Anyone interested in humanity and the natural world should avoid politics and commercial science. And big business, corporations, etc etc. Cliches perhaps. Within cliches often lies the kernel of the whole muddy affair. Karl Marx. Unpublished. Notional. Unknown date.
Nick talked and I smoked. 19 to the dozen. Cigarettes and anecdotes. Time well spent. Between drags on the old toxin we moved through 400 years of poetry, 3500 years of history, 100 years of Irish literature and 3 litres of numbing cider. The science came later. As did the politics, best avoided whilst drunk. Happy days. Sobriety was overrated then. Until Nick finally and suddenly ceased. I quit the smokes, the painkillers but not the booze. That was my only treat. And treated from then on in as such. The body is a reliable engine, open to an amount of abuse, but only a finite amount. Not a day goes by when I don't think and feel down about Nick. He's been added to a pantheon of friends and family, often indistinguishable who has gone from this planet leaving a beautiful legacy behind for us survivors. Rare, that.