Galaxy Quest 2

I want to make this. No, seriously.

I have a killer idea for the story for the 2nd one. It’ll work really well. And should be as much fun as the first.

(I’m following the “mostly same + enough different = Great Sequel” formula that great sequels follow).

As far as I’m concerned, Galaxy Quest was one of the best films ever made. I’m serious about that. It runs an amazing gamut of comedy and tragedy, is completely cohesive, has a deft sense of character development and depth, and in fact the ONLY thing I can say at all that’s bad about it is the final death of Sairus at the end (where it’s obviously a flash pan on the stage that goes ineffectually pop, with an effect on top).

Actually, that wrap up scene is a little twee, but everything else in the movie is brilliant.

Alright – who wants to help me make it? Put me in touch with the right people (I’ll be working it from my side), and let’s do it.

#science fiction, #script writing, #film
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Ten Grand is Buried Here… More clues

Looking at the fine print, you have to be an Australian resident to win. Sooo… bang goes my shot at it.

Meanwhile, here’s the clues I’ve figured out. A quick web search seems to indicate that no-one else has got these yet, so without further ado…

Use a crowbar to open the tun

Use a crowbar = Pry. A tun? Vat. Pry Vat = Private.

Jobiska made a drink for Ian. Or Arthur.

This is from an Edward Lear poem, as has been noted elsewhere on the web:

And his Aunt Jobiska made him drink
Lavender water tinged with pink;
For she said, “The World in general knows
There’s nothing so good for a Pobble’s toes!”

What hasn’t been noted so far, however, is that Arthur Ian Lavender played Private Pike in the BBC sitcom Dad’s Army.

A Pike is also a predatory fish. The map of Sasketchewan also shows a turnpike, but there may be more than one meaning.

GI v Texas Ranger

G.I. Joe v Walker, Texas Ranger.

Joe Walker – Private Joe Walker is another character in the TV-show, Dad’s Army.

There’s a theme here. That theme seems to be Dad’s Army.

… and now I’m waiting for more clues.


Niacin Adventures: Part 1 - Nature's Prozac

Next article in this series: Niacin Adventures Part 2: Why Raw Food Diets Might Work For Some People

Back in January, I promised a series of articles based on some experimentation I was doing with Niacin, or Vitamin B3 (the Nicotinic acid form).

So here’s the first post I’m going to make as a result of that research. (I like nutritional experimentation – I can do it at home, and don’t need a lab or a license).

A Little Background

Niacin has been added to food since the 1930s to combat the disease Pellagra, caused by Niacin deficiency. (Typically this disease hits countries with a heavy corn-based diet who don’t mix the corn with ash when cooking it, which releases the niacin from its bound form).

It’s found naturally in the husks of seeds such as brown rice, and is also synthesized by the body from Tryptophan. It takes 60mg of Tryptophan to make 1mg of Niacin, and the recommended daily does is between 2 and 15mg.

An average chicken breast (about 1lb, or 16oz) contains about 108mg of Tryptophan.

Now, your body uses most of the Tryptophan (about 93%) for other things. About 7% of it is available to be converted to Serotonin, and Niacin. (These figures may be wrong – I read the paper a while back and can’t find it right now, but they’re in the ballpark).

The pathways work like this:

Tryptophan + Vitamin B6 –> Niacin

Tryptophan + Tryptophan Hydroxylase –> 5-HTP; 5-HTP + 5-HTP decarboxylase –> Serotonin; Serotonin eventually becomes Melatonin.

Now, there’s a switch here. Your body needs Niacin more than it needs Serotonin. If you’re Niacin deficient, then your body will convert more of the Tryptophan to Niacin, in order to get the right amount. (The two biosynthesis pathways compete, and the Niacin one is stronger).

What this means for Your Brain

Simply put, if you’re not getting enough Niacin in your diet, you will end up being deficient in Serotonin. And Melatonin. So you’ll be depressed, and will have trouble sleeping.

What are our foods fortified with? Typically, it appears to be not Niacin, but Niacinamide. There are two forms of Niacin; one is Nicotinic Acid, and the other is Niacinamide. Presumably because it’s cheaper, or more stable, the niacinamide form is preferred as an additive in cereals and flour. In fact, the USDA requires that food manufacturers use either form – not just nicotinic acid.

Now this is the really important part – Niacinamide does NOT trigger the switch in the pathways. It’ll stop you from getting Pellagra, sure. But it won’t flip the switch to say “hey, you’ve got enough Niacin – let’s start making Serotonin instead.”

So your body will carry on trying to convert Tryptophan into Niacin, and use it all up, leaving you with a somewhat lower amount of Serotonin in your system (and Vitamin B6, as this is used up in the conversion process).

