Tuesday 29 July 2014

A Home For Every Fuzz-Ball ~ Kudos to the Spay Neuter Kingston Initiative !

I've been feeling it for a while now, this urge to connect.  I speak and post about OneLove as though it needs no explanation, needs no translation.  But posting is simply not enough anymore.  I must do.

Enter THIS, the extension of a program put out by the City of Kingston and The Spay Neuter Kingston Initiative.  This is exactly what I need, to involve myself and feed this desire to be the change I need to see in the world.

Let's face it, kittens are adorable.  In the year 2014, one of the most commonly watched videos on Youtube are amateur videos of adorable kittens doing every day stuff.  I swear those little fuzz-balls are funny no matter what they do!  Problem is, these videos don't illustrate the whole story.  I mean, I'm happy for any kitty who finds a forever home.  Even more so, if they're adored to the point of video taping!  But the whole story is only partly cute.  The other part sees too many kitties without loving caregivers.  That's a shame.  We all deserve love.

If only every resident of this planet wanted or had space for a wee fuzz-ball or a dozen!  The fact is, there are too many pets and not enough homes for them.  Depending on her age, a female cat can have anywhere from two to six kittens each litter.  And as many of my well-intentioned friends can attest, the rebound hormones are sending even the youngest mother cat to the door within weeks of welping.  It's nature.  It's strong.  And it can happen in mere minutes!  I once had a Rottweiller get preggers by the neighbor's Newfoundlander within minutes and through a chain link fence.  Procreation is a determined force to be reckoned with.  Before you know it, your little kitten has 007 caliber stealth when it comes to escaping out the door.  One cat quickly turns into several that cause all kinds of adorable havoc in your life, not to mention drain your wallet.  This is why many shelters and humane societies prefer early sterilization of all pets.  It's not so much that they don't trust you to spay or neuter in the future, it's that they know the drive to proliferate is strong and the signs are not always easy to recognize.

The feral cat population is different though.  They may look cute from afar, but these are not domesticated house cats and no amount of coaxing can make them so.  Because of this, these packs are somewhat dangerous as kids have been known to try to befriend street cats before, and disease spreads quickly in these colonies. These are not and will never be adopted or adoptable.  Culling is a dirty word and it only takes a few litters to increase the members of a pack.  It's a vicious circle. The Spay Neuter Kingston Initiative has the answer for this population crisis of feral cats.

So how am I going to help?  First, I'm going to sign up HERE as a volunteer.  I think you should check it out too.  There must be almost a dozen various ways that we can help:  from donations to fostering feral kittens, from setting up traps and feeding stations, to driving to get supplies.  I'm going to spread the word about this program, and keep my eyes peeled for any feral cats in my area.  If I see one, or hear of any I'll email the location to spayneuterkingstoninitiative@gmail.com.  I'm also going to print a sign with the above info so others in my area can make a difference too.

Now back to my animal-loving friends looking for an affordable way to spay or neuter their forever friends. I know one softy who may soon need a bulk discount.  There is the Kingston Napanee Spay Neuter Clinic. You can check them out HERE and fill out a contact form for pricing and appointments.  A friend is full of praise for the Veterinarians who are the healing hands behind this clinic.  I never tire of hearing kudos about good Doctors of all kinds!

We humans are like cats in that we are pack animals.  We need to feel needed at times, and connection with others is therapy in itself.  If you're like me, and you feel this too, then I'll see you there ...

Being the change we wanna see.

Monday 28 July 2014

Claim Your Re-claim & the Wonders of Silicone

For some of us, there's nothing quite as exciting as trying your hand at alchemy.  Alchemy is a broad term for mixing elements and compounds to produce something else.  Whenever I use that word, it's referring to one of my medicinal creations.  One online dictionary states it as:

"any magical power or process of transmuting a common substance, usually of little value, into a substance of great value."

Mmmmm that reminds me of what my mom can do with a cheap cut of beef ... oh the taste of that stew is unarguably of greater value than the contents therein.  Value is relative though isn't it?  What is valuable to me, isn't always what's valuable to you.

So by now the net is overflowing with articles about Dabbing.  I'm sure by now we all know how Cannabis concentrate is made.  And there are many different ways.  This isn't another one of those articles.   Discussions turn to debates turn to digital battles of wits.  No one can agree on the perfect method, the perfect solvent, or the perfect purge.  But for readers not 'in the know', Cannabis is now converted into a very concentrated form that is basically different consistencies of Oil.  A broad term is a Dab, but these can also be called BHO (butane honey oil), Wax, Ear Wax, Oil, Shatter, 710, Budder, Honeycomb, and some I'm not even aware of I'm sure.  Also to be clear, dabs are usually smoked in what's called a 'Rig' or a bong with an attachment of a small heat conductive cup that's heated with a blow torch. The concentrate is then dabbed into the red hot cup.  Smoke is slowly inhaled. 

There are many benefits to using dabs.  This isn't an article about those either.  This post is about something called re-claim.  What the heck is that and more importantly, have you been dumping it down the sink each time you clean your equipment?  I hope not, but it's quite possible.  I fear that half of the people enjoying dabs are throwing out the 'savings account' and medicinal compound known as re-claim. 

So what is it?  When you do a dab, some of the oil does the 'escape-by-sizzle', jumps outta the cup and ends up in the water-line of your rig or bong.  Also, some of the oil is within the smoke and sticks to the glass as the smoke lingers.  To the untrained eye, it looks like a BP oil spill just polluting your bong water.  But it's nothing short of medicine.  Like the bottom tray of your trusty grinder holding the trichome dust, this scummy looking oil is your best friend when you're out.  Or, as my buddy found out, as good a sedative as he has tried.  Not that he's tried much, being a tree-hugger.  All he knows is, he put some of it into a caplet and an hour later he was ready for night-night.  He slept nine hours straight.  And dozed pain-free for a few more.

