Anthony Bourdain, Renegade Chef and Genius Storyteller, Dies in France of Apparent Suicide — He Was 61

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/08/business/media/anthony-bourdain-dead.html

One of my favourite mini-binge-watching shows was “No Reservations”, Anthony Bourdain’s first breakout show. It was different. It was fun. And it was the beginning of what is now known as food travel TV.
http://dai.ly/x2xcbf7

PIONEER

Ironically enough, the first such show I fell upon was “Bizarre Foods”, hosted by one of Bourdain’s best friends, Andrew Zimmern, who was inspired to make such a show by Bourdain. I saw Bourdain on an episode where Zimmern needed help finding strange places in a seedy part of Brooklyn. Bourdain came across as a wise guy; as someone who fit in everywhere and knew how to get in and out of almost any imaginable situation. I will always remember this episode the two travelling chefs made, mainly because it reminds me of the sheer juxtaposition of the two personas. Yet the two were good friends and had something in common — experience in the world of darkness. Zimmern asserted that Bourdain was one of the few people he could talk to about this darkness.

For Bourdain, it had been a life of addiction and, as he often overtly and covertly admitted, a search for inner piece of the soul. He had admitted to Zimmern and others that his current girlfriend may have finally, at 61, been the soulmate he’d been searching for.

Take his sensitivity, his wise guy persona, his creativity, his culinary skills, his great camera presence, and his will to travel and be a work horse, and you have the perfect recipe for the man who’d bring about a new TV genre and a different perspective on what food really is and what it can do.

MAN OF THE PEOPLE

When someone becomes a cultural force, almost everyone sees a part of themselves in him. In my case, I saw Bourdain as a renaissance man. He gave me creative ideas through the smallest things I saw in his episodes. A movement here. A flicker of the eye there. A drunken sleepless night waiting for a food stand to open in Reykjavik or somewhere like that. A political discussion while having a traditional meal with a family in Finland or Sri Lanka. Staying at a hotel in Havana waiting for the storm. You know, things that you would like to happen to you.

I read a tweet today saying Bourdain encouraged someone to quit their job and write a book. There are so many tweets showing so many ways of how this former drug addict inspired others.

APT QUOTE POST-MORTEM

“He was that uncle that came to your house and everything just seemed right and hopeful with the world again,” one of my acquaintances said.

“Once, at the peak of my depression, I accidentally saw him on TV. He was just enjoying life and appreciating everything. Now I travel on food journeys and am happy again,” another acquaintance said.

“That smile sometimes made me feel that he may have been forcing it. After all, a good soul like his has to have lived in the darkness. And once you’ve been there, you’re scarred for life,” said another.

Unfortunately, the last quote my have been the truest.

DEPRESSION

depression hotline canada

Depression is a very broad term. Was Anthony Bourdain’s suicide just a simple overburdening of depression? Friends said he wasn’t himself lately and one of his best celebrity chef friends in Paris spoke of his friend’s very bad mood the last couple of days.

Maybe there were sudden overwhelming circumstances. Who knows? Maybe we’ll find out in time, if not for anything else than to understand what could make a man who was the idol of so many and was doing what he loved become so distraught as to feel the need to kill himself.

In the meantime, thank you Mr. Bourdain for re-introducing me to the power of the written and spoken word.

Rest In Peace, Sir.

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Contrived Fear and Enslavement

Words are the strongest things that exist. They give us joy and can drive us crazy. In a world rife with fake news, reality and truth can barely be distinguished. People are expected to act a certain or risk being shunned. I will speak of the abuse of words and its consequences.

We’ve all become aware of the term “fake news”. What we’re questioning is the meaning of the term. Fake news has a broad meaning which depends on the leanings and beliefs of the user. The term is usually used in the political realm.

Donald Trump got credited for coining the term during his election campaign when calling unsubstantiated claims and allegations against him as fake news. This brought about the careful and more informed scrutiny of the media by the right. It started becoming apparent that the left, as they had accused the right of continuously doing, had an agenda for Hillary Clinton to win the election.

When this agenda became abundantly clear, the Democrats went a step further to in discrediting Trump by making lewd sexual endeavours pop out every other day. When others pointed out the misgivings of Bill Clinton, the left-wing media responded with a “he’s not running for president and that was decades ago”. The words that couldn’t get through were that Bill Clinton committed proven crimes while in office. Also, Hillary was covering up her husband’s crimes by threatening or bribing or blackmailing his accusers and victims. This was continuously overlooked. It was politically incorrect to attack the Clinton machine.

It costs only a cable subscription to get bombarded and eventually driven into an intellectual void. This is done mainly through good old gaslighting that comes through, that’s right…. words. Gaslighting is classically known as a way someone makes you believe you are seeing something other than what is apparently and solidly there. Eventually, this can lead to weakness and even insanity. In short, it creates slavery.

