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


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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!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Clearly Unclear

LAST NIGHT I had about 7 hours' sleep; that's not very much for me. I've been feeling headfucked and down of late; precisely how I feel when I'm about to become hyped up and hyper. Maybe I'm just depressed though.

I made a call today. I'm half interested in going back into counselling. But there are provisos: person-centred is out. I only did well in psychodynamic deeper counselling. No time limit. The 2 year time limit the time before last got extended by 6 months but 2.5 years was barely enough to scratch the surface. And lastly no fees. And I'm not getting into anything longterm in the London Borough of Evil where I presently and resentfully reside. I want to Go Home Again. Back Home Where I Belong.

I wish I could have some manic energy back. Darkness and winter are closing down around us.

I just wish I could feel OK again. I'm taking the pills; I'm taking the methadone. The methadone is doing my head in; dose is far too high. I want off that crap as fast as possible.

I try to structure my days with books in different languages but I have no drive. I want to curl into a ball. I'm too far gone to be OK again ~ maybe. Maybe that's my problem... Too far gone. Do you think so? I don't know any more. I've turned my attention back to my house and the giant clear-out session I still need to do. So that is where I am now. Clearing, clearing, clearing!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Better Already

I REALIZED while rushing to the chemist that I feel WAY BETTER than I have in days. Not so paranoid. More to the point, not so depressed.

I'm only 28 pages from the end of my French novel. That and 6 Feet Under, an everyday tale of folks living above a funeral home, have been soundtracks to my life.

No I don't think 6 Feet Under has depressed me. It's the best TV series I've ever seen. I like Billy the bipolar brother who keeps coming off my meds. People who do that are shockingly irresponsible and should be institutionalized!

I hope you like the furry chinchilla picture? I really would love a chinchilla or three (as long as they had huge wheels to ramble upon). They need a special "marble" which is a stone chopping board you slam in the freezer to be lovely and cold in summer. As dwellers of the high Andes, chinchillas find summer captivity unbearable ~ sometimes to the point of death.

I can't really keep a chinchilla. The nearest tiny equivalent is the Russian or Djungarian hamster also known as a "winter white" because its winter fur tones with the snow. They also have thick luxuriant fur, with fur on the soles of their feet; they also take dust baths and like chinchillas probably do need a "marble". Mine looked close to death one summer's day (thanks guidebook for giving no warning of this). They perked up immeasurably rambling on a tray of ice-cubes. Before y'all call me an animal-torturer, remember these are Siberian hamsters. And if they didn't want to be on the ice, they'd have walked off it.

Anyway I have to go have a charming weekend everybody.

PS has anyone else seen Made In Chelsea? Docusoap. One character is heir to the McVite's biscuit empire. I like the blonde girl with the kind eyes. I don't know her name yet. She went on the fishing trip where the other girl put a live maggot on her tongue. That's a true sign of class ~ not being afraid of dung and wiggly things. If you don't believe me, observe the reactions of lower class people around dirt. They act like they're too perfect to get dirty. True upper class people never do. I met the upper classes at university. They're OK.
I try to be classless (which makes me middle-class). How about you...?

Illustrated: chinchilla in ball with cat looking on; winter white hamsters in summer; winter white hamsters in winter...

Friday, September 23, 2011

Not Feeling Well

I DON'T FEEL AT ALL WELL. I think a doctor would call it "depression" but it feels like so much more. Like something's gone badly wrong; that something is about to go wrong. That I can do nothing about it. I'm back on my meds, even though I hate them, even though I want to change tablets yet haven't a doctor who will do this for me because only a psychiatrist is willing to take responsibility and I'm between psychiatrists. I need a psychiatrist. I'm on page 315 of the book I'm reading or rather skimming through in French noting down unfamiliar words. Only another 50 pages to go then I'll be lost because "reading" this book is all I've done for the past week. It takes away the pain. I'm not sure I would have the verve to focus on a book in English. Not without whizzing through it on fastforward; the exact opposite to what I'm doing in French. Once I finish the present volume I'm meant to read it slowly from page one, homemade glossary in one hand explaining to me each and every single expression I do not know; but I don't know if I'm up to it. I can but try I suppose. I have to go now; I'm still computerless. I hope you all are OK. Don't worry about me I'm not doing or about to do crack; that was a complete abbarration. I actually enjoy being clean nowadays. More than I ever enjoyed being on drugs. In some strange sort of way. If that makes sense. More than anything I long for the end of my script; for the day when I'm finally methadone-free and everything-free and can tell myself that nightmare, 11 years and counting of constant opiate addiction is finally and at long, long last... OVER. OVER AND DONE WITH.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

