HAMSTERS & HEROIN: Not all junkies are purse-snatching grandmother-killing psychos. I'm keeping this blog to bear witness to that fact.


Gledwoods deutscher Blog

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I used to take heroin at every opportunity, for over 10 years, now I just take methadone which supposedly "stabilizes" me though I feel more destabilized than ever before despite having been relatively well behaved since late November/early December 2010... and VERY ANGRY about this when I let it get to me so I try not to.

I was told by a mental health nurse that my heroin addiction was "self medication" for a mood disorder that has recently become severe enough to cause psychotic episodes. As well as methadone I take antipsychotics daily. Despite my problems I consider myself a very sane person. My priority is to attain stability. I go to Narcotics Anonymous because I "want what they have" ~ Serenity.

My old blog used to say "candid confessions of a heroin and crack cocaine addict" how come that one comes up when I google "heroin blog" and not this one. THIS IS MY BLOG. I don't flatter myself that every reader knows everything about me and follows closely every single word every day which is why I repeat myself. Most of that is for your benefit not mine.

This is my own private diary, my journal. It is aimed at impressing no-one. It is kept for my own benefit to show where I have been and hopefully to put off somebody somewhere from ever getting into the awful mess I did and still cannot crawl out of. Despite no drugs. I still drink, I'm currently working on reducing my alcohol intake to zero.

If you have something to say you are welcome to comment. Frankness I can handle. Timewasters should try their own suggestions on themselves before wasting time thinking of ME.

PS After years of waxing and waning "mental" symptoms that made me think I had depression and possibly mild bipolar I now have found out I'm schizoaffective. My mood has been constantly "cycling" since December 2010. Mostly towards mania (an excited non-druggy "high"). For me, schizoaffective means bipolar with (sometimes severe)
mania and flashes of depression (occasionally severe) with bits of schizophrenia chucked on top. You could see it as bipolar manic-depression with sparkly knobs on ... I'm on antipsychotic pills but currently no mood stabilizer. I quite enjoy being a bit manic it gives the feelings of confidence and excitement people say they use cocaine for. But this is natural and it's free, so I don't see my "illness" as a downer. It does, however, make life exceedingly hard to engage with...

PPS The "elevated mood" is long gone. Now I'm depressed. Forget any ideas of "happiness" I have given up heroin and want OFF methadone as quick as humanly possible. I'm fed up of being a drug addict. Sick to death of it. I wanna be CLEAN!!!

Attack of the Furry Entertainers!

Attack of the Furry Entertainers!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Chunky Cottage Pie

HAVING REALIZED that my baking tray may be used as a tub for home-cooked food, as well as something to hold up industrial lasagne etc in reheating, I have been fantasizing all week about making my own beef shepherd's pie (cottage pie). The difference from the illustration will be that mine will be a beef pie covered in cheese and potato not pastry and so will have chunks of beef, not ground up piggles.

I've never done shepherd's pie in my life (can't remember whether we ever did it at school, though it's a typical school recipe) but my recipe was going to go something like this.

About 500g-1kg (1-2lb) stewing steak diced small
About 500g-1kg potatoes
One or two large onions
One or two large carrots
About 250g (0.5lb) mushrooms
About 100g 0.25lb) cheese
Broccoli to eat separately

Method: fry steak lightly for five minutes or so to "brown" (even though it goes grey not brown) and "seal in flavour" or whatever this is supposed to do. I'm quite sure that skipping this step makes no difference but have never dared do it as would hate to waste food. When done tip into large saucepan and continue simmering in a little water on low heat. Dice mushrooms and add to this. (Doesn't water come out of the mushrooms at some point? That's what I seem to recall occurring...) Fry onions.

At end of frying add seasoning which would be something like 4 teaspoons paprika, 2 tsps mild curry powder (Jamaican, Chinese, Garam Masala or mild Indian), 1 tsp "all purpose seasoning" (glorified celery salt), half to one tsp ginger, 1 tsp mediterranean or Italian mixed herbs, 4-8 tsps Lee & Perrins to taste, about 4 tsps soy sauce (makes excellent gravy browner), possibly one Oxo cube and/or 1 or 2 tsps Bisto-style gravy granules. Add all together including most of the fried onions into main pan and simmer fairly lightly for 2 hours, covered, adding more water if required but not too much or the pie will be ridiculously sloppy. Dice and add the carrot(s).

After 2 hours peel, chop up and boil potatoes. Mash, adding the saved fried onions to the potato. Add a little butter to the mash but not too much (I much prefer dry "natural" mash to over milky/buttery "creamed" potatoes). Preheat the oven to about 190C 350F(?) Gas mark 6.

Checking the pie-mix pan, boil off any excess water by removing lid and keeping on heat.