That’s your brain turning to mush. Media manipulation is stronger than any drug because it cannot be undone. The information stays there and it affects you psychologically.

Political correctness is the intimidation factor here. You are taught what is acceptable. You are afraid to go astray because, like it or not, you will be shunned. You can lose your friends, your job, even your family. You are eventually to become a bearer of fake news or the victim of it.

Let’s go back to Donald Trump. For pointing out the obvious and giving it a term, he brought about all kinds of consequential retorts. He was a philanderer, a rapist. The politically correct machine had the power and blessing of most of the world because they have all been brainwashed or in charge of the brainwashing brought about by the media. The media is responsible for metting out the truth. Instead, they mete out what is assigned to them by special interest groups that pay their salaries. Donald Trump responded in kind and was quickly reprimanded for it. More labels. More negative -isms. As for Hillary, she was an angel, the purveyor of truth, the victim. The networks speaking up against her were seen as merely fringe opportunists. The intellectuals supporting Trump’s campaign were misled or profiteers.

Trump won the election because he travelled and spoke to the people. He got little airtime. He got almost completely negative mainstream press. But the people were hurting. Alas, there was someone speaking their language. The tone deaf that came out of the closet, even if for one Trump speech or rally, often understood the message. Trump was able to tackle taboo issues. The leftists cringed. Most Republicans cringed, albeit privately.

People need to believe. Blind faith only goes so far. Ergo, Donald Trump wins the election. It was not at all a surprise to me, seeing in how he had the wherewithal to oppose the politically correct media, pundits, and international community.

Let’s skew away from Trump now and just feel ashamed for looking at the skinny model above and finding her attractive. Fake news will label her as anorexic. At the same time, fake news will call out anything remotely associated with fat-shaming. Let me be clear that neither side of the coin is right. People are people. Instead of preaching equality, the media chooses who we need to shun. In this case, the more healthy model above. She is not anorexic. We all know what anorexics look like. The media won’t take the blame when our politically correct acceptance of fat and obesity leads to premature death. But people’s lives don’t matter. What matters is a loss of ethics at any cost.

This is an emo girl. She is a disenfranchised millenial. She is the consequence of the anomie and loneliness caused by fake news. Emo stands for “emotional”. Young people like this girl listen to melodic punk with emotional lyrics and undertones. They are often admittedly depressed youth. There is no ambition outside of their closely-knit community. Unlike previous generations of rebel youth, these young people will find it hard to get out of this emotional circle they’re in. They will be stigmatized and gaslighted by words. Fake words. Fake sentences. Fake stories. Fke news. They are inequipped to deal with or separate the fodder that acts as reality from actual reality.

If someone reads this sign and kills themselves, should the bitch in the picture be jailed? Is this sign appropriate? How can this sign be appropriate when a sign reading “MEN ARE PEOPLE TOO” would be found unacceptable? Have I lost your fondness for me yet? Have I hurt your politically correct feelings? Have you just decided to not think and blame? Or have you decided to take a step back and think?

So how does contrived misinformation enslave us? It keeps us in a state of uncertainty, which produces a fear of reacting with our minds. It makes us react and think like others want us to.

Yes, you are a slave.

Stress,Gut Health, and Irritable Bowel Syndrome — Beyond Eating Well

A few years ago, it would’ve been difficult to empathize with people who had to cut back on this and do that just in order to be able to function healthily. I never wanted to discipline my eating , sleep, and exercise patterns. Instead, I did my annual medical exams and took it from there. No exam had ever shown the slightest danger sign. It still hasn’t. Yet on a downward spiral I tend to go. I then lift myself up and do well for a while. But the problem is keeping the wellness intact. This remains extremely problematic because of the western world’s continues malignant approach to disease prevention. The system , rather, focuses on cures. All we have known may be untrue in terms of living a longer and healthier life, physically, mentally, and even spiritually.

You may wanna read this beforehand.

I will focus on gut health; something I’ve been affected by.

There are an array of illnesses and diseases that are related to the gut. I have had a few of them. Let’s take a look at the diseases I’ve had throughout the years with my digestive tract.

1. Gastritis

https://emedicine.medscape.com/article/176319-overview

I consider this the introduction to gut disease. It’s popularly known as indigestion. When you’re young and healthy enough, it just goes away. In my case, I got it at the end of a stressful time. This is quite common, seeing as your body protects itself at a time of stress by overworking your immune system. If the stress last too long, then the end of the stress lets your brain tell yoir body to let down its guard. This is when residual damage is done to your body because its defenses are low.

2. GERD (Gastro-Esophagal Reflux Disease)

http://www.health.com/health/condition-article/0,,20279852,00.html

This may also be called Acid Reflux Disease, although it’s not the same. For our purposes, I’ll stick to what I personally know.