On a moonless night

WHAT A LOAD OF BLAH BLAHS I posted yesterday. Those are the product of an unproductive brain. All I have done... ALL I HAVE DONE is skim through this one novel in French. I haven't a clue what happens because my concentration span is too fractured. Every single word I didn't know I looked up and wrote into a glossary notebook with the intention of reading back from page one, novel in one hand, notebook in the other now with a completely clear understanding of the text. O yeah and I took up Spanish, which is really easy. No more idiotic pictograms that all look the same. No more hong dong bing and bong words all nearly the same. I was looking for a project I could complete that had some usefulness. Chinese will never be useful to me at an intermediate level (ie after 2 or 3 years' daily study) unless I go hardcore backpacking. It won't be useful to in a career context unless I get past university level. That means 6 or 7 years' study at home. I can use Spanish just by flying to Spain for £50. Actually I'd like to go to Paris, Berlin and Madrid on the same trip. I love big cities. I once spent half an hour in Madrid. I looked out over this huge city, simmering on an endless plain, thinking "wow, I'm in the centre of Spain". British tourists hardly ever go anywhere but the coast and Madrid is about 200 miles from the sea.

The idiotic shitheads from the council are coming round tomorrow to criticize me for living like a pig. So I'm having a half-hearted effort at cleaning up. I'm just afraid of making a worse mess where I can't find "important" documents etc. I'm terrified of throwing something important away. Hence the hoarding. Anyway, least I can clean up to loud Spanish dialogues. I don't get why I can follow Spanish very easily, even when the words are just as unfamiliar as any other language. Eg an apple is una manzana. Yet Chinese words: hong dong shui dui lua I cannot remember. I think maybe it has to do with Spanish having grammar parallel to French. The little words are nothing like the French. A shop is una tienda; a street is una calle. When you get to posher vocabulary things are more similar to the English: libertad, igualdad, fraternidad and of course la electricidad.

I'm reluctantly agreeing (with myself) to go back on medication. Yet again.

I desperately need to see a doctor yet have no psychiatrist ie nobody willing to alter or tweak my meds.

When I went to this God-forsaken new methadone clinic I was promised continuity of care. This has not happened. The old clinic had a consultant psychiatrist who diagnosed me and prescribed the pills I'm on now. The new clinic's doctor said she could not prescribe medication so I lost my psychiatrist and appear to have no hope of getting a new one.

The bullshit on the clinic wall says you are to be involved in and allowed to make choices in your treatment. This has not happened. I am on 110mg methadone against my wishes. I want the dose lowered. And they force me to drink it in the pharmacy meaning I drag myself up there feeling crap each morning and have to wait 2 hours to feel OK. For years I drank my juice in bed meaning I got up feeling fine. I don't know whether the pharmacist is watering my dose but that is how it feels. I'm not using on top; haven't used any heroin in however many weeks I cannot remember, yet I go through spates of quasi-withdrawal symptoms in the mornings. Anyway my new worker, the third one I've had in 3 months, is getting me a clinical review so I can hopefully pick up my methadone like a normal adult and drink half of it before I sleep and the other half before I get up. The 2 times I really need it and it's not there now. He should also get my dose reduced. It was meant to stay at 110mg for 4 weeks (for no good reason). It's been on this ridiculous dose for 6 weeks. If they don't give what I want I'm making a detailed formal complaint as I feel totally let down by this clinic. The titration nurse was bullying, coercive and rude, forcing me into groups therapy I had no interest in. I went twice only so I could say I'd tried it and hated it. The second time I left within 4 minutes of it starting. Once you've been to one such group you've been to them all. They're set up as a punishment for people caught shoplifting so at least half the group announce at "check in" that they do not want to be there. I used more toned down language and said I was giving it a try.

