Tag Archives | Drugs

Gravy, With a Side of Cancer


Thanksgiving week is usually slow. Reeeeel s l   o   w   .   .     .

Thanksgiving proper, Citizen’s Cab lowers the gate (cab rental) for us drivers down from $91 to $61, as an act of mercy. A cabbie might gamble on coming into work early on Thanksgiving to drive a fare or two to the airport; people trying to make it somewhere around the country before turkey and the big game. Or that cabbie might just be spinning his or her wheels empty until well after noon, after the locals have long walked home from their neighborhood coffee joints and suddenly found themselves running late to whatever friend’s house with their thrown-together sweet potato casserole with marshmallows pot luck.

This year I chose to sleep in… until Black Friday.

But it will definitely be slow this morning, too, until the day wakes up for shopping and chemo.


I’ve just rolled-in to Citizen’s Cab.… Read the rest

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Your Fingerprint Is All Someone Needs to Know You Used Cocaine

“We can distinguish between cocaine having been touched,” the study’s lead author, Dr. Melanie Bailey, told Motherboard, “and cocaine having been ingested.”

Graham Templeton via Motherboard:

Call it a line detector—law enforcement agencies may soon have a way to test for cocaine use through a quick, non-invasive fingerprinting technology.

Rather than looking for trace amounts of cocaine itself, a new test developed by a team of researchers led by the University of Surrey looks for the products of cocaine metabolism. When the body breaks down cocaine, it produces benzoylecgonine and methylecgonine which are detectable in blood, urine—and even the sweat.

“We can distinguish between cocaine having been touched,” the study’s lead author, Dr. Melanie Bailey, told Motherboard, “and cocaine having been ingested.” This prevents false positives, which are very possible in a society where a majority of bank notes and some other common objects hold detectable amounts of cocaine and other illicit substances.

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Podcast Episode 3: Pagans & Prisons


Compelling stories, ambient recordings, and interesting background music, woven into a radical pagan tapestry with a high audio-geek quotient.

Via Gods & Radicals:

In episode 3, we hear from several members of the Maine Pagan Clergy Association, all of whom work in some capacity with pagans in prison, along with a rant on the subject from our own Dr. Bones.

“We’re number one in prisoners.

By every measure the U.S. leads the world in prisoners, with 2.2 million people in jail and more than 4.8 million on parole. No nation tops that – not China with 1.7 million, not Russia with 670,000. We not only have the highest number of prisoners, we have the highest percentage of people in prison or jail. In the U.S., 702 of every 100,000 people were in prison or jail in 2013. Cuba has 510 per 100,000 people in prison, Russia has 467, and Iran has 290.

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How LSD Microdosing Became the Hot New Business Trip

Acid is back in California, except this time is the workaholics not the hippies who are champions of LSD. From Rolling Stone:

Let’s call him “Ken.” Ken is 25, has a master’s degree from Stanford and works for a tech startup in San Francisco, doing a little bit of everything: hardware and software design, sales and business development. Recently, he has discovered a new way to enhance his productivity and creativity, and it’s not Five Hour Energy or meditation.

Ken is one of a growing number of professionals who enjoy taking “microdoses” of psychedelics – in his free time and, occasionally, at the office. “I had an epic time,” he says at the end of one such day. “I was making a lot of sales, talking to a lot of people, finding solutions to their technical problems.”

A microdose is about a tenth of the normal dose – around 10 micrograms of LSD, or 0.2-0.5 grams of mushrooms.

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Injection rooms for addicts to open next year in Ireland

Todd Huffman (CC BY 2.0)

Todd Huffman (CC BY 2.0)

Can you imagine this happening in the US? Me neither. But it probably should.

Kitty Holland via The Irish Times:

Drug users will be able to use supervised injecting rooms in Dublin next year, followed shortly afterwards by Cork, Galway and Limerick, according to the Minister in charge of the National Drugs Strategy.

Aodhán Ó Ríordáin, who is set to announce the radical move in a speech to the London School of Economics on Monday, told The Irish Times that medically supervised injection rooms “will happen next year”.

In his address he will also outline plans to decriminalise the possession of small amounts of drugs, including heroin, cocaine and cannabis, for personal use, as part of a “radical cultural shift” in the approach to drug addiction.

“I am firmly of the view that there needs to be a cultural shift in how we regard substance misuse if we are to break this cycle and make a serious attempt to tackle drug and alcohol addiction,” said Mr Ó Ríordáin.

