November 9, 2012
Grammie wasn't able to write today so here's an article from November 2010. Although two states, Colorado and Washington, leaglized the personal use of marijuana this year we are still a long way from having reasonable drug laws.
I'm glad the elections are over! I get so mad at all the ad's that run, most with outright lies in them. I find the whole process very stressful.
I told my wife that if things turned out the way I feared, I was going to move to California and smoke pot. Unfortunately, proposition 19 which would have legalized pot didn't pass. I suppose I could just get drunk, but I've always been a non-drinker.
The biggest problem with booze is that I don't care for the taste of most of it. I also don't like the feeling of getting high. I know that many drink to feel more relaxed and uninhibited, but for me it makes me feel more inhibited. I'm so concerned about making a fool of myself that I get uncomfortable. (So I write for RGQ where I make a fool of myself on a regular basis!)
Another reason I'm opposed to alcohol is the fact that it had a great deal to do with my parent's divorce. My dad was a lifelong drinker, although in the end it appears he wasn't a true alcoholic.
I bring this up because of an Associated Press article I ran across on Yahoo News. It concerned a recently released study done in England.
"Researchers analyzed how addictive a drug is and how it harms the human body, in addition to other criteria like environmental damage caused by the drug, its role in breaking up families and its economic costs, such as health care, social services, and prison."
"Heroin, crack cocaine and methamphetamine, or crystal meth, were the most lethal to individuals. When considering their wider social effects, alcohol, heroin and crack cocaine were the deadliest. But overall, alcohol outranked all other substances, followed by heroin and crack cocaine. Marijuana, ecstasy and LSD scored far lower."
"Experts said alcohol scored so high because it is so widely used and has devastating consequences not only for drinkers but for those around them."
"When drunk in excess, alcohol damages nearly all organ systems. It is also connected to higher death rates and is involved in a greater percentage of crime than most other drugs, including heroin."
"Experts said the study should prompt countries to reconsider how they classify drugs. For example, last year in Britain, the government increased its penalties for the possession of marijuana. One of its senior advisers, David Nutt - the lead author on the Lancet study - was fired after he criticized the British decision."
So California keeps pot illegal and alcohol legal. Doesn't make sense to me but the authors of the study don't recommend trying to go back to the days of prohibition. They point out that most drinkers do so in moderation and responsibly. Wouldn't it stand to reason that people would treat drugs the same way? Wouldn't they use drugs on occasion and for the most part carry on a normal life? Aren't millions of people doing that now?
"'What governments decide is illegal is not always based on science,' said (professor of psychiatry and addiction at the University of Amsterdam, Wim) van den Brink. He said considerations about revenue and taxation, like those garnered from the alcohol and tobacco industries, may influence decisions about which substances to regulate or outlaw."
Which makes it even more bizarre that we keep pot and it's cousin industrial hemp illegal. The first state that legalizes both will see huge revenues from the tax on pot and the boon to farmers from growing industrial hemp. And now that we see growing evidence that it is far less of a concern than alcohol, why not legalize it now?
If you are in California, did you vote for or against proposition 19? Would you vote for legalization if given the opportunity? Would you rather legalize pot or make alcohol illegal?
For those of you in England, how do you feel about your government making the penalties harsher? What was the reasoning behind this?
Isn't it worth $1 a month to you to keep RGQ in your mailbox? Please click the link and direct your contribution to keep RGQ going.Today's Quotes
Good manners: The noise you don't make when you're eating soup. - Bennett Cerf
A proverb is a short sentence based on long experience. - Miguel de Cervantes
An aged farmer and his wife were leaning against the edge of their pig-pen when the old woman wistfully recalled that the next week would mark their golden wedding anniversary.
"Let's have a party, Homer," she suggested. "Let's kill a pig."
The farmer scratched his grizzled head. "Gee, Ethel," he finally answered, "I don't see why the pig should take the blame for something that happened fifty years ago."
Great things are possible when one man's wisdom and an hour's effort are combined.
