Never Too Late!

Never Too Late!
any resemblance to anyone real or imaginary is mere bad luck
we are all lying in the gutter, but some of us are trying to get up


Palestinian Graffiti

Okay, and it's my favourite Banksy yet:

That Banksy has been doing the subversive graffiti thing on the big apartheid security wall in Israel/occupied Palestine.

Hey, but that crazy Arofish guy did it first!



A man walks into a bar... yeah? So...

A man walks into a bar... He walks up to the bar and orders a drink. He is an alcoholic. His addiction to drink is slowly killing him, and destroying his wife, his family and all those who are dear to him. In a drunken stupor, once, he ran a red light and drove over a four-year-old schoolgirl. She survived, though only just, spending four months in a coma with a severely fractured skull. He didn't stop.

Haaaahahahahahahaaaahahaa!! Let's have another one!

There's an Englishman, an Irishman and a Scot, yeah?

So there's an Englishman, an Irishman and a Scot. They are queueing at the local Tesco. The Englishman picks up a TV listings magazine and leafs through it in a desultory manner while he waits with a trolly full of his family's weekly shopping. The Irishman is uncomfortably hot and restless, tapping his foot nervously and reading and re-reading the labels on the bottles of wine he is waiting to pay for. The Scot gets fed up of waiting, decides to buy his lunch-break sandwiches at Benjy's instead, puts his shopping down and leaves.


Fucking anti-humour.



Torture in the modern age

Picked up a New York Sun story via Google News in which Jose Padilla (alleged al-Qa'ida "dirty bomb" suspect) claims that the CIA dosed him with LSD to, presumably, help break him under interrogation - see here.

LSD was studied by the CIA as a possible "truth drug" during MK-ULTRA, without much success. But as a method of sheer chemical torture, it could be notably more successful. As a sensitiser, it could potentially make you feel really miserable, depending what sort of a set and setting you were subjected to.

Of course, there are worse things than LSD. As anyone who has read Bunker 13 will know, things like BZ: a deliriant guaranteed to give you a screaming psychotic nightmare trip, while chemically stimulating the pain receptors in your nervous system.

Oh yes: chemical torture. Too flesh-crawlingly terrifying to even contemplate.

Experts in coercive interrogation recommend (should you ever have to torture anyone for vital information) to avoid inflicting pain for as long as possible, as the fear of pain is often more potent than physical pain itself. Indeed, many people surprise themselves with how well they cope with pain, when it comes.

Imagine, instead, being placed in an immersion tank, floating in body-temperature saline and deprived of all sensory input whatsoever. You are, essentially, a "brain in a bath-tub"; consiousness floating in total darkness, total silence, total emptiness. Horror vacui. This, in itself, is enough to drive most people crazy. In a matter of a few hours or so.

But before they put you in there, you are injected with prolixin - developed as an anti-psychotic, this is something like being chemically flayed - and turbocurarine, which paralyses your body and denies you any outlet, through physical movement or flailing about, from the ghastly creeping torment and panic that is slowly drowning you. If necessary, of course, they will put a tube down your wind-pipe to keep you alive for the next few days.

The sadist genius of human beings knows no limit.

This is an unpleasant thing to think about, but almost certainly, someone somewhere is undergoing treatment like this, perhaps under the aegis of your government, busy fighting the great War on Terror.

[[realgem recommended reading]] Excellent and thoughtful article from Atlantic Monthly on the dark art of interrogation, speculating what Khalid Sheikh Muhammad may have gone through

... Or maybe they just gave him the LSD treatment...

"After 48 hours, the suspect cracked and began to reveal vital operational intelligence. It was established that all matter is merely energy condensed to a slow vibration, that we are all one consciousness experiencing itself subjectively, and that there is no such thing as death. Further, evidence was gained which seems to bear out suspicions that life is only a dream, and that we are merely the imagination of ourselves..." [remember Bill Hicks...]


Asymmetric warfare

New addition to the sidebar blogroll: Global Guerillas. Fascinating and authoritatively-written open notebook on "4th generation warfare": encompassing explorations of emergence (in the sense of spontaneously self-organising systems - all this alliteration is unintentional, by the way), open-source and networks as metaphors applied to theories of guerilla warfare, and post-modern insurgency in the age of the internet.

Also gypsy-ass bad motherfucker Robert Young Pelton's website - if you haven't heard of this man and his work, please to check out the website. Found by browsing on the Black Flag Cafe forums: "Hitler's Drugged Soldiers" - RYP quotes the full text of an article discussing German military use of drugs and alcohol under the Third Reich. (Excerpts:)

Many of the Wehrmacht's soldiers were high on Pervitin when they went into battle, in a Blitzkrieg fueled by speed. The German military was supplied with millions of methamphetamine tablets during the first half of 1940. The drugs were part of a plan to help pilots, sailors and infantry troops become capable of superhuman performance. The military leadership liberally dispensed such stimulants, but also alcohol and opiates, as long as it believed drugging and intoxicating troops could help it achieve victory over the Allies. But the Nazis were less than diligent in monitoring side-effects like drug addiction and a decline in moral standards... During the short period between April and July of 1940, more than 35 million tablets of Pervitin and Isophan [methamphetamine] were shipped to the German army and air force...
Franz Wertheim, a medical officer who was sent to a small village near the Western Wall on May 10, 1940, wrote the following account: "To help pass the time, we doctors experimented on ourselves. We would begin the day by drinking a water glass of cognac and taking two injections of morphine. We found cocaine to be useful at midday, and in the evening we would occasionally take Hyoskin," an alkaloid derived from some varieties of the nightshade plant that is used as a medication. Wertheim adds: "As a result, we were not always fully in command of our senses."

[and of course Hitler's prescribed daily methamphetamine shots and Goering's morphine addiction are well documented]

... indeed, we were feeling positively... asymmetric...


The God experiment

This god experiment is a good one. Walk around pretending that you're god. If you can do it, it will force you to take responsibility. For everything. Furthermore, since you are god, everything you have created is by definition good, even if you don't remember why you created it that way right at the moment. It is the best psychological experiment ever to conducted on yourself.

I am god. The little psychos kicked my ribs in and I was laughing and laughing because they didn't understand that it was really me kicking me. I pain hurt I love pain magnificent I keep walking, I walk over broken bottles, the pain kills a little more of you and then the scar tissue doesn't feel no more...

I am god... She walked away and I cried and I was her walking away ("I didn't realise til you walked away you had the perfect ass/Forgive me for not falling in love with your face or conversation" Leonard Cohen) and I was the tears and I was the smirking workman who had listened to our conversation standing on the corner.

I am god. Where I used to bow my head and hide my face, I now smile benignly on all my creation. Especially that Turkish girl in the short black dress. How do I know I'm god? When I take drugs, other people stop working.

