THE POISON GARDEN website      Arum maculatum berries on a Cannabis leaf 

Search thepoisongarden.co.uk:

This free script provided by JavaScript Kit

Pontifications on Poison

Being some ramblings on events associated with poisonous plants.

Wednesday 11th January 2012

If you’ve read much of this website or, better still, if you are the proud owner of the wonderful ‘Is That Cat Dead? – and other questions about poison plants’ you will have realised that I don’t have a lot of time for superstition and unproven beliefs.

Or, rather, I have a lot of time for them in terms of being interested in trying to understand what makes people believe some of the very silly things they do and trying to see the rationale behind those beliefs. Sometimes, for example with Atropa belladonna, deadly nightshade, you can understand the story about the devil owning the plant in terms of its deterrent effect on children who might be tempted to try the toxic berries. But then there are the ones, like the notion that standing on the crushed root of a Helleborus plant will make one invisible that seem to have no sensible source.

Atropa belladonna, deadly nightshade

Atropa belladonna, deadly nightshade

But, in general, I’m not one to accept old wives’ tales, pseudo-science or non-science in all areas not just those directly related to plants.

Today, however, I’m going to break that and confidently make a prediction based purely on superstitious belief.

It will snow heavily on 25th January or be definitely forecast for 26th January.

The reason I am willing to set aside so many of my principles and make a nonsense prediction is because I have just booked to travel to Kent on the 25th and return on the 26th.

As I wrote on the 8th December, I had booked a trip to Glasgow for a showing of the Canadian documentary ‘Raw Opium’ but could not make the journey because the forecast winds suggested there would be severe travel disruption and there was.

Now, I’ve decided to make the trip to the University of Kent to hear David Nutt speak about ‘Science and non-science in drug policy’ and will spend the next couple of weeks avidly reading all the different weather forecasts I can and looking for indications that might predict what the weather will be like on those two days.

If it has to be bad, I really hope it is bad on the 25th rather than forecast to be bad on the 26th. I can’t take the chance of not being able to get home that day so, if the forecast looks bad, I shall have to abandon my trip and hope that the forecast isn’t wrong. Worst case would be staying home because the weather looks as though it will inhibit the return journey only to find that the actual weather on the Thursday isn’t a problem.

Professor David Nutt is a very interesting and accomplished speaker. If you haven’t seen him speak it is well worth having a look at this video of the 2011 Monica Fooks Memorial Lecture. On that occasion, he was focussing on the way the media reports on drugs. I don’t know if he’ll be giving evidence to the Leveson Inquiry but he should.

In January, the advance information suggests, he’ll be talking about alcohol and the illicit substances together. The idea that we should consider all psychoactive substances the same way regardless of the arbitrary differentiation between legal and illegal is one that particularly interests me.

So, although I do know that it really won’t have any bearing on anything, it’s finger crossed and touch wood that the mild winter doesn’t end just as I’m packing my overnight bag. 

 

Full Entries

2016

Tuesday 25th October 2016
Saturday 20th August 2016
Sunday 6th March 2016
Wednesday 3rd February 2016

2015

Saturday 28th November 2015
Friday 27th November 2015
Monday 17th August 2015
Wednesday 15th July 2015
Friday 26th June 2015
Thursday 25th June 2015
Thursday 30th April 2015
Wednesday 29th April 2015
Wednesday 11th March 2015
Tuesday 3rd March 2015
Saturday 28th February 2015
Sunday 22nd February 2015

November 2014

Monday 24th November 2014
Saturday 8th November 2014

October 2014

September 2014

Wednesday 24th September 2014
Monday 1st September 2014

August 2014

Tuesday 26th August 2014
Saturday 16th August 2014
Tuesday 5th August 2014
Friday 1st August 2014

July 2014

Sunday 27th July 2014
Wednesday 23rd July 2014
Sunday 13th July 2014
Sunday 6th July 2014
Tuesday 1st July 2014

