are crossed off at once. Average weight for your height? Can’t be diabetes then.

The baker who used to work at Local Shop was, more than once in the few months our paths crossed, carted off in an ambulance because he had fallen into a diabetic coma. I’ve met him in passing since and it has happened again in his new job. He is not at all fat, he eats none of his own baking, drinks no booze at all, and looks like he has spent a lot of time in a gym. Lucky for him he was diagnosed as Type 1 diabetic before all the current lifestyle control nonsense took over. Any doctor would look at him now and think ‘Not obese. Can’t be diabetic’.

He does smoke though so he’d still get all the tests. If he didn’t smoke they’d let him die and never understand why that happened.

I’ve said it many times – if you have never smoked, never drank a drop of hard booze, never scoffed a cheeseburger, tell the doctor you used to. You will get tested for everything. You become a potential notch on the lifestyle-related-disease scorecard and they will search you for anything at all that could be wrong with you.

Not to help you. To get another datapoint for the statistics. ‘Look, look, this guy has seborrheic dermatitis, and he smokes. Therefore it is caused by smoking, That’s a new one for the list’. They love to jump to conclusions and to hell with the science.

As a side effect though, they will find what is wrong with you. It is worth it.

None of those news stories about ‘they missed my cancer’ ever include the line ‘I smoked for years and they didn’t think to check for cancer’ because if you tell them you smoke, it’s the first thing they look for.

Tell them you have never smoked and it’s the last thing they look for.

Worth keeping in mind, I’d say.


Are you sitting comfortably? Then you must die.

We are now well used to being told that smoking causes cancer, drinking causes cancer, sugar, salt, sunlight and soft toilet paper… and just about everything else in the world causes cancer. Oh, I forgot cosmic rays. Everything in the entire universe causes cancer in humans. But only in humans. The universe hates us and sees us as its biggest ever error, so is turning every part of itself carcinogenic in an attempt to eradicate us before we escape this tumour/planet and metastasise throughout the galaxies. The universe is trying chemotherapy on itself.

Everything we experience causes cancer because people who get cancer are also people who experience these things and in the post-logic world of NewScience, correlation is causation. People who drive cars sometimes crash those cars, people who don’t drive cars never crash cars, so crashing is a direct and definite result of driving. If you drive, you will crash, because only drivers crash and (post-logic world, remember) all drivers will crash eventually. Some hospital workers will be along shortly to tell us how they have seen the terrible results of driving, patients dying in pain, broken and twisted with tubes in every orifice, and they will tell us how driving ruins lives and all drivers are doomed to suffer the same fate.

This is the logic that tells the drones that all smokers will get cancer, all drinkers will become alcoholics, anyone drinking a can of sugary fizz will become obese, and so on. Even when observation is wildly at odds with their crazed imaginings, those crazed imaginings are reality and real reality is wrong. Nowhere is this more obvious than in the Church of Climatology, where we are routinely treated to ‘there will be no more snow in the UK’ and six months later, ‘oops, we didn’t order any grit or snow ploughs because the Climatologists said we wouldn’t need them’. Meanwhile we are farting bubbles in the snow and trying to move away before it escapes the snowline at our chests.

Everyone sits down now and then. I like it, especially since I now have a job that does not involve it at all. Journalists sit down a lot because they are writing up their stories. I wonder if the one who wrote this story was sweating profusely as he/she/it typed?

Yes, in Expert Land, sitting down gives you cancer. Why? Well, because everyone who gets cancer has sat down, therefore… oh, it’s not hard to work it out, it’s not even science.

This does mean that those confined to wheelchairs should all be lumpier than my grandmother’s gravy (my father used to ask whether he should carve the chicken or the gravy first, but even he dared not say it to her face). Those wheelchair athletes on the Paralympics must be CGI fakes since according to the post-logic science, anyone who has been seated that long must now be so lumpy that the Elephant Man goes to freak shows to look at them.

All those ASH drones who trawl the internet looking for smokers to abuse are now at greater risk of lung cancer than the people they pretend are attacking them. All those Experts who are typing up reports are at far greater risk of lung cancer than the smokers forced to stand outside to smoke – because they do not allow seating in the risible ‘shelters’.

All the nonsmokers sitting in the pub chortling about their mates outside with their coffin nails… you sitters are now at greater risk of cancer than the standing smokers.

All those fat arses on green seats in the House of Commons… the seats are plain green to deter their sitting addiction and there, right in front of them (well, in front of their arses but since that’s where they speak from, in front/behind becomes hard to differentiate) is proof that plain green packaging deters nobody. They are at greater risk of cancer, including lung cancer, than smokers. Their seats are plain green and still they sit. Such a powerful addiction!