My buddy makes his own Dabs.  He uses a vacuum pump to purify it of all impurities.  His system creates some of the purest concentrate around.  It's smoke often smells like wind*x.  The other day I was lucky enough to witness this savings account collection for myself.  And pics were taken.

The most important thing to remember when working with a glass rig or bong, is that metal and glass never mix.  No matter how steady you think your hand is.  Wooden shish-kabob sticks work perfectly though.  Their wooden texture helps the re-claim to stick to it.  Because of the consistency, once some oil touches the stick, you can literally flick it around collecting wads of this stuff like taffy.  When a glob gets a certain size, he'd pull the stick out and collect it on parchment paper or this little silicone mat that looks like something from the Star Trek and totally unnatural and processed.  But it's not!

Silicone is the newest shizzle.  It truly is a ridiculously amazing product that's surprisingly natural.  In fact, Silicon makes up almost 28% of the Earth's crust and has been safely used for years in consumer products. I always thought it was some kind of super sci-fi product, but once you use it you'll see it's superiority to parchment paper.  Get yourself one of these mats when you collect your re-claim.   Just look at the pics. You can also get little Silicone tubs to store your Dabs in.

By the time the collection was complete, there was literally nothing on the walls of the bong and only slightly cloudy water.  Ready for a good cleaning.  Where's the Or@nge Chronic?

PIC 1:  you can set the mat on it's side in order to collect the excess water.  Using the edge of a clean tissue you can absorb any puddles.

PIC 2:  within no time of working this back and forth, buddy has it in a glob.  More water is absorbed with a tissue.

PIC 3:  ready for purging .... looks like a shiny piece of taffy that slowly becomes liquid again when left for long.

Now what the heck do you do with this stuff?  It's a very sticky product reminiscent of Pine Tar or tree sap. Buddy worked it around on that Silicone mat for a while, squishing it and then balling it up again.  Working out any remaining water.  Then he put it in his vacuum purge device.  That's a whole other post though, we won't get into that.  I will say though, that another way to 'purge' cannabis concentrates is in gently bubbling water, so there wouldn't really be any more chemical remnants in your Re-claim than there would be in your Dab to begin with.

So what to do with your Re-claim is really up to you and your personal ingestion of choice.

Do you:

Smoke doobs?  Spread some of this Oil on your paper!
Smoke bongs?  Repeat the above, and add it to your bowl for a Rocket!
Don't smoke?   Get yourself some gelatin caplets from the health food store and ingest it orally!

It can also be added to Cannabis Oil infusions to ramp up the Cannabinoid content.  You could then bake some edibles or savoury yummies using that oil.

So ... as you can see, Re-claim is nothing short of free wonderment in a gooey looking mess.  And should NEVER be sent down the drain!!

Happy Dabbing!!

Sunday 27 July 2014

Death by Ignorance ~ Rest in Peace Anna Conte

On Thursday July 17th, Wendy and John Conte said goodbye to their daughter Anna.
Anna suffered from a rare form of Epilepsy called Dravet's syndrome.  Her parents were monumental in the fight to provide Cannabinoid therapy to children like their Angel. Unfortunately, time and the bureaucratic processes were not on their side.

Eulogy by Anna's father John:
"Anna Olivia Conte lived a life of 9 years in a way we all try to achieve. She had no angst or anger towards anybody, no jealousy, no greed; she never had any of those feelings. Only love. She loved everybody and she got it back in return. It spread through our family, then our village and town, then people throughout New York State, then other states and even other countries. And all she ever did was love like Anna.
She did not care about race or where you were from, if you were tall and skinny, or short and round, what religion or church, rich, poor, dirty or clean.
She didn't even worry about a person’s past. She loved like Anna no matter who you were. 
Think about it for a moment;  If we could love like Anna what would our lives be like?
In my wildest dreams I never thought a 9 year old who is cognitively and mentally 18-24 months old would end up being my role model when I would be in my 50′s.
But, she is.
It isn't a gift to love like Anna. We all have it inside. The gift is to be able to be that person without even trying. And she was.
I mean isn't it what we all want in the end, to love and be loved back?
To love like Anna?"

Can a death be a spark?  Can grief shift perceptions enough for change?  Can missing someone's very existence transform a group mindset?
Almost without knowing I do it, I put myself into the shoes of Anna Conte's family.  I feel so much anger.  The selfish part of me wishes this grief on others.  The others who have literally sat back and allowed children like Anna to die needlessly and far far too soon.
Every death of a child is profound.  Every single one is met with dismay and the utter knowledge that it should not have occurred. The childhood phase of life is one that should not be filled with seizures, and medications, and mental deterioration.  Yet Anna's short life was.  That in itself is criminal.
Anna's father's Eulogy speaks only love though.  How does he do that?  How is he able to set aside the blame, the anger, the angst that he undoubtedly feels for the bureaucratic process that allowed this loss to happen?
I'm just not sure I would have that strength.  My anger would surely be too great.  
This is senseless!  This is needless!  Why?  Why?  Why?
I'm not sure that I could pull myself upright from each day forward.  How could you care about the economy, climate change, or poverty?  The people who make the rules in this world, have allowed my flesh and blood to perish.
Clearly though, Anna left her mark.  Like osmosis it seems like the nine years of living in and around Anna's light, has left her father with words of wonderment for this little being.  As her father states, this ability to foster, build, and grow love requires nothing but love itself.