But what happens when god gets stoned? He starts making silly jokes. Like "what goes boing boing boing BOOM!" It's a suicide bomber on a pogo stick, like you probably remember. Now the fucking dog is enthusiastically licking god's hand and offering its head to be scratched. God's scalp is itching, too. A strange depression fell over god at the Kings Cross end of Caledonian Road. He wondered what the fuck he had been thinking when he created it all.

This is not as difficult as it seems! Try it and you will understand. This text is merely to illustrate the idea.

Yes, god... you created that street full of vicious kids with empty eyes and iron bars. I use the word "mine" (as in "mine creation") a little sourly in this situation. "Whose is it all?" Shit, I don't know, I don't give a fuck, I always try...

try what? Distracted by some atrocious bullshit. God allowed himself to be distracted by himself. This could get really schizophrenic. Is the end of that sentence lost forever?

Nevermind that. I can see into the future now as well, though only about three seconds. This fellow here, he might be an important sorceror or initiate of hidden doctrines, however you would have it. It seems he can read god's mind. Of course god doesn't like this particularly.

God is a pathological optimist and adjusts his attitude accordingly.
The ceilings have eyes and so do the floors
And so do the faces nailed to the walls


PR and publicity review: Hezbollah, the Taliban and Gen. Musharraf

Found on Newsweek: PR tips from Hezbollah's publicity consultant.

(Also note the images of the front covers of the four separate Newsweek issues. Asia: "Losing Afghanistan". Latin America: "Losing Afghanistan". Europe: "Losing Afghanistan". US: "My life in pictures".)

Then we have videos from Afghanistan, from the communications department of Dadullah Akhund. I liked the music in the first one, but the second one is the fascinating one, where he's handing out slips of paper to suicide bomb volunteers. Look at that first boy, so pretty, and how he can't keep a straight face at the martyrdom video bit at the end where he's meant to be gesticulating at the camera angrily. Can you peer through someone's face into their mind?

Via MoorishGirl, Gen. Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan (YouTube) plugging his memoir on the Daily Show in the US. Interesting short interview. If you're interested in that sort of thing.

And something more lighthearted, from susiebright - magic striptease act from Ursula Martinez.


Addiction: a metaphor for everything

Is it time to expand our definition of "addiction"?

Scientific evidence suggests that we should. Apparently, illegal drugs only crudely imitate the more natural "highs" that most of us get from wholesome habits -- using internal chemistry to reinforce love of family, music, skill, beauty or country.

Is this why so many find it easy to "just say no" to drugs? Because we already know how to press the same buttons... inside our minds?

What follows is an open letter to scientists who could answer such questions. Especially the following:

Might some addictive
mental states be doing as much harm to society as all the heroin, cocaine and crack on our streets, combined?


I want to zoom down to a particular emotional and psychological pathology. The phenomenon known as self-righteous indignation.

We all know self-righteous people. (And, if we are honest, many of us will admit having wallowed in this state ourselves, either occasionally or in frequent rhythm.) It is a familiar and rather normal human condition, supported -- even promulgated -- by messages in mass media.

While there are many drawbacks, self-righteousness can also be heady, seductive, and even... well... addictive. Any truly honest person will admit that the state feels good. The pleasure of knowing, with subjective certainty, that you are right and your opponents are deeply, despicably wrong.

Sanctimony, or a sense of righteous outrage, can feel so intense and delicious that many people actively seek to return to it, again and again. Moreover, as Westin have found, this trait crosses all boundaries of ideology.

Indeed, one could look at our present-day political landscape and argue that a relentless addiction to indignation may be one of the chief drivers of obstinate dogmatism and an inability to negotiate pragmatic solutions to a myriad modern problems. It may be the ultimate propellant behind the current "culture war."

If there is any underlying truth to such an assertion, then acquiring a deeper understanding of this one issue may help our civilization deal with countless others.

[full text here; An Open Letter to Researchers of Addiction, Brain Chemistry and Social Psychology from David Brin, Ph.D.]


"Take strange drugs and wines that foam..." Observe and see what forms of drunkenness assail thee...

(neglect not thy pranayama...)

take strange drugs and wines that foam...
horror vacui

(nothing more)


Hello seeking searching world

People end up here in various ways as is the wont with blogs and other gypsy-ass websites like this... Someone did a search on "ho [sic] much is heroin in Karachi" and sadly left without an answer (about £1 a gramme sort of thing). Some people have Googled "Rodney Anyanwu", and left disappointed that my two-part tale of the serial killer and the haunted house never got its concluding chapter (see archives if you're that interested... or easier is to Google the man's name, and I think realgem will be one of the first results.)

An interesting recent one is "putting crushed valium in a drink". Whoever you are, think hard about whatever it is you're planning to do (rohypnol or temazepam might do the trick better, but valium doesn't taste of much anything)... and do drop by again sometime...


English architecture

Consider: always baths and no showers. Consider floor to floor carpeting in bathrooms and kitchens. Consider not rinsing when washing dishes and letting them dry with soapy water on them. Yes, it's England. Consider tramping around inside with your shitty outside shoes on. These people are disgusting barbarians.

House-building has not advanced since the Victorian era. The Victorians were quiet people who were not into fat bass and therefore the sound insulation is atrocious. The drains or plumbing invariably have some sort of problems, and houses are poorly insulated against heat or more importantly, cold.

Apparently, through some accident of architectural acoustics, it is possible for the upstairs neighbours to hear everything that goes on in this room, and for me to sit in the bathroom and hear what is going on upstairs. Apparently this is so, as I received another late-night knock asking to keep the noise down. I wasn't making a noise and nor was anyone else. Or maybe my typing now is keeping them awake in bed.

I couldn't decide whether to be belligerent about it or sympathetic, so I asked: "Is it really that bad? Is the sound insulation seriously that bad?" The answer I got of yes seemed sincere. So did the "We can hear everything you're saying, we can hear the music as if it was in our room. We're trying to sleep, the kids have to get up at 7 - 7! - in the morning..." Shit, I've been waking at 5...

If that is literally true: that it is really possible to hear everything that is said in here in a normal voice... Goodness... You have been witness to some really scandalous stuff... You might as well have been reading realgem... No, better even...

If that is literally true... Well... I'm not saying anything illegal ever took place or was ever discussed, you dig? What, everything? You've heard... what exactly? Interesting proposition. You know about... that thing? and... that thing? and...

God. I wish I had such interesting neighbours. We'd have a lot in common.

Well, I do, but neighbours horizontally rather than vertically. They are wonderful people. All I ever hear from upstairs is some kid being told off. Repeatedly and at length.

I don't have curtains on my windows either, so I can always see the sky.