The only week I stayed the entire session I was hypomanic enough to dominate the entire discussion. Then of course my mood crashed and I couldn't face the same group of people who I knew would have assumed only crack could make somebody that high. My experience and the life of the average junkie have diverged a lot over the last few years. I haven't been out begging or shoplifting since I can't remember when. I cut down my heroin use gradually with no help from any clinic or group. All these clinics do is put excessive pressure on you. I did a bit of crack ~ for the first time in ages I might add ~ about a week and a half ago. I used the stuff 3 or 4 days in a row. I gave up by buying a gigantic French dictionary, notebook and novel and forcing myself to look up every new word I found. It felt like Chinese torture in the beginning, then I couldn't stop it. I was up at 4am with 6 Feet Under playing and those dictionary pages whirring. I didn't "enjoy" this activity but I liked the brain-dead emptiness of it. As I say, I lost contact with the narrative flow nearly all the time so I was just looking up words words words and the same words cropped up over and over "mes larmes" means "my tears" I now know. But French isn't onomatapoeic. So a brush which is shush-ush-ushshshshshy, sweeping over the paper, is le pinceau. Which I looked up endless times yet still could not remember out of context.

So my mind is blank and my mood is low, despite all this talk.

I'm going to have to take risperidone, when I really want something else. Because I have been let down YET AGAIN by a network that seems deliberately to be constructed with man-shaped holes for people like me to fall down.

That's it for today. Don't be offended if I haven't visited your blog in an obscene length of time; I've visited nobody.

Illustrated: the book I'm reading by the Chinese immigrant Dai Sijie who, incidentally, had lived in France only 14 years when his French got good enough to write novels in the language. The title means "On A Moonless Night"

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Back from Beyond the English Language

I DIDN'T POST because my computer is still broken and I have spent all my time watching (rather listening to) the box set (all 5 seasons) of 6 Feet Under while marking up a notebook with every single word I do not understand from the French novel I'm reading. I've decided to better myself by reading novels and memoirs in French and German exclusively. I don't mark the books; as I said, I keep a notebook with every word I don't fully comprehend in the order it appears complete with page numbers. If a word crops up 45 times and I still don't get it, I look it up and write the definition all those times. The ONLY method of language acquisition that works is repitition.

Today I bought 3 new French novels (French literature outdoes German by a long way). They cost £2 each from a particularly eclectic charity shop with shelves and shelves of foreign crap.

I'm learning Spanish from a Linguaphone Plus course my Dad got me on ebay. It cost £35 secondhand; that's about $50. These cost about £300 new and bring you to a vocabulary of 2400 words. I know because I counted definitions per page in the glossary and multiplied up. 2400 words is about 4 times what a Teach Yourself book + 2 CDs course gives you. Plus you learn by listening. The handbook explains why it is as it is, line by line. But somehow it all goes in without much effort. Linguaphone is way better than Pimsleur. I tried Pimsleur Hebrew from the library and it's ridiculously repititious. Breaking down a simple sentence into constituent parts over and over on CD because it's designed for people who fear a simple textbook will make them feel like they're at school. I heard Pimsleur gives you a vocab of only 400 words; that wouldn't surprise me. Also Rosetta Stone level 3 gives only 1500 words ~ their customer services had to phone me back with that figure. I got the impression that neither the school-leaver who took my original call nor the supervisor who answered my enquiry had ever learned a foreign languge, let alone actually used Rosetta Stone.

Last week I was in a good mood but now I'm depressed. I decided that it's unnatural to live on psyche meds. Not to mention the fact that I want my meds CHANGED to quetiapine which has a more acceptable side-effects profile. Ever since I took risperidone I had episodic severe anxiety which I will NOT put up with. Surprise surprise anxiety is a side-effect afflicting more than one person in ten on that drug. I want quetiapine instant release. It might stop me needing to take zopiclone, which I mostly buy on the street as my doctor is too prissy to give a regular supply. I only take zopiclone as required. Every so often I go through a period, usually when I'm going manic, where I sleep 3 hours a day or less. Or just cannot sleep at night and sleep randomly during the day.

