Hot day.

In the afternoon I stopped off at a hotel, and sat outside with a beer.

There was nobody else there.

This is what it looked like.


I stayed quite a long time, because it was so warm and sunny and mellow.

And I sat with my beer, and thought about nothing.


About Frank Davis

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28 Responses to Nothing

  1. legiron says:

    When the flowers look like that, shot through with darker lines, that’s when you pick them for smoking. What a wonderfully educational pub.

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      Franks onto something here,he had a good time smoking and drinking that has to piss Deb Arnot off!

    • Frank Davis says:

      Those are tobacco plants? I don’t think so. The leaves are too small. And the flowers too big.

      Rose will tell us tomorrow.

      • Rose says:

        You seem to have great faith in me, Frank , probably quite mistaken.

        The flowers in the basket look like mini petunias to me and as Leggy notes, they are related to tobacco.
        http: //

        “The genus Calibrachoa (Solanaceae) comprises approximately 27 species that are found in open areas of southern South America, with the exception of C. parviflora, which also occurs in North America and Europe, probably as a result of introduction from South America and subsequent naturalization. The genus is closely related to Petunia, but differs in characteristics such as chromosome number,
        corolla aestivation, seed morphology, and leaf anatomy.”

        World Crops

        Potato – solanine, chaconine, etc
        Tobacco – nicotine
        Deadly nightshade – scopolamine
        Tomato – tomatine
        Jimsom Weed

        “Most of these species are graft compatible, so one could develop a nicotine-free tobacco plant by grafting a tobacco scion onto potato rootstock.”

        What I didn’t know is that all these plants are related to the legendary mandrake!

        I read somewhere that these New World vegetables were not very well accepted in Europe at first, because the flowers looked so much like deadly nightshade, tomatoes were grown as purely ornamental.

        Tomatoes Lore and Legend

        “Up until the end of the eighteenth century, physicians warned against eating tomatoes, fearing they caused not only appendicitis but also stomach cancer from tomato skins adhering to the lining of the stomach.

        Colonel Robert Gibbon Johnson of Salem, New Jersey had brought the tomato home from abroad in 1808. He had been offering a prize yearly for the largest fruit grown, but the general public considered the tomato an ornamental plant rather than one for food.

        As the story is told, it was Colonel Johnson who on September 26, 1820 once and for all proved tomatoes non-poisonous and safe for consumption. He stood on the steps of the Salem courthouse and bravely consumed an entire basket of tomatoes without keeling over or suffering any ill effects whatsoever. His grandstanding attracted a crowd over over 2,000 people who were certain he was committing public suicide. The local firemen’s band even played a mournful dirge to add to the perceived morbid display of courage.”

        Leggy you are good with a camera and I don’t have one, please could you post a picture of a tobacco flower when it’s ready to pick to save any confusion.

        Virginia only, so far, from my observations Havana flowers don’t seem to give you the slightest clue about when they are ready.

      • Rose says:

        But you’ll have to wait a bit, due to excessive and unnecessary information its been caught in Frank’s spaminator :)

        • Marie says:

          Hello Rose.
          I always enjoy your comments and I always learn something from them. Please forgive me for going off topic, but I wanted your take on something. I recently had a run in with an anti on a newspaper comments thread. He insisted that nicotine was a narcotic. Do you have any idea where this particularly pernicious piece of misinformation comes from?

        • Rose says:


          That one puzzled me too,so I had a look at it a few years ago.

          The confusion seems once again to start with James 1st, the tobacco he so reviled was Nicotiana Rustica, Mapacho, a tobacco apparently used in shamanic rituals reportedly containing 20 times the amount of nicotine, which is why it was the one that was used to make pesticide, and more interestingly something called Harmala alkaloids.

          But apparently we much preferred the much milder Nicotiana Tabacum, which is what we have been smoking ever since and which doesn’t contain the Harmala alkaloids.