Tom Thumb's Tales

realgem likes. free travel stories! entertaining stories of interest to any adventurous writer or discerning blog-reader by a true gypsy-ass motherfucker... someone who is surely no stranger to the sensation of waking in a strange city in an alien land without anything but the clothes he wears and the blue flip-flops on his feet... (nor to cringing at the old writing he finds himself to have inexplicably done...)

click here or new link in the sidebar

writes better stories than i ever did of skulduggery heroin and squalor on the streets of delhi ('Jail story' here)... another from among the malung's weird gallery of acquaintances...

in practice it demonstrates that you have to be lucky to make a living as a writer, or then you have to live lucky and be a writer... and you probably still won't know why you keep doing it...



blogger doesn't seem to support persian characters yet. this might have been better done with the scanner rather than the camera. hope you can read it.

this is a link to Khudi, Allama Iqbal's poem as adapted by Junoon and set to their "Sufi-rock". (I know people have criticised this version but you don't have to listen. It doesn't stream very well anyway.)

The first two powerful and often quoted lines can be rendered into English in many ways. like:

Endow thy will with such power

That at every turn of fate so it be

That God himself asks of his slave

"Tell me, what is it that pleases thee?" or my own loose:

Strengthen thy will with such power

That at every twist of fate

God himself asks of his slave

"Tell me: what is thy will?"

(Transliterated into English: khudi ko kar buland itna ke har taqdiir se pahle, khuda bande se khud puche: bataa, teri razaa kia hai?)

[And here I found another English-language rendering with:
Make yourself so strong that before writing your destiny, even God asks you “tell me, what is your desire?” (from here)]

Allama Iqbal is undisputedly considered the greatest poet of Pakistan / Muslim British India, writing in Urdu, Persian and English. His magnum opus was the Asrar-e-Khudi (Secrets of Self). Remaining firmly within the Muslim tradition, tending to the Sufi, his philosophy of khudi - self - or Will (in the Crowleyan sense) has echoes of Nietzsche and Goethe. He preferred writing in Persian and considered Rumi his greatest inspiration (the Persian/Afghan poet appears in some of his poems as some sort of muse or presence)...


Fantastico: Ayahuasca

Reportagem sobre a religao do Santo Daime, a igreja que usa a ayahuasca como uma bebida sagrada [[clique aqui para YouTube]]. O assiste aqui:

Eu tava muito satisfeito poder entender quasi tudo que o narrador falou, mas quando o cara da amazonia (o daimista de 43 anos) falou, nao entendi uma palavra exceto alguma coisa sobre divinidade universal. Nao sei se tem a ver com seu sotaque, o com os 43 anos da ayahuasca.

Tambem no Fantastico, o Barquinho e a estranha Uniao de Vegetal, [[aqui]] o aqui:

(Brazilian prime-time Globo broadcasts about the Church of Santo Daime and ayahuasca and other religious groups that use it. Scan through it even if you can't understand.)


And in the news...

An old friend of Dave's and mine from down Finsbury Park has been arrested on terrorism charges... See here at News of the World (NOTW doesn't maintain an article archive, so it's now linked to a blog that quotes the whole article, minus pictures) or see the man speak on featured videos...

Some friends have been raving in a millionaire mansion and got themselves on the front page of the Standard... Good reporting from The Times, contrasted to the cheap sensationalism of "littered with broken glass and used syringes and needles" (there were none) of the Evening Standard...

And here is a local newspaper report of the house I knocked down with the power of my will (see scaling north face) , in the Islington Gazette...
FOUR men were lucky to escape with their lives when a former crackhouse and squatters' den collapsed without warning.

A thunder-like boom was heard and clouds of dust filled the air when the floors in the four-storey house suddenly came crashing down.
(Earlier on realgem, stories from the old house, when it was still standing: Squatting stories, or, the alchemist of Camden Road, a photo of the house, Squatting stories 2, or, sexual problems of the disabled, which has some of the house's history. Between the story of SPOD and our arrival there, the house had indeed been a crack house, in case you thought the people mentioned in the Islington Gazette article were us... Needles, crackpipes, condoms thick on the floor, with little junkie nests, filthy mattresses surrounded by drug detritus, in the corners of the rooms... That was a fuck of a cleaning job... Oh, it was civilised enough there, for a "squatter's den", and when we left, only my room was littered with the odd needle... Jan-May 2005, realgem was published from the nicest, most comfortable apartment on the top floor of that old house... I almost miss it, if it weren't for the people and the memories... The office furniture manager is hopefully referring to the previous occupants in the article, who were bad crack niggers who had taken it over from some homeless working girls... They were removed by armed police and the place bricked up to rot...

Yes, I do believe buildings pick up energies, and once you've pieced the story of the Camden Rd house together, you will understand when I say its aura was tainted... Paulette blames that house for how things fucked up between us, and to me, it meant this...)



I have improved and updated scaling the north face of reality, the ibogaine story...

doc o has a blog, finally... and i've added a few more blog links, plus a new publication...

temporary aversion to sitting at the keyboard... i'll be around...


The in-between states

The Tibetan Book of the Dead, so called, is known as the Bardo Thodol in Tibetan. An alternate translation of the title gives us something like the Book of Instructions for the In-between States.

Generally, that means death. Traditionally, 49 days pass between death and reincarnation in a new body, and the Bardo Thodol gives instructions on how to handle the in-between state and not be tempted by the illusory beautiful and hideous deities and visions.

But bardo need not occur at death. Other events may trigger it. At certain points in life, too, one may enter a bardo, an in-between state, when the linearity of consciousness slips, when the record jumps, when you have the opportunity to catch the right wave to a new level of frequency. To peel away one more layer from prime reality. (The alternative, then... is to drop back into the same programmed pattern.)

Emerging stripped clean, zeroed, nulled, emerging once more into physical reality and time and the surprising sensation of being alive and existing in time, I feel I may be in a bardo state. May Avalokiteshvara the Buddha of Compassion help me keep my mind on the true light, and bless all of you beautiful people. Aum Mani Padme Hum.