Now turf the piemix into the baking tin, covering carefully with potato mash. Sprinkle liberally with cheese and pepper the top. Bung in middle of oven for half an hour.

Boil the side order of broccoli.

Remove and eat!

I'll let you know how horrible it turns out when I risk making it...

There's no big news as I've stashed at home all week feeling not like doing anything. Those pills are not working yet, I am sure of it. Though it is "early days"...

I have cut down on my alcohol drinking as it was starting to get ridiculous at points (more then 6 cans a day at peak, which would be about 10 pints of pub-strength beer). Now I have got down to as little as one a day. I don't want to have to feel panicky at the thought of not drinking, I have enough problems with chemical dependency as it is!!

Can antidepressants actually make you feel worse? I feel dragged right down.. down.. down.

...The Germany Bible reading is coming on in fits and starts...

And that's about it!

Rolling Stones ~ You Can't Always Get What You Want from Rock and Roll Circus

Science Lab ~ Flesh and Blood
Tekno with Shakespearean quotations!
(Sound only)

from Raymi the Minx blog
~ a glimpse into someone else's boring old life for a change ~


Vi said...

A bit of cookery trivia for you my dear...

Shepards pie is using lamb mince (hence shepard, looking after sheep) cottage pie is with beef.

But you know, for a lovely pie whatever you call it... turkey mince... it's the leanest mince you can get and it's the cheapest as well!!!

Baino said...

Yum. Inspiration for tonight's dinner methinks. Without the garam masala. I love that Stones song . . .it's ageless. Hope you pick up soon!

Terry Wright said...

Howdy Gleds.
Long time between chats.

When my wife had died, I spent a week being strong for the funeral and family etc. I then started drinking solidly and was spastic drunk for months. The depression was crippling. I finally went to a doctor who prescribed me something similar by way of anti-depressants and amazing it really helped. The problem was the drinking which made me crazy and each day was out of control. I had to do something so I gave up the anti-depressants and replaced it with heroin. Not a good move.

My point is alcohol and anti-depressants really blurs you mind. I went back to the anti-depressants about 5 years ago whilst on methadone (and some using) but it did nothing. I again went back on them 6 weeks ago and they seem to work a bit better now. It is probably because I am on SROM(morphine) instead of methadone, but it is working.

Moral of the story ... don't let your partner die.

Zen Wizard said...

The Cheesecake Factory (believe it or not) used to have a really good shepherd's pie. (Maybe they still do, I don't have occasion to go there much anymore.)

It tasted more like it was beef, rather than lamb, though.

Whatever the mystery meat was--it was good.

Zen Wizard said...

Okay, I Googled it, and they said the Cheesecake Factory Shepherd's Pie was, "Ground Beef, Mushrooms, Carrots, Peas, Zucchini and Onions in a Delicious Sauce Covered with Mashed Potatoes and Parmesan Cheese."

How come the guys on Brokeback Mountain never made this?

Nicole said...

ZEN WIZARD - They were too busy going up and down that f*cking mountain all the time!

Nicole said...

GELD - The meat will brown if you have the heat up high enough and don't over-crowd the pan. Fry the beef in smaller batches as needed. It goes grey if the heat is low and there is a lot in the pan so it doesn't seal quickly enough and the juices render. The sealing and browning of the meat can be quite beneficial for the flavour of your finished dish, the brown bit which caramelise will add a lovely gravy-like flavour.

Mushroom will release moisture when cooked, but not a significant amount to affect your dish in this case.

My opinion is that two onions will be better than one. Start frying them on a high heat for the first few minutes and then turn low for at least 15 minutes so they turn a lovely brown and caramelise, this will add fantastic flavour to the pie. (Add a pinch of salt to them while frying).

I can also highly recommend a chopped leek to this recipe and a handful of frozen or fresh peas.

Good luck! (I made this a few days - the mince version!)

Gledwood said...

Vi: Tescos, however, are unaware of these facts and insist on labelling "beef shepherd's pie"... hmmmm

Baino: doesn't taste of curry. I guarantee it. That's my casserole recipe and I always add curry powder. It just tastes faintly middle Eastern and spicy, definitely not like something from a curryshop

Terry: o do you think DRINK is affecting them then? shyte. I still drink too much as it is. Am genuinely cutting down tho.... (bit by bit, ahem!)

ZenWizz: what on earth is Cheesecake Factory? I've never heard of it!

Gledwood said...

Nicole: thanks v much for that advice. I definitely shall be adding the peas. + doing the sealing in as you said... leeks I'm really not sure about. I find their texture rather offputting in stews etc. Can I cook it out though? Like onions kind of reduce to a background mush with 2 hrs of simmering..??

