Category Archives: Life

“shit hot diseases like breast cancer”

I had some leaves, lettuce, croutons, cheese and sauce for lunch today. It cost €15 ($22ish?). It was okay. It was the only meat-free thing on the menu.

I dined at the Hotel something something in Paris. Paid for by some business people who deal with healthcare professional databases and research, with a view to selling specified information to pharmaceutical companies so they can market their products to the most influential clinicians who can then be ‘brand ambassadors’ for dimazaponeova or whatever it’s called, leading to other (lesser?) clinicians wanting to use it too (and then maybe media organisations getting wind of it and demanding “WHY ARN@T OUR DOC SCUM USING IT TO GIVE THIS WOMAN EXTRA 2 MONTHS SHITTING IN A BED!!!” pressurising government organisations to with fast-track approval processes, with drugs coming to market before full-effectiveness is determined, or money is prioritised to purchase new mega-expensive treatments for shit hot diseases like breast cancer over treatment (and care/support!!!!) for other diseases, including those horrible chronic ones like Alzheimer’s and diabetes that can take decades of constant support, but no-one really seems to die from them all the time in films and things so nobody cares).

That was written for myself so I could understand it. And how pointless and amoral it is. I’ll never get over profiting off basic human rights. But that’s me!

And only me it seems in the world of smart suits, fast talk, engorged brains, €30 hamburgers with no chips and a menu with ONE vegetarian option, as I mumble my questions and shake hands that must somehow feel I’m a idiot out of my depth and hypocritically indignant in my moral outlook.

I looked good though. Tie, sweater vest, blue shirt. The works.

It was my first time on a Eurostar train too. The St Pancras departure lounger reminded me of Rigsby in 2001: A Space Odyssey, all low, modern seats with curves and patternless surfaces. My coffee was on expenses. It tasted the same.

Paris was not mine to explore though. By time and budget, I was confined to the Metro, the Gare du Nord and the hotel.

In a state of extreme cold and confusion though, desperately searching for an elusive rue (a bluffing boulevard?), I stumbled on my old friend General Koenig. We first met as I exited a bus two and a half years ago wondering what Paris was all about. He was a safe guide then. Shit now though. Making me 30 minutes late and blustered by wind. He’s changed.

It was a happy encounter in any case, as memories of the loveliest times of all came back, involving people and art and talking and 30 cent baguettes and things you know. Not indulging in sorbet in a glass while literally being told the biggest deals in pharma are made on a golf course.

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“obese gentlemen are more prone to dying”

Juno in the background, concentrating on a screen.

The days are getting away from me like sanity from Charlie Sheen. Can’t keep track of them, not particularly wanting them around.

The world seems to be collapsing around me as well though as people take to the streets (those streets, eh, where would we be without them? Venice. That’s where. Question answered, problem solved) marching, shouting and standing still against unjust and ill-judged authority. All engaged with from a cold room on a bright screen.

I’ll try tomorrow though. My anger and outrage with Tory plans for NHS reform (entirely undemocratic and universally criticised as risky, unnecessary, too expensive and too vast by any medical association or authority worth a damn in the UK) is usurping most emotions at the moment. Approval goes up, here come the cuts. And the private firms driven by profits rather than any true sense that freedom from sickness and disability is a universal right.

And this flawed ideal that patient choice is the most important thing in healthcare, not making sure every health practice gives the same equally valid, quality care.  If I want a nice meal in a restaurant, I’ll let the chef fucking decide how best to cook it thank you.

Anyway, I bought some trousers today, from a charity shop. And again went through that thought process I always do of wondering why anyone would bother getting clothes from anywhere else. Anything affordable is inevitably sweat-shop produce, coming with the associated blood and guilt, and anything more expensive is, well, expensive. And worn by tossers who actually think fashion is somehow important.

I got some trousers that fitted though after the charity shop rigmarole – trying the 4 or 5 shops inevitably places next to each other (from British Heart Foundation to Scope to Cancer Research) – with an opener of the door for an elderly clientele in each location; a polite nod and smile to the assistant; then to the back of the shops where men’s things are. Men have to travel an extra 10ft minimum in each charity shop to find clothes. Is this what you wanted Pankurst? Is it?!?! Fucking bitch.

A flicking through of what’s on offer, approving the style, contemplating the size, holding next to my waist, being disappointed 4 stores in a row. I’ve lost weight in recent months and am down to a 34. You’d think this would be a nice normal size with lots of items available, but no. It seems the larger plus 40 sizes are most common in such stores – I assume because obese gentlemen are more prone to dying, and thus, their leftover belongings are quicker, more abundant turnaround. Come on normal sized people – get dying! I need me some clothes.

I got the trousers eventually. They are nice, and were under £4. I was happy.

That’s the end of my story.