Sitting is more addictive than heroin, and then people sit on each other’s laps. Second hand sitting! We are all doomed! Children are encouraged to sit on adult laps and are even told to ‘sit down’. Forced to, in school, all day. Child abuse! Won’t someone think of the cheeldren?

Or, as a general call to all politicians and whatever is left of science out there – won’t someone THINK? No, I suppose that’s old-fashioned now. Thinking is what old people and retrograde youth engage in. Modern, progressive people prefer knee-jerk reaction based on prejudice and manufactured data twisted into a Moebius strip so that you can go round and round without ever coming to a conclusion.

Well, tonight I have eaten bacon (fried, not grilled), a couple of jam doughnuts and a blueberry muffin, some salad leaves to negate all the calories, and am currently sitting, smoking and drinking all at once. And I am not dead. Not even ill. Am I a statistical anomaly or am I, as I suspect, well within the bell curve? My theory holds that most people actually live like me and that those who follow the whims of the Healthists are the anomalies. They are vocal anomalies, used to full effect by the smug and pompous politicians who are in turn merely hand-puppets for the unelected proctological Righteous.

Add the sedentary lifestyle to my list of Things I Do To Defy The Healthists and I must have died twenty years ago. All that exercise at work does not matter, according to the article. Spending hours sitting around writing is yet another thing that has killed me already. A Healthist prediction of my remaining lifespan must surely be a negative number.

So… if I am officially dead, why am I paying tax? I should get a big granite headboard for my bed that says ‘Here lies Leg-iron, not dead, only sleeping, but maybe dead, best give him a nudge and check’.

Later I will commission a gravestone that says ‘Not sleeping, actually dead this time’.

There are those who say that sitting is unnatural for humans, and that it is the position of the sit that causes all the problems. To which I reply with a scientific term I have used a lot in recent years – ‘Bollocks’.

Monkeys sit on things. They’ll sit on chairs if they have them but they also sit on logs or rocks. Dogs sit. Cats sit. On chairs, if you aren’t looking. They sit in a different way because they have a different body shape, but still they sit.

Chairs were not designed by a carcinogenic sadist who then forced everyone in the world to assume an unnatural position. They were designed to provide a more comfortable place to sit than a random rock or fallen tree. If they were not comfortable, the chair maker wouldn’t sell any. He’d have to rethink his design, maybe leave out the central spike even though it ruins the aesthetics and does mean people could slide off when drunk. Perhaps put the chair arms at elbow level rather than shoulder level. Add legs to raise the seat off the floor. Increase the number of legs from one to three or four to improve stability. Oh, considerable research and much trial and error was involved in the final design of the chair.

I don’t for a moment believe that chairs are carcinogenic. It is insanely ridiculous unless you have a chair made of plutonium and if you had that much plutonium in one place we’d all know about it by now.

But I know quite a few people who will believe it. They will believe that sitting is more dangerous than smoking and I know of a few who sit while smoking! Even more who sit around talking about the smokers standing outside. Can I resist playing with this new absurdity? Am I likely to even try to resist?


It’s probably an addiction. Everything else is now.

Not to eat Flesh nor Fish, that is the Law. Are we not Men?

Everyone will recognise that line from ‘The Island of Dr. Moreau’ by H. G. Wells. A great book but made into a lousy film. I lost my copy a long time ago. Must get another one.

In that story, Dr. Moreau made people. He made them out of animals using surgery and pain, then he sent them to live on another part of the island because none of them were really successful. Well, when you want to make a human, starting with a leopard is just making things difficult for yourself. He did try an ape, which was better but still not a success.

To control his Failed Men (nothing to do with an entirely different short story by, I think, Brian Aldiss) he gave them Laws. A series of statements, each followed by ‘Are we not Men?’ (but he didn’t add ‘We are Devo’) – that was to instill pride and guilt in equal measure. As long as they followed the Laws, they could consider themselves Men, not animals. The Doc had to curb their tendency to revert to type, which would be very dangerous indeed when you have Men made out of bears and tigers.

I never saw any real-life allegory in that story. It was just a story. Maybe ol’ H.G. thought it was just a story too. I wonder if it came from a whisky dream? It does have that quality about it… but I digress and that’s not a good thing. It’s going to be hard to force this post to a point anyway!

Lately there have been more and more news stories telling us how eating meat will make us all die. Newsflash – not eating meat will also make you die. You are going to die. Forget about it, there is nothing at all you can do about it, so just have a good time while you can. You really don’t want to face that Grimy Reaper (he tried showering but the water just went straight through) and think of all the things you could have done, the things you could have tried, but denied yourself because the medics told you you would die if you did them. It’s too late when the scythe swings.

Maybe we don’t meet him. Maybe Ray Bradbury’s story ‘The Scythe’ in ‘The October Country’ is right. Maybe the Reaper does it all remotely. Maybe now he does it with an iScythe.

