Bruce Cohen

The day Percy pitched me onto the street

I’m pretty damn sure I was the first white person in South Africa to be fired by a black person. I am revealing this little-known truth now in the hope that such credentials might earn me a place at the back of the queue behind those gay, disabled, half-Chinese women standing in line for some…

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Dead man walking in Shangri-la

For some time now I have been methodically cleaning up my lifestyle as my body has become less forgiving of abuse and more demanding of consideration. There were clear warning signs popping up all over the place: age-spots (free radical damage) on my forehead, bouts of sciatica, tendonitis, fibrositis and other inflammatory markers of a…

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301 ways to blow your mind

A record 301 new medicines are being developed for mental illnesses in the United States, according to a report released a few days ago. Wow. A record. Neat, especially as the Olympics are around the corner and records are metaphors for human excellence. According to the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) who issued…

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Ritalin: Tik for the middle classes

I received an email this week from a parent who had read an article I wrote a while back on Ritalin, asking whether we are poisoning our children with the stuff or paving a better future for them — though somewhat numbed! Ritalin is a metaphor for everything ugly about modern medicine — a form…

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The wisdom of whores

Elizabeth Pisani is unlikely to make many friends in SA — especially among those in the Aids establishment. This former journalist-turned-Aids-epidemiologist has just written a book with a catchy title of The Wisdom of Whores that deals head-on with the Aids crisis and pulls no punches; she is on a warpath against the Aids industry,…

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How I loved smoking

There was a time in my life some years ago when a dark fear stalked me: that I was destined to become the last person on earth who could not kick the smoking habit. Like a fat person in a bakery, I was losing control. Reminiscences about smoking seem such a grubby subject for a…

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Don’t blame fatties for being fat

Fat is enigmatic stuff and there’s literally much more to it than meets the eye. It was fat that first got me interested in nutritional health, one day stumbling upon Fats that Heal, Fats that Kill by Canadian Udo Erasmus who broke through the anti-fat fascism of the Eighties and Nineties (when all fats were…

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Alternative healing under fire

Burrow through a copy of your favourite daily newspaper’s classifieds section these days and you’ll stare into the abyss of alternative “healing”. Herbalist Prince Fahad Mama Farida wants to sell you a magic stick that will make you rich in seven days. Prince Wakho (sic) offers safe abortions and better pay, while Prof Dunga proffers…

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Thabo really needs a smoothie

I am worried our president is just not getting a proper breakfast. How else can you explain his, well, erratic behaviour these days? There may not be a crisis in Zimbabwe, but I think there is definitely one in the Tuynhuis kitchen. What on earth are they feeding the poor guy in the morning? Worse,…

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Why I won’t talk to my wife in the morning

My wife and I no longer talk to each other in the morning. We’re just too busy wandering around the house with our mouths full of oil. We’re members, you see, of that little-known global community, the Society of Oil Pullers. Laugh away, but oil pulling is catching on fast — and you didn’t even…

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