I woke up one night when my throat was burning. It was as if acid had grown in it. The only cure seemed to be standing up for the rest of the night. When visiting the 3rd doctor at the same clinic, I was finally given something for it. The first 2 had told me to keep my stress level down and sleep with 3 pillows under my head. The good news is the problem was solved.

It went away after 14 days of medication. It has never come back since. But I have a feeling it helped the acid move elsewhere.

3. Allergic/Immunological Reactions

https://www.webmd.com/allergies/features/stress-and-allergies

About 3 years ago, I started getting small reactions to foods. I figured it was allergies. I even had reactions where my genitals became inflamed. It was never painful, but they could be life-threatening if not taken care of. My stress level went through the roof as no doctor could do anything for me.

One Tuesday night, I wound up getting a fully inflamed lip in about 10 seconds. I couldn’t feel the left side of my head further than it getying pulled and shriveling at the same time. I rushed to the ER. After 12 hours, the doctor gave me a prescription for anti-allergens and anti-inflammatories and, most importantly, a referral to an allergist.

The allergist was very accomodating and concerned. He said it was definitely not an allergy. He gave me a full immunological test to do and said I may have this rare disease that he would take care of. In the end, all was negative. Nothing found. Again. He ended off our last appointment asking me “stressed much?” and left it at that. When I asked him for a referral to someone for stress, he said they don’t function that way in the health-care system and to check with my insurance if I was covered for therapy with a psychologist. “Just forgetting about it should be the best,” he said.

Talk about someone unable to help further. This was a defining moment in so many ways.

4. Diverticulitis

https://www.webmd.com/digestive-disorders/tc/diverticulitis-topic-overview

Even Brock Lesnar Gets It

A few weeks later, I woke up at 2.23 in the morning with an excruciting pain on the lower left part of my intestines. It was a pain that would go away for 1 minute and come back for a few seconds. Again, the only cure was standing up.

I saw the same doctor I’d seen for my GERD. She is the best doctor I’ve ever seen. This made me relax. She saw that mynpain had subsided but was sure there was an infection in my gut. She blamed stress and a lack of fibre. She told me to go see a dietitian. In the meantime, she told me to eat very blandly. No fibre at all till the diverticulitishad fully gone away. She looked at me helplessly. She knew what I was thinking. And she knew she was helpless. I felt her almost was to reach out and hug me. Yes, things were that pathetic.

I booked an appointment with a dietitian for the next day at a private clinic. My insurance covered it. She was a nice-looking woman in her 30s who was more occupied with protocol than thought. She took out her Mayo clinic chart and also one from a local hospital I forget. There were instructions on how to build yourself up after the diverticulitis has ebbed. For a week, I ate boiled chicken, white bread, cheese, and lots of eggs. I lost 10 lbs. in 5 days. It was terrible. I felt weak. I revisited her after that week and we started my FODMAP training upon my request. Yes, I had to suggest it. Her face lit up. She told me to try some new foods and see if there are any triggers. I followed my calories per day and went back after a week and hadn’t gained any weight. She looked disappointed and forced a smile. She had failed. Obviously.

Thankfully, I got another attack and a CT Scan showed nothing wrong in any part of my gut. I saw a very good young male doctor at the private clinic. He was not covered by insurance. But fuck that. I needed help. He said that this was probably diverticulitis initially but thought it had gone away.

5. Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/irritable-bowel-syndrome/symptoms-causes/syc-20360016

There are many diseases and illnesses of the bowel. IBS is the strangest one because it is an assumption when all else has been ruled out. No one thought a colonoscopy was necessary and 4 different doctors agreed upon my having IBS. This was a relief in that it is less dangerous than most of the other possibilities, but it is one of the most painful every time a flare-up occurs. Also, there is no set diet. Just trial and error and, very often, retrial.

Studies have shown that IBS is almost entirely a mental disorder. It is caused by overwhelming or continuous stress. It is also a precursor to more serious ailments if not dealt with.

I finally got a family doctor, a nice docile woman from eastern Europe. She is afraid to ask for too many blood tests. She is also afraid to give pills. She admits it’s stress and leaves it at that. Again, no safety net. I tell her which pill helps me the most but we try other, newer ones taht don’t fucking work. I tell her it’s difficult for me and she makes a small joke and smiles. Again, helpless. The Cipralex I’m taking worked at first but started waning off. I’d say it currently works at 30% its original effect. I keep asking for Rivotril, which proves to work for me time and time again. She abstains. Every single doctor, including my neurologist, abstains.

What is getting me upset is that there seems to be a fraternity that leaves no room for second opinions. No doctor has given me a good reason why one drug is better than the other, except that the Rivotril is addictive. This reason is ridiculous, as I’ll probably be taking the drug for the rest of my life. If not, it just takes a few days of being tied to your bed and you’re fine.

I’ll abruptly end it off with a simple takeaway. TRY AND PREVENT STRESS. That’s the best I can do for now.

Here’s a post from a survivor. It is a great example of ills that plague.

Be like the girl below.