I got so much enjoyment from the Point Reyes Light a few weeks ago that my brother sent me an issue of another rural rag, the Mendocino New Settler Interview, devoted to scientific research into a local agricultural product. I offer some, er, "highlights."
From "Editor's Beforeword": "This is how women practice science: With a babe at their breast, reaching for the research, talking at another gal. Science as another form of collaborative gossip; evoking tactile, gorgeous reality."
This is apparently in reference to a long, long interview with a young woman who claims to suffer from "Cannabinoid Deficiency Syndrome." The cure for the resulting systemic lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, interstitial cystitis, bladder failure, endometriosis, hypoglycemia, asthma, chronic sinusitis, allergic dermatitis, sterility and chronic bacterial infections that she suffers: juicing the "fresh leaf" of marijuana. Her auto-research makes her feel just like "Marie Curie," she says.
Juicing is a bit different, of course, from what's called "grazing," the scientific term for chewing marijuana leaves, which is what a local "gardener" named Bob does. His main source of nitrogen fertilizer: his own urine—40 to 60 gallons a year. He's a medical researcher of sorts too. "It seems to be bringing things back into balance in my body. And that's why I appreciate the plant ... I've noticed improvement in my elimination: my stools are much better formed and more regular since I started eating leaf; very much so. It has led to a major change in my stool formation."
And then there's an interview with a local medical doctor who declares, "I consider [marijuana] the single most important dietary element that humans should have on a daily basis, and on a frequent daily basis."
This is news that you won't read in your boring old New York Times. No wonder Big Journalism is dying.