Gazing At A Pond

H/T Harley for this report:


The introduction of smoking rooms in pubs and private members’ clubs would be welcomed by a majority of the British public, according to a new Populus survey.  The poll for smokers’ rights group Forest found that a majority of adults also oppose bans on smoking in public parks and private vehicles.
The survey found that 57 per cent of those surveyed think smoking bans have gone too far, saying they believe pubs and private members’ clubs, including working men’s clubs, should be allowed to provide a well-ventilated designated smoking room to accommodate smokers.

The numbers have increased since a similar poll by ComRes conducted for the Institute of Economic Affairs in December 2014.  On that occasion 51 per cent believed “owners of pubs and private members clubs should be allowed to have a private room for people to smoke in if they want to.”

The stance taken by the public closely matches the libertarian policy proposed by UKIP at the recent General Election.  The manifesto called for amending the smoking ban “to give pubs and clubs the choice to open smoking rooms provided they are properly ventilated and physically-separated from from non-smoking areas.”

The anti-smoking lobby claims overwhelming public support for the ban, but they normally offer a binary option merely asking whether should smoking be banned or not. In fact some sort of accommodation for smokers has long been popular. As Anthony Wells of YouGov explained in 2005, two years before the current ban was finalised across the UK:

“The simple picture is this – if you conduct polls that ask a straight yes or no question about whether people would approve of a complete smoking ban in pubs, about two-thirds say yes. If, on the other hand, you ask people what they would like done about smoking in pubs, and give them a list of options such as a complete ban, or making all pubs have a no-smoking area, or better ventilation or so on, then most people opt for making pubs have no smoking sections (or making pubs no smoking with special smoking sections, which amounts to much the same thing) and against having an overall ban.”

I’m not surprised. Most normal people never gave a damn about smoking, and clearly they still don’t.

Anyway, today I took my new dashcam to a country pub with a pond, and set up the dashcam to do what I like doing with water: just gaze at it. I stayed over an hour, and had a snack lunch and a beer and cigarettes. And then drove home and condensed the video down to about 7 minutes, and added captions when stuff happened. I’ve left in the footage at the end where I take down the camera, because you can see the contraption I was using to hold the camera.

I’m pleased with the result. There’s a pub nearby which has the river Severn out back (I recently found out that the Roman name for it was Sabrina, so it’s kept its name pretty well). I read that the pub has recently re-opened.  But when I visited last year there were lots of leaves in the Severn, slowly drifting by. I think that would make for another nice little movie.

About Frank Davis

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22 Responses to Gazing At A Pond

  1. margo says:

    Very peaceful – lovely pond!

  2. Frank Davis says:

    Will someone please tell me what happened to Harley. Walt seemed to think that he’d got in a fight. Brigitte seems to think he had a heart attack. Which is it?

    • Rose says:

      I thought it was a heart attack, one of the side effects of some medication he was on. I assumed the cracked ribs and bruised sternum were caused during resuscitation.
      In fact he was asking me if I could find a study he’d seen which found better outcomes for smokers. As I had a vague memory of the same study,I eventually managed to find it.

      Cardiac resuscitation
      The ‘smoker’s paradox’ after in-hospital cardiac arrest
      20 May 2014

      “A retrospective, observational analysis of data from a large US hospital database has shown that smokers have higher rates of survival and lower rates of poor neurological status after in-hospital cardiac arrest (IHCA) than do nonsmokers. This ‘smoker’s paradox’ of improved outcomes has been recognized in patients with acute myocardial infarction for 25 years,”

      “Smoker’s Paradox” in Patients Treated for Severe Injuries: Lower Risk of Mortality After Trauma Observed in Current Smokers

      “Background: Studies evaluating the effect of smoking status on mortality outcomes in trauma patients have been limited, despite the fact that survival benefits of smoking have been reported in other critical care settings. The phenomenon “smoker’s paradox” refers to the observation that following acute cardiovascular events, such as acute myocardial infarction and cardiac arrest, smokers often experience decreased mortality in the hospital setting. The objective of our study was to determine whether smoking imparts a survival benefit in patients with traumatic injuries.”

      Conclusions: Patients who smoke appear to have a much lower risk of in-hospital mortality than nonsmokers. Further investigation into biological mechanisms responsible for this effect should be carried out in order to potentially develop therapeutic applications.”

      Rather ironic that they’ve banned smoking at all our hospitals and pour scorn on those who manage to drag themselves of the grounds in night clothes and attached to drip.

      • harleyrider1978 says:

        Rose they actually didn’t give me much trash about being a smoker at all. I went 2.5 weeks without even a smoke much less begging for one. They had tossed a patch on my arm I found about the 3rd day in. I ripped it off and the nurse said you want a new one I said hell no I didn’t want the first one.

        I told the nurse I could quit at anytime I wanted I didn’t need patches……….

        I said Id quit for the time being so as not to mess up any routine going on but Id start back when I felt like it. Which was 4 days after getting home……………about a half pack a day Id say if that.

      • Rose, WONDERFUL work on digging that up! I remember having run across the “smokers’ paradox” thing at some point in the past, but I think at the time I shrugged it off as likely being either wishful thinking or a resuscitation of some leftover Big Tobacco blurb from the 1950s/60s.

        One biological mechanism that could help explain it may have to do with increased secondary circulatory system paths. It’s something I’m not sure about, but I think I’ve read about smokers having increased vasculature growth to make up for their extra CO body-loading. That extra networking could come into very helpful emergency play when the body is in deep doo-doo — particularly if the smoker stops smoking for a while and the extra CO load that caused the development of that “extra strong” system starts operating in a more oxygen-rich environment than it usually has!


