Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Lost in Arctic Darkness? Chemical Warfare on Seasonal Affective Disorder.

Top of the morning gents,

I found another article detailing the curse all of us
rural Nigerian Candidates suffer or enjoy: 66 days of
total arctic darkness.

This kicks my ass. My liver too. What's a moron to do?


When in Rome, do as the Romans. When in Barrow, do the
Ukpeagvik Boogie. This boogie is the toxic dance of
the dead and dying north of 70 lat.

Hang halides, chop powders, charbroil phlegm in pine
chron seasoning and wash away the dark of night with
vision enhancing levels of solvent and dog wash (R&R
and Natural Ice Beer).

The only thing natural about that beer is the high
flow hop squats my nose detects wafting from Child
Mo's and Reilly Ko's (Jack Octollik and Reilly
Kuwanna) honey bucket carving and drinking shack
across the street from Super Dad from Unalakleet.

Me and Sarin Gas have pert near chuked up visiting
that little shit shack. If the airborne powdered ivory
dust, cigarette and pot smoke don't gag ye, the
mountain grown, I mean mount and groan steaming and
smoking bucket chair in the corner will.

What kills me is how my hard drinking Eskimo brethren
can just walk up next to me and pull up a chair on the
throne that never flushes.

In my last tranformation, I had to focus on my bong
rips and cups of gulped whiskey: not the frozen uncle
on the S&R sled nearby nor my upriver fecal discharge
of high liquidity blasting overspray on my very own
north of 70 lat homegrown bud.

Ever slug an Immik, then push him over his own bucket
of ass paint? I have.

I sometimes wonder why I do such mean things. Poor guy
only cursed and spit at me, he likely didn't deserve
the liquid shit coating treatment, but the slug in the
neck was judged fair and healthful.

Paula Hensley's bro received karma from karluk. I was
so inflamed from shitty booze and eskimo drugsmoke I
almost killed that soggy snigger, 'cept he used germ
warfare.

When I got home, I burnt all my clothes.

Ah, the memories of long, cold and dark winters
suffering in the upper left hand corner of Alaska,
chugging and fighting over shots of 151 in Benny
Hensley's old shack, David Burnors little snow drifted
grovel, or Karl Sheldon's place of death watering hole
and sigluk tent freezer.

They're all dead now. No runs, no drips, no errors.

Those brusk faces and shrunken heads and shriveled
eyes only come out at night for a skoatch over 2 very
cold months and visible only in the dark if the dead
soul is sparking a bowl. A mind needn't accumulate
such images, drive ye to drink.

Since hiking all the way to Barrow, me and bunnik now
get fucked up in old man Ira's 1-lightbulb cabin up
the coast near Pt. Barrow, or me and Sarin chief down
doobies and chug R&R like mad Induns high on life:
gasoline fumes and Lysol.

Jack and Reilly always had a can of Lysol to share. It
was really good eh?

A picture is worth a thousand words, I'll assemble
some graphic photos for y'all. Take a peek, you may
recognize some of the characters.

These pictures are computer generated, no felonies
were committed or injured in the making of these lame
dumbass pictures and retarded morning emails.

Have muttoo and eekoot, will travel. I'd also happily
walk a mile for a Camel and 'caulq' in pitch dark 43
below up the coast to Ira's party shack.

Black frozen faces, lost toe nails, teeth and
braincells. Along the Arctic Coast, it's all part of
the dance.

Karl.

---

On Call With Globeandmail.com

Health Alert

Not enough daylight? SAD Disorder can spell disaster
for our northernmost populace.

By Dr. Shapiro

It wouldn't be winter in Canada without unusual
weather patterns -- extra mild weather in parts of the
country, heavy snowfall in others. But one thing
remains constant at this time of year: About 5 per
cent to 10 per cent of our population will experience
seasonal affective disorder, commonly known as SAD.

SAD symptoms include changes in mood, energy and
appetite, excessive sleepiness, fatigue, weight gain
and craving for carbohydrates, loss of libido and
depression. The disorder's hallmark feature is that
symptoms are present in darker fall and winter months,
but gone in spring and summer.

It is well known that seasonal affective disorder
increases, the farther north you go. A study of U.S.
soldiers in Alaska, for example, found about 13 per
cent experienced the condition, much higher than the
general population rate. And it has been noted that
people from southern latitudes are at increased risk
of developing the disorder if they move north.

It isn't known for sure what causes seasonal affective
disorder, but the "latitude theory" suggests that
lower exposure to sunlight increases the risk. There's
no doubt people feel down in the dumps on dark, gloomy
days and much more energized when they get a shot of
sunlight.

Thus, many people believe that light is vital to
fighting off the disorder. But what about blind
people, who cannot distinguish between dark and light;
wouldn't they experience a higher rate of the
condition?

To explore this question, we have to take a look at
our eyeballs and the role they play in our body
rhythms. At the back of our retina are receptors, the
so-called rods and cones that are responsible for
interpreting what we see and are essential to our
vision.

But researchers at Harvard University have recently
discovered that there is another kind of receptor in
our eyeball -- a non-rod, non-cone receptor essential
for recognizing the presence of light.

This third receptor is critical to the workings of our
circadian rhythm, because darkness triggers the
synthesis of melatonin, often called the "sleep
hormone." Daylight, in turn, suppresses the production
of melatonin.

In blind people who do not have rod or cone functions,
but do have the receptors to recognize light, the
circadian rhythm remains normal and the incidence of
SAD is about the same as the general population. But
in people who do not have eyeballs at all, and thus
don't have the third receptor, the circadian rhythm is
altered dramatically. Their melatonin production is
distorted. They are in a constant state of jet lag, if
you will. (So far, no research has been done on
whether this group has a higher rate of seasonal
affective disorder than other blind people, or the
general population.)

Along with the role of light in the condition, there
may be a genetic component that makes some people more
susceptible to it than others. Studies show that
genetic adaptations may have evolved to deal with
lower light levels in fall and winter months. For
example, direct descendants of Icelandic immigrants in
Manitoba have a much lower incidence of SAD, at about
1.2 per cent, than the general population. It's also
known that the condition tends to run in families,
bolstering the idea that there is a genetic component
involved that makes some people more susceptible.

(Another theory of what causes seasonal affective
disorder looks at another brain chemical, serotonin,
which your body uses to make melatonin. It is
suggested that if serotonin levels are low, melatonin
will be low, circadian rhythms will be off kilter and
the risk of SAD might increase. Carbohydrates increase
serotonin and some researchers believe that the
carbohydrate craving seen in seasonal affective
disorder might be a body's way of trying to correct
serotonin levels.)

The classic treatment for SAD is light therapy, which
is about 70-per-cent effective. The idea is to have
early-morning exposure to light to turn off melatonin
production and ensure the circadian rhythm is normal.
While some studies have found that morning light and
evening light are equally effective, most research
suggests that treatment -- whether outdoors in natural
light or using artificial lamps -- is best done in the
morning.

Other possible treatment includes taking St. John's
wort in combination with light therapy. But this herb
can interact with a number of other medications, so be
sure to check with your doctor before trying it.

Dr. Marla Shapiro can be seen daily on Balance:
Television For Living Well on CTV. Questions about
general health issues can be sent to her at:
health@globeandmail.com.

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