Was this Anna's legacy?
There are lessons to be learned in each and every death.  This one even more so.  A plant could have saved this one and many more.  Anna's plants are growing as I write this, their seizure-stopping cannabinoids developing day by day.  
Perhaps these cannabinoids can save another angel with Dravet's or some other form of Epilepsy or Leukemia.  
May Anna's pure love burn through this grief to be the change she needed in the world.

Anna ... showing some love to the Realm of Caring guys.

Wednesday 16 July 2014

Canada's Wonderland ... the barf-inducing buzz-kill

I'm not a lover of Canada's Wonderland.  I've never even been there.  I'm a barfer, and the last time I rode a quick-moving carnival ride was about 25 years ago, and it was the Tilt-a-Whirl.  The last ride itself, was a Ferris Wheel a mere two years ago.  It brought me close to tears with fear.

Yet many of my friends love it.  Every summer trips are planned.  McCoy tours has lots of buses going too. Some people love it so much that they buy a season's pass.  One such guy who did that just lost it.  Taken away from him, because he dared use his legally prescribed herbal medicine in the smoking area at Canada's Wonderland.

Y'know about the smoking areas eh?  The ones where we allow addicted people to ingest a substance that kills millions of us yearly worldwide.  It even kills people who simply live around and near those who smoke it.  Anthony dared to smoke a hand-rolled Cannabis doobie in the smoking area because his back was aching, and it's his medicine.  Medicine that is Doctor-approved, documentation sent from Health Canada, licensed producer attained, medicine grown, harvested, cured, and sent to him. You can read about his day HERE ... it started off so well.

This post isn't about me telling you how much safer Cannabis smoke is than Tobacco smoke.  I'm not going to talk about human rights and freedoms.  I won't even expand on the fact that a Medical Doctor, Health Canada, and a Government-approved, licensed producer says that Cannabis treats his ills.  I just want to know why the Security Guards and the Law Enforcement responding to this call, haven't been educated on the MMPR program that affects 40,000 Canadians.

Let's look at the Security Guards.  They've been called wanna-be cops, but regardless they're usually sufficiently trained.  Because they work with the public, they've had all types of sensitivity training. They'd be trained on Sexual Harassment in the workplace, Religious acknowledgment to identify different sects when it comes to wardrobe.  They likely have even been trained to some extent in CPR in case a kid chokes on a bite of his lips 'n asshole hotdog.  They'd likely have seen many examples of personal identification, all ten Provinces have a different looking Driver's License, not to mention those from foreign tourists.  All in all, not just anybody can become a Security Guard.

I guess the training department never considered that they'd have legal MMPR patients spending money there.  Could they really think it's not important enough to be able to quickly and efficiently identify legitimate documents?  One of the guards assumed that Anthony should have a green plastic card like the Ontario Health Card.  Ya ... that would be nice wouldn't it?!  Yet it's really not their fault.  The Conservative Government of Canada has made no secret that it sees no value in Cannabis as medicine.  But does that necessarily mean that the 40,000 tax-paying citizens taking part in this program don't deserve respect from law enforcement and security guards?

As you read, the Wonderland Security department handed the situation to the York Regional Police.  They did this after they banned Anthony for life, and voided his season's pass.  Wow.  Frustratingly, it seems that the York Regional Police have also not been trained on this documentation either.  How can we have a Government-run health program, yet neglect to train law enforcement on identifying documentation?

Duty Counsel was also no help, basically calling our friend a fraud who simply printed his certificate off of the internet.  I just don't get it.  Don't we live in an innocent-until-proven-guilty kind of society?

So Anthony sits in the limbo of bureaucratic bullshit, charged with possession though he followed the proper channels to become legal. I mean, at the risk of sounding naive, can't somebody simply call his prescribing doctor?  Can't somebody call the licensed producer?  But no, it seems that in the sea of paperwork and waiting periods of our legal system, he could be hanging in limbo for quite some time.

Do you know anyone who is a legal Cannabis patient?

How would you feel if this happened to them?  I'd be pissed!!  So I've given $10 to Anthony's cause by going  HERE.  Yes ... freedom is now a "cause" that some people must ask donations for.  Crazy isn't that? Through the site "GoFundMe" he's trying to reach $3000 so he can simply retain a lawyer.

Donate if you can.  I totally understand if you can't.  In that case just share this post and/or the 'gofundme' page so others can learn about this travesty.

It takes a community to make all Government-run programs work effectively.

Sunday 13 July 2014

Countering Kevin A. Sabet's 7 Myths of Cannabis

This blog post is attempting to counter THIS article by Kevin A. Sabet, Director of the Drug Policy Institute in Florida.  I reference the above often.

I must say, it's been a while since I read something quite so black&white and super-sterilized as the writings of Kevin A. Sabet regarding Cannabis.  I honestly didn't know it was possible that such a young man could be this out of touch with reality.  And I don't even mean that in the condescending way that it sounds. I think that about 75% of society buys into this idea that the Foundations and Organizations that are in place, are proven to be factual and up to date.  A thorough internet search of socially accepted and assumed authorities in areas of expertise, oftentimes gives us antiquated views that will never be changed regardless of how many studies disprove them.  Take the foundations that mention Cannabis, they will never change their official statements until the Federal Governments legalize this plant, effectively removing it from the CDSA and the CSA. This is what makes Kevin A. Sabet a danger to the legalization/ personal freedom cause.

So ... let's counter this list shall we?

#1) I can't become addicted to Cannabis:

Well now, that's a nice start eh?  The addiction question always irks me for several reasons.  There are different types of addiction out there.  But nobody that is telling you that Cannabis is addictive, is going to distinguish between the types.  It doesn't suit his agenda.  The real McCoy of addiction is the kind that will make you shit your pants if you don't ingest it.  Physical addiction.  Where every cell in your body thinks it needs what you've been giving it.  This does not happen with Cannabis. To anyone.