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The Driving Range


I’m all Paris-ed and “let’s throw up barbed-wire fences to keep us free“-ed out. Feeling kind of dark. So, please indulge as I pitch this one ride out there, to cheer us up…



It’s been slow. It’s that palpable quiet period for cab driving as Thanksgiving looms.

At present I’m cruising the Lower Haight, with the back seat having been cold for the last forty-five minutes. (Sigh.) I guess it’ll be the left up Fillmore now, for the usual rounds; on through the Jazz District, up through well-off Pac Heights, and down into the yuppie ubiquitous Marina.

However, mid-turn, score!

It’s a late 20’s skinny white blonde dude with thick coke-bottle glasses, and sagging jeans, running into the street from the afar bus stop to flag. Dude is swaggering towards me in beat up skater shoes, with gold chain swaying, and one hand waving vehemently in the air as the other holds up his falling pants.

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The tiny pill fueling Syria’s war and turning fighters into superhuman soldiers

Ever heard of Captagon? It’s the amphetamine pill turning fighters in Syria into deranged psychos, and it’s a decent bet that you’re going to hear a lot more about it soon. Here’s an introduction courtesy of the Washington Post:

As The Post’s Liz Sly recently noted, the war in Syria has become a tangled web of conflict dominated by “al-Qaeda veterans, hardened Iraqi insurgents, Arab jihadist ideologues and Western volunteers.”

On the surface, those competing actors are fueled by an overlapping mixture of ideologies and political agendas.

Just below it, experts suspect, they’re powered by something else: Captagon.


A tiny, highly addictive pill produced in Syria and widely available across the Middle East, its illegal sale funnels hundreds of millions of dollars back into the war-torn country’s black-market economy each year, likely giving militias access to new arms, fighters and the ability to keep the conflict boiling, according to the Guardian.

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CBS DEMOCRATIC DEBATE: Foreign Policy Suddenly Got A Lot More Important

I won’t lie, I had totally forgotten there was going to be a Democratic debate on Saturday.  In my mind, the biggest story of the weekend would be Ronda “Rowdy” Rousey being fed a new victim at UFC 193 and I was looking forward to a first-round victory via manslaughter.  That never happened, which came as a complete and utter shock to me and everyone else in the world with the possible exception of Holly Holm, who as the world’s best female boxer likely realized long before the rest of us that even a monster is vulnerable to being punched in the fucking face two-dozen times.  Shoulda touched those gloves, Ronda!

But Holm sending Rousey to the hospital to have her lip stitched back together obviously wasn’t the biggest news of the weekend, and neither was the CBS Democratic Debate.  It was Friday night when I first started hearing about trouble in Paris; a friend living there suddenly “checked in as safe” via Facebook and before I knew it I was seeing reports of a terror attack that left over a hundred dead, a number that seemed impossibly high (but later proved, sadly, to be true).Read the rest

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A Foggy Mourning

foggy mourning

They’ve been warning of a big El Niño in California. Say it’s gonna cause great landslides in the wake of this historic drought. But of course, they qualify that it won’t do much for the drought. Hmph! Well, who are they, anyway!

No really, who are “they”??

When I was a kid lying flat on my belly on the living room carpet inches from the TV, with my head propped up by elbows planted firmly in the floor, and the TV would go all white-noise and fuzzy, my parents would just write it off all nonchalant with, “It’s just them.” Well, I wanna know who “them” is! Cause they keep fucking up the program. Maybe we can all hunt them down, together! Get rid of “them”… Who’s with me!!

But, I digress.

The big El Niño this week was all of a three-hour rain, one morning. No wet gold for the cabbie.… Read the rest

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Can you get high on art?

Decue Wu, Illustrator

Decue Wu, Illustrator

Kelsey Lawrence via Hopes&Fears:

The average person spends about 30 seconds looking at a work of art. We know in that span of time, the viewer will have some sort of emotional reaction, however subtle, whether it’s excitement, repulsion or simply boredom. We also know that drugs and art have a long, storied history together. But can looking at a work of art generate a high that comes naturally, no dealers speedialed?

Can it cause a chemical change in our body? Can it affect our perception of reality? Can it serve as a stimulant, a hallucinogenic, a depressant, or anything that mimics these effects? We spoke to a neuroesthetics expert, an art critic and a neuroscientist to find out.

Dr. Elena Agudio, Berlin-based art historian and curator, curator for Association of Neuroesthetics

In my opinion, absolutely yes. It’s a kind of excitement you can have; it’s not only cultural and psychological, it’s really due to certain mechanisms in the brain that are being activated.

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