The little lessons of evolution

Cro-Magnon men swept out their caves. Neanderthal's didn't.


ummm.... what was the reason for doing this blogging thing again... ah... you see, i am learning everything anew, having only been alive a few days. but i have a hazy memory of it from a previous life and these things will hopefully come back to me.

ah yes, that was it, the words that started it all: If you are idle, be not solitary, and if you are solitary, be not idle, as dr j said.

i will be, hopefully, insh'allah, be publishing lots of writing soon. i may get another blogspot address for it. you people, whoever you are, who still keep checking here to see if there has been any movement, will doubtless be able to track it down... you clever people, you beautiful people, you who will never grow old...


scaling the north face of reality

this account may be added to and improved check back. for another account of ibogaine withdrawal, see here.

the professionals among you will know that acute heroin withdrawal, 100-0mph in 0 secs howling bloody nails-tearing screaming cold turkey, goes something like this: Day 1 is uncomfortable, the first night don't expect to sleep. Day 2 is approaching howling bloody nails-tearing dope sickness and it's only getting worse. The second and then god forbid the third night will be pure fucking hell on earth. If you are lucky and aren't too far advanced in your addiction by the fourth night you will be getting your first patches of delirious sleep, waking from nightmares to more twisting in reeking sweatsoaked sheets. And it goes on... And the craving, the god-awful cellular scream ("a yen comes on him like a great black wind through the bones..." naked lunch)...

when i did my kick, i was on over 300mg morphine sulphate (approx. equiv. to some 100 ml methadone), plus anywhere between 0.25-1 gramme of street heroin per day on top (cheap, powerful, plentiful and pure in London since the US and Brits joined the interminable war in Afghanistan and bombed the fuck out of the Taliban...)

what happened to me was this:

sometime around the time of the last post i took 1400mg ibogaine hcl and lay down on my bed, preparing for whatever was to come.

several hours later there is a vague humming in my ears. my thoughts are a little disjointed, i feel tranquilised as if by one of those horrible psychiatric tranquilisers but still able to communicate normally. i feel a little disassociated and underneath that i can feel the junk sickness kicking in. then colours are starting to blur, and objects are tinged with strange colours. it becomes more difficult to hold onto a thought for more than two seconds. the music is playing upside down.

the delirious paranoia running through my mind is that it's not working. that i've been cheated. that there's something wrong with the stuff, cause i stored it for so long. panic building up. horrible sickness. wasn't this supposed to be painless? that i toss and turn in the grip of some ketamine-like delirium while the sickness cures itself?

where is the powerful psychotropic effect i expected from the drug? instead, there is a mocking emptiness, laughing, laughing at stupid me who wanted something for free. ("pay it all, pay it all, pay it all back, every moment you have stolen...") it is only afterwards i realise how truly powerful this drug is. it's a very low-level reprogramming drug in computer programming language terms...

i am lucky to have at the other end of a telephone a man who we'll call ed i've never met with a remarkable knowledge of ibogaine. the consultant. otherwise who knows what would have happened to me.

the next 48 hours are delirious. flashes: i'm just going in. ed is on the telephone: "i have a feel for ibogaine. i can reach out and connect to you now. i can hear you are in an ibogaine space." i feel i am in acute withdrawal space and abandoned by this supposed wonder cure. "it's a remarkable drug. have trust. trust in it. now settle down in your bed and stay there. you'll be there for at least 48 hours." i laugh and drop the phone. at the time it seemed the most blood-curdlingly terrifying idea i'd ever heard.

delirium of torture. no hope no hope for one second's comfort. nerves peeled and exposed, lying twisting and twiching in a stench of toxic sweat. how much longer? someone else is talking calmly: "... in some gestapo prison... having lights shined in your eyes, getting slapped every time you tried to sleep. then when you've been sitting tied to a chair in your own piss and shit for 48 hours, when any little slap hurts, they fix your hands to a table and out come the pliers for your fingernails... if you pass out, they'll chuck some cold water on you to wake you up before carrying on..." it's the funniest thing anyone's ever told me in this infinity of pain. how petty my situation really is. i am coherent enough to answer that some sophisticated modern tortures are completely chemical in nature... inject you with this to make you feel like you're drowning in pain, inject you with that so that you're immobile and put you in an immersion tank so that you're alone in the dark with your own screaming nervous system... (like this)...

a synchronicity too delicious to miss, or how i destroyed a house with the power of my will:

sometime as i lie twisting and in delirium on day 2, just around the time i find and lock my will on what i'm doing and laugh at how easy it really is, the old house in Camden Rd collapses into the street. builders are trapped inside. the road is blocked. people in intensive care.

the old house where all this begun. where realgem began. the old house that... some people didn't like. paulette, for example. and some other sensitives. they didn't like that house, didn't come there. well. it had a fucked up old history. long-time readers will remember... see archives Jan-May 2005...

the only reason i don't leave on day two and get heroin is because there are people there to restrain me by force if necessary and i am too weak and confused for any sort of subterfuge. "give it 24 hours" ed says. "trust."

visions of evolution, nature red in tooth and claw, a million generations of teeming slashing tearing bundles of will to live and pain, a million years of bloodsoaked evolution on the primordial plains of africa. i see smoke from the witch-pyres of the middle ages rising into the skies of europe. then reeking mud and barbed wire and cutting jagged steel across the mindless battlefields of the great war. all moving towards something... moving towards something... but where did intelligence first come from? the brutal fight of evolution, the generations before us over the eons clawing forward - i owe them more than this, i owe them greater tribute than to be caught by this stupid-trap of nature and to destroy myself...

by night 2 (don't get the idea it was pleasant...) i was actually improving, just when it should have been getting worse... by the morning of day 3 i am cheerful and smiling even if i still haven't slept and feel frazzled. eating handfuls of valium and smoking dope, giving me some respite. i do not look like someone on the third day of cold turkey withdrawal. by the morning of day 3 i have a bath by my own power and dress in a suit ready to go out to eat breakfast, feeling fine in my mind, and then promptly collapse like a skeleton.

doc o had said the day before this all, the last day of my junkie life: "i don't know why you're putting yourself through this psychedelic hell when you could so easily just gently reduce on methadone." look through the realgem archives and count the number of times... gradually reduce, relapse, force the dose down again, start scoring again... count the number of times... i was in a position and with the resources to maintain my life like this indefinitely. i just couldn't quit. couldn't, couldn't couldn't.

"it all comes down to how thinly you want to spread it," he said when he dropped by on the morning of day 3. yes, in his very professional opinion, i looked nothing like someone in day 3 of acute junk sickness.


it all comes down to how thinly you want to spread it.

ibogaine lets you face the dragon or the monkey and fight it head on in one ferocious test of wills. into the inferno!

people ask me what it was like, what was the trip like: it's a shamanic psychedelic, isn't it? but no, i had no visions of african gods or strange other worlds... some people perhaps do...

as i can now limitedly comprehend it, ibogaine works on a much lower level... near the metabolic, cellular, maybe genetic level... the theory has been put forward that psychedelic chemicals played a part in the evolution of intelligence, language in some sort of proto-human apes... after ibogaine, i have a strong intuitive feeling that this may be so...

this experimental medication does merit the description miraculous. within several days i am out and about, in the street... like a window has been cleaned, and the light is painfully intense, painfully intense is the world... but it's the world... once again swimming in the world of the senses, talking to people... throwing away money at people, talking to a homeless junkie and giving him a note to score, just cause i don't need that money for my habit any more... sitting on the street in camden one of the crack-niggers comes and waves rock in my face... the pusher-man... he won't leave us alone... so i ask him if he's got brown... yeah... so i tell him to get the fuck out of my face, hoping for violence, ready for violence... but it's sunlit high street and the day it's beautiful and it's just childish bravado in the face of "powder power..."

the ibogaine's psychotropic effect, which i initially was so disappointed with, manifests itself in the next few days, and in a much more subtle way than any mere psychedelic... my mind is sharp inside my worn-out body that i push to exhaustion... and still don't sleep, no, i don't sleep... god, sometimes i want to...

and all the synchronicities... the crazy coincidences, the chance meetings, the way everything is falling into place as if the universe was in synch with me again, the new opportunities that drop into my path, the people i need to meet there just when i turn the corner... but this is some effect on a more subtle level of reality... something, something beyond words or chemistry or pharmacology...

don't think it's the painless cure. there's only one painless cure and that's death.

i hope this is of interest to anyone who struggles with this strange sickness... anyone who is finding lady heroin too demanding a mistress...