          “Whereas before 1616 the indifferent plant (Nicotiana rustica) of the English colonies offered little competition to the popular Spanish leaf (Nicotiana tabacum) which was grown in the West Indies, Mexico, and the north of South America, the English colonists, by taking the Spanish plant from Trinidad and planting it in Virginia, began to trade in earnest”
          http: //

          Harmala alkaloid
          “The MAOI (Monoamine oxidase inhibitor) alkaloids found in seeds of Peganum harmala (also known as Harmal or Syrian Rue)- harmine, harmaline, and tetrahydroharmine- are collectively known as harmala alkaloids. The harmala alkaloids are of great interest for their complicated relation to phyto-indole entheogens used in Amazonian shamanism”
          The harmala alkaloid harmine – once known as Telepathine and Banisterine.

          “Harmala alkaloids are also found in many other plants, such as tobacco and passion flower.”
          http: //

          “Passionflower was widely used by the Aztecs as a sedative and analgesic. Its constituents include harmine.
          Harmine was originally known as telepathine because of its peculiar ability to induce a contemplative state and mild euphoria. It was later used by the Germans in World War II as “truth serum.”

          The word Narcotic is defined as something that induces sleep or stupor, which would seem to accord with the harmaline alkaloids in Mapacho.

          Narcolepsy – “A condition characterized by an extreme tendency to fall asleep”

          But words change their meaning over time and who is using them, I always thought that narcotics meant illegal drugs.

          Trouble is when you try to look up the science for Mapacho you just seem to end up with websites selling various “ethnogens”, which is a bit of a clue to it’s possible effects.

          Anti-tobacco don’t seem concerned about the huge differences between different types of tobacco and lump them all together as just Tobacco and it’s quite possible that they might not understand or care that there IS a difference when the only way to explain what your talking about is to use the latin names.

          I have a feeling that all this post is rather unsatisfactory, but not being into South American shamanism, I too am at something of a loss.

        • Rose says:

          How I miss preview, sorry Marie, that should have read 20 times the amount of nicotine, not 20%!
          Frank, please could you correct that for me.

        • Rose says:

          Thank you, Frank.

  2. harleyrider1978 says:

    Wish I could say nothing,but hey Im me always busy with something. Ban storys were a bit slow today but hey its only tuesday………………

  3. Some other Tom says:

    Life. As it should be.

    • jaxthefirst says:

      Sad but predictable. The tobacco companies, just like any other anti-ban organisation or individual who tries to take on anti-tobacco (such as the mental health patients here in the UK) cannot be allowed to win. By fair means or foul (and I know which one my money’s on) anti-tobacco has to be seen to prevail in every possible avenue available to those who oppose them. Any other result would, inevitably, bring the whole pack of cards tumbling down – and the collateral damage which that would wreak on Governments, local States or Councils, health campaigners, the media just can’t be allowed to happen.

      Oh, well. I guess the Government here in the UK will be breathing a sigh of relief then …

    • smokervoter says:

      “Australian Council on Smoking and Health president Mike Daube, who chaired the Federal Government committee which called for plain packaging, said the decision had global ramifications.”

      I guess that means we’re next.

      All the courts worldwide always find some way out of the private versus public property, the right to assembly, and copyright arguments. In other words public health, no matter how phony the premise, trumps all. Mob rule by the healthist elite is all that counts. If Pol Pot wants to kill everyone in the name of a healthier Cambodia, by all means, go right ahead.

      I remember back in the early 80s a buddy of mines young tween kid had his hair dyed bronzed aussie blond and he affected a very lame ‘down under’ dialect. As soon as he was old enough to do so, he planned on moving to Australia so he could ‘do as he damn well pleased’. It was a total crack up to me, but kids are kids.

      Australia sucks. If someone gave me a plane ticket there I would sell it to the highest bidder.

    • beobrigitte says:

      Big tobacco loses plain packaging challenge

      Big Tobacco?