  3. Rose says:

    Frank, incase you missed it.

    I hope Harley won’t mind me reposting his comment.

    harleyrider1978 says:

    Frank I was 4 days on this anti-biotic when I had an AMI…………….

    Antibiotic clarithromycin and heart attack risk

    By Tim Sandle Sep 1, 2014 in Health .

    Copenhagen – The commonly prescribed antibiotic drug clarithromycin has been linked to a heightened cardiac events risk, according to the British Medical Journal’s newly-published study

    Im fixing to sue the shit out of them.

  4. harleyrider1978 says:

    Feeling good for the most part just sore as hell all over and tired. You gotta figure I went almost a month with no sleep and it took til my 4th day home before the pain from my sternum and ribs quelled down enuf to finally sleep. Of course I was off all that damned morphine that made me a literal madman in the hospital for 4-5 days I was swinging and hitting everyone. They tied me to the bed and even put boxing gloves over my hands………………lmao. They all said what a fighter when down and out. Save the few who caught a fist. I actually thought I was a POW in a camp and all of us were being tortured and I was fighting back anyway I could until finally they cut the morphine dose and ABOUT 4 HOURS LATER I WAS BACK TO NORMAL and appoligising for my actions.

    • Sounds like you had a truly horrible medical experience, and VERY glad you’re back and feeling up to hitting the keyboard again. Pamper yourself for the next week or two guy: Don’t try to play catchup with all the various loose ends that you may see flapping from your unexpected non-vacation, and take a bit of a *REAL* vacation with the best rejuvenating food and real rest while your system builds its strength back up. Even a drug-induced AMI takes a real toll on your body in the short term, and combined with the bad morphine reaction your overall defense systems are probably pretty wrecked. Give them a break and nurse ’em back to health for a bit. Meanwhile we’ll do out best to keep the Antis’ tootsies to the fire!



      • harleyrider1978 says:

        Thanks Mike I really need a rooting section Ive even had panic attacks and god forbid even crying spells…………From the hospital trauma care they did to me. VA veterans hotline for help line with therapists told me 90% of their calls deal directly from post trauma unit PTSD symptons. I had em hit me 6 days after I was let out. Weird your like a total emotional wreck not wanting to be alone or even go outside the house. Then Dizzy as I hadn’t been getting up and walking around like I shoulda been. So yesterday I started walking around the house doing about 20 laps around the dining and kitchen area which would be about a 1/3 mile walk.

        • For anyone who’s had a good long adult life without hospitalization, the first real stint in one (My first, and so far only, one was about 15 years ago after a bicycle accident.) can be very, very scary. You’re totally helpless and dependent upon a whole bunch of strangers who are very busy with a whole bunch of other people and whom you’re desperately afraid of pissing off about anything simply because you ARE so dependent upon them. Combine that with the fact that you’re likely to be in some degree of pain AND have at least occasional brushes with poor treatment by interns etc who are working 80 hour weeks AND your fears over whatever landed you in the hospital to begin with… and your description of conditions ripe for PTSD is very real. Having a good friend or family member or two who can just quietly be near you during the most critical periods can mean all the world to someone, particularly if they’re good enough that they can convince the staff to look the other way regarding visiting hours.

          Visiting hours have several purposes, but two of the primary ones seem to be (1) giving the staff a good excuse to get the annoying/time-energy-consuming visitors out of their hair so they can do their work properly; and (2) giving the staff a good excuse to get the annoying and emotionally/physically exhausting visitors away from the patients who really just want/need to get rest. If the staff sees that a visitor is being more helpful than harmful and if the patient is secluded enough that the visitor isn’t going to be setting a “bad example” for the visitors they want to bounce out the door when the clock chimes, I think they’re often likely to show some flexibility. I’ve been watching some episodes of Grey’s Anatomy recently on Netflix (binge-fashion in terms of starting with Season One etc, and I think their treatment of what visitors are like looks pretty on the mark… erring on the kind side if anything.

          But for the frightened/helpless patient, having someone they know and love to simply be near them quietly reading or dozing after a major surgery etc means everything in the world: you might be “afraid” to bother the nurses with your call-button over little things, but those “little things” can feel really really important after your body is thinking “OMG! We just got CUT WIDE OPEN DUDE! We’s gonna be DEAD real quick man! NO ONE survives after a wound like THAT! Probly got ripped by a MOUNTAIN LION who’s gonna come back and FINISH the job purty soon if we don’t simply BLEED TO DEATH first. We be dead meat!”

          And having an advocate who can, politely, be a bit more insistent on pressing a doctor/nurse for some extra aid or details than you might feel safe doing yourself can mean a lot too, particularly since, in the first post-op day or two, you’re likely to also simply feel confused and have a hard time understanding/remembering everything that’s being said to you.

          Sooo…. yeah, PTSD sounds accurate.

          Glad yer back! And get outside a bit for those walks: walking in circles around the house’ll jes’ make you even dizzier than you normally are!


        • harleyrider1978 says:

          Mike its 108 degrees outside with heat index all week and likely to be till mid sept……….hense indoors

  5. Pingback: “Will someone please tell me what happened to Harley?” | Library of Libraries

  6. Joe Public says:

    The “contraption I was using to hold the camera.” looks reminiscent of the gadget from a school chemistry lab used to hold test-tubes & flasks over a bunsen burner.

  7. Harley, sorry to read about what happened, but very pleased you’re well on the road to recovery.

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