How do you get around this?

Simple. Start taking the nicotinic acid form, along with Tryptophan. This works much better than St. John’s Wort or a prescription SSRI (at least, in my experience).

Why does it work better?

Your body can regulate the conversion process. It can limit the amount of serotonin in your system, and target the results. What’s more, your brain directly uses the higher amount of Tryptophan and converts it to Serotonin inside your brain. Which is much better than SSRIs which can have nasty effects on the Serotonin producing cells in your gut.

(Your gut has its own, entirely separate brain to control digestion, a medical fact that was almost lost for about 100 years, but that’s a story for another time).

What about 5-HTP? Why not just use that?

5-HTP is an intermediate step in the production of Serotonin.

But your body doesn’t regulate its conversion to Serotonin. It’s not limited, other than by the amount of 5-HTP decarboxylase in your system.

This means that you can get Serotonin overload. What’s more, most of the conversion will happen in your body – not your brain. Before you even get close to a therapeutic amount, you’ll start getting the shakes, and will probably vomit. Sure, some of it will make it into the brain – but it’ll also be floating around your body. (And that can cause heart issues, so don’t do it!).

So What Should I Take?

Before I go to bed, I personally am taking 1500mg of L-Tryptophan, along with 300mg of Nicotinic Acid. (Be VERY careful to get the Nicotinic acid form of Niacin – it’s often hard to tell, and the most clearly labeled form is SolarRay’s brand). I also take about 250mg of B6 (which in some studies helps the brain convert the Tryptophan into Serotonin, which is confusing, as B6 is involved in the synthesis of Niacin), and 100mg of B1 (because I drink occasionally, and eat a lot of sugary foods).

The effects come on within about 15 minutes, and I’m no longer depressed or anxious at all, and get a very good night’s sleep.

I occasionally try this mix during the day, and it works well then too. There’s some flushing that occurs (skin redness & itching), but that goes away over time and lessens over the course of a few weeks.

If you try this out, be careful NOT to take more than 1500mg of Niacin per day. For safety’s sake, keep it below 1000mg. And DON’T mix it with SSRIs, or you risk getting too much Serotonin – which is also bad.

A Call for Research

And here’s the important thing:

Can we please do a study to lock down the exact mechanism of the switching pathway to determine exactly how Nicotinic acid supplementation switches production of Niacin to production of Serotonin in the body?

If we do this study, we can probably help the millions of people around the world with depression by mandating a switch from Niacinamide fortification of foods to Nicotinic Acid supplementation (or a 50-50 mix) in foods.

We beat Pellagra. We can beat depression too.

Disclaimer: As ever, I’m not a medical doctor, and don’t claim to be one. Use this information at your own risk, and consult your physician before proceeding. I can’t be held responsible for any bad side effects you may experience by following this advice. Nutritional supplements are effectively drugs, and should be treated as such.

#Health, #anxiety, #niacin, #vitamin supplements, #tryptophan, #serotonin
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New Site for my disease theory…

I’m taking the plunge, and as I have hosting already, I’m setting up a new website for my theory about herpesviridae being the main cause of most late-stage life diseases.

It’s going to take a while until it’s ready, but you can find it here:

Why put it up before it’s baked?

There’s an ethical issue here. If I’m right, quite simply, then I’m being unethical by not doing so. (There’s also the possibility that if I’m wrong, then I’m also being unethical by putting it up – but, given that I think I’m on the right track, here it is).

So there it is. More content coming soon. (I’m planning on adding an RSS feed for the front page so you can see when things change).

#Health, #herpes, #cure, #theory
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Earthlink Followup

So apparently they finally got around to calling me back.

The conversation went something like this:

“So you need to cancel… can we ask why?”

“I have hosting elsewhere that I’m barely using and money is tight.”

“How about 2 months free service?”

“No thanks… I already have hosting elsewhere.”

“OK, so we’ll cancel that for you. You’ll switch over to Domain Parking, and your email will still work. You can redirect your domain’s traffic to another site if you want.”

“Wait… what? Is this a free service? How much does that cost?”

“It’s $4.95 per month sir.”

“Hang on a minute. I asked you to cancel it, and cancel everything.”

“Are you sure you want to do that? You will lose the traffic from your site.”

“That’s okay, I’m rehosting it on – I’m not using most of my space there, so it’ll be no problem.”

“So we can’t convince you to keep the domain parking?”

“No. Please shut it down. But I’ll keep the dial-up.”


Still, I can’t blame them. I’d hate that job, and customer retention’s important, especially in this economy. But seriously? I’m not going to change my mind.

#technology, #web development
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