A warrior who overreacts will rarely finish anything successfully.
True warriors do not seek fame and position. Real men cherish the truth. To work for favor, or offer one's skills for profit, is the behavior of small men and mediocre warriors. - all from Choi Hong Hi, Co-Founder of Taekwon-Do, born on this day in 1918
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I've been conducting a scientific sleep deprivation study. The subject of the study is a singular subject. Me.
My day work has perked up a bit. Nothing earth shattering, but it's paying the bills. It also keeps me busy for a good part of each day. I usually work from 8 or 9 a.m. until I'm done with the day's activities. That could be only till noon, or could be on into late afternoon.
I'm in electronics service, installation and repair, so some of my schedule is totally unscheduled. The failure of electrons to traverse whatever circuitry to which they are assigned will garner me an adjustment to my schedule at a moment's notice.
Some of my work is totally scheduled. As such, I have to be at Point A at a specific time. Some companies much prefer any work to take place outside of business hours so to keep the potential loss of business at a minimum. With that comes early morning and late night calls.
Business had been slow for me as it had been for the general economy. Because of this, I have taken on a part-time job. I get paid 1/10th of what I get for my daytime work, but I don't have to make any decisions. I just have to match up numbers. I know all 10 of the digits in the numerical system, so I can decipher a 6-digit code for a particular product and match it to it's location on a shelf. The problem is, I work quite late 4 days a week doing it. I get off somewhere between midnight and 1 a.m.
So, I have been getting home in the wee hours from my part-time job, but it doesn't end there. I can't simply plop my sweet hiney into bed when I get home. I'd never get to sleep. I'm too "wired" from all the physical activity. I have to wind down a bit, so that takes me an additional hour or so. Then I can go to bed and actually get to sleep.
Now it's time to get up again for the day job. There wasn't much time from the going to and the arising from bed. I thank the Great Spirit for creating coffee! How the likes of us figured out we could roast those beans, crunch them up and put them in hot water to make a beverage is totally beyond me, but we did, and I am extremely thankful to that unknown person as well. I am able to function again.
Sometime during the day I have to write an article for an on-line newsletter. I get to do the formatting for it as well. So, the time I could have taken a nap is devoted to that. Discounting the sheer volume of calls from people who are supporting specific candidates, there is little time yet for a nap.
Some things just have to happen. One has to feed oneself. One has to relieve themselves of what they had previously eaten. These things take time. One has to dress for work, no matter what type of work. If one becomes quite adept at it, it doesn't take much time, but it does take some time. One must refresh themselves lest they offend their co-workers and/or customers. Since I comb my hair with a disposable razor, it takes me some time to accomplish this. These things take up precious nap availability time.
I will endeavor to squeeze in a short nap in there somewhere. If not, well, there's where the term "deprivation" comes into play. Whether there is ample time to actually rest, that is another topic for another day.
Here's your quiz:
Have you had any lengthy periods where your sleep was limited?
Have you had to go extended periods without sleep, like missing a whole night's sleep?
Have you tried those "energy drinks" to augment or replace sleep?
Sleep - Perchance To Dream
Cliff (the High-Tech Redneck who doesn't rate a fancy 'signature pic')Kirsten's Krazy Kaleidoscope
"When you're drowning, you don't say 'I would be incredibly pleased if someone would have the foresight to notice me drowning and come and help me,' you just scream."
~ John Lennon ~
I have the wrong kinds of friends. Well, that's not a fair thing to say. I love my friends dearly and would not even want to imagine my life without them. They are very diverse in nature and bring different things to my life. It's just that none of them has ever won a trip for four on a cruise ship and offered to take me with them. Unlike my co-worker Patricia.
A friend of Patricia's won a week-long Caribbean cruise for four. The friend and her husband have no children, and so they have invited Patricia and her husband to join them on the cruise. There are so many good things about this. Patricia and her husband will have a nice vacation and enjoy quality time with each other and their friends. They will be treated like royalty, enjoy great meals, and have access to all kinds of parties and activities. They will get a great tan and some fantastic memories.
