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Sunday, 20 August 2017

CBM Calculator vs Sanitary Product

This should have come out last week but our internet was down, so you'll have to read this now instead. We scrapped the PC in question below btw, and picked up another dell, a laptop this time. I'm just a sucker for pain sometimes



Have spent most of the day trying to rebuild an old Dell PC with all the added stupidity
that Dell bakes into every one.  This time they bolted the motherboard to the case so
couldn't do nothing with it.  To cap it all our internet is down and have to slum it
by surfing via the phone. 

We do have a few things from clearing out my aunts old place, and while we have mostly
books brought back and a few old photos and such these two are for the most bizarre.

First up is a Nikini Pocket sanitary towel holder, found along with the second item
its from the 60's I guess. When I got it home I did do a search for it to see if they
were still going and it seems that they aren't.  There is a Museum of Menstruation
dedicated to jam rag paraphenalia and such, though its closed for painters once a month.

My aunt used to be a health visitor so it may be connected with that and such, here are
some photos of it.


Second item is probably my uncles, an odd guy who was Canadian and used to paint. He
worked at the dye factory down near the tip and can remember my aunt picking him up
in her Skoda with me in the back reading.  Its a Commodore calculator, complete with
instruction manual.  CBM started out doing these before their line of computers such
as the PET, VIC 2O and later the C64 and Amiga line before going belly up in 1994.

When my C64 had to be repaired they gave us a commodore branded camera as a thank you
which is pretty cool, would love to see if it was a rebrand or if they really did go
into photographic equipment. Here are some pics of the calc and will when we get a
PC to run the printer, some scans of the manual.


Sunday, 6 August 2017

Peyote and other Psychoactive Cacti

A biased book review of sorts.

Picked this up from a charity shop in Camden for a quid.  Judging from the price on the cover someone initially paid £20 for this and really can't think why. 

First of all are you a stoner, a pot head or a hippie, then you may get £20 worth from this. Especially if you are actually going to use a plant, that is from the UK perspective, better off grown as a show plant.  There are a few chapters that I've not read yet, mostly about preparing mescaline from the raw Peyote, but what I have read its that its mostly written from the standpoint of a psychonaut.

Here are some facts about Lophophora Williamsii here (wiki article actually goes into more depth than the book) and if you want some pics, here's cactus guide with a few notes on forms and varieties. 

To be honest its not just Peyote as there is a few bits on San Pedro Cactus (A.K.A grafting stock) too as well as some of the smaller genera of plants, Ariocarpus, Aztekium and Obregonia that contain psycho active ingredients to some degree.  Mostly though they are just broken down to their constituent chemicals, in the description and such and yes, any sane person would grow them to show, as all three species are alsochoice, small plants that take up very little room and are known for slowness of growth.  

As the book was printed in 1997 the names need updating, so Dolicothele is much better known as part of Mammilaria today (and was back then, seriously did they grab them from Britton and Rose).  Cultivation wise its not bad though we don't need a shade house here in the UK as light levels are pitiful at best. Hydroponic growth is mainly used for stuff that are tricky on their own roots such as the more tender ! Asclepiads and Melocacti, I've had no problem growing Peyote on its own roots even surviving in an unheated greenhouse and the kill winter of 2010.

Legality its a grey area for stuff, you can get the taller Echinopsis sometimes as well as the smaller species.  I got my Lophophora as a kid from Syon House garden center back in the 80's but its available from cactus sellers from time to time and yes they know all about this too.

Finally, and this is anecdotal evidence, from talks and listening in to conversations.  There is bugger all peyote in cultivated specimens, plus its a really horrible trip, bitter, puking and shitting everywhere apparently not that I've tried. 

The book isn't bad, its going to give you the basics on growing and grafting which will help up the growth rate (did I say its slow growing) and a bit on law and shamanic usage.  Its not bad but more of a curiosity.

Finally, I'll leave you with a pic of when my plant flowered many moons ago, (it's still clinging on).

Much more shrivelled now.