Anyway. ‘They’ want us to not eat animals because… well I don’t know why. Maybe they want all the bacon for themselves, the greedy fat bastards, or maybe it’s all part of the plan to destroy any kind of successful business. If nobody ate bacon, what would happen to all the pig farms?

It’s not about ‘saving the animals’ because if nobody ate any pork products there would not be a live pig in the country within a week. They’d all be shot and sent to China where they eat anything. HoiSin sauce is a wonderful invention. It really doesn’t matter what meat is soaked in it, it always tastes great.

By now we are well used to the idea of smoking causing things it cannot possibly cause, like dandruff, soft shoulder, the onset of the nadgers, spots before the ankles and general lurgi (fortunately there is a cure) so it will surely come as no surprise that meat now causes lumps in the lady lumps.

I don’t have lady lumps so pass the bacon this way. So far, despite the title, we can still eat seafood because that is so very ethically produced.

Ladies, if you don’t want bacon to cause boob cancer, may I suggest you stop padding your bras with it? We know why you do it – you’ll snare a man in an instant with a pound of bacon and you know it. When engaged in an extended session of ‘put your face between them and go blblblbl blblblbl blblblbl’, a snack is always appreciated but please don’t put your health at risk on our account. You can just hand us a bacon sarnie when we come up for air. It will work just the same. As long as it’s made with real butter and brown sauce, we are yours to command.

The report was, of course, in that propaganda hack-rag the British Medical Journal. It used to be a respected scientific journal, once. Now it’s trying to swap places with the Sunday Sport.

Also in the British Meddling Journal is the report that says ‘you need expensive drugs, you just don’t know it yet‘.

Really. If you are not diabetic, you will be. Unless you boost the drug dealer’s profits by accepting free drugs paid for out of your taxes and that you have no need to take because you aren’t ill. If your blood sugar is a little too high, skip a doughnut. It’s far safer than sucking down random chemicals devised solely to make sure the head of the company can afford three more Bugattis and a moped. Pharmaceuticals are not made for your benefit. They are made for profit. No other reason.

The entire medical profession have become drug pushers for the Pharmers. It’s all they do now.

If you eat the natural food your guts are designed to deal with, you will die in horrible agony. To live forever you must ingest artificial chemicals whose sole purpose is profit for someone else. And you will still die. Of nothing.

But hey, let’s not get too depressed. Let’s end with a song… for the BMJ.


Drawing on the rigging, and other stories.

A mixed bag tonight. There will be random subject changes, sometimes without warning. All sorts of things in the news presented themselves for both rage and wonder, so here’s a bit of rage to start off with.

On the radio at work (I think it was tuned to Northsound) there was a pitiful horrible bastard child whining about the deadly second hand smoke that you cannot see or smell, but which spends five hours wandering through every room in your house after every cigarette. Presumably it then hides under children’s beds until they fall asleep, only to emerge in the dead of night and break their toys.

Okay, drones. You believe in the existence of a terrifying thing that is totally undetectable? I can go along with that. Let the games commence. You will never know when you are breathing in tobacco smoke. It can travel upwind and across continents (heck, if they believe it can pass through solid walls, they’ll believe anything). It accumulates into vast invisible clouds with no smell and these clouds stay at ground level forever. These clouds can be five miles wide – and you might be right in the middle of one now. You will not know until you get The Lumps.

This is what you believe, antismokers. This is the stuff that makes Scientology look mainstream. If you can be convinced that second hand smoke is invisible and odourless then you are doomed to an existence of permanent terror, a Hell to make Satan clasp his hands in admiration at the simplicty and cheapness of it all. No flames, no pitchforks, nothing real at all. Just the permanent fear that the invisible and odourless demon might be all around you at any moment. Get out of that. Oh, but you can’t – maybe you’re not in a SHS cloud right now but think you are, so you move over there – but maybe that’s where the cloud is!

Best stay home but then there are smokers outside and the Doom Cloud can pass through solid walls and closed windows. Basically, you are fucked. Ha ha ha.

There can be no escape when you can’t see what you’re running from. You might just run straight into it. Straight into the welcoming arms of Death.

Speaking of running, just what is the ‘Run for Life’ rubbish all about? You cannot outrun cancer. You cannot threaten it or reason with it. It is made of you. You can avoid Salmonella or Listeria or Scrumpox or Llandudno Neck or Taiwanese willy rot by being careful not to get infected. Cancer arises within you. There are a lot of different causes (the invisible Doom Clouds are only one thing to fear in this delightfully fresh Hell) including genetic defects you didn’t know you had – and sometimes it just happens. Nature is like that. Random and sometimes vindictive. For the lulz.

There is a simple way to determine whether you are likely to have been born with a genetic defect. Do you believe in the existence of smoke that is invisible and odourless? If the answer is yes, then you are seriously defective and should pester your doctor daily until he kills you in a fit of exasperated rage. There is no other cure.