If I have to go along with this idea that some people are addicted to Cannabis, then fine.  But it is the type of addicted that some people have to Salted Licorice, Dark Chocolate, or Cool Ranch Doritos.  I have this intermittently throughout my everyday life.  I always have.  I become addicted to a kind of food, like pancakes and then eat them every day for weeks.  Most recently, it's been Peanut Butter Brownies from Card's Bakery.  Willard's Oatmeal cookies were all I was about many moons ago.  Willard's daughter was my neighbor, and I almost called her to bring some home for me on several occasions because I used to crave them like a fiend!  When fresh, they are better than sex~ sorry hunni.

Further to the addiction sillyness.  Society and Governments have proven quite efficiently that a substance's 'addictive properties' is not really their concern.  Tobacco, Coffee, Alcohol ... three substances whose addictive properties have never been argued, are legal and widely advertised for all~even our youth~ to see and be influenced by.  Of the three, Coffee is particularly worrisome because it's widely sold to youth that can easily say it's for a parent.  In goes the sugar or even worse the artificial sweetener, if it wasn't already a Cafe Mocha, and out comes an enormous rise in Diabetes and endocrine disruption symptoms such as fatigue and lethargy.

Cannabis in all of it's organic forms is safer from an addiction standpoint than all of the above.

2)  Today's Cannabis is the same old Woodstock weed my parents used.

Another great topic of discussion that is burdened with half-truths, ignorance, and propoganda all wrapped up in a starchy wrap of misunderstanding. This is nothing but dangerous rhetoric, as nobody can really prove what strains were smoked at Woodstock. There is actually more than one way to counter this one.  We can talk about what my buddy THC really does.  And we can talk about what my other buddy CBD really does. I could show you that together as a team, they sound better than Gladys and the Pips.

But no, there is a much clearer way to prove that Sabet is completely out-to-lunch on this one.  And it's really not his fault. How the heck is he supposed to know that the strains that have a higher THC count take much longer to grow? Yet it's true.  There are two main classes of strains.  Indica and Sativa.  Sativa's have the highest THC count of the two.  In the ideal environment, Sativa's can grow into veritable trees!  They are the strains that take patience and kid gloves. They do better in stable climates with very slow changing seasons, making them better for outdoor growth.

Enter prohibition ... enter supply and demand ... enter capitalism.  This all pushed the grows indoors and underground where trees are really just too much to deal with.  So, out the window went all the Sativa strains, and in went the Indica strains.  Even today, many experienced growers still grow predominantly Indica strains like Kush varieties because they are small, bushy, and relatively easy to grow.  Therefore, Sabet stating that THC counts have risen, is completely counter to all economically historical fact.  Ease of growth and capitalism is what has decided which strains saturate our markets.  After all, growers are in it for the money.  So they could grow a plant that is ready to sell in a mere two months, or they could grow one that will be ready for sale in twice that long.  Which are they going to grow?  Therefore the fact is, THC rates in black market Cannabis have not risen, they've declined because the money demanded it.

I would even hazard to state that many of the strains smoked at Woodstock were Sativa strains because the "Hippy movement" was engrossed with grassroots chemists and gardening geniuses.  These are the people who proved that singing, stroking, or simply being in the presence of your garden increases it's output.  By the way, the white-coats have since proven this to be true.  And truly, if the THC count in the ganga smoked at Woodstock was anywhere near 1%, the pics and vids we admire today would have been much less exciting.  After all, dancing around with flowers in your hair isn't exactly what a strong Kush variety is going to make you wanna do.  Woodstock was full of energy and activity;  not sedation and sleepy-time!

3)  Smoking Cannabis once in a while won't harm me.

This is another one that simply kills me every time.  I mean, we live in a society that eats crap.  Food manufacturers put artificial sweetener in almost everything ~ artificial sweetener that was created by replacing three hydrogen-oxygen groups with three atoms of chlorine on the sucrose molecule.  No worries, they've done some kind of magic voodoo spell on it that keeps the chlorine from breaking down until you piss it out.  Ya right.  Isn't chlorine the thing that sterilizes everything it touches?  We are fed more toxic substances in our everyday food, than you could ever get from ingesting organically-grown Cannabis.  Smoking that first ciggy is a right of passage these days, and there are over 400 man-made chemicals in that tobacco.  A quick internet search even provides study after study proving that simply parking underground these days is harmful to your lungs.  They've tested that air!

But Sabet is pushing the mental illness theory.  Aw yes ... let's delve into my world for a moment.  I am one of the millions of people on this planet with mental illness who consume Cannabis to treat it.  I tried the pills.  I fell in the crevice.  And when I tried to crawl out, I realized I was addicted to those pills.  I now have brain damage from them.  Though time and Cannabis is healing it.  My childhood memories bubble up to the surface now;  when on those pills they could not be found.

Sabet blames early Cannabis use for high school drop outs and people who didn't go to College.  I'd love to know how 'successful' and satisfied with their lives, those kids are today.  I mean, for many of us Cannabis provoked question after question.  I'm not being hippy-dippy when I say that Cannabis provokes deep thought.  It provokes new thought.  For many teens, the bullshit of high school in all it's boring melodrama and unnecessary assignments just drives them over the edge once they start thinking outside the box.  But that's not to say that those kids didn't grow up to be very successful and happy adults.  Take a look at your CD tower, your computer programs, and your book shelves.  They are filled with people who ingested Cannabis~as teens and adults~ and lived successful lives.  The POTUS for one.

Perhaps Sabet hasn't read THIS study from Harvard Medical School that finds little support for the claim of linking Schizophrenia and Cannabis use.  It goes on to state that though Cannabis "may have an effect of age of onset of Schizophrenia, it is unlikely to be the cause of the illness."  It could even be argued that learning you have this disease early rather than later, may be beneficial in itself.