13.00 Aug 21 2006
2 years of solid opiate abuse behind (this time around. i was here before, too. so make that 5 years in total.)
withdrawals are starting now
first dose of ibogaine hcl down 13.00 hours
recording of nusrat fateh ali khan playing in the background
the sun has just broken through the clouds
i'm going away to a strange place now, i don't know where
hope to see you all when i get back

("if you find the door that allows you to leave this life, you must not take it. it will be destructive for everyone involved.")

bismillah ar-rahman ar-rahim



Dublin post-dated

happened in a past life quite recently... paulette calls and says has two tickets to eddie izzard show in dublin on friday, how do we get there? (i don't think she realised it was a different country) it was the day i'd originally planned to take my cure but with a pocketful of morphines left to use up i thought it would be good. oh it was so kind of her to remember me with only two tickets left for the show, how could i not have gone with her?irish sea, pulling out of holyhead, the isle of anglesey (the ancient isle of Ynys Môn)
christchurch cathedral

club, outside and inside

number 23 of?
dublin, rain

(paulette had researched the trip and has a tourist streetmap of dublin printed from the internet. attraction number 23 is the james joyce museum... "captain clark welcomes you aboard...")

then on sunday evening she called me to bid farewell to this mike and hope to see the next mike soon.

while we're on ireland, here's a rousing old rebel song...



realgem will be back presently


A vindication, should you need one

In the words of that glib Oscar Wilde:
Good artists exist in what they make, and consequently are perfectly uninteresting in what they are. A great poet, a really great poet, is the most unpoetical of all creatures. But inferior poets are absolutely fascinating... [they] live the poetry they cannot write.


no words

middle temple




The coolest man on earth

On guitar we got my main fuckin nigga Ian C. motherfuckin Bishop bitch! This is the chillest man in all earth.

Doc O and I play chess at his bar (Vestry, Fortress Studios, Provost Street N1, especially recommended Sundays for Sunday lunches and bloody Marys). He disconcerts us by coming up to the table and stroking the bishop. Any of them, but usually black's queen-side bishop.

"What the fuck are you doing?" we demand. "I'm stroking a bishop," Ian Bishop says. The photo links to his myspace. Cold Cold Heart is good. (Rupert Murdoch bought myspace, did you know that? For $580m. But it's still especially good for musicians.)


Your dose of literature for today

"Selling is more of a habit than using," Lupita says...
Nonusing pushers have a contact habit, and that's one
you can't kick. Agents get it too. Take Bradley the
Buyer. Best narcotics agent in the industry. Anyone
would make him for junk. (Note: Make in the sense of
dig or size up. ) I mean he can walk up to a pusher and
score direct. He is so anonymous, grey and spectral the
pusher don't remember him afterwards. So he twists
one after the other....
Well the Buyer comes to look more and more like
a junky. He can't drink. He can't get it up. His teeth
fall out. (Like pregnant women lose their teeth feeding
the stranger, junkies lose their yellow fangs feeding the
monkey. ) He is all the time sucking on a candy bar.
Baby Ruths he digs special. "It really disgust you to see
the Buyer sucking on them candy bars so nasty," a cop
The Buyer takes on an ominous grey-green color.
Fact is his body is making its own junk or equivalent.
The Buyer has a steady connection. A Man Within you
might say, Or so he thinks. "I'll just set in my room," he
says. "Fuck 'em all. Squares on both sides. I am the only
complete man in the industry."
But a yen comes on him like a great black wind
through the bones. So the Buyer hunts up a young
junky and gives him a paper to make it.
"Oh all right," the boy says. "So what you want to
"I just want to rub up against you and get fixed."
"Ugh... Well all right.... But why cancha just get
physical like a human?"
Later the boy is sitting in a Waldorf with two col-
leagues dunking pound cake. "Most distasteful thing I
ever stand still for," he says. "Some way he make him-
self all soft like a blob of jelly and surround me so nasty.
Then he gets wet all over like with green slime. So I
guess he come to some kinda awful climax.... I come
near wigging with that green stuff all over me, and he
stink like a old rotten cantaloupe."
"Well it's still an easy score."
The boy sighed resignedly; "Yes, I guess you can
get used to anything. I've got a meet with him again
The Buyer's habit keeps getting heavier. He needs
a recharged every half hour. Sometimes he cruises the
precincts and bribes the turnkey to let him in with a
cell of junkies. It get to where no amount of contact
will fix him. At this point he receives a summons from
the District Supervisor:
"Bradley, your conduct has given rise to rumors -- and
I hope for your sake they are no more than that -- so
unspeakably distasteful that... I mean Caesar's wife
...hrump... that is, the Department must be above
suspicion... certainly above such suspicions as you
have seemingly aroused. You are lowering the entire
tone of the industry. We are prepared to accept your
immediate resignation."
The Buyer throws himself on the ground and crawls
over to the D.S. "No, Boss Man, no... The Department
is my very lifeline."
He kisses the D.S.'s hand thrusting his fingers into his
mouth (the D.S. must feel his toothless gums) com-
plaining he has lost his teeth "inna thervith." "Please
Boss Man. I'll wipe your ass, I'll wash out your dirty
condoms, I'll polish your shoes with the oil on my
"Really, this is most distasteful11 Have you no pride?
I must tell you I feel a distinct revulsion. I mean there
is something, well, rotten about you, and you smell like
a compost heap." He put a scented handkerchief in
front of his face. "I must ask you to leave this office at
"I'll do anything, Boss, anything." His ravaged green
face splits in a horrible smile. "I'm still young, Boss,
and I'm pretty strong when I get my blood up."
The D.S. retches into his handkerchief and points to
the door with a limp hand. The Buyer stands up looking
at the D.S. dreamily. His body begins to dip like a
dowser's wand. He Bows forward....
"No! No!" screams the D.S.
"Schlup... schlup schlup." An hour later they find
the Buyer on the nod in the D.S.'s chair. The D.S. has
disappeared without a trace.
The Judge: "Everything indicates that you have, in
some unspeakable manner uh... assimilated the Dis-
trict Supervisor. Unfortunately there is no proof. I would
recommend that you be confined or more accurately
contained in some institution, but I know of no place
suitable for a man of your caliber. I must reluctantly
order your release."
"That one should stand in an aquarium," says the
arresting officer.
The Buyer spreads terror throughout the industry.
Junkies and agents disappear. Like a vampire bat he
gives off a narcotic effluvium, a dank green mist that
anesthetizes his victims and renders them helpless in his
enveloping presence. And once he has scored he holes
up for several days like a gorged boa constrictor. Finally
he is caught in the act of digesting the Narcotics Com-
missioner and destroyed with a flame thrower -- the court
of inquiry ruling that such means were justified in that
the Buyer had lost his human citizenship and was, in
consequence, a creature without species and a menace
to the narcotics industry on all levels.