(calm interlude)

I still have my grandfather’s watch chain. Solid silver, hallmarked on every link. I have never considered selling it no matter how desperate things have been. He wore it in the first World War when, as he often said, he died fighting so little swines like my brother and I could go around shouting and fighting and generally being a pain in the arse. A shouted ‘I died in the war for sods like you’ could shut us up in an instant. Confusion is a powerful weapon.

I have no idea how old the actual chain is. He had attached a few coins to it, the French one and the Arabic one (I have no idea which country) are probably from places he was fighting in. The American dime is likely to be a trade from an American soldier he fought alongside. Unless he switched sides, but if he did he didn’t say. I doubt it. He was not impressed with Uncle Herbie’s Hells Angel gear. I have some of his old badges too, one of which is an SS cap badge.

The American coin on that chain is dated 1916 so two years from now, the chain will be a minimum of 100 years old. I will have a party for it. Maybe Mrs. Queen could be induced to send it a telegram. Is that a stunt I could pull off? It has to be worth a try. It’ll be easier if Dopey is on the throne by then, but then again it’s hardly worth tricking Dopey. Fish in a barrel. No, Mrs. Queen is a wily one and she has Cynical Phil on her team. Tricking those two would be a real challenge.

(/calm interlude)

Again via #Octabber on Farcebok – another smoker for Frank’s smoker’s graveyard. This old man was hammered by the antismokers for no real reason at all until his health finally failed him. He will be classed as a ‘premature death due to smoking’. He was taken from us at the tender age of 90. How much longer would he have lived if not for petty, spiteful and (as his own case demonstrates) nonsensical claims that smokers die young?

Meanwhile, the drones are still breathing in that odourless, invisible death. I hope the bastards choke on it. And I hope their cheeldren wake up screaming every night because of something that isn’t even real. Most children do at some point but this time, their drone parents can’t tell them it’s not real because they are stupid enough to believe in it too.

I have converted another at work to pure leaf. This one doesn’t want to buy it so I have given them seeds. A bit late to get flowers but they’ll get leaf. I almost converted one of the bakers to pure leaf but she was only on one or two a day, then she got a bun in the oven so stopped altogether. I am not going to even try to tell her about my chain smoking auntie whose sons are all strapping huge lads. I am not going to prevent her stopping smoking because I know she lost one in the past, and every precaution should be taken.

In fact I will never try to convince anyone who wants to stop smoking to carry on. Smoking is a choice and should remain so. If you smoke but don’t want to do it, don’t do it any more. If you smoke, become pregnant, and believe all the stuff about smoking turning your baby into a kipper, then stop smoking. The stress of worrying about it will do more harm than the smoking. Stop, and lose the stress.

I have rarely bought food from a Subway shop. We do have one locally but I am rarely looking for food while they are open. My hours are odd, and more suited to the curry houses. Which is okay. I really like curry.

Now it seems that Subway are taking bacon off the menu and having Halal-only shops. This is likely to wipe them out as fast as the pubs that embraced ‘no-smoking’ before the smoking ban.

They claim that their Halal meat comes from animals that are stunned before slaughter. This is a prime example of the stupidity of those suited monkeys who consider themselves intelligent. If the animal is not fully conscious when killed then it is not Halal. If it could be stunned before slaughter and still be Halal then there would never have been a problem. Subway is thus evidently run by morons. Do you want to eat food prepared by morons? You can if you like. Speaking as an intestinal microbiologist with 30 years of experience, I am not touching any of it.

I don’t care about Halal but I do like bacon. If I am hungry mid-day, a bacon roll is my preference. So if Subway don’t sell bacon I will go elsewhere – no problem for me, no problem for them. Their business, their choice. My favourite curry shop will not sell me a bacon sandwich either. I do not expect them to. I have another source of readymade bacon sandwiches and it will never be Subway.  Since they now sell no bacon, have never sold curries and are evidently run by idiots, I see no reason to trouble them at all.

Finally, the point of the title.

A Thing has been invented,  a wonderful Thing with endless possibilities for small scale model makers. Imagine fitting the rigging onto a 1/600th scale ship just by drawing it with a pen. In the air. Yes, from September this year, it will be possible. It’s expensive now and will remain so until after Christmas but then I bet the price will drop.

Sometime, even today, science still manages to do something actually useful. What a pity it is more and more the commercial side, and less and less the old ‘blue (now grey) sky’ science that comes up with innovation.

The future is like the past. Real science, real invention, will depend on private money. And maybe that’s not a bad thing at all.

If you are spending your money on your idea, you’ll be a damn sight more frugal than if you were spending mine.

I wonder how much of her own money the Dreadful Arnott has ploughed into the cause she so believes in? My bet is … none.