I'd like to add that there's a reason that behind pain control and side effect management, the most common illness for which many Medical Marijuana Licenses were given is Depression.  Millions of us can't be wrong.

4)  Cannabis is not Tobacco (thank Goddess!) ... it won't harm my lungs.

This is one that should be screamed from the rooftops.  And yet, every medical professional working in today's medical fields will tell you that Cannabis is much more damaging than Tobacco.  I remember not twenty years ago when my best friend Robin graduated in Nursing from the University of Ottawa.  They taught her that smoking one joint was the equivalent of smoking a pack of cigarettes.  Utterly ridiculous and yet still taught to this day.  Just check out the "proof" Sabet uses for this myth.  It's straight from the American Lung Association.  Once again, though studies like THIS ONE exist which find no evidence for an increase in cancer risk for even heavy Cannabis smoking, the American Lung Association is never going to change it's official stance until things change Federally.

I feel it absolutely pertinent to address the issue of mixing these two products.  In the beginning, even I used to mix Tobacco with Cannabis.  It helps your stash last by beefing up your bowls and doobies.  And ... it makes you higher.  Now, I dare say this yes, though I hope nobody reads this and immediately goes home to experiment.  That is not the influence I want this piece to have!  It's been proven that certain Cannabinoids open up the Alveoli in the lungs.  These precious sacs are the deepest parts of our lungs.  Opening them up would be a healthy thing, if you weren't also smoking Tobacco.  Now the sacs are open and collecting all of that crap~ 400 chemicals, tar, nicotine.  It's bad news.  Many people who mix, wake up to cough up huge globs of dark phlegm.  Overnight their lungs worked that crap up.  I never cough up in the morning, and if ever I do throughout the day, it's crystal clear.  Prohibition is keeping dangerous secrets like this, hidden from kids.  We need to come clean with them.

5)  I can't die from Cannabis use.  (Finally!!  Someone who has read the literature too!)

These days, people live to be in their nineties.  And people die in childhood.  Did you know that some kids are allergic to Chick Peas these days?  Precious Garbanzo Beans .... to never feel the bliss point of hummus, is to not have fully lived!  Patients die from the mistakes of a whole surgical team~ did you count the sponges?  Children have died after getting routine vaccinations~ why won't she stop crying? And finally, people die from normal every day things like tums or drinking too much water.  In the U.S. alone, 18,000 people die yearly from accidents at home, 6000 of which include falling, and 5000 of which are caused by contraindicating under and over the counter medications.
Let's officially tuck the 'death thing' in okay?

What would be really effective, is if Sabet would put some action to his words.  He states that "like tobacco, one cannot overdose and die from Cannabis."  Yet if he tested that theory by eating a couple cannabis doobies vs. eating a couple Tobacco ciggies he'd surely see that the word 'like' should not be used with Cannabis and Tobacco in the same sentence.  They're nothing alike, and only one of us would still be alive to see it.

As far as the 400,000 supposed emergency room visits blamed on Cannabis, this could easily be remedied by education.  If you smoke, vape, or eat too much of this plant, you cannot die.  In 5000+ years of humans recording deaths and using this plant, there have been no documented cases of death attributed to Cannabis.

That other legal intoxicant has also been studied and it concludes HERE that Alcohol is twice as harmful as Cannabis.  And as far as dabbing is concerned, many would successfully argue that the concentrated cannabis product known as dabs is by and far healthier to smoke than regular plant material.  We're told ad nauseum that breathing the smoke from burning carbon is unhealthy for the lungs!  Well Dabs have none of that material.  A pure solvent is used to strip the active ingredients from the plant, then the solvent is evaporated and what you're left with is pure liquid gold ... that when ingested gives morphine-caliber pain relief without addiction.

6)  Cannabis is Medicine!

If Sabet and those like him, had their way food manufacturers would be paying Biotech companies to remove the medicinal properties out of every fruit, vegetable, and plant in existence.  It is said that in the future, the only medicines we'll be able to buy pre-packaged and sterilized will be those that are man-made. They would like us to require a prescription for one of their many pills to simply get our daily nutritional needs met. Remember:  "Who controls the food supply, controls the People" or so Henry Kissinger thought and Biotech companies like Mons@nto believe.

What they don't get, is that the "god particle" that created this plant so many years ago, knew what it was doing.  To believe you can dissect anything for it's individual parts is just naive.  What Sabet obviously doesn't realize is that for many natural medicines derived from plants, the makeup is a varying menagerie of compounds that work together synergistically.  Dr. Sanjay Gupta himself calls this the Entourage Effect.  I mean, let's face it ... Gladys just wasn't the shizzle without the Pips!

This isn't to say that the many individual compounds in Cannabis aren't worthwhile on their own, it's just that they work together to make this medicine more user-friendly.  For instance, they've done studies where they've injected intravenously straight Tetrahydrocannabinol.  The results are not fun.  Agitation, morbid thoughts, panic.  When they injected a combination of Cannabidiol and THC, the experience was described as amazing and fun.  Watch the video HERE.  So the conclusion is that Cannabidiol and the other 59 active Cannabinoids actively mitigate any extreme psychoactive effects.  They simply work better for you as a team.

7)  Cannabis will make me a more focused and better driver.

This is another tough one because nobody wants to say that driving after you smoke weed is a good idea. But it should be noted that every single day, we citizens take pills that alter our perception.  Lunesta, the sleep aid has been blamed for causing people to do things like drive while asleep and not remember it in the morning.  It is estimated that thousands of prescription of Opiates and Opioids are filled every year in the U.S.  I personally don't like the thought of driving on the same highway as someone on synthetic heroin, not to mention if that someone has missed a dose!  Even driving while you're trying to quit smoking Tobacco could be bad idea!