Now I feel down and out and pretty pointless. But I'm determined to be able to read these pretentious French novels in the original. Why not? They're not really pretentious. French literature is parallel to English literature. There's a huge international contingent in France, the language is used widely accross Africa. So French books are very cosmopolitan. My current one is about the last emperor of China and an ancient manuscript; the next one is called Le nègre du Palais by Thierry Pfister. Something to do with a rich man dying in a big house (wouldn't he be liable to dreaded French wealth tax?) and politics. Well it looks a lot better than it sounds. I haven't taken a dictionary to it yet so it's all a blur.

Isn't 6 Feet Under just about the best thing that's ever been on telly? I was wondering why Ruth, the mother, annoys me so much. That's because she's just like me: a mixture of prissy and adventurous. Meek yet not meek-willed. Just like me. I'm also like Phoebe from Friends. Hippy dippy on the outside; hard as nails on the inside. It's other people who call me hard. I don't think I'm hard. But when they say that I answer: well if I were as soft on the inside as I appear on the outside I'd be a fucking lump of jelly wouldn't I??

I hope y'all are OK. I didn't mean to worry anyone by not posting. If I ever do get to die I'll be a very lucky man. I know that will never happen to me. I am a born survivor. Don't want to be. But I am. Least I won't be a fucking monoglot when I do die. That would be WELL beyond the pale!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Vive le Romance

DON'T WORRY about my over-ernest post yesterday. I was getting a bit over the top, psyching myself up to write write write. The writing is going, but slowly. Strangely I write almost the same for children as for adults. This is fiction I'm talking about; not blogging. Children don't like or relate to abstracts and neither do I. I hate latinate nouns in English; I like things concrete.

Anyway talking of Romance languages I got so bored of German ~ which quite frankly is NOT doing it for me ~ I went out and purchased a Collins Robert French dictionary for £6.50 (second hand) and a selection of books. One about a Burmese monk called Par une nuit où la lune ne s'est pas levée a guide to rocks and minerals: Roches, cristaux, minéraux by the way I do think it's vulgar when in English people pluralize "bureau" with an S! The proper spelling is BUREAUX. You eat gâteaux in bureaux on plateux of vast mountains! My final French book is a murder mystery by J P Manchette titled Fatale. It's only 139 pages so I'm looking forward to that. Plus someone has helpfully biro'd in notes of their own to save my time at that Collins Robert!

I should hopefully have a Linguaphone SPANISH COURSE. 4 books and 8 CDs winging its way to me. I got it on ebay for £35! So I'm very much into romance languages at the moment. Remember, before y'all tut tut on how fickle I am that my goal is to speak French, German, Spanish, Chinese and Japanese. I just got temporarily tired of Chinese and German isn't inspiring me these days. French literature is just so stately. Some of the best books in the world were written in French. I'd love to be able to read Victor Hugo and Emile Zola in the original. Not to mention Flaubert's Madame Bovary ~ which I've only ever seen on television. Amazingly well adapted, it has to be said.

I always thought Madame Bovary was a junkie who just happened to live in an era before the proliferation of hard drugs. In today's world a woman with a taste for things beyond her reach would tend to seek solace in chemicals. In her day, even as wife of a country doctor, the only things available to her would have been laudanum and possibly cocaine. Strange to think of Madame Bovary nosing up a line off her posh rosewood dining table, but there you go.

Now I must off. I got a box set of Six Feet Under, one of my favourite television programmes of all time. I like the bit with the bipolar brother weeping and wailing in the kitchen and Rachel Griffiths says "if you're looking for the olives, honey, they're right here"....

Monday, September 12, 2011

Loose End

I'M AT A VERY LOOSE END. Feeling depressed. I don't get the buzz out of things that I expect to get. Example: I went into town and bought Chinese books and Paris Match and Stern magazines in French and German. I got all this stuff home and felt distinctly flat. Not depressed. Not angry. Nothing negative; just nothing very positive.

My life goals are to speak and write German, French, Spanish, Chinese and Japanese to as near mother tongue standard as possible. To this end I am using every language course I can get my hands on. It's good to have one in German, even if it is "too easy". Really I need a teacher to correct my writing, because I know it's unidiomatic. Someone once asked in all seriousness whether my German blog was the product of Google Translate ~ which just about says everything about my writing. My vocabulary is pretty good now ~ though nowhere near as good as someone's who has put proper effort in. The Perfect Your German CDs and book promises an active vocab of 5000 words. Using a dictionary and multiplying the number of words familiar with per page by the number of pages I calculated I had a passive vocabulary (that is, I read a word and understand it) of eight to ten thousand words.