What’s your bet?

Food Righteous take a stand.

We have to start categorising these various forms of Righteous. They’re all the same, really, they use the same techniques, they just have different bandwagons to ride.

Yesterday, the EcoRighteous made a tentative grab for SmokeRighteous territory by claiming that autism was caused by pollution, and that breathing in pollution was really bad for you. They stopped short of claiming lung diseases as part of their empire – this time.

Today it’s the FoodRighteous who are taking the blow. I think it’s still safe to trust research from Cambridge, certainly more than from some of the backwater agenda-driven propaganda centres that used to merit the description of ‘university’.

Well, it turns out that sticking to butter and rejecting the plastic alternatives was the right thing to do all along. No wonder the medics see me no more than roughly once a decade. I’ve been ignoring all their advice.

This line must have puckered the anuses of every Righteous who saw it:

‘Poor diet (even in normal weight people) is responsible for more disease than physical inactivity, alcohol and smoking combined.

And this one, the Pharmers, the processed food lot and the supplement sellers. The sewers will be running dry and Righteous bowels bulging.

‘Furthermore nutritional supplements have no proven benefit for the vast majority of people when it’s better for the body to gain essential nutrients from just eating real food.’

Haaahahaha! The foodies claim precedence over the FatRighteous, the BoozeRighteous and the SmokeRighteous in one fell swoop.

The research was not, naturally, conducted by the FoodRighteous but by actual scientists – which is why there is this Righteous response from the British Heart Foundation:

‘Alongside taking any necessary medication, the best way to stay heart healthy is to stop smoking, stay active, and ensure our whole diet is healthy – and this means considering not only the fats in our diet but also our intake of salt, sugar and fruit and vegetables.’

You can smell the panic, can’t you? Everything is in there. Keep taking the pills, keep doing exactly what we tell you and living as we instruct. Obey! Obey! OBEY!

I… O…bey. In my own way. They say we can have two drinks of red wine a night. I currently have eleven bottles of red in the rack, enough for five and a half days. Best stock up. I wouldn’t want to fall behind the guidelines.

Which reminds me – must get a few bottles of whisky in too, before the price rockets in the budget. They put those prices up the moment they are announced. The Righteous make little mention of whisky so I assume that’s ad lib then.

It’s nice to see real science leaking out from behind the veil of lunacy once in a while. It tries again in an article on ancient cancer. Yet the contradiction is in there and the obvious is ignored. Not quite, guys, but good to see you trying.

They found the bones of a youngish (30-ish) man who was riddled with cancer. The trouble was, he died 3200 years ago, long before Marlboro Man was born. It seems cancer is a rare thing to find in such old bones. Which is not hard to explain.

1) It can kill you without getting into the bones if it starts in the right place.

2) Living in those times, being debilitated by anything could mean starving to death long before any disease finished you.

3) Cancer is mostly an old-age issue and old age, 3200 years ago, would have averaged about forty. It would have been rare because young-people cancers are rare, and the old people were almost all dead.

4) We know what it is now. We can diagnose it (as long as you say you smoke, otherwise they won’t bother looking). 3200 years ago, you just had ‘the lumps’ or whatever they called it and they treated you by sticking leeches onto you or cutting a hole in your skull or just beating you to death as a devil-created aberration.

So really, the rarity of cancer in ancient bones is not a surprise.

They can’t blame this one on Benson and Hedges so what have they come up with as a possible explanation for this dismantled young man and his holey bones?

The researchers could only speculate on the cause of the cancer, with theories being carcinogens such as smoke from wood fires, genetic factors or from an infectious disease caused by parasites.

Whoops. The SmokeRighteous don’t want to hear about genetic predisposition or cancer caused by infectious disease (an increasing number of viruses have been found to do it, you know). That would mean it’s not all caused by smoking and that would never do. It would also confuse much of the medical profession.

But smoke from wood fires? There’s the contradiction. These ancient cancer finds are extremely rare but in the timescale spanning the dawn of humanity to about 1970, everyone heated their homes with… fire. Up until roughly 1700 or maybe later, most houses didn’t have chimneys (the posh ones did but the plebs didn’t). The fire was in the middle and the smoke filtered out through the thatched roof. Inside, it reeked of bonfire all the time.

So if burning wood caused cancer, then cancer in old bones should be extremely common, not extremely rare. Pandering to the SmokeRighteous damages research. As does pandering to any of their idiot relatives.

Nice to see some real science being spoken aloud again. Especially since it must mean that these real scientists are starting to feel secure enough to speak out. Until now, such things were career-enders but if enough of them hit the cracks with hammers, they will break the Righteous wall. A few are speaking out and that is all it takes – the Righteous have nothing on their side but illusion and control of the gullible. A few start shouting them down and all those previously scared for their careers will join in.