We also have to remember that way back in the 80's the U.S. Federal Government had a "compassionate" drug program that provided a total of thirteen patients with Cannabis to help manage medical conditions. They still come monthly pre-rolled in a handy metal tin to a man named Irvin Rosenfeld, you can read about him HERE.  This medicine comes with no prescription guidelines, because like the medicines mentioned above, people drive while taken them.  Irvin Rosenfeld is no different.  So, perhaps more research needs to go into determining how experienced a Cannabis user needs to be before this medicine stops impairing his driving skills.  Some would even argue that Cannabis doesn't impair at all.  I have witnessed people driving under that influence and to be honest, the effect seemed to make this person think in terms of a step-by-step process.  I felt safe ... the only real worry being the snail's pace rate of speed we were achieving.

Once again, I'm not condoning this, I'm simply shining a light on the fact that many double standards exist that need to be dealt with when it comes to Cannabis as medicine in every day life.

All in all, I can't close without stating the irony of all of this.  That being that almost all of these "problems" with Cannabis are entirely because of Prohibition and the lack of education that it has provided.  No one can study this plant, because it's still illegal.  So, you have millions upon millions of every day people sharing anecdotal evidence on an illegal substance.  Millions would go to jail simply to see it's legalization happen. Many have.  Too many will even still.

Because of Prohibition, we can't prove any of this anecdotal evidence.  And because we can't prove any of it, it still remains a mystery to people who could be helped by it.  Smoking is the most archaic way of using this medicine;  and yet it is the fastest.  Vaporizing is also fast and a much safer way of consuming, and could even offer help with asthmatics because the cannabinoids open up the alveoli.  Kinda like an inhaler.  Eating the plant seems to be the best way to heal the body of diseases like Leukemia and Cancer.  It's also great for chronic body pain.  And then there are dozens of other ways to ingest it based on specific patient need.

Gastric bypass? You should vaporize. Neurological pain or migraine?  I hear a Glycerine or Alcohol tincture kills it in no time. Trouble sleeping?  Have a warm cup of Bhang, an Indian beverage consisting of Cannabis, Milk, Ghee, and spices. You'll be counting sheep in no time.  Feeling too nauseous to smoke, vape, eat, or drink?  I'll get you a candy full of Cannabinoids so you can suck on it for slow, constant relief.  I've even seen them mixed with ginger to help soothe that tummy.  Deep muscle pain and stiffness?  Rub-a-dub ... osmosis allows Cannabinoids to seep into the muscles and lower inflammation.  That's right, people are going to the spa and getting rubbed down with massage creams made with Cannabis!  Millions of prescriptions are filled each month for sleep aids.  A brownie is safer and yummier.  Or Cannabis-infused caplets keep me in la-la land for a full nine hours.  And I wake up, feeling refreshed.  Not the groggy, quick-sand feeling that too many sleep aids give.

I still think this list is dangerous.  As is Sabet's site and viewpoints.  Let's face it Kevin, not everyone can live a squeaky-clean lifestyle.  Not all of us want to.  And because we both still live in free countries with personal rights and freedoms, you'll have to come to terms with the fact that many disagree with you. If nothing else, it comes down to personal choice.  Virtually nothing is completely safe these days, water included.  So in the end each of us deserves the right to at least try all that the planet has to offer when searching for optimum health.

This plant has been studied!  Simply because the people studying it weren't wearing white-coats does not negate the importance of the conclusions.  What I feel, others feel too.  And in some ways anecdotal evidence is more likely to be truthful since no one is being paid to skew the results.

I leave you with THIS SITE ... it is the pot at the end of the rainbow ... pun intended.  I'm sure you've heard Cannabis called a cure-all.  Well in 5000 years, a lot of studies have been done.  You won't believe what Cannabis does for some people.

Oh ... and spread the word that Cannabis is safer.

Hey ... Sabet ... if Cannabis isn't Medicine, then why is this a fact?

Tuesday 8 July 2014

Whole Plant Cannabis Oil ... A Kid's Best Friend?

Update from Mykayla's step-dad!!!!

"November 18 at 8:21pm ·
So proud of my little warrior Mykayla. She has dutifully gone to her oncologists appointments over the past nearly 5 years with little to no complaining. She has succeeded on this path above and beyond all expectations, I know we give cannabis a lot of credit, but the credit is truly due to her, her will, her fight, her personal power.

She has taught me a lot about humanity and it has been a blessing and honor of mine to accompany her on this walk.

Today her blood counts were completely normal, just like you and I, this is something to celebrate-

#givethanks #Hero #fighter #BraveMykayla ✊💯🙏✌👐😀🏅"

*****Bravery at any age.

Illness is a part of life.  A part of the part that states that life isn't fair.  And illness—at any age—is an unwelcome illustration of Mama Gump’s words wherein “Life is like a box of chocolates; you never know what you’re gonna get”.  When a loved one is diagnosed, we always do the math in our heads, trying to figure out if their age is the typical age to get this or that disease.  But anymore, adult diseases now belong to the young too.  Cancers and tumors, Epilepsy and seizures … these are all-age venues now.  No mercy left for the young.

I know very few parents who buried babies in their lifetime.  My cousin Trevor is one, and a couple I was related to through marriage make the second.  I cried for hours the day they buried Jake.  My tears more for the family than for the wee angel in that wee casket.  As my mom told me years and years ago, the funeral service and the wake are more for those who have survived than for those who have passed.  The smaller the casket, the more profound that sentiment.

