Tuesday, July 23, 2013

My God. . . what's that in your pocket?

No, it's not the cute little green Geico Gecko with his Australian accent and ironic humour. It isn't the Aflac Duck, who seems to have broken a wing lately or something (but he only had one line anyway).

This is some sort of nightmarish mechanical squirrel that hands out pills.

Pink pills, Pepto-Dismal pills (as we used to call it). If they taste as sickish and paintlike as the original sickish pink liquid, then they'll make you throw up, which is one way I guess of relieving your stomach problems.

I heard once that during the war (and to my generation, The War meant only one thing) people used Pepto-Bismal as paint in a pinch, when nothing else was available. This tells me several things. One, that there must have been buckets of it lying around (why would it cost less than paint, or be more available?) Two, that there must have been a lot of sickish pink walls during the war. Three, that I think I'm going to be sick now.

And hey, waitaminute: the Pepto part I get, but Bismol? Does this stuff have bismuth in it? What the hell IS bismuth - isn't it radiactive, like Strontium 90? What's Strontium 90? Is that why it's pink?

(below. . . I hate to do this. . . I found out some facts about the bismuth, but could only post these few because I can't think about this any more.  I'm surprised this stuff hasn't been hauled off the market by the FDA.)

Dissolved Pills Mike Walker

Most modern medicines are carefully synthesized organic molecules so potent that each pill contains only a few milligrams of the active ingredient. Pepto-Bismol is a fascinating exception, both because its active ingredient is bismuth, a heavy metal commonly used in shotgun pellets, and because there is a lot of it in each dose. So much, in fact, that I was able to extract a slug of bismuth metal from a pile of pink pills.


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