-Naked Lunch (William Seward Burroughs)

Doc Parker: "a man don't have no secrets from God and his druggist"

-Naked Lunch

[That's when you find yourself in the pharmacy to get morphines and MSTs and sedatives on a private embossed Harley Street script and Germoloids hydrocortisone hemorrhoid spray and itchyrash ointment and contact lens eyedrops and three packets of ultrathin condoms.]

The full text of Naked Lunch can be found here also with title in Cyrillic (Russian letters look like if they were made out of sharp steel would be vicious weapons)

Here it is with the introduction - Deposition: testimony concerning a sickness, and with the afterword, but more difficult to read layout. Columns of text are easiest on the eye when reading on a computer screen.

The score today

or, a chance for R&B, who was curious, to pick up some English squatting law

Court judgements in my favour 2 - the Opposition 0

So o, I am not talking about the football. Nor is this a reference to drugs. This is the endless delaying game in what is always the eventual loss in a legal battle (no, a legal squirm) for the order of possession on a squatted "illegally occupied" or "reclaimed for the community" building. I have addressed the court in possession hearings in more houses than I've ever lived in. I am constantly volunteered to do this because I wear shirts with collars and silver jewellery rather than cowrie shells and tie-dye. I don't even squat these days.

We are dealing with semi-literate hippies here so the appeal form which has been filled in on my behalf is an illegible scrawl. I address the county court judge to outline our appeal for the right to make an appeal (yes, I think that's right). Mr Edgeley and Mr... whatever... oh yeah, Peter Serber, but you might recognise him as the malung, ("can you get arrested for giving a false name?" Pete hisses too loudly "no, of course not" says Mr Mike Anderson)... and... where was I? This is all a bit sneaky, as we are appealing a decision made on Thursday, meaning there has been no time for the hearing papers to be served to the claimant's (ie. the Opposition) lawyers, meaning they are not present for the morning hearing.

The judge is convinced and decides to grant a new hearing. How long will you need? The judge offers two weeks, maximum. "Ah, four weeks..." I suggest "We have to apply for legal aid... Mr E___," I say, turning to him, sitting at the back of the room. "You recently applied for legal aid... how long did the application take?" I am expecting Mr E____ to say "Yes, um, about four or five weeks at least" or something. He starts telling the judge his life story.

A date is fixed for the last day of June. Medium-good result. Now off to the High Court after a leisurely wander through central London punctuated by stops for food and beverages. Mr E_____ smokes a joint and loses consciousness in Leicester Square so Dave Bones, no, ah, Pete Serber or Sherbert or whatever (where did that come from?) and I, Mike Anderson continue to where the Strand meets Fleet Street (where the subterranean River Fleet, completely built over in Victorian times, emptied into the Thames, leaving only street names like Anglers' Lane and Fleet Road as memories, and water can be heard rushing through certain hidden gratings) to the Royal Courts of Justice, housing the High Court, Queen's Bench division.

In county courts, the judges are "your honour". In the High Court, I check with the primly spectacled and badly needing a vicious fuck opposition lawyer (solicitor, not barrister), they are "master". The solicitor is outraged at the underhanded trick we have played on her and kidnaps my case papers to "call her sister". Whatever that means.

Master Leslie is the second most intimidating judge I have ever faced, after HH Armon-Jones of the peery-downy glasses and icy forbidding stare. A face of the British establishment, here, in a magnificent old complex of buildings which are the embodiment of the power of the British state. Earlier, we have sat in the gardens of the Inner Temple of the inns of law, another more ancient place of a similar nature. Judges can do this. Or good judges I suppose, the really intimidating ones... reduce you to a stammering wreck by the power of mind alone. None of this today. I feel, strangely, almost in my element. The master has no choice but to stay the eviction by High Court sheriffs until the appeal has been disposed of. Ha haa!

Inner Temple court (inner temple of what?)

The whole jolly crew of Mr Anderson, Mr Malung, the claimant's solicitor, and the two pleasant representatives from the claimant's company or trust (both of whom incurred the wrath of the master with their mobile phone beeping) tramp around the Royal Courts of Justice, looking for a photocopy machine. An intricately bizarre photocopy-machine bureaucracy which must date to the reign of King George II, many centuries ago, defeats us and we leave to find a photocopy shop outside.

I and the malung discuss Lao Tzu's The Art of War on the walk in the scorching sun. I am not sure we have followed all of Lao Tzu's precepts today. I have been to civil to the devious lawyer bitch. Mr Anderson and the solicitor end up going to her chambers to copy the requisite documents. The depraved Mr Anderson thinks he would be doing the world a favour by... no but anyway, the others are waiting outside.

This narrative has been interrupted by the return of Mr E____. After parting company with us in the afternoon, he slept in the sun, woke up, and immediately took the bus to Camden and gambled all his money away. Then he caught a bus back to the West End. On the bus he met an American lady lawyer who took him back to where she was staying, at the Hilton. After copious drinks, they end up in her room. However, the inevitable doesn't happen. The situation, as I understand it, is something like I've come across in neurotic, career-obsessed women like the aforementioned Mr Anderson's lawyer. At the last moment, the industrious government economist or whoever puts their head in their hands and its no! I can't do it! I still love ___! Or whatever. (Then why the fuck did you bring me to this disabled toilet and pull up your skirt and jump up on the baby nappy-changing table with your legs open? What was this all meant to demonstrate?) No, she is just lonely and Mr E____ gives her a hug and puts his shoes on.

A jolly day has been had by all. The squatters are pleased with the verdict.

(update: the Claimants have appealed to have the appeal heard at an earlier date than first agreed. The witness statement in support of the appeal uses some of the strongest language I've come across in such a document: Mr Anderson has abused the court system by not serving notice of the ex parte Monday appeal with the Claimants - not my responsibility - he is in no way authorised to represent the occupants or to address the High Court, he has no locus standi in law, etc etc.)