We all give to childhood diseases when we can.  That Leukemia box at the beer store always gets my change.  Hospitals like CHEO benefit from countless donations from people who have lost a child or simply loved a child lost.  Generosity flows freely to charities for childhood diseases.  We can all agree:  No parent should have to bury their child.

Yet I am filled with hope as I write this.  And not a moment too soon, as my tissue is wearing thin & wet.  I just met a little girl named Mykayla Comstock otherwise known as “Brave Mykayla”.  You can GOOGLE, TWEET or FACEBOOK  that name to put a face to it.  What you’ll find is a nine year old who was diagnosed July 14th 2012 with intermediate risk T-Cell acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia.  A big word for a nasty disease.

Here’s why I feel so hopeful.  Mykayla’s Leukemia is in remission.  She and her illness now serve a greater purpose of showing the world that Modern Western Medicine can successfully team up with Natural and Alternative Healthcare measures, as well as using food as medicine.  Her enormous and heart-warming smile is testament to this, because you can clearly see how healthy she now feels.

Mykayla is Oregon’s youngest Medical Cannabis patient.  And no … she does not smoke the herb.  But she eats it mixed in Banana Bread, and she drinks the juice from its crushed leaves in her smoothies.  She also takes a very concentrated form of Whole Extract Cannabis Oil and, as explained in the link provided above, it all “helps her to mitigate the debilitating effects of the Chemotherapy protocol.” In other words, it lets her feel human and it protects her fragile body from the damages and the side effects of the chemotherapy.   

It is crucial to note and understand that within hours of beginning this concentrated Oil treatment, Mykayla got the munchies.  Yep … her appetite and smile came home, and all traces of Leukemia took-a-hike within a mere seven days.

Childhood diseases are the ones that make us pull out all the stops.  If it will help the child; we will do it.  We’ll spend every dollar, pray every prayer, and promise all for the life of a sick kid.  When a child’s life is at stake, the sacred cow must be sent packin’ because no life is as sacred or innocent as that of a child.  Clearly, we as a society need to legalize and study the Cannabis plant.

So this got me to investigating other examples of childhood diseases being helped by this oft misunderstood plant.  After meeting Mykayla and seeing her health so improved, and reading about several other kids who attribute their survival to Cannabis, I had to know more.  Brave Mykayla is NOT the only child being helped by this illegal plant.  The following is an incomplete but tear-jerking list of children who are either being helped, healed, or cured with the Cannabis Plant and the cornucopia of healthcare products it provides.

It is my hope, that after reading through the following list of angels who are given relief by a plant that is still illegal, you will see that the prohibition of Cannabis is actively harming children like these every single day.  In fact, this post could have gone both ways, for sadly there is another list that needs to be compiled.  That is the list of children who have died while our Governments try to decide if a plant that has never killed anyone, is safe enough to legalize.  

Please do your part to share the information that backs up the fact that Cannabis is medicine.

Logan Ewell, Michigan--B Cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia.  Cannabis oil successfully manages side effects from Chemotherapy treatments.  Read more HERE

Charlotte Figi, Colorado--Dravet’s Syndrome.  Cannabis Oil reduced her grand mal seizures from up to 300 a week, to less than one per week.  Read more HERE

Landon Riddle, Colorado--Leukemia.  In remission for 19 months... 13 months of which he only received Cannabis Oil. Keep up to date HERE

The Miracle Baby, US--enormous centrally-located inoperable brain tumor. Oil given on soother twice daily. Tumor reduced to such a point that in four months the tumor was gone.  Rejoice with me HERE

**NEW ADDITION !!** :-)  Liam McKnight, Constance Bay, On. Cda-- Dravet syndrome.  While plant cannabis oil stopped his 60+ daily seizures, leaving him seizure free for the first 10 days after treatment.

***If you have any examples or info about any other angels being saved by our plant, please leave a comment below and their name and a link will be happily added.

One Love We Are.

The youngest and by far the cutest Cannabis activist I encountered at the Champs Expo in Toronto.

Brave Mykayla .... kickin' Cancer's butt on the daily.

Saturday 5 July 2014

Gall Bladder Emancipation ... Feeling Muted

Up until seven days ago, I was a hospital virgin.  Other than the day I was born, and two other uneventful visits to the ER, I had never really seen the inner workings of any hospital.  As strange as this may sound, I was really excited to simply experience this new thing.

Last Friday was the day.  And if I had to summarize, the last week would be something like this:

Friday:  Barfy barf barf ... nausea sucks and anesthetic always makes me barf.  Thank Goddess for intravenous Gravol.
Saturday:  My entire surgical team are ROCK STARS.  Pain was minimal.  Movement brought on pain, but not severe by any means.  My hubby is a ROCK STAR when it comes to nursing me back to health.
Sunday:  I am a ROCK STAR.
Monday:  Sleep is my friend.
Tuesday to Today:  Let the healing itch begin ... and continue.

Rewind seven days.  The Out patients' or Day surgery area of the Belleville hospital was lonely that day when I arrived about 9:40a.m. but the preoperative machine was in working order, nurses buzzing around.  If I could get a message to all of those nurses, I would apologize for staring.  But truly, as a person laying on a stretcher, you are the most interesting entertainment we have.  And personally, I just love sitting and watching you.  I couldn't help but wonder if you all enjoy your jobs.  Do you know that you are a crucial spoke in the wheel of humanity?

I was undressed.  I was weighed.  I was given the Anesthetist's personal pre-op cocktail of Lyrica, Celebrex, and two Tylenol.  Within a mere thirty minutes, I was loopified.  And this made the short walk into the pristine, shiney operating room, very interesting to say the least.  Upon entering the actual operating room, I was met with sterile equipment, gloved hands, and many sets of smiling eyes beneath dark blue surgical masks.  I felt confident and in good hands.  Before I went under, I was asked two final qualifying and clarifying questions:

What is my name?  What are we doing today?  No one told me there'd be a quiz!  I aced it ... loopy and all. Next came the wonderful oxygen-rich mask, and a calming voice telling me to take four deep breaths. Another calming  voice telling me to nod when I feel like I'm sinking into the bed.  And that's all she wrote. It was lights out.