There is a drawback, though. They could fall overboard, and that would be more than a little inconvenient. It is really cold out there in the deep blue sea. The waves are rough, and if you're not rescued quickly you can die. Besides, wading around in the sea with shoes and clothing on would be really uncomfortable, and assuming you were rescued in time, it would take days for your shoes to dry off properly.
But fortunately, help is at hand for Patricia and her husband, and anyone else with plans to board a cruise ship. The Internet - repository of every tidbit of knowledge you could possibly want access to - has an article about what to do if you fall of a cruise ship. Presumably you're not going to be able to consult this article in the panic of the moment - what with falling off a giant boat, you'd probably have other things on your mind - so it behooves you (finally! I've been searching for an opportunity to use the word "behooves") to study this article prior to setting foot on the ship.
The article states some things that many people would think are obvious. Don't go out alone at night. Avoid areas of the ship that might not be safe. As you're falling in, try to grab hold of a railing or something. If you fall in, grab onto whatever you can to stay afloat. If the ship moves away and you find yourself alone, wave your arms to try to signal passing sea traffic (but don't let that piece of wood you're hanging onto for dear life drift away). If you see land, swim towards it.
Then there are pointers in the article that no-one would have thought of. For instance, try to avoid falling overboard in the first place. Gee, ya think? And here I was going to just stand there and let someone toss me over the side. Apparently, if someone tries to offload you, you should kick and scream and bite to get them to let you go, and even vomit on the culprit if necessary. That should work. I don't think that even the most hardened criminal could handle being thrown up on.
Here's a good one: once you are in the water, make as much noise as you can. This makes perfect sense. Someone on the ship could hear and run off to get help. Even if someone assures you that they are going to save you, continue to scream and make a noise. When it comes to people making a rescue attempt, the more the merrier. Here's the portion of this advice that I find somewhat intriguing: don't laugh, because people will think you are joking. I cannot help wondering what event prompted the author of the article to include something like that.
The best part of the entire article, though, is the final piece of advice it offers. It's so good that I'm not even going to try paraphrasing it. Here it is, as written in the article: "Be reasonable. If you have been stranded for more than about three or four hours and no ships have happened to pass by, your chances of survival are extremely low. While it may be depressing, console yourself with memories of good times, the fact that you will probably have passed out before you drown, and that you will soon be in heaven, far away from this lonely place."
I don't know what to say. If the Internet says it, it must be true.
The election is finally behind us. What a relief! It is about 9:00 a.m., and I am sitting in my pajamas watching the election news. I realize that I should be doing something else, but for this moment, I am a little priority challenged.
I hardly slept last night. My sister, Chicagoann is visiting. She and Mom watched a movie rather than do what I would have done. If it had been up to me, we would have sat through the election returns.
Yes, I know that there were hours of no news, wild speculation and repetition. As a practical matter, watching election news coverage is about as stimulating as watching paint dry. Nevertheless, you can't know when something that is actually interesting will happen. To me, that tiny morsel of potential news is worth the hours of patiently waiting for information.
A friend of mine called at midnight to update me on the presidential race. I was glad to hear from her. After all, Mom and Chicagoann were still engrossed in their movie, and I had no idea how things were going. I don't enjoy being bored any more than the next guy, but I do like to witness the making of history, and no matter what your political views and hopes, any presidential election will be a part of the American story for hundreds of years.
I am grateful for one indisputable fact. A lot of folks turned out to vote, which is a real relief. It comforts me to know that so many of us still care about what happens in Washington. I'm not as convinced that Washington gives a flying puck what happens to us, but if you have an alligator in your bath tub, it is prudent to keep an eye on it, even if you won't be able to do much about it if it escapes.