June 2014

Wednesday 25th June 2014
Tuesday 24th June 2014
Sunday 22nd June 2014
Monday 9th June 2014
Wednesday 4th June 2014

May 2014

Monday 26th May 2014
Sunday 18th May 2014
Wednesday 14th May 2014

April 2014

Sunday 13th April 2014
Saturday 5th April 2014
Thursday 3rd April 2014
Tuesday 1st April 2014

March 2014

Monday 31st March 2014
Tuesday 25th March 2014
Friday 21st March 2014
Monday 17th March 2014
Sunday 16th March 2014
Tuesday 11th March 2014
Tuesday 11th March 2014
Thursday 6th March 2014
Wednesday 5th March 2014
Saturday 1st March 2014

February 2014

Thursday 27th February 2014
Monday 24th February 2014
Wednesday 19th February 2014
Monday 17th February 2014
Thursday 13th February 2014
Monday 4th February 2014
Monday 3rd February 2014
Saturday 1st February 2014

January 2014

Thursday 28th January 2014
Thursday 23rd January 2014
Friday 17th January 2014
Wednesday 15th January 2014
Monday 13th January 2014
Thursday 9th January 2014
Tuesday 7th January 2014
Wednesday 1st January 2014

December 2013

Monday 23rd December 2013
Friday 20th December 2013
Tuesday 17th December 2013
Friday 14th December 2013
Thursday 12th December 2013
Sunday 8th December 2013
Wednesday 4th December 2013
Sunday 1st December 2013

November 2013

Friday 29th November 2013
Wednesday 27th November 2013
Tuesday 26th November 2013
Friday 22nd November 2013
Monday 18th November 2013
Friday 15th November 2013
Thursday 14th November 2013
Sunday 10th November 2013
Thursday 7th November 2013
Wednesday 6th November 2013
Friday 1st November 2013

October 2013

Thursday 31st October 2013
Sunday 27th October 2013
Wednesday 23rd October 2013
Monday 21st October 2013
Friday 18th October 2013
Friday 11th October 2013
Wednesday 9th October 2013
Tuesday 8th October 2013
Monday 7th October 2013
Tuesday 1st October 2013

September 2013

Monday 30th September 2013
Saturday 28th September 2013
Friday 27th September 2013
Monday 23rd September 2013
Sunday 15th September 2013
Monday 9th September 2013
Tuesday 3rd September 2013
Sunday 1st September 2013

August 2013

Sunday 8th September 2013
Tuesday 3rd September 2013
Sunday 1st September 2013

Tuesday 27th August 2013
Sunday 25th August 2013
Monday 19th August 2013
Friday 16th August 2013
Tuesday 13th August 2013
Friday 9th August 2013
Friday 2nd August 2013
Thursday 1st August 2013

July 2013

Saturday 27th July 2013
Sunday 21st July 2013
Wednesday 17th July 2013
Monday 15th July 2013
Saturday 13th July 2013
Friday 12th July 2013
Thursday 11th July 2013
Wednesday 10th July 2013
Tuesday 9th July 2013
Saturday 6th July 2013

June 2013

Friday 28th June 2013
Tuesday 25th June 2013
Friday 21st June 2013
Thursday 20th June 2013
Wednesday 19th June 2013
Saturday 15th June 2013
Sunday 9th June 2013
Saturday 8th June 2013
Saturday 1st June 2013
 

May 2013

April 2013

March 2013

February 2013

January 2013

December 2012

November 2012

October 2012

September 2012

August 2012

July 2012 blog

June 2012 blog

May 2012 blog

April 2012 blog

March 2012 blog

February 2012 blog

January 2012 blog

December 2011 blog

November 2011 blog

October 2011 blog

September 2011 blog

August 2011 blog

July 2011 blog

June 2011 blog



IMPORTANT NOTE

The POISON GARDEN website is not connected with Alnwick Garden Enterprises Ltd and/or The Alnwick Garden Trust.