The property in dispute


The cold North

Finland's contribution to the Transmet future

Finland finally have win the Eurovision song contest with Lordi's Hard Rock Hallelujah (awfully lo-res video of their performance), threatening unbelievers with a day of rockening. After 51 years of really trying. After countless national-inferiority-complex-aggravating zero, more nil-scores than every other competing nation combined (don't quote that last statistic in any context demanding an accurate reference; it is merely a well-educated guess).

But there is other interesting stuff to come out of Finland lately, too.

This is the third week of the Helsingin Sanomat (Helsinki News, Finland's largest circulation broadsheet newspaper) reality videoblog competition: "Sinustako matkaopas - Could you be a travel guide?" (Note the laconic succinctness of the language.)

The premise is as follows: take five couples, send them all for a weekend in a randomly chosen European city, they each produce short videos about the city and post them to the website, people vote by text message to eliminate one couple each week. Please to check some of the videos out; a selection presented below. They stream without delay. Seamless web design. Finnish technology.

The videos, my inside source told me, are done on a Nokia N91 phone, one of which is given to each couple, which not only records video to its internal hard drive, but edits it too, ready for broadcast. Revolutionary. Finnish technology.

Why do we like this so much? The videoblog competition is, for a start, something rather innovative for a traditional print newspaper of record to be doing with their website. Nokia have regained their edge in the mobile phone market. And it's all so very Transmet.

Transmetropolitan has been described here before - one of the most compelling and convincing dark future dystopias, in any medium. How much "speculative" sci-fi has - fuck warp drives or turbolasers - contemplated with any intelligence what the over-saturation of media, information and communications technology, combined with ubiquitous chemical self-programming, is doing to the human mind?

Foucault, Lyotard and their French post-modernist ilk indigestible? Read Transmet instead: hyper-reality and near-future anomie and alienation in glorious technicolour. Links: Warren Ellis (writer) interview, succinct Wired magazine obit for the ended series, plot summaries with disarmingly non-intellectualist commentary, Flash movie demonstrating the main character Spider Jerusalem's icy cool motherfucker-ness.

Selection of videos from the competition

Realising few of you will be conversant in Finnish, here is a selection of videos which may be appreciated nonetheless. These are from the first two weeks, encompassing first Amsterdam and then Berlin.

Vague psychedelia in Amsterdam... this couple's videos have without a doubt been the most creative, but apparently not to the taste of the puritan Finns, as they were just voted out in Oslo this weekend (the third couple to go) [update & correction: they're still in, head to head with my man Ukko from Rovaniemi in the finals]. The girl's face distorted strangely by a multiple reflection is saying "don't smoke wacky-baccy... beware the wacky-baccy... oh, don't touch them jazz cigarettes..."

Another of theirs... A stroke of true genius, this is the talking thumb guide-book (instantly recalling the Hitch-Hiker's Guide). Its Amsterdam entry says: "It is good to remember that you can do other things in Amsterdam apart from hallucinate in a cafe. If you want your own windmill, remember to have at least 4m euros handy. You will also need a license. Your own window on the red-light street will cost you 350 euros per day. More than anything, you should just enjoy this land of strangely speaking funny people. Have a nice day."

In this clip from Berlin, a female contestant does a brilliant impersonation of Inspector Harjunpaa (the two last "a"s are meant to have dots on top), the archetypal Finnish TV cop.

Again in Berlin, watch this if you wish to learn both the Finnish and the German for the following phrases: where are my sausages?, I have a beer in my leather trousers, I'm hungry, let's eat some ice-cream, where is the nearest cock-fight, please?, and vote for the best, vote for #1!

My old friend Ukko (this is a rare and etymologically fascinating name, meaning both "old git", "geezer" or "[old] man", as well as being the thunder-god of the ancient pagan Finns) has taken a hard journalism route; no fucking around with psychedelics in Amsterdam or with 2-litre German beer steins. Here he interviews former Finnish Prime Minister Esko Aho at the airport (who doesn't say anything interesting, but he has uniquely loveable eyebrows), and here, a possibly boring video which ends on a cheerful bi-lingual double-entendre: the statue they are leaning on is inscribed "Multatuli", Finnish for "I just came! (or should that be cummed, in correct internet porno-speak?) I just jizzed!"

Ukko was a junior sergeant in the military police. Come wartime, it would be his job to round up deserters from the glorious Finnish army like fucking Mikey and shoot him. Unfortunately, he lost his job after giving an interview revealing pacifist, anarchist and dope-smoking tendencies to an alternative Helsinki newspaper. Equally unfortunately, around the same time the Finnish Army lost several valuable super-bright high-pressure arc lights (ideal for growing cannabis indoors) from a firing range which junior sergeant Ukko's detachment was guarding. As it happens, U's old man is a psychiatrist, and when Mikey still had a Finnish passport (he can lay claim to no less than four passports, just like your humble scribe) and he got a letter from the government the other day, opened it and read it and said they were suckers... they wanted me for their army or whatever, picture me giving a damn, I said never... he declared that gutter-trash unfit for service on mental health grounds, right there and then, in a MacDonald's in the underground shopping-centre beneath Helsinki's central railway station.

Largely spurious mental health grounds, and unnecessary, as Mikey did a runner to the safety of the warmer climes he was dragged up in (the story is referenced here, in the book review towards the end of the post, of The Dice Man for "Life-Changing Books"; the first confirmed piece of writing attributed to Ishmael Smith). Once, Mikey was detained at the airport while visiting Hell... sinki for stupidly using the wrong passport to enter the country (this was before Schengen) and almost being arrested for AWOL'ism. Now, those mental health grounds have become quite real... evidenced by the fact that if it happened again, the stupid fucker would actually probably volunteer for service, despite being almost too old by now, provided he got to be a helicopter door-gunner and got sent on active duty, peace-keeping in Kosovo or something.
(The flag; the Monty Python Finland song is available for illegal download here. Do the righ-click "save link as" procedure.)
(shotgun art, William S. Burroughs)

(Kenneth Anger)


"Lazy" has set himself the discipline of putting up at least one good item here every day, and so it is frustrating for him end this day, still with nothing new here. Especially as there is so much, so much interesting material in store. My friend, it's easy: approach it like cooking. Get the ingredients in front of you (the pictures, the text), prepare them and chop them up, and combine them in the correct manner...

Here is a page about the swastika (the "I'm not a Nazi swastika gallery"). There are some beautiful variations and interpretations of this ancient and powerful symbol.

