Coffee, Cigarettes, Books and Pastries

Getting through the day with enough coffee, cigarettes, books to read or even enough pastries to eat can be challenging for the average bloke or chick.

Things get in the way, e.g., work, driving, walking, bosses, spouses, texting, careers, doctors, dentists or just dealing, in general, with life and humanity.

Given an option, which most of us aren’t given, unless you’re in the top 1% of shysters scamming everyone else on the planet, every day could be spent drinking coffee, with a pastry or two in front of you, followed by a dash into a dark and dismal alley for a cigarette (the ones that are pure tobacco and not laced with thousands of chemicals) with a good book awaiting your return and a couch to nap upon.

Such ethereal joys seem to be meant for angels, retirees, poets, writers and the occasional madman, and are, of course, frowned upon by uptight Westerner’s, health fanatics, mainstream media liars, and Russiaphobia nutjobs.

“I am at the moment writing a lengthy indictment against our century. When my brain begins to reel from my literary labors, I make an occasional cheese dip.”
― John Kennedy TooleA Confederacy of Dunces

Avoidance of coffee, cigarettes and God forbid, pastries, is for hearty souls and minds – God bless them – with yoga mats over their shoulders, along with an odd assortment of shoulder bags carrying laptops, job necessities, healthy lunches and, of course, the ever present cell phone cradled between shoulder and ear while they pack it all into their car to head off to the wonderland of hideously ugly steel and concrete structures where idiots (bosses) are ever-present to ensure their day is a rip-roaring and depressing affair.

freddie-marriage-477021-unsplashAnd just when you thought that avoiding coffee, cigarettes and pastries will lead to a long and happy life of warrior pose, downward dog and goddess squat – you come to find out that life in this EMF age has become even deadlier as a new study finds that malignant brain tumors have doubled in the last 2 decades, possibly from the use of mobile phones.


And if the possibility of brain tumors isn’t enough to make one double their daily pastry intake, there are other “concerns” that might send you quickly to the streets of Paris to mainline baked goods before it’s all over:

At a glance / Mobile phone health scares:

‘Text neck’

Children as young as seven are developing hunchbacks and curved spines because of the hours spent bending over smartphones and tablets, chiropractor Dr James Carter claimed in 2015.

Crossed eyes

According to a 2016 South Korean study, excessive use of smartphones is causing children to become cross-eyed. Researchers recommended limiting mobile phone usage to 30 minutes at a time.

‘Cooked’ sperm

In 2016, fertility experts warned men that using a mobile for as little as an hour a day is ‘cooking’ sperm and lowering fertility levels so that conceiving could become difficult.


A study in 2014 suggested the nickel, chromium and cobalt found in most phones can cause skin irritations. At least 37 incidents of contact dermatitis were linked to mobile phones.

Mental illness

In 2015, a child psychotherapist blamed “the computer, the Internet and the smartphone” for an “explosion” in mental health problems amongst youngsters.



Of course, all these luscious side affects of constant mobile phone use have been known for some time, aside from the brain tumors, to anyone paying the least bit of attention to it all.  But just like nicotine addiction, our electronic addiction can never be satisfied, and so most of us give a shrug of the shoulders and carry on with the never-ending texting, with the cell phone permanently glued to the ear, only to be pried loose upon going to bed, yet still clutching our electronic pacifier as we sleep.

All the modern day glories of dashing from work to work-out, of head bent over looking at the latest inconsequential text, thumbs up and ready to reply, of sleeping with a device rather than the comfort of a warm human body, or even a devoted canine laying next to us, or…after a day enjoying the delights of coffee, cigarettes, books and above all, pastries – it probably comes down to a preference of which way one might choose to usher in passage to the great gig in the sky. For there’s always some nasty goblin lurking around the corner for each of us – how we choose to allow the grim reaper to call us from this grand mystery seems to be personal preference – unless you’re in the crosshairs of Washington’s lunacy of bombing other countries into oblivion – which, of course, provides you with no choice.

But if it comes down to just one choice to enjoy before the next grand comedy…let it be, above all else, coffee, cigarettes, books and pastries, and, of course, glorious music!


“From the Lucerne Festival 2010 conductor Gustavo Dudamel leads the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra in a performance of the Overture to Rossini’s “La Gaza Ladre” (The Thieving Magpie). A two act opera whose overture will be known to many.” (final few moments – the full piece can be heard here.)

GUSTAVO DUDAMEL conducts ROSSINI – “La Gaza Ladre” (The Thieving Magpie) ~ Vienna Philharmonic

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