I've started my book in ernest. I'm only after a name for my central character but I think I've found one. I googled it and it's not been used. That is the big high jump for all children's characters' names. The more unique they are the less allowable it is for them to have featured in previous books, films, cartoons etc. Mine seemed to check out OK.

I've only written about a page of story but it's a children's book. Not a picture book, as my mother assumed, but a children's book like the Chronicles of Narnia and Harry Potter are children's books. Totally unreliant on illustrations. A tale spun in spellbinding language. I know I'm not the best writer alive. But I'm unique: I do believe I'm best at being me. I am not writing in the style or genre of anybody else. I hope to bring a breath of mountain-fresh air to the fetid wizard and lesbian-single-parent-obsessed world of children's publishing. Apart from this I'll say nothing until my book is done. I wouldn't say my story is so much amazingly unique as something that's magical for the way it's told. We see the world through the eyes of our little character, who is an amazing character. So it's a magical world to see. And that's all I'm saying about it.

It's my parents I credit for kicking me up the backside and saying YOU CAN WRITE, WRITE THIS TALE. So I am doing. I'm not entirely convinced self-publishing is the way to go forward. Considering half a billion people in the world speak English well enough to enjoy a novel and many of these hundreds of millions have children. How can I hope to market my production to them. I know nothing about promoting children's literature. The way I see it, writing is an art; publishing is a business. Experience as well as everything I have read about my mental situation has told me stress is bad for me. True I find it exhilarating. But that exhilaration can trip into mania very easily. I've told myself I was being hypochondriac so many times before. Only to look back and see I really was manic. When you're up at four in the morning, TV and stereo blaring at top volume, bouncing balls on the floor you're not just "a bit excited" you're manic. Mania has left me in a real mess every time it's come. It's not that mania itself is so terrible; it's the disinhibition, the feiriness of spirit (ie uninhibited agression), and hyperkinetic distractability that cause problems. Ratchet it up a notch or two and agression turns into outright paranoia, the beautiful enhanced sensory pereception trips into hallucinations. When I was truly manic I saw spirals on the walls and ceiling. I heard voices speaking to and about me. I could not tell what was and was not real. Then of course there's the depression. Less than a month ago I felt my life was so useless that lying down in front of an express train was the best favour I could do my family and friends. I was intensely paranoid and very depressed. Then I started popping my pills again and literally by the next morning two thirds of my depression and half the paranoia had dissipated. Isn't life strange.

This is why I seek a career in writing. Not only is it exceedingly trendy to be bipolar and artistic but I know from experience that rare extremes aside, I'm capable of writing almost no matter how high or low or sideways I go.

I intend to take these languges of mine far enough to qualify as a translator at least in German to English. If you calculate languges as GDP and number of speakers; German is number two in the world after English. Chinese is number three. Japanese is number four. So if you wonder why my German obsession: that's it. German is by far the biggest business language in the European Union after English. I phoned around some agecies specializing in placing bilingual temps and headhunting bilingual administrators, secretaries etc. What language had the most openings? I asked. German German German I was told. Every time.

So that's what I'm doing. Writing my intellectual story book, improving my German. Chinese is quite frankly doing my head in at the moment but I'm still slogging away. I'd like to apply my talents to Spanish if I can.

So here's the news. I hope this isn't too much of a tangle. I'm not lost but I'm trying to break free of the inertia and lassitude and apathy that has hemmed me in like a dancer frozen in a paperweight for years and years and years. Like a cage-nibbling hamster I desire escape. I'd like to go on a City Break to Berlin. And I can't wait to finish my Amazing Tale of Adventure and Wonder!

And how was YOUR weekend?

Saturday, September 10, 2011

I GOT A BOOK EARLIER called Perfect Your German so I'm perfecting away. It cost only £19.99 for one 300 page book and 2 CDs from WH Smiths. This might have had something to do with Smiths pricing something marked £29.99 at £10 cheaper but hey. A bargain is a bargain and who am I to complain.

