The path to decomposition

As lugubrious as it may plumb, wholesale recognition of one’s decline and impending doom is but the first step towards defeating intolerance of the perilous decomposition. To my undying credit – catch, if you will, the skilful innuendo – I have succeeded to camouflage my incremental inadequacies through the plausible mettle of science. Consumed as we all currently are by evolving pandemics which threaten to scour the face of the entire globe, it appears that for most of the worldwide population – other perhaps than Republicans and Trump allies in the United States of America and what I consider the vulgar generally  – science is our saviour.  Naturally it offends those swallowed up by erstwhile religious fabrications and the falsities of ignominious politicians to accept there is anything as palpable as science in face of competition from the mystical and misplaced alliances with constitutional freedom of rights.

My personal crusade however is neither directed nor sustained by political ambition or spiritual hoaxes but rather by relief from the pain of broken ribs, osteoarthritis and dissolving kneecaps, hips and spine. I think you’ll agree that the stimulus for my particular forbearance is not ill-founded and indeed quite creditable. It does however implore a certain arrogance – that is, an elevation of purpose and campaign beyond the scope of social influences. The object is nothing more or less intense than pain relief; and, in a word, if the medicine works, stick with it. It helps too that my former physician concurs.

From what I perceive as nothing other than a chance encounter with the fictional writings of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle many years ago, the thing that has stuck with me from my introduction to the character Sherlock Holmes is his private but seemingly knavish seclusion in dens for laudanum addicts. The cave-like allusion I suspect derived from a fable surrounding an exotic inhabitant of an imaginary desert kasbah but it somehow aligned with the character’s peculiar personification. Why it is this image has continued to capture me I shall never know. What survives in particular is the agreeable manner in which Holmes addressed the problem. It enhanced his authenticity.

Laudanum is a tincture of opium containing approximately 10% powdered opium by weight (the equivalent of 1% morphine).

Reddish-brown and extremely bitter, laudanum contains almost all of the opium alkaloids, including morphine and codeine. Laudanum was historically used to treat a variety of conditions, but its principal use was as a pain medication and cough suppressant. Until the early 20th century, laudanum was sold without a prescription and was a constituent of many patent medicines. Today, laudanum is recognized as addictive and is strictly regulated and controlled as such throughout most of the world. The United States Uniform Controlled Substances Act, for one example, lists it on Schedule II.

I believe that some people endure pain more than others. For those of us who haven’t affection for obstacles of any description, whatever can be done to remove the cause or the symptom is welcome. Never did I imagine fifty years ago that one day I would be squirting an eye-dropper filled with liquid cannabis into my mouth. I have no more interest in how they “make” the product than I care about the distillation of liquor. What I do care about is its popularly called “efficacy” – the scientific term for potency.

The best that can be said of any pain killer is that it momentarily hides the issue.  Pain relieve whether out of pill box or an eye-dropper is always merely a camouflage. Whatever may be said about the organic quality of the product, it is always just a cover.

So the question remains, how best to cover the problem? I won’t venture a reply. Yet I will promote the search for an answer. And when you find a solution, it will never prove to be perfection; but if you’ve succeeded to polish or cover the obstruction even moderately, you’re at least on the right track in the right direction.