Some of the swastikas link to further pages. Under the pro-Nazi swastikas, I hope you took the opportunity to click on the Thule Society symbol which leads to a readable article about the Thule Geselleschaft (with just one or two insignificant historical inaccuracies). This is of interest on realgem due to the way it demonstrates the extent to which occult societies shaped early Nazi and thereby almost the whole world's history. The article mentions the Occult Bureau within war-time MI5 (the Rudolf Hess gig would probably have been one of their projects - it is not mentioned in the Wikipedia article, but his flight to Britain was largely prompted by spurious astrological forecasts fed to him by British intelligence), and notes that the independence of the USA was a Masonic project. This, in turn, takes us to Skull & Bones and Bohemian Grove territory (the latter a link to Alex Jones's site... a bizarre combination of fascinating hard journalism and breathlessly earnest conspiracy nut - obligatory credibility disclaimer and statement of skepticism; I am after all, an academic essayist and journalist of some standing)
- the continuing influence of occult or quasi-occult organisations in the highest corridors of power. While we are on the subject you may wish to poke around the internet (or avail yourself of this link) for the Kay Griggs interview (former wife of an abusive and alcoholic high-up Special Forces and PsyOps officer with dirty secrets). The use of homosexual intimidation / initiation in the military / political elite which she describes relates to our Imperial British project (rum, sodomy and the lash... le vice anglais etc...)

This is a continuing realgem theme, as I gently steer Lazy away from his junkie narcissism. My own little distraction at the moment ("yes, I've written a few trifling monographs on the subject ...") is the sketching out of the notes for a historical epic, perhaps a trilogy of novels, revealing or darkly hinting at the black magic rotten heart of the British Empire (carrying on the mantle of the Romans; now passed on to the Americans).






preamble, or: why doesn't nardac like me anymore?

Look in the sidebar - there is a blog called Holy Smokes!!!, kept by one NARDAC, one of my first blogging friends/acquaintances [then why didn't you know that she is on nardac.blogsome, fool - I.:.S.:.], and the only one to guess correctly in the realgem competition (the knife photo referred to can be seen here - scroll down a little). First she linked me, then she didn't, then she did again, then she didn't. Why? She told me once, in no uncertain words, that I should MOVE THE FUCK ON from whingeing about a) my addiction and b) the woman I married who broke my heart (but that was all a good long time ago), and just write good old stories like I used to. I can't find the original email conveying this sentiment, so instead, I reproduce an example of the charming sort of thing I used to leave in her comments section ages ago, the point being - how can NARDAC possibly not like me?
"And, it's true...Paris has put me to the test but I am now officially bilingual."[says Nardac, who lives in Paris]

My deepest respect and admiration and thank you very many! Every one of us Anglophone who learn to speaking other language make good karma for the cursed Anglo-Saxon English-speaking planetary cancer! May God blessing you! Thank you please!

Posted by M to holy smokes!!! at 2/18/2005 05:05:21 PM
I am getting the valium-sodden sensation of circling and circling the point I want to make, without quite being able to... Why do I bring this up? Because here is ONE MORE POST about the HEROIN, and there is ONE MORE POST about THAT WOMAN, and then, onto other things.

the cure

My head is spinning, my head is all a vortex of difficult-to-express emotions and ideas, all vying for pre-eminence. I have... I am... I am here to write about IBOGAINE, "the cure" of the title. The cure for my heroin addiction, detailed throughout this blog, but perhaps best through April 2005 (not a great deal to scan through). Have no doubt I have been to the ends of desperation, have no doubt I've been to hell, have no doubt I have been ever so near to death by my own hand.

I have spent all day researching this miraculous African root-bark, this heavy shamanic hallucinogen, this healer-god in vegetable form. I have spent hours on the telephone with some of the leading specialists in its therapeutic use. The best-written summary of what it's all about is in this article, headed 'The Dreaming', reproduced from the Independent on Sunday (London) in 1999. While the information is now dated, and there are now more practitioners using it in the UK and Europe (though still not many), it is a fine piece of writing, a great piece of feature-writing, and incidentally, wins a prize for the best use of a William S Burroughs quote in a quality broadsheet feature article ever.

My head is spinning: with sheer joy and relief; with a near-religious awe; with gratitude to the people (particularly Edward Conn) who took the time to speak to me today; with sadness; and anger, fierce and burning; these, and many other things - most of all, perhaps sheer information overload. And so I don't know how to write about this at all. Read the IoS article.

I knew about ibogaine before. I knew it was a shamanic psychedelic used by certain African tribes, which by accident, a New York junkie in 1969 discovered had the property of instantly curing the Sickness.

It is expensive, whether I choose to obtain some myself, or sign up for therapy. Does not matter. No obstacle at all. I have faith in it, and nothing else matters.

It is not necessarily a pleasant experience. It strips down your ego, cleans and oils the parts, and reassembles it.

It can remove 85-100 per cent of withdrawal symptoms in one night.

It has been described by some psychiatric specialists as "10 years of therapy in one night".

It has been known about in the West for over 35 years now. Why is it illegal in the USA, and not receiving the attention it should elsewhere?

If you were a pharmaceuticals giant in the business of making chemicals for drug "rehabilitation", which would you market - a pill that does the cure in one night, or a substitute medication like methadone or LAAM that leads to long-term "stability" (as the "experts" call it - a placid, law-abiding, comfortable, never-ending narcotic stupor)? The LAW WOULD REQUIRE YOU to maximise profits for the shareholders and choose methadone. Choose life... no... choose a half-life... forever... for millions of people you don't know... married to the methadone molecule, til death do us part. And the dollars keep rolling in.

That's where the anger comes from, and sometimes, anger can save.

I swear, I swear by the spirits of enforced wakefulness, by the things you see from the corners of your eyes when you would kill for something to put you to sleep and end the suffering, that I will heal myself and become powerful once more. And then I will fight them, fight the greedy fucking bastards, punish the deserving, fight them 'til I die.

And best of all, confused as lazy still may be, realgem is back! realgem endures...

:::coming up on realgem:::

-that was the last heroin post (pace NARDAC); now the last post about that woman
-more on the occult history of the British Empire
-the coolest man on Earth
-the best Sunday hang-out in London
-books and journalism review
-and much, much more...


Playing for Time: or, The great cop-out

if you have ended up on this page by chance like many do with bizarre google search terms like "rules for fuck buddies" or "heroin addict journalist experiment" - or because of fucking Mikey's liberal commenting on Helsingin Sanomat, Finland's paper of record's genius reality weblog competition - click around in the realgem archives, that's where the good stuff is.

meanwhile, lazy and ishmael are racing each other to produce a splurge of vintage realgem shit like it used to be.

the problem is not a lack of material; no. we could fill pages and pages and pages effortlessly. but there is something holding that back, perhaps our well-documented fear of information overload; nothing but some sort of rudimentary sense of duty has motivated page-filler for a good while now... and look at, say, something from Feb to Oct 2005; we seem to recall that was a reasonable good spell. upcoming is also a set of side-bar links to classic posts.

editorial policy is changing focus from quality(?) to quantity, the "throw stuff at the wall and something will stick" or "throw enough hash crumbs in the fishtank and at least one of the goldfish will get stoned" school of thought.

publish and be damned, for ye are damned already