I suppose it had to start with Cambridge or Oxford. It really needed the big guns to fire first. A missive from a polytechnic would have been wiped away like a bug on a Righteous windscreen.

It won’t change overnight. If it did I’d go back to science but I am six years from pension now and it might take longer. All the same, it has started. The junk science is being tested and shown to be junk, and those in the know aren’t keeping it quiet.

I wonder which Righteous group will be hit tomorrow? There are so many to choose from.

There can be only one.

Only one ‘main cause’ of anything.

The WHO, bastions of recycling (of their only idea) and with imaginations that would embarrass a lizard, have decided to claim that air pollution is now the number one cause of lung cancer.

It still isn’t quite true but they are closer. However, they cannot make this claim. As one commenter points out –

R A Browne, Liverpool, United Kingdom, – Sorry WHO but the anti smoking lobby have already claimed smoking is the number one killer, you will have to be number two, not so important I’m afraid. Unless of course the anti smoking lobby lied…. naah would never happen.

You cannot claim more than one primary cause so the War on Cars is going to come up against the army of antismoking drones they have already created. Frankenstein’s monster indeed. WHO didn’t see that coming.

They have blamed everything from asthma to zoonoses on smoking now. There is no other cause of anything. Nonsmokers with cancer get turned away from surgeries every day. Smoking causes everything so nothing else can be blamed. The next gravy train is stalled at the station before the avaricious embark. When they let the antismoking gravy train go first, they didn’t realise it would scuttle all the other engines on the way out.

The War on Smokers continues but it has scuppered all the other Wars on Things. Alcohol cannot be the leading cause of throat cancer because smoking already is. Pollution cannot be the leading cause of lung cancer because smoking already is. In fact, any cancer you care to name has been pinned as a smoking-related cancer now. As have most other illnesses and disorders, including dandruff.

We have a new baker at work. Very nice woman, younger than me but not too much younger, we get along well. She has been there about three months. As she left today I was outside for a smoke. She said ‘I didn’t think you were a smoker?’ She is not an antismoker, just a normal nonsmoker. She is not the first by a long way to assume I don’t smoke – and I was once asked by someone who knew I smoked ‘Why don’t you smell of smoke?’ It’s because I wash regularly and don’t stand in fires.

So. We all smell, we all look haggard, we all have yellow fingers (that has more to do with what/how you smoke than how much) and yet in three months, this woman has not identified me as a smoker? I am there six days a week, sometimes seven. And yet I am invisible to nonsmokers unless they see me in the act of smoking. How can this be? Have the drones been lied to? Have they been duped? I don’t think any answer is necessary.

One good thing – their fear of second hand smoke stops them burning down tobacconists.

Oh, and why did lung cancer take off in the 1950s? The answer is here, from a long-ago Captain Ranty post I can’t find now. This is the death that dare not speak its name. The total is tallied in the bottom right of the image and it only goes up to the end of 1998. Two thousand and fifty three nuclear bombs were fired up to fifteen years ago. There have been more since.

And the drones are scared of breathing the smoke from half a gram of burning leaf.

In a statement released after reviewing the literature, the Lyon-based agency said both air pollution and particulate matter – a major component of it – would now be classified among its Group 1 human carcinogens.

That ranks them alongside more than 100 other known cancer-causing substances in IARC’s Group 1, including asbestos, plutonium, silica dust, ultraviolet radiation and tobacco smoke.

They just can’t let it go, can they? Tobacco smoke is as bad as plutonium. The drones will believe it and I will refer them to this article when telling them that smokers glow in the dark.

Sadly, when it comes to letting go of indoctrination, neither can the most wonderul woman in the world. She, too, equates tobacco smoke with nuclear fallout. Even though when most people smoked and there was no fallout… but let’s allow the drones to pretend they are right.

It’s more fun that way.

One day I will kill someone with words. The antismokers bring that  day closer and it will be one of theirs that succumbs.

It won’t be anyone worth keeping.

The horror… the horror…

In a modern remake of ‘Apocalypse Now’, Marlon Brando might utter those words in response to the news that tobacco companies are advertising something they are allowed to advertise because it’s not tobacco.

It’s not even their invention. Quite why they are spending so much to advertise something smaller companies have been selling for ages seems strange, but in big-company budget terms they are probably doing it on the cheap.

They are not trying to entice children to take up vaping. That is ridiculous. What they are doing is something that boils my piss because it is something all big companies do. What they are doing is attempting to overshadow and then wipe out small-business competition. When they’ve done it, they can put their prices up or stop bothering with Electrofag and get the ex-smokers back on the baccy.

