Udo Pollmer, food scientist, discusses the “Paleodiet”.
The principles of the Paleodiet are basially to eat a lot of meat, not consume grains, and limit the intake of other veg and fruit as veg and fruit are thought to have been scarce in “paleo” times.
Udo Pollmer explains (with the use of about 6 different reference books) what “paleo” humans and “nature cultures” really ate.
In the first place, let’s investigate the fruit and veg side of it. “Roots” looked a bit more like tree roots. Wild carrots are basically sticks, without taste (or if anything, with a bitter taste) and without much nutritional value. The same can be said for wild “field fruit” which also tend to be small, bitter and fibrous. Any mom who has battled to get her kid to eat his veggies, will understand the concept that humans didn’t exactly eat a lot of that stuff. Our veggies and fruit of today are deluxe foods.
However, what Pollmer’s sources do point out is that whenever a fruit was wriggling with larvae and worms, that was when humans tended to eat it with great gusto. Insects have a high fat content, and are good protein.
Now as for the meat. Humans are not, and have never been, particularly efficient predators (take the hunter’s gun away and see how he does). A lot of their meat was scavenged; once again, the more worms, the more delightedly they would eat it. The worms were guaranteed to be fresher than the meat. There was even a North American tribe that used to drive the buffalo across frozen rivers so that the buffalo would break through the ice and drown; then the tribe would follow downstream to see where the animals would wash ashore, and leave them for a little while until they were nice and bloated, and then open them and eat the green stuff. Protein would already be putrefied and broken down to amino acids, to a large extent, glutamate; it is no accident that humans have a “sweet tooth” for glutamate (aka MSG). Amino acids are a lot more accessible and easier to digest than proteins.
Among others, concerning the limiting of sugars: There was a tribe of Native Americans (even named after their habits) who spent several months a year collecting honey. This honey would be eaten in pure form, and in large amounts, to no further detriment of the tribe.
Therefore, if you were to look for the genuine elements of the “paleo” diet in shops, you’d struggle to find them (putrid meat? Wormy fruit? Roots that look like sticks?). It’s also questionable whether a modern human would even survive such a diet. What is sold as a “paleo diet” in today’s health freak circles was not even in existence back then. It is simply another modern food fad. Enjoy!
On that delicious note, and the one that the original diet followed by William Banting was in fact a kilojoule-controlled, high-alcohol-low-everything-else diet (his carbs were “restricted” to four slices of bread per day), I’ll leave you to munch, and I’ll post a little bit more of “A Friday Fairytale”.
From “A Friday Fairytale”:
As they flew high above the meadow towards the town, Nadisda saw something disquieting happening to the place. A yellow fog was wreathing its way along the valleys and gulleys. It had almost reached the town gates.
“What do you think is that?” she asked Nita.
The electronic-turned-fairy shrugged. “Never seen it before. Maybe one of Mike’s tricks?”
“Hope so,” said Nadisda. “Hope he’s aware of it.” She set down at the town gates with Nita following suit. They entered by Nita giving the poor gates a good blast of black magic to open them and Nadisda decorating them all over with black roses from the fright; then they went searching for Valentine’s party.
The yellow fog had started seeping into the town too, wreathing low between the cobbles. Where it touched, things went a bit fuzzy. Nadisda tried not to step on it and found that she had to fly low over the ground to avoid it.
“I don’t feel easy about this,” said Benita, who had taken to low flying as well.
“I think you need to tell Mike about it,” suggested Nadisda. “In his world. I just want to know that it is something he planned.”
Nita froze. Nadisda waited. The fairy unfroze again and reported back.
“Mike says he’s coming over to look. It isn’t in his part of the game.”
“Let’s find Valentine so long,” suggested Nadisda and carried on along the cobbled streets, passing dozens of disinterested-looking citizens. And she heard the commotion up ahead.
She flew faster and arrived in the town square, and saw what it was about.
A group of twelve assorted low-level warriors had surrounded Hero Hugo. Amongst them were Valentine and the Heroine; but both seemed to be frozen in time.
“Mike says his system is frozen,” Nita reported back. “He can’t move. He’ll have to restart, and if he does, he and Jen both get cut down.”
Nadisda flung a fistful of fire at the evil Hero Hugo, who laughed and pushed his way through the valiant low-level fighters, cutting them down with a single blow of his sword for each.
“So now you show your true colours, fairy!” he said triumphantly. “I was wondering about the tricks you played on me yesterday. So you’re fighting with the evil Villain?”
“You’re not talking old-fashioned anymore,” observed Nadisda. She saw that there was a red circle around Hero Hugo’s feet, marking him as an attacking enemy.