I've heard horror stories.  You've heard horror stories.  But I can say that my first surgical experience was quite awesome.  To be honest, I wasn't so much worried about the procedure itself, my two older sisters had already had it done successfully.  I was more concerned about something else.  You see, I was completely honest about my Cannabis use.  And that scared the shit out of me. But the modern-day ME knows this is the only medicine for my biology, so it was important to me that it was taken seriously.  I feared that it wouldn't be taken seriously.  And I feared how I would react to that.  We in the "movement" think everyone sees what we see.  But this is so not true.  For every medical professional who knows Cannabis is medicine, there are an equal number who do not.  They're not taught about it.  Expecting medical professionals to know about Cannabis is silly.  Any education they get is on their own terms, time, and their own dime.  Ain't nobody got time for that in a 40+ hour work week of saving lives.  Because of this fact, I was and still am ready and willing to answer any questions any medical professional has about my use of this plant.

All in all, I wasn't sure how much respect my medicine would garner me.  Would they be offended?  Would they too give me some silly asinine joke about the munchies?  You can imagine my relief upon realizing that my whole team put the capital P in the word Professional.  In fact, I was advised that I could have partaken before coming in by one nurse, because as she stated, "that too must be kept at normal and regular levels in the body like other medicines."  Amazing.

This seems like a natural segue into post-operative medications and pain control.  I had a surgical consult almost a month ago during which time I briefly touched on my use of Cannabis as medicine.  Unfortunately, I let my fear and the fact that Cannabis is illegal to limit my discussion on the subject.  If I could re-wind I would explain more fully all of the ways in which I ingest. From smoking to taking Cannabis infused olive oil in caplets, to using salve made with cannabis infused coconut oil, it's now all that I use for many many ailments.  This ailment was no different.

Nausea.  Is there a more basic urge than to eject the contents of one's stomach?  And what power that diaphragm possesses!  It's crazy to think that for the most part, nausea still has medical professionals stumped at times.  Smoking Cannabis seemed the only logical option for me that first night after my surgery.  For truly what good is a pill when I know I'm going to barf?  Yes ... there are other suppository options out there, but even they can have unwanted side effects.  Within three small puffs, my nausea hit the road so I could finally eat something.  Insert munchie joke here :-)

One very crucially important thing to me throughout this whole thing has been my aversion to Opiates.  My apres-surgery drip was only saline and gravol.  I felt a certain gush of pride when I heard one nurse tell the other nurse that I was "dry".  But I was sure that I didn't want that shit in my body!  I didn't want the high.  I didn't want the nausea.  I didn't want the constipation.  And I personally did not need any of it.  Years of intermittent stomach upsets has awarded me a high pain tolerance.  By 11 pm on that first night after the emancipation, I realized that I hadn't even taken a pain pill!  I honestly found there was no need since as late as 9 pm every cell in my body was still vibrating at a higher frequency, the anesthetic remnants still clearly felt. I was given a script for Tramadol but I let my fear of nausea sway me, and I chose to fill a few gelatin caps with Cannabis goodness to ease me into sleep.

Pain.  It truly does suck.  Long term pain especially.  But for post-operative pain, this has taught me that pain can be a tool.  For me, pain only came when I moved.  So heavily medicating myself for pain that I could control seemed illogical.  No medication is without it's side effects.  Tramadol contains codeine ... a known colon blocker ... so my use of those has been sparingly to say the least.  In one week, I've taken 7.5 Tramadol and likely as many as 60 cannabis caplets for the pain. This experience has shown me that pain control does not necessarily equal healing. Yet many of us seem to think it does.  In my opinion, that wee misunderstanding is a recipe for disaster ... and the disaster is already happening with stat after stat proving and re-proving that more of us are addicted to legal pharmaceutical pain killers than are addicted to illegal street drugs.

In the end, now that it's all done and my life revolves around itchy incisions and sticky steri-strips, I feel as though fate had a thing or two to do with connecting me with my healing team at the Belleville hospital.  I felt my surgeon's genuine goo .... whoa ... wait a minute.  I am an idiot.  I trusted that they listened.  I trusted that all seven of them listened to me, and not a one of them did.  I just googled Tramadol.  It's a fukking opiate.

So ... let me get this straight.  If I were to go to any Emerg in Ontario asking for an opiate pain med, I would be immediately black-listed as a pill-seeker.  Yet I tell nine medical professionals, and write it down on the pre-op forms that I specifically did not want an opiate and they ignored me.

This is especially upsetting to me because I understand Opiate addiction ... I lived with a recovering addict for several months.  I saw how wretched her poor body became ... and that was on Methadone ... the thing that's supposed to help addicts!  I saw the pain she went through on days that she missed her drink.  That could be me right now had I had any issues in the past with Opiates!  And they don't have my medical records so they have no way of knowing!

So ... profit ... frequent flyer miles ... trips to Jamaica ... smooth writing pens ... ski trips to Aspen ... just why did this surgeon ignore my wishes?  Does the entire Belleville Hospital have a contract with Janssen Pharmaceuticals to give every out patient Tramadol?   Why did she ignore me?  I'm not even a doctor and yet if I had told me that I was having this surgery, yet didn't want any opiates, I would immediately suspect past addiction issues.  Yet nine medical professionals didn't?  WTF??

Is the Medical industry actively making addicts out of us?

I am officially verklempt.