I'm on the lookout for bargainacious second hand language courses so if anyone has higher German or French or beginners to intermediate level Chinese, Japanese or Spanish I'd be most interested.

I have to be pragmatic with these languages. German is the most useful language in Europe ~ or to put it another way, if you add the GDP of different nations together, language by language, German comes out number 2 in the world after English. It's way ahead of Spanish which says a lot, considering Spanish has 400 million native speakers and German has "only" 100 million. Japanese has 125 million native speakers; Mandarin Chinese has about 850 million native speakers; a total of 1,400,000,000 people speak Mandarin as a first or second language. Chinese "dialects" by the way, differ as much as Italian and Spanish. They are really languages, but because all Chinese people consider themselves Chinese the word "dialect" is preferred. On the other hand, Norwegian and Danish are really separate dialects. But they're labelled languages purely on political grounds. When a dialect has a written standard it is apt to be labelled a language. But in actuality ~ so it is said ~ you could walk from Amsterdam to Berlin and at no place would you come across any sudden language divide. That's because German blends into Dutch. And that's why I speak so much Dutch. Not because I'm clever but because I did A level German and Dutch is a version of Low German. Low German is very similar to English. Where a German person says "über das Wasser" a speaker of low German dialect says "over de water" ~ just like an English person. Some of Grimm's fairy tales are in low German. The best one has a man and wife living "in a stinking piss pot". I laughed like a diarrhoea-clogged drain over that one!

Now I must go I'm in an internet cafe. Darkness surrounds us with this weather of late. It's very dull and autumnal.

Sorry no furry Friday. I don't know what else to put! Take care y'all.

PS I'm practising my terrible German once more by blogging in German again.... wish me luck my German grammar is atrocious!

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

AUTUMN is thick in the air. You can feel it everywhere. The leaves have fallen off the trees already in some places. Conkers are everywhere. Stormy weather is forecast. Already it's grey and cold.

The only good thing about autumn, if you're into drugs of all kinds, is that psychedelic mushrooms appear after the first rains.

I'm not into drugs and haven't taken a magic mushroom in well over a decade... I haven't used heroin since I can't remember when. But my brain's telling me it's about 10 days.

Time for all you cooks to make hearty stew and dumplings.

Monday, September 05, 2011

Cigarettes Level

MY CIGARETTE SMOKING IS LEVEL at about 15 per day. That's not bad, considering they're spindly rollies. I can get by on 10 superkings per day. Those are very long, ordinary thickness cigarettes. I break off the ends and get about 6 or 7 rollups as well as 10 ordinary length cigs. So my habit costs me about £20 per week. British cigarettes are very expensive.

I used NO GEAR yesterday or today (Sunday and Monday are the only days I've used on for weeks, mostly just Sundays). So I'm over 7 days clean now. I don't miss heroin at all. I did crave it yesterday, because I'm used to using on Sundays. But I do not want or need that muck in my veins.

I'm keeping my last memory of a needle in my vein a bad one: the blood test nurse tutting and muttering over my collapsing vessels. If I have bad memories to look back on, I reason, I won't have anything to set me off. Also you tend to glorify the past as you come off drugs and only remember the good days. In spates. Then you remember how bad it really was and are glad you never gave in during those episodes of glorification.

I'm watching a drama about multiple murderers Fred and Rosemary West called Appropriate Adult. The appropriate adult is someone they keep in with a suspect during interviews to ensure procedure is adhered to and that the suspect understands what's going on. Apparently they weren't sure whether or not Fred West was retarded!

The appropriate adult's partner got so excited by press camping round their house (the British press being especially voracious) that he went and caught Bipolar Mania, buying a new car, television and hifi equipment and ending up in a mental hospital. Now the appropriate adult has been sacked... end of part one.

I laughed at the beginning of that drama when they cracked a joke about the buried au pair not "having three legs" (ie 3 thigh bones of at least 2 people were found buried in close proximity). Then he talks about ripping a baby from a murdered woman's womb. And I wanted to be sick. The Wests apparently tortured these young women to death and what they did was vile.

Anyway back to cigarettes and now I have to give up smoking. And I wish my methadone clinic would reduce my dose I hate being on over 100mg.

Take care everyone.