“And you have become a player,” added Hugo.
“Stop killing them,” demanded Nadisda. “You’re a hero, not a villain! Stop the slaughter! Good guys don’t do that.”
“Good guys sometimes have to cut down crooks,” replied Hugo. “Sometimes they have to stop people from thieving and breaking into other people’s treasure chests.”
Benita launched a ball of pure undiluted evil at Hugo. It was impressive; it hit the mark. His shield splintered dramatically into thousands of shards that disappeared in mid-air.
And the yellow fog wreathed around Nita’s dainty fairy feet. Its tendrils caught her and enveloped her; at the same time they swallowed up the heroine. Jen and Nita both fell into death-like rigidity and then crumbled to dust, that blew away in the wind. Valentine still stood frozen with his sword lifted high.
Hero Hugo glanced at Nadisda’s face, then casually turned to Valentine and struck him down with his sword. The Villain’s form collapsed to the cobblestones.
“Valentine!” exclaimed Nadisda and rushed to his side. The avatar was dead, and already going transparent. Behind her, Hero Hugo laughed.
“You can pour as much healing magic on him as you like, forest fairy,” he said. “He’s out of the game.”
“But – that’s not possible,” she gasped, staring at Hugo, her hand on Valentine’s shoulder. That shoulder became unreal under her touch, and when she looked, Valentine’s shape disappeared completely. He was gone.
Shaken, Nadisda got to her feet, fending off the yellow fog with a white shielding spell. Around her, the fog had conquered buildings and roads, and everything started crumbling and falling apart. Where buildings disappeared, dark voids gaped.
“What have you done?” she whispered. “What’s happening to the town?”
“Not just the town, fairy. The entire realm. Everything. I’m taking it over, and I’m rebuilding it my way. That yellow fog is a virus that is destroying the program. But before it deletes it, it copies it to my hard drive. So eat your heart out, fairy. You’re not even going to be in my version of the game. I’m calling it ‘The Everrealms’.”
“You can’t hijack it!” objected Nadisda, upset. “Mike programmed it and Jen created the artwork. You can’t just – steal it from them!”
“Ah, but you see, I can,” replied Hugo. “Because they are villains, and I’m the hero. Or in real-world terms, I’m a cop, girl. And they are juvenile delinquents, hackers, jail-breakers, on the run. The one riddle I’m still trying to decipher is where you fit in. Mike gave you the forest fairy for an avatar, that’s very unusual. He had the forest fairy as a fixed feature of the game. So who are you? Another thief? A hacker?”
Nadisda shook her head. “You can’t do this! Good guys don’t do this!”
“So you think good guys hack into people’s bank accounts and steal their money?” challenged Hugo. “Tell that Mike from me that his game is up. The virus has a tracker in it too. I know exactly where he is, and he won’t be there for much longer. He’ll be behind bars, where he belongs. In state penitentiary. He’ll be a guest of our president.”
The fairy in Nadisda wouldn’t have understood a single word; but the juvenile delinquent memories Mike had so kindly endowed her with (no doubt gathered from his own) interpreted everything perfectly for her. Hugo’s words chilled her to her bones.
Still, it was deeply unfair.
“He’s turned over a new leaf,” she protested. “We’ve got him on the straight and narrow. You can’t take the game away from him! It’s his ticket to an honest life!”
“Yeah – created on stolen equipment,” said Hugo scathingly. “Girl, or guy, whoever is behind that fairy avatar, I suggest you log out now before your computer gets wrecked with my virus.”
Nadisda’s patience was up. She launched herself at Hugo like a cat, her fingers spraying sparks of fire and ice magic, and clawed at him. The world went up in smoke around her and Hugo’s avatar disappeared, and she fell into the void.
Mike swore heartily at the computer that would simply not restart. Ben, Jen and Nancy all battled along with him; but the whole system was down, every last machine connected to the LAN had shut down.
Ben was the one who voiced the dreaded words.
“It’s a virus.”
“Trojan, more likely,” said Nancy.
“Whatever it is,” growled Mike, “it’s destroyed all our computers! Lucky that I took the external drive offline before we restarted. Who knows what it could have done to the backups?”
“So we need to check if the backups are alright,” said Jen urgently. “Reload it, to get Nadisda out of there.”
“Reload, on what?” asked Mike.
“Let’s try the old Dell,” said Ben.
“That’s what knocked the program out last time,” objected Mike.
“But at least you can check if your backups are still there,” said Ben.