For now, it will be pleasant not to hear the back biting hysteria that seems to characterize our national elections. It will be refreshing to turn on the TV and not have to listen to what lies or misrepresentations one side lays at the feet of the other. For the next 24 hours, we won't have to endure comments about one side being socialist and the other being fascist. After that, we can look forward to 4 years of speculation, misinformation and exaggeration about a subject that will be dear to the hearts of political pundits everywhere, the 2016 election.
Odds and Ends - The $1 Bill - Did you know that the number 13 (corresponding to the 13 colonies) figures prominently on the $1 bill. The number of letters/digits in 1776 (4) and its Roman Numeral equivalent MDCCLXXVI (9) adds up to 13; The dollar has 13 stars above the eagle; There are 13 steps on the Pyramid; There are 13 letters in ANNUIT COEPTIS; There are 13 vertical bars on the shield; E PLURIBUS UNUM contains 13 letters; The top of the shield has 13 horizontal stripes; You can count 13 leaves and 13 berries on the olive branch; The dollar bill also features 13 arrows and 13 hats; and while we're on the subject of money, did you know that in 75% of American households, women manage the money and pay the bills? I wish I had a woman to pay my bills!
Thanks for your limericks. Try this one -
I once had a froggie named Fred...
Hints: Here's a great new rhyming/composition tool. http://www.writerhymes.com/
There's also a great rhyming dictionary at http://www.rhymezone.com/
Limerick rules. http://freespace.virgin.net/merrick.sheldon/limerickrules.htm
I once saw a mouse in my bed
It's right where the cat had just led
Me so I would shudder
And under my breath mutter
"I guess that I'm grateful it's dead."
- Maria in IL/NYI once saw a mouse in my bed
that was chewing a piece of my head.
I let out a yell
like something from hell
and away that poor mousie had sped.
- LDOReader Comments
Plenty of loud applause and cheering going on right now, but not because you didn't write an article. - herm
I feel your pain and agony, Cliff! Mine seldom wants to cooperate, and I tend to use my most colorful language at it. It doesn't help, of course, but it keeps me from throwing a on-it's-last-legs-and-please-don't die-yet piece of technology across the room. If I can ever afford to replace it, I may just do that, and stomp on it for good measure. If it would just do what I tell it to do once in awhile, without argument, that would be nice. Or actually, if the programs would work right, I guess is what I mean! If it weren't such a big piece of my life, I would throw it at Bill Gates house.
Oh Well, sigh, - Ruth in WA
When that kind if stuff happens I like to blame it on the moon. - Mary
Re: Part Of History
I turned 18 the year that 18 year olds first got the right to vote. I haven't missed an election since. I agree with you on the ads. I'm so glad for the respite. Problem is, it won't be long before they start up again for something else. I think 3 - 4 hours was the longest I ever waited in line. I did it gladly. herm
Re: Cost Of Elections
The cost of all those ads polluting the airwaves gets added to the price of things you buy, or, more often, things the government buys with your money, that do nobody any good. Funding elections that way, in an age when money can buy pretty reliable manipulation, is a sure way to get the government to work for the 1% and try to keep the people quiet. Why not use taxes to pay for moderated debates, with more time to Any candidate who draws applause from the general public? Have elections about issues and policies that people want, instead of having only two visible candidates with a gentleman's agreement not to mention climate change, or a normal sized military budget. In an electronic age, a lot could be done to improve direct democracy, but when it comes to elections, voting machines have a dismal record. Any bank with that error rate would have to go back to paper. Canada still uses paper, and it only takes us about two hours to get the results, most of the time. Kristen - Heck, yeah, I'd have stood in that voting line in SA. I've knocked on doors, pounded election signs, scrutineered at the polls, and voted almost every chance I've had. One time it really did come down to One vote - talk about a bunch of people who were So glad they'd gone, and another bunch kicking themselves! - Bob of the North
Disclaimer- All quotes printed in this publication are believed to be accurately attributed, but no guarantees are made that some incorrectly attributed, or even outright false quotes won't get in here from time to time. I assure readers that I will do my best to weed out incorrect quotes, and will print a retraction as soon as I become aware of any errors.
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