Today's main illustrations are from the Aussie drama, Prisoner Cell Block H. If you want to see Fred and Rosemary West click the links I put up

Friday, September 02, 2011

Countdown to Nothing

I AM COUNTING EACH AND EVERY CIGARETTE I smoke in preparation to cut that number down down down... then out. To Zero. I am thinking of going on Nicotine Replacement Therapy when I've got down to five a day. I have no idea how many I currently smoke as I roll my own. I have had six so far today. It's 1:30. I have been up since about 9 or 9:30 which means 6 in 4 hours. Which is not that good.

I take back everything I have said about giving up fags being easy. I only said that in exasperation at cigarette smoking being compared to heroin. Interestingly only in smoking cessation clinics. Not heroin cessation clinics. Because smoking a fag is nothing like hitting up some "pukka B".

An addict cycled past me, saying he is running for a dealer I know and his gear is "old school". Ie good. I'm over heroin now. Like I said I've only used once a week, and looking back it's the change in routine on a Sunday that prompts me to do it. (I've only ever used on a Sunday for weeks now. When I have used extra it was on Monday. Because Sunday sparked me off to do it.)

With that nasty nauseating blood test fresh in my mind, I'm determined to hold on to a negative image of needles and keep myself reverse-fixated that way. I'm so over heroin. Yes the methadone is helping a LOT. Never thought I'd say that, but anything that makes heroin feel not worthwhile has to be good.

And here endeth my thoughts for today. Happy thoughts! (Wow.)

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Police Everywhere

I DON'T KNOW WHAT THEY'RE UP TO but the boys and girls in blue are everywhere today. Even "civil enforcement officers" (who prosecute you for dropping a fag end: judicious use of resources by the local council). It's as if there's some secret plot in the air and the Old Bill are out in force to foil it.

I need a new wardrobe, I have decided. I am fed up of looking "like a homeless" (not my words). Even the local council hinted I might prefer to throw my clothes away because a charity shop probably wouldn't take them. I'm going to start out looking in thrift stores as they have the nicest stuff (amongst the tat). I used to wear a lot of Paul Smith, because Oxfam didn't realize it was a designer name and priced his shirts and trousers at 50p. I think they do realize now, and price accordingly. I also had an Armani teeshirt, which I never quite had the guts to deface. It used to be highly fashionable to tear and graffiti designer names. It meant you were hip enough not to care. I haven't a clue what's trendy nowadays and frankly I do care. If you're going to get new clothes they may as well be in Vogue to boot ~ know what I mean?

So I'm left with a clothes crisis and nothing to wear.

By the way I've swapped alcoholic liquor for cloudy lemonade. It only costs 54p for 2 litres and has more of a kick. It's an acidic kick, but it's lovely. I also got free limoncello deserts from Londis. They'd gone past the date so they were literally giving them out free.

So that's all. No big news, as you can see.

O yeah I found this in 100 Cases in Psychiatry by Wright, Dave and Dogra

p89: A 38-year-old woman has taken an overdose. She is refusing to give consent for her blood to be taken for tests. She is also shouting, "you're not going to pump my stomach!"

p90 Although this woman is unlikely to have a mental illness, her acute distress might make he temporarily incompetent. If, however, she has a mental disorder and that disorder is posing a risk to her health, she can be detained under the Mental Health Act even on a medical ward.

Which made my blood run cold. NOT because I am thinking of doing myself in, but that if I did have some illness I would want the right not to be treated for it. And now I find out that because I have a Label, my wishes are wont to be overriden!

Surely it's my right not to have compulsory treatment. I didn't even WANT to have that blood test and only went for it so the doctor would sign the form for an ECG, which I need in order to continue receiving methadone. Yes I let her coerce me but she was playing stupid saying "we'll get the blood results first" even though I told her repeatedly the blood results had nothing to do with the ECG. I wonder whether that woman actually qualified as a doctor or has fake papers. She's the one who wanted to give yet again the the antidepressant that made me psychotic. And she wanted to prescribe it to me while I was clearly hypomanic, cheerful and talking 19 to the dozen. Ie not depressed at all. But not sleeping either. She was trying to pull that move where they fob you off with antidepressants instead of benzos. Hmmm...

Well I have to go. Hope y'all are well... I'm in a NORMAL MOOD. Wow!



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