I’ve seen big supermarkets do it to small local shops time and again. They sell a wide range of paint cheap until Local Paint Shop folds, then they sell white and magnolia only. They wiped out Local Lightbulb Shop, who sold lightbulbs for all manner of ancient and strange devices, then settled into the ‘main market’ range. They sell bestseller books at prices no real bookshop could possibly match and when Local Bookshop died, they put the prices up. Tesco, here, now sell a range of ‘local books by local authors’ at prices that would have kept Local Bookshop alive if they had been able to match Tesco price on even one Harry Potter book.

They don’t sell any of mine so screw ’em. I don’t want them selling mine. The author’s cut of the price is whatever is left after printer, publisher and bookseller have made their profit. Selling books in Tesco might make you famous but it won’t make you rich. I want it the other way around.

The tobacco companies hate Electrofag and would love to see it eradicated. They aren’t bothered by the Pharmers’ patches and gum because they don’t work so are no threat at all. Electrofag is a real threat to tobacco companies. Even I, a dedicated bonfire-in-the-face sort, have a range of electrofags to play with. They are great gadgets and for those who want to stop real-smoking, they are the best way to do it.

Electrofag is also a serious threat to the health lobby. The health experts are concerned – of course they are. They are not concerned about health. They are concerned that their gravy train could be derailed if there was a version of ‘smoking’ they cannot blame for all known ills, and which means they can’t sell patches and gum containing the only thing Electrofag contains.

It might also mean they have to do some work. As it is, the papers give us daily reports of people who were sent home diagnosed with migraines, only to die days later of brain tumours. Also all those reports of ‘I can’t understand how I have cancer, I have never smoked’. I’m not going into a long explanation of cancer aetiology, I don’t care enough any more. You’re going to die and I am sick of explaining why. As to how to avoid it, it’s not hard, you work it out. When you get old it’s just going to happen. If you smoke they’ll catch it far earlier than if you don’t, soon only smokers will be alive and you antismokers did that. Isn’t life funny?

I advise all never-smokers, if they visit the doctor with something they think is really bad, to claim to be ex-smokers. When the GP says ‘do you smoke’, never say ‘I have never smoked’ because that wipes a whole raft of terrible illnesses fromn the GP’s mind.

Say instead ‘Oh, I gave that up five years ago’ and watch the GP’s eyes light up. They will then test for smoking-related diseases and these days that’s all of them, even dandruff. You will get an MOT the likes of which you have never seen before. Every cell in your body will get a makeover and the big difference between you and the never-smoker who proudly boasts about it is that in your case, they are looking for cancer. Actively looking for it. In every bit of your body. They won’t miss a single wart and they will triple-check every mole.

Say you have never smoked and they start from the premise that whatever you have, it can’t be cancer.  Even if you have an unsightly lump the size of Liverpool hanging off your neck. Can’t be cancer if you don’t smoke. ‘It’s just a big lump, nothing to worry about, have an aspirin and get out of the way. I have a smoker scheduled next’.

Do they get paid extra for adding to the ‘smoking related diseases’ databases? I have no idea, but it really would not surprise me.

We have entered the antismokers’ ‘Sloppytember’ nonsense. I thought they had forgotten about it this year but at last night’s Smoky-Drinky there was a TV ad. In this ad, lots of Righteous puffed into a big balloon with many puff-holes and with no regard for hygeine at all. See, if a nonsmoker put their mouth there before that’s okay. It is now impossible for a nonsmoker to have any disease at all even if they are dying of it. Even rolling this balloon along the street and getting total strangers to suck on its teats is just fine and dandy.  Feckin’ idiots. Still, natural selection and all that, eh?

I’d like to see a similar balloon filled by smokers – take a drag and puff it in – rolled up to ASH headquarters and popped. We’d wipe ours with alcohol swabs which the Righteous are not allowed to use in case it addicts them. It can have that effect on the brain-use-challenged.

Maybe we could do this in Octabber? We do have Halloween in our bit, which we can have some fun with. They have nothing of consequence in theirs.

The horror…the horror… the fun to have…



Chill, and lower the risk of lumps.

It’s about thirty years since I started saying that stress could be a major cause of cancer, or at least an exacerbating factor. About that time, I found out what stress does to your guts and it’s pretty dramatic. Stress can change the pH of your intestines by a lot, make them more alkaline, completely wreck the balance of your normal bacterial population and leave you more open to pathogens like Salmonella and Shigella. At the same time, turning your guts alkaline whacks your Lactobacilli which are your best defence against a lot of nasty squirt-bugs and even if you don’t get a squirt-bug, the meddled-with bacteria might decide it’s time to leave en masse.

There is nothing physically external happening to your body in this case – your brain is doing it all. In non-science terms: Stress is making your brain panic and fiddle around with hormone levels and that cascades into all sorts of cellular changes while the rest of the body tries to work out what the hell the admin department wants it to do. Just like in most big companies now.

In that situation, a precancerous cell (we all have them, all the time) has the ideal opportunity to turn cancerous and a benign tumour (a lot of us have those and don’t know, and never will because they stay small and benign) has the chance to metastasize.