Nicole said...

Gled, the leeks will also disappear into the background of the pie if cooked right, but they are not necessary, I like them for the flavour and extra vegetable matter but if you put plenty of onion it's perfectly good. I usually half the leeks for my cottage pie and then slice the halves into thin semi-circles about a millimetre thick. I also don't use the very green bits because they can stay a bit rough, but the lovely white and light green parts become soft and behave pretty much like onion in the dish.

By the way, Vincent just reminded me. The cottage pie we make also has a stalk or two of diced celery. This makes for a great taste. It cooks through and you don't really know it's there any more, but it gives it great flavour in the end.

I think you'll do well with cooking this. It's great that you're in this new place where you have more room and resources to be creative.

And about the zucchini, you can stuff those with anything and bake them, minced meat is good too. My cousin Tarita taught me this tuna version and I like it a lot because it's light and very Italian tasting. I posted the recipe way back here.

Monogram Queen said...

That cottage pie is making my mouth water Gleds! I haven't ate too well the past few days either.

Monogram Queen said...

That cottage pie is making my mouth water Gleds! I haven't ate too well the past few days either.

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Heroin Shortage: News

If you are looking for the British Heroin Drought post, click here; the latest word is in the comments.

Christiane F

"Wir, Kinder vom Bahnhoff Zoo" by "Christiane F", memoir of a teenage heroin addict and prostitute, was a massive bestseller in Europe and is now a set text in German schools. Bahnhoff Zoo was, until recently, Berlin's central railway station. A kind of equivalent (in more ways than one) to London's King's Cross... Of course my local library doesn't have it. So I'm going to have to order it through a bookshop and plough through the text in German. I asked my druggieworker Maple Syrup, who is Italiana how she learned English and she said reading books is the best way. CHRISTIANE F: TRAILER You can watch the entire 120-min movie in 12 parts at my Random blog. Every section EXCEPT part one is subtitled in English (sorry: but if you skip past you still get the gist) ~ to watch it all click HERE.

To See Gledwood's Entire Blog...

DID you find my blog via a Google or other search? Are you stuck on a post dated some time ago? Do you want to read Gledwood Volume 2 right from "the top" ~ ie from today?
If so click here and you'll get to the most recent post immediately!

Drugs Videos

Most of these come from my Random blog, which is an electronic scrapbook of stuff I thought I might like to view at some time or other. For those who want to view stuff on drugs I've collected the very best links here. Unless otherwise stated these are full-length features, usually an hour or more.

If you have a slow connexion and are unused to viewing multiscreen films on Youtube here's what to do: click the first one and play on mute, stopping and starting as it does. Then, when it's done, click on Repeat Play and you get the full entertainment without interruption. While you watch screen one, do the same to screens 2, 3 and so on. So as each bit finishes, the next part's ready and waiting.

Mexican Black Tar Heroin: "Dark End"

Khun Sa, whose name meant Prince Prosperous, had been, before his death in the mid 2000s, the world's biggest dealer in China White Heroin: "Lord of the Golden Triangle"

In-depth portrait of the Afghan heroin trade at its very height. Includes heroin-lab bust. "Afghanistan's Fateful Harvest"

Classic miniseries whose title became a catchphrase for the misery of life in East Asian prison. Nicole Kidman plays a privileged middle-class girl set up to mule heroin through Thai customs with the inevitable consequences. This is so long it had to be posted in two parts. "Bangkok Hilton 1" (first 2 hours or so); "Bangkok Hilton 2" (last couple of hours).

Short film: from tapwater-clear H4 in the USA to murky black Afghan brown in Norway: "Heroin Addicts Speak"

Before his untimely death this guy kept a video diary. Here's the hour-long highlights as broadcast on BBC TV: "Ben: Diary of a Heroin Addict". Thanks to Noah for the original link.

Some of the most entertaining scenes from Britain's top soap (as much for the poor research as anything else). Not even Phil Mitchell would go from nought to multi-hundred pound binges this fast: "Phil Mitchell on Crack" (just over 5 minutes).

Scientist lady shows us how to cook up gear: "How Much Citric?" Lucky cow: her brown is 70% purity! Oddly we never see her actually do her hit... maybe she got camera shy...

And lastly:

German documentary following a life from teenage addiction to untimely death before the age of 30. The decline in this girl's appearance is truly shocking. "Süchtig: Protokoll einer Hilflosigkeit". Sorry no subtitles; this is here for anyone learning German who's after practice material a little more gripping than Lindenstraße!

Nosey Quiz! Have you ever heard voices when you weren't high on drugs?

Manic Magic

Manic Magic

Gledwood Volume 2: A Heroin Addict's Blog

Copyright 2011 by Gledwood