      A majority of justices rejected manufacturers’ argument that laws were unconstitutional. The court did not publish the reasons for its decision.

      Why not?

      The decision means that from October, cigarettes made in Australia will need to be packaged in drab brown boxes featuring standard fonts and larger graphic health warnings.

      Plenty of pictures of “brown smoker’s lungs” then? This will be interesting – and proof of how far they have strayed from the truth.

      Health groups said the decision was a major win against smoking.

      Interesting sentence. Pity there is no elaboration on it.

      “It shows to everybody that the only way to deal with tobacco industry claims, sabre rattling and legal threats is to stare them down in court,” he said.

      What is sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander. Isn’t “sabre rattling” and “legal threats” something tobacco control does well?

      Tobacco companies HAVE launched a legal challenge to plain packaging through international trade laws but these are likely to take years to be resolved.

      Perhaps not.
      Nevertheless, as a customer, I would like to ensure I buy the brand of tobacco I choose to smoke. Perhaps we can order our tobacco from the companies directly.
      I also would like to buy a metal cigarette case with the “Amber leaf” brand on it. Has anyone got an idea where I can order it?

  4. Walt says:

    Wasn’t the whole place once a penal colony? Full circle being reached. And their Constitution must be pretty porous. Besides, who’d spend 20 smoke-free hours on a plane to get to to a penal colony? I wouldn’t even do that to get to heaven.

    About the empty garden. I was reminded of the Rogers & Hart song “There’s a Small Hotel” which praises the place with the lines, “…not a sign of people. Who wants people?” And you’re damn lucky to still have hotel and pub gardens. Our lack of them makes hunting smokers for the survey like looking for unicorns in a haystack.

  5. Rose says:

    Australia upholds world’s toughest law on tobacco packaging

    1…2… 3 – and breathe, as balance is restored.

    Bradley Wiggins celebrates Olympic gold with wine and cigarette in Majorca

    “The 32 year-old had travelled to the Spanish island with family and friends after becoming one of the most decorated British sportsmen in history.
    He appeared relaxed and in high spirits as he toasted in style the most remarkable time of his career on Monday night.

    Pictures showed Wiggins, dressed in his Fred Perry range of clothes, holding a glass of chilled white wine in one hand and a cigarette in the other outside a local pizzeria restaurant.”

  6. harleyrider1978 says:

    So in Australia you have no legal right to your own name according to the high court. We can now see who owns the courts,the laws and the key to who gets to be free! If ever there was justification for open civilwar against government this is it.

  7. harleyrider1978 says:

    If anyone has daves addy send him what I wrote

    David Atherton posted in TICAP (The International Coalition Against Prohibition) David Atherton 9:59am Aug 15

    I should be on CNN tonight at 9.30pm UK time talking about the Australian Supreme Court allowing plain cigarette packs. It is Sky channel 506.

    Bust their chops over international trade treatys which are a higher law th=
    an the aussie supreme court!

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      although it has withheld its reasons for the judgment until later this year.

      They dont state why because their ruling breaches international trade TREATIES which are a higher court and law than the Aussie supreme court!The fact is this shows just how illegal the courts have become in their alliance with tobacco free advocacy. Plainly the courts are no longer impartial but more a JUDGE ROY BEAN hang em high sort of law! Dont expect the laws to be upheld in any court any longer! Big tobacco should immediatly shut down all operations within Australia and let the chinese bootleggers take over the void and the revenues the government would lose!

  8. lleweton says:

    I’m getting on for 77. I keep asking myself why I should care about the insidious tyranny which concerns us here and in kindred blogs. But I do. And I don’t know whether I should stop – or how to if I could.

  9. Marie says:

    I hope you see this Rose. Many thanks for the reply. I have copied and pasted it into a word doc to use as a guide for further reading and ammunition in future debates.

  10. james higham says:

    Bit worried you’re just on halves there. Can’t do things by halves you know, Frank.

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