When you are stressed, your immune system is running about looking for a threat that isn’t there. It’s just your brain sending out ‘Panic!’ messages.

A short burst of stress isn’t dangerous. Precancerous cells aren’t lurking, waiting for their chance. It’s a lottery – if the precancer turns to cancer while your immune system is distracted, it has a chance to grow. If it turns when the immune system is merely prowling, then it gets slapped down hard.

Sure, some will still get past that system, even if you’re cooler than a penguin’s feet. Other external causes – radiation, virus infection, many more – can cause so many cancer cells to appear at once that the immune system has no chance to stop them all. It only takes one big cancer to kill you.

There’s not much you can do about radiation other than coat yourself in lead, and lead’s toxic too so that won’t really help. You could avoid viruses by becoming a hermit and living halfway up a mountain in a cave – but viruses can have animal vectors too.

There’s not even much you can do about airborne particulates. Even if the oil runs out, someone will revive the old steam-powered cars and run them on coal or wood.

One thing you can do is to say ‘Oh what the hell, I can’t do anything about those things so I’m not going to worry about any of them’ and that stress release will improve your chances of staying non-lumpy.

It does not guarantee you’ll be forever lumpless, nothing can guarantee that. Sometimes, when cells divide, they simply get it wrong and there are millions of them in you. Most of the time a passing lymphocyte gets its taser out and deals with them. Once in a while, one goes unnoticed. No point worrying about this because there is absolutely nothing you can avoid as a ’cause’. There is no ’cause’, it’s just bad luck. Worrying about it actually makes it more likely to happen.

Stress is often seen as a cop-out. ‘Oh, he’s off work with stress, can’t take the pace, eh?’ but stress has real physical effects.

I know a few people who will read about an illness, convince themselves they have it and produce real symptoms when there is nothing wrong with them at all. Yes, they are stupid to read that stuff but psychosomatic illnesses can feel very real to those experiencing them. Sometimes I loan those people micriobiological disease catalogues out of a benevloent sense of malevolence and because it really is incredibly funny.

I don’t think I’ve ever had a psychosomatic illness but can I be sure? I do have a lot of books about diseases here and have read many more – is it possible I subconsciously convinced myself I had one of them? Then ‘recovered’ from something that was never there? Given my determined avoidance of the quacks and shamen of the NHS, I cannot rule it out.

As I have described in the past, it’s not at all hard to induce a psychosomatic effect, as long as you don’t push it too far. All it takes is a steady voice and a gullible drone who already believes in modern medical mythology. Yes, I really have induced chest-tightening, breathlessness and tingling in the extremities in antismoking morons just by talking to them. I have not induced cancer, or at least I didn’t think I had.

Then again, if I sufficiently raised their stress levels over a long enough period, maybe I did.

You know what? I’m not going to worry about it.

Smokers are like that. We don’t worry too much about things. That’s why those who are forced to stop smoking get stressed and often break out in lumps as a result.

I can think of three people off the top of my head who stopped smoking for no other reason than they didn’t want to smoke any more. Nothing to do with health or money or NHS-inspired guilt trips, one day they just lit up and thought ‘Nah’.

They did not become antismokers, they did not suffer any withdrawal at all, no stress, no need for doctors or medication. It was the same as when I gave up train spotting – that was because the real trains were all replaced by faceless maggot trains that looked like a set of carriages running with no engine, all windows were sealed so you couldn’t poke your head out, we weren’t allowed to ride in the guards’ vans any more and all this was long before the smoking ban. It just stopped being fun so I stopped doing it. The smoking ban’s extension to many stations just means I’ll never go back to it.

So it was with those three ex-smokers. They don’t care if you smoke near them, they don’t feel threatened and they don’t hate the smell. They just don’t want to do it any more.

I can also think of three lifelong non-smoking non-drinkers who are all dead now at ages less than my current age (in one case, far less). One died of a brain haemorrhage, one of a heart attack and one of cancer. All were in high-stress jobs, as was I, and working fit to bust, as was I at that time. The heart attack and the brain haemorrage were the reason I thought ‘Whoa, I’m slowing down at work, sod it’. The cancer death came later and was a real surprise. The guy was very, very fit and healthy.

I know some ex-smokers who became antismoking (born-again nonsmokers) but in each and every case, they did not really want to stop. Cost, pressure from family, pressure from the NHS… all but one is dead now. All from cancer.

As a certain minority is fond of saying, ‘Smoke, drink tea, relax’.

I just don’t follow that advice by saying ‘Ras Tafari’ because I don’t have dreadlocks and don’t smoke quite the same rollup contents.

(Firefox updated, spellcheck isn’t working and Whyte and Mackay was on special offer so please excuse any typos.)