Mike shook his head. “No ways. Not risking that. I’ll check on the library’s computer tomorrow. Nadisda organized me a friendly relationship there, I’ll go in and return the book and ask them a favour.”
“Sounds like a plan,” said Jen. “So what do we do in the meantime?”
“You mean, except trying to resurrect our systems?”
There was a knock on the door.
“Positions!” hissed Nancy, but she herself dived for the external drive, slipped it into her pocket and left through the back door.
“It’s Nadisda,” said Jen.
“We can’t be sure of that,” said Ben.
Mike was already at the door, opening it.
Two large police officers pushed their way into the room, one immediately handcuffing Mike. It went so fast that the programmer still had his mouth open trying to formulate a protest. A third one followed the first two.
“Hey!” exclaimed Jen. “On what grounds are you doing this?”
“You are under arrest,” the officer who had got a hold of her, told her in a bored voice that had recited these words far too often. She was handcuffed too. “You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can be held against you.”
“I have a right to know my charges,” she snapped angrily. Ben had been immobilized by now, too.
“Theft, cyberfraud or accessory, and jailbreak,” said the policeman coldly. “Now be quiet. You should never have broken out.”
“I’m a digital artist,” she said indignantly. “I was arrested under false charges the first time too! I’ve done nothing!”
“You broke out of jail,” the police officer replied. “That’s a criminal offence.”
“Some justice system!” she snorted derisively as the three policemen bullied her, her brother and her friend out of the house to the police van, and into its back.
Something gave her hope. Nobody had asked about Nancy. Maybe the Goth girl would get away.
This time, as she fell through the void, Nadisda spread her wings immediately to break her fall, and grabbed the USB stick that hung from its string around her neck. She focused on Detroit and Mike’s place. She had to warn him. But instead she landed with a bump before her wings could find a proper air current. It was dark, but not that dark. She was inside a room, on someone’s carpet.
She folded her wings away, got to her feet and took a critical look around. She was certainly not in Mike’s house; the traffic noise and din of a big city came from far below. She went over to the window and took a look outside. It must be an apartment on the twentieth floor, or something. She turned and studied the room in the sparse city light that fell through the window.
It was nicely balanced and well furnished with a high-class leather settee in a dark colour with some light scatter cushions on it, a low TV shelf housing an enormous plasma screen and the necessary paraphernalia underneath with a few little controller lights glinting green and red, a glass-topped coffee table, a deep plush carpet which she had fallen onto, and not much else. No clutter. Feng shui.
She had to find out where she was. She lit a small mage-light from her fingertips and investigated the flat she found herself in. From the balanced lounge, a door led away into a passage which ended in two rooms, a bedroom and a study. The bedroom resembled the lounge in its very Zen and peaceful furnishings, with a kingsized poster bed of dark wood, made perfectly with luxurious beige linen; a dark wooden bedside table with a very modern-looking white reading spotlight, and a well-worn Dean R Koontz novel lying on its face. She looked more closely. Twilight Eyes. She hadn’t read that particular one, which meant that probably, Mike hadn’t.
Beige curtains were open to reveal the panorama of an endless sea of lights, a large city by night. She went over to the window and peered down here too, this time taking a closer look at the kind of street scene underneath the flat block, and found that it was not so great at all. This flat may be well furnished, but it was positioned in an iffy neighbourhood. That was odd.
She turned and went to investigate the en-suite bathroom. The colour theme continued: Beige, dark-brown and black. It was a very stark, male design. She peered into the mirror cabinet and found shaving cream, various shaped razors including an electric one; hair-clipping equipment; dandruff shampoo, a nail clipper, mouthwash and toothpaste, and that was it. The electric toothbrush lay on the rim of the basin, next to a small cake of soap.
Not a hint of a feminine presence. No make-up, perfume, anything. Could it be a single man lived here alone? She left the bathroom and returned to the bedroom, and followed her nose to the study – the second bedroom.
Once again the stark dark wood theme was there; but the neatness was missing. The large, dark office desk was littered with papers, except for the PC screen and keyboard sitting at close reach slightly to the left. Whoever lived here, used his computer and his papers with equal intensity – and that was a lot of intensity.
The PC was only sleeping. She touched the mouse, and the screen came into life – showing folders open, and an action window that reported that something was being copied at the frantic pace of several GB per second. She read the file names and gasped.
‘Mike Nickells’ version’, read the one, and ‘The Everrealms’ was the name of the file being copied to.
“What,” asked a menacing voice from the doorway, “are you doing in my apartment?”
She turned and stared into the mouth of a handgun, and into the angry face of the man she had never yet